Aussie stair-climbing champ paralysed after crash

From correspondents in Wellington, New Zealand
November 17, 2006 07:33am
Article from: Agence France-PresseFont size: + -
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AUSTRALIAN athlete Paul Crake is paralysed after an accident during a cycling race in New Zealand.

Crake, the five-time Empire State Building stair-climbing champion who finished third in the 2005 Australian cycling championship road race, was seriously injured when blown off his bike during the Tour of Southland last Saturday.

He remains unable to move his legs, despite having had surgery at a specialist spinal unit, and doctors fear the paralysis may be permanent.

“They’re not saying never but I mean it’s serious and obviously only time will tell,” ACT Cycling Federation president Steve Blair told the Southland Times.

“From the moment he regained consciousness, he hasn’t been able to feel his legs - and it’s likely that he won’t regain the use of his legs.”

Crake’s parents said he was “very alert and aware of his situation”.

“Despite the severity of the accident, we are taking a very positive attitude,” they said in a statement.

“Negatives can be turned into positives, and that’s something Paul certainly has the capacity to do.”

:eek: must be high winds ey?

[i]Crake recovering
12/23/2006 6:00 PM

Australian Paul Crake is continuing to recover from spinal surgery after his accident on the Tour of Southland.

Crake is recuperating in Sydney’s Prince of Wales hospital after flying back to Australia on Wednesday. Crake fractured several vertebra