It was the warmest day we’ve had here in a while and a friend sent me a txt around noon asking if I wanted to go riding today.  It was about 50 degrees and a ride sounded great!  Too much time on the bike indoors gets really boring and getting out on the roads would be awesome.

We headed out on a favorite ride of ours.  It’s about 47 miles total and covers a good portion of the Utah Half 70.3 triathlon course.  Winds were non-existent and we made good time through the country roads.  Very little traffic was out and it was just a great ride.

On the home-stretch there is a long, flat section that we really like; it’s great for a pace-line and just mashing out some speed.  We were cookin’ along at about 26 mph and I was in second position in the line.  I looked ahead, then down at the lead’s wheel, maintaining a close but safe distance.  Suddenly the front rider slowed down; no brakes applied but he stopped pedaling and the wind resistance slowed him down quickly.  Just then I glanced up to see three large St. Bernard dogs running at us from a farm house that we were passing.  My friend in front turned slightly to move further into the road just as my front wheel had overlapped his rear wheel by mere inches.

Out tires connected and my front wheel was quickly push out and away from my bike causing me to slowly begin to tip over.  Not much I could do but watch and realize that I was going down!

Most of the ground impact was on my forearm and elbow.  I tucked, ducked, and rolled to a stop in the road.  Ouch!  Everything on me seemed to hurt for a few moments.  Then I looked over myself and tried to asses the damage.  Good road rash on my right leg, mostly my upper outside thigh and knee.  Elbow took a good blunt-force blow and I thought something might have been broken.

In the end, luckily, there are no serious injuries.  Just about ALL of my cold weather riding gear is shredded — shorts, jacket, jersey, gloves, leggings, shoe covers… all just toast.  Now that I realize I’m pretty much ok I’m starting to get miffed at the total $$ damage to my gear.  Gave the bike a quick once-over and I think everything is ok there — the bike really didn’t take any impact; that was all on me :)

Moral of the story?  Stuff happens.  I don’t believe this accident was anybody’s fault.  However, I will definitely pay more attention next time even when I’m not the lead in the pace line.

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