Monday, May 5, 2008

Poolesville: Crash

Here's a quick recap of the 40/50.

Not sure what the others, thought but the first lap was one of the hardest laps I've had to do. Might have been due to not getting a really good warm up. I almost popped a couple times, but stuck with it. Gravel section was pretty bad avoiding all the pot holes and water bottles. About 10 riders pulled off with flats. I also think a couple riders went down.

Second lap seemed to be much slower, although I'm not sure if this was because I was warmed up and legs were feeling better. Same conditions in the gravel section, lots of water bottles and flatting riders.

By the third lap, I was feeling really good, and was planning on moving up towards the front. On the downhill section just past the golf course, the pace really picked up to the lower 30s and then all of a sudden two riders, (Todd Gue and Spencer Beckett ??) in front of me are tangled up and going down. There are bikes and bodies bouncing in front of me. The world evolves in slow motion. I hit my brakes hoping to slow up enough to get around them. Unfortunately, there was no room as the bikes and bodies seemed to take up the entire width of the road. I really couldn't see any gaps to get through. As Todd bounced towards the gutter on the right side of the road, my only escape route was into the gutter. As I hit the one foot deep gutter, I barely missed riding over Todd's head and then hit the dirt embankment with my right knee and right shoulder. I cartwheeled a couple times before coming to a stop. Sitting in the grass, I tried to assess what damage I'd done. I had a huge gash on my right knee and my right shoulder was hurting. I checked for the tell tale signs of a broken collarbone. Fortunately, there was no bumps along the collarbone, but there was a painful bump in the area where the collarbone connects to the scapula. So, I'm sitting there kinda daized, and just trying to stay calm. And I see Luis San Sebastian, who was working as a rode guard. Thanks for taking care of my bike. I'll call ya to arrange to pick it up.

As I'm sitting in the grass, I look down and realize, I don't have my right shoe on. WTF? I lookover at the bike about 10 feet to my left and see my shoe with blacksock cover is still attached to the peddle. I also hope I'm not sitting in any poison ivy, fortunately I wasn't. I also look over to the right farther down the road, and there is another EMT truck sitting in the right hand lane just before the right hand turn, taking care of another downed rider. Turns out, he was on a flyer in the 4/5 race and solo crashed while trying to get some water. He was in pretty bad shape.

Anyway, the EMTs took me to ShadyGrove Hosp, I think I got there around 10:30ish and I didn't get discharged until around 1:30.


  • Knee wound: open to the knee cap. 1 internal suture, 4 external sutures
  • Shoulder; nothing broken, but possible Grade2 shoulder separation. I'll see my orthopedic early this week for official diagnosis and treatment plan.

Not sure how long I'll be off the bike, but I will be riding my trainer once the pain in my shoulder goes away.

Post Note Addition: I forgot to thank Manny and TonyG for asking if I was OK as they raced by.

Post Note Addition: Officially diagnosis: Grade 1 Shoulder separation will keep me on the trainer for at least a month.


Kyle Jones said...

Ray, I hope you get better. That stuff sucks to go through.

RayMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RayMan said...

Thanks Kyle
So you know what's funny? I always complain about the sketchiness of Cat 4 races but I've never crashed in a Cat4 race.

I've now crashed twice in 40+ races over the past three seasons resulting in a fractured shoulder socket in the first and a separated shoulder in the second.


1km2go said...

I saw you sitting there on the side of the road when we came by. I hope you recover soon.

DaedalusVelo said...

oh man, that's terrible! I wish you well and a quick recovery.

the irony of the 4's and master's...haha. Take care.

fabsroman said...


I hope you get better quick. Me, I did Poolesville last year, rode the course 3 times this year with teammates that were doing the race this year, and am glad I was going to be suspended for this one. Personally, I doubt I'll ever do Poolesville until they get rid of the gravel section portion of it. Last year, too much gravel. This year, too many potholes.

Get better so we can race in June.

Bryan Burns said...

I rode past you, but didn't realize who was down. hate to see that...hope you recover quickly.

RayMan said...

Thanks everyone. I saw the Doc yesterday and he wants me to stay off the road for a month to let the ligaments heal. He's pretty conservative when it comes to recovery and really wants it to be completely healed in case I fall on it again, which could result in further damage.

So, I'll be hitting the trainer hard everyday and will come back stronger.

Kyle Jones said...

At least it will be a month. A month puts you in june. That is still 3 more months of good racing.

RayMan said...

You better be upgraded by the time I get back, cuz I'm going to get into better shape then I already am, and will plan on crushing every Cat4 race I enter upon my return.

Kyle Jones said...

Stop pouring salt in my wounds my man. I feel every week that goes by that I have wasted another opportunity. I hope to have enough points to upgrade by the time you get back.

John(ny) said...


Happy to hear it wasn't worse. Have fun on the trainer--it's not so bad, as you know from the last time you were confined to the hampster wheel. It's been my go-to on the weekdays. Now you can watch NHL playoffs and fartlek your intervals with Crosby's shifts or something like that...See you in a month on the road.


VeloFish said...

Ray -

I haven't checked posts in a long time and was shocked to see what happened at Poolesville. Glad it wasn't worse, but bummed it'll keep you off the streets for a month. Get better soon.