Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 December 2014

Wiggins recovers after bike crash

The scene of a crash in Wrightington, Lancashire, in which cyclist Bradley Wiggins was hurt
The scene of a crash in Wrightington, Lancashire, in which cyclist Bradley Wiggins was hurt
Olympic gold medallist and Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins has been involved in a collision with a vehicle

Tour de France-winning cyclist Bradley Wiggins and his personal coach, Shane Sutton, have both been knocked off their bikes and taken to hospital in separate road accidents within the space of 15 hours.

Wiggins, 32, suffered a bruised hand and ribs in his collision with a van near his home in Lancashire but was later allowed home.

Great Britain Cycling Team head coach Sutton, 55, sustained a small bleed on the brain in a crash with a car in Manchester and remains in hospital in a stable condition .

Australian-born Sutton, from Cardiff, has worked with the British team since 2002 and has been credited with playing a major role in transforming the fortunes of the sport in this country - including helping Wiggins to many successes including the world's toughest bike race and this year's time trial gold medal at the London Olympics.

Wiggins was taken by ambulance to Royal Preston Hospital following his crash in Crow Orchard Road, Wrightington, shortly after 6pm on Wednesday. The incident happened when the driver of a white Vauxhall Astra Envoy, a local woman, drove out of a garage forecourt.

It was reported that Wiggins was riding a mountain bike to meet a group of local cyclists near to his home in Eccleston. Lancashire Police said they intended to speak to the driver, who was uninjured, as part of their inquiries.

Sutton was in a collision with a blue Peugeot 206 driven by a 61-year-old man on the A6 Stockport Road in Levenshulme shortly before 8.55am. He suffered a head injury but was conscious as he was taken to Salford Royal Hospital.

The driver of the car was not injured. No arrests were made and inquiries are ongoing.

A spokeswoman for British Cycling said: "It is extremely rare that our riders and coaches are hurt while out cycling on the road, even rarer that two incidents should occur in a short space of time, and we wish Shane and Bradley a speedy recovery. Cycling is not an intrinsically dangerous activity but there is much more to be done to improve conditions for cyclists on the roads.

"British Cycling is calling on the Government to put cycling at the heart of transport policy to ensure that cycle safety is built into the design of all new roads, junctions and transport projects, rather than being an afterthought."

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