It is not my intention to write up the ride, more so to mention a small section of it.
BACKGROUND: The ride started in Freo, with the biggest bunch that Perth can muster up. I did see a couple of SPR riders at the start and some pick up the ride as it went along. From the word go, it was clear that there were many a punter that would be attempting to ride well above their physical strength and skill level. After a little bit of sorting out, the ride was solid and the group was getting smaller and smaller. After the Shelley section, we were less than half the size we started with. I was really pleased with this as it was getting “safer” by the minute.
THE INCIDENT: We crossed the little white bridge and the rider in front of me (clearly riding on his limit) must have been looking elsewhere and seemingly did not see the left curb until he was just about to (or he may have) hit it, he braked and swerved back into the bunch. He made contact with my bike, taking out my front wheel and sending me over the handlebars and onto the road. As I was flying through the air, I was thinking, “this cannot be happening”. I have sustained some injuries to my lower back and hip. My bike needed significant work on it. Thankfully the riders around me were skilful enough to not also come down.
THE AFTERMATH: A bunch of riders stopped to help me, as far as I know, the guy responsible did not. I was really pleased to see members of the SPR family, as I was assisted off the road, in quite a rage and pain about the whole incident. I was clearly not ok to continue riding (nor was my bike) and Meg & Carlos just happen to be riding past and helped me arrange to get home.
THE POINT: I was really pleased and thankful that my club members stopped to help me in my time of need (thanks guys). I wanted to mention that as you ride in a group, your actions impact on other riders and I encourage all riders to take on board feedback from others on their bunch skills. I also encourage other riders to speak up if they are concerned about the safety of a rider/bunch. Being too politically correct may result in the bunch (as a whole) not progressing their skills. If you ride with the same people week in, week out, you start to create your “acceptable riding environment”. Also, as your strength as a rider progress, you will likely ride with more challenging groups. However, once you start to red line, your perception and decision making skills are significantly reduced, and this is the time that accidents are likely to happen. Just be aware of the other riders around you.
Happy Riding Everyone