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Old 08-07-06, 07:38 PM   #1
cycle17
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I almost bought the farm!

"A few feet to the left and I'd be history!"

Well, I've been working a lot of hours lately. And fitting in riding time has been a challenge, but I've been making time. Work will settle down a bit after this week, but I went out on a 20 miler tonight, familiar route and about 12 miles in I'm coming down a fairly fast road with some corners. The speed limit is 40 and the corners are open enough to see traffic coming. I'm doing about 35mph and come into a right hand turn I'm leaning the bike a little and I always grab a little front and rear brake just before entering this turn. A white ford pickup is coming from the other direction, but appears to be in his lane. I've riding this road dozens of times this year alone.

So I squeeze a little of both brakes and the back of the bike totally loses traction, I counter steer but the back end kicked out so fast that it whips my left foot out of the pedal! The bike slides towards the other lane completely sideways and then the back tires catches, now threatening to throw me over and around heading across the road in front of on-coming pickup at 35 mph! I manage to correct the steering/handlebars and because I almost always keep pedaling down hills...I have a rythym with my right leg which is still clipped in and manage to keep the crank rotating. I manage to keep my balance and the bike manages to come back into my lane/right side of the road with about two feet to spare between me and the oncoming pickup! I still had enough speed to stay up right and keep going. Man!! Was that scarey though. I thought "I just came within two feet of certain death!" Whew.

A couple observations:

1. the road is fairly smooth and free of debris, so I don't think that was the cause of this
2. Conditions were dry, 84 degrees and mostly sunny...ideal for cycling
3. Bike handling skills,(especially the ones I learned from years of mt biking) are important and likely saved my life! As is a good bit of luck and a calm head!
4. Although this seemed to happen in slow motion, it all took place in the span of about 3 seconds or less
5 I did not need to change my cycling shorts after this incident , and I'm still alive and unhurt
6. If I hit that truck head-on at 35plus mph...I'd be dead for sure!
7. I shredded the MIchelin Pro2 Race tire on the back of the bike last week when I ran over some metal. I had to put an almost new Bontrager Race X Lite Silica tire on until the new Michelin comes in at the LBS. I think that this tire just doesn't have nearly the traction or grip that the Pro2 Race has and as a result the back of the bike just took off. I've taken that turn upwards of 40 mph several times before without even a hint of losing grip I road the rest of the ride a little tentative about leaning the bike over like I normally do to make turns. I just don't have a lot of confidence in the rear tire, until I can get the Michelin back on there.
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Old 08-07-06, 07:47 PM   #2
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Glad youre ok.
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Old 08-07-06, 08:01 PM   #3
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The fast and the furious: CT Drift.

Glad your ok!
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Old 08-07-06, 08:02 PM   #4
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Sounds like one hell of an adrenaline rush, though!!
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Old 08-07-06, 08:05 PM   #5
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Well, at least you got a good story out of it! What's life w/o some good stories? Glad to hear you're ok.
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Old 08-07-06, 08:32 PM   #6
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Thank God you can look forward to two retirements.
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Old 08-07-06, 08:36 PM   #7
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Dude!!!! +100 on the okay... geesh!
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Old 08-07-06, 08:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottogo
Thank God you can look forward to two retirements.
I'm exactly sure what you mean... but I assume it's a stab at humor...so I'll say "Thanks!"

I was just on the phone telling my girlfriend about my "close call" and now she is all... "You better be careful!...I want to see you this weekend!"
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Old 08-07-06, 10:49 PM   #9
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Wow, glad to hear you're OK. I've had a few near-death/near serious-injury biking moments, but narrowly avoiding a head-on collision at 35mph sounds particularly scary.
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Old 08-08-06, 01:13 AM   #10
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Congrats on a remarkable save, Nicky Hayden would be proud of you.

