Highs and lows

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Last week was full of highs, a massive 273km ridden in a week and my longest ride to date, 133. The joys of a Gran Fondo badge from Strava in my trophy case.

This week started well to with a second KOM on a short TT route a friend of mind set up last year. As he is now third on the list I am sure he will be working hard to regain the top spot.

It was on the way home, however that the lows kicked in. I was overtaken by one car who gave me plenty of room, however the following car unfortunately did not. As they overtook me the first car braked as they approached the 30mph sign for the village, with plenty of time and space, however the second car didn’t have the space and cut in. The result was the rear of the car clipping either my front wheel or handlebars and away I went. A wobble and a shake then splat into the grass verge and it hurt. Thankfully I was not travelling at a high speed otherwise we could have been talking broken bones or there could have been a long silence if I was unable to post anything onto this blog being hospitalised or worse.

The most annoying thing about the whole situation is the driver didn’t stop. I can’t say if they noticed their driving actions had caused me to leave the road and end up in a heap on the grass verge. If I was more seriously hurt then I don’t know how long it would have been before someone would have found me, this is the really scary thought.

Now at this stage I am not trying to start a drivers v cyclist war, there is enough of those in the media already. The fact is BOTH cars and cycles have the right to use the roads. From a personal perspective I know that from cycling I give cyclists much more room than I did many years ago.

Investment is what is required. The gutters of any roads are full of debris and stones which are just a nightmare for any tire but especially a bike. Cycle lanes help but can’t be everywhere. We also need to educate both cyclist and drivers to respect each other on the road. You also don’t see as many road sweepers as you did in my youth, no doubt to the harder economic times the councils face, but this all adds up to worse conditions for all.

Of course the main problem is money. Improvements to roads and the traffic systems, cleaning the road and even providing education costs money. To add to this all the changes required will take time. Think of the use of seat belts in cars, not many if any would not use one now. However for wide spread acceptance it took legislation and time for people to adapt. The same goes for the various drink driving campaigns.

Well back to me on the bike. I hope to be able to get out again soon to banish the events of earlier this week. Thankfully I was not seriously injured, which will help be get back out there.

Just remember we all have a right to use the road but also have many responsibilities to obey the traffic laws and keep each other safe. Drive safe and cycle safe for the sake of everyone.

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