Did you check your shorts for skid marks?
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Old 08-08-06, 05:38 AM   #11
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oh my gosh! cycle !!! Im so glad you're fine!!! I was allready complaining that you're not around enough anymore! dont you get hurt too!
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Old 08-08-06, 06:46 AM   #12
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geez cycle, glad your ok! becareful, things like that happen in a blink of an eye....
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Old 08-08-06, 07:07 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cycle17
I was just on the phone telling my girlfriend about my "close call" and now she is all... "You better be careful!...I want to see you this weekend!"
Girlfriend?
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Old 08-08-06, 09:02 AM   #14
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dood, nice save ---

(don't worry, there aren't any places in Lancaster to get that fast downhill)
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Old 08-08-06, 09:11 AM   #15
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I see my voodoo skills need improving...
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Old 08-08-06, 10:20 AM   #16
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You're lucky!

A few weeks ago I was riding down a new hill I found to hit some serious speeds on. I had it up to 50mph when a few hundred yards ahead there was a pickup truck pulling out in front of me. I grabbed both brakes and saw a cloud of grey smoke come off of the front brakes when they hit the rim. Had to pass him on the left to avoid becoming a part of his tailgate.
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Old 08-08-06, 10:49 AM   #17
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Unfortunately biking with cagers and close calls seem to go hand in hand. Sounds like a great save from high-siding. Reactions are the only thing you can rely on in a moment like this.

I had a similar experiece last month where a car took my lane and only left about 12" of road to its left side of the corner. I had only slowed to about 20 MPH for this corner and had to stuff the bike to avoid a head on. My motorcycle racing reactions took over and saved my butt.

Glad to hear you and the bike are ok! How long did the adrenaline rush last?
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Old 08-08-06, 10:57 AM   #18
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[QUOTE=cycle17]I'm exactly sure what you mean... but I assume it's a stab at humor...so I'll say "Thanks!"


No one knows when they are going to leave this world and people like me don't even want to think about it but this type of experience makes it clear that a few feet can bring us to the edge.
Hope you retire the bicycle soon and can retire at 67 or whenever.
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Old 08-08-06, 12:59 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottogo
No one knows when they are going to leave this world and people like me don't even want to think about it but this type of experience makes it clear that a few feet can bring us to the edge.
Hope you retire the bicycle soon and can retire at 67 or whenever.

I hope cycle will not retire his bike and I still believe in the old racing philosophy on close calls.

An inch is as good as a mile!

But thumbs up to retiring at 67. More time to ride.
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Old 08-08-06, 07:44 PM   #20
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[QUOTE=scottogo]
Quote:
Originally Posted by cycle17
I'm exactly sure what you mean... but I assume it's a stab at humor...so I'll say "Thanks!"


No one knows when they are going to leave this world and people like me don't even want to think about it but this type of experience makes it clear that a few feet can bring us to the edge.
Hope you retire the bicycle soon and can retire at 67 or whenever.
Thanks for the concern, but the bike is not being retired, and I am not about to stop cycling! It's one of the things I truely love to do, and look forward to each and every time I go out on a bike. This may be Foo, but it's still a website called bike forums. I've had a few other close calls, but this was a sure thing that I was a goner if I'd have ended up in front of that truck. Won't make me sell any bikes or stop riding though. Life is full of risks.
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Old 08-08-06, 07:47 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blonduathlongrl
oh my gosh! cycle !!! Im so glad you're fine!!! I was allready complaining that you're not around enough anymore! dont you get hurt too!
Aww...thanks blondie! This is the busiest three week span of the year at work for me. Things will settle down a bit after this week and I'll post more regularly. But...they are starting to crack down on internet sites and usage at work, so I try to keep posts during the day to a minimum. Good to see you miss me though. I can have that effect on people!
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Old 08-08-06, 10:29 PM   #22
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[QUOTE=cycle17]
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottogo

Thanks for the concern, but the bike is not being retired, and I am not about to stop cycling! It's one of the things I truely love to do, and look forward to each and every time I go out on a bike. This may be Foo, but it's still a website called bike forums. I've had a few other close calls, but this was a sure thing that I was a goner if I'd have ended up in front of that truck. Won't make me sell any bikes or stop riding though. Life is full of risks.
Yes.
Re tire the bicycle's rear wheel.
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Old 08-09-06, 07:35 AM   #23
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^^ O.K. now that makes more sense.
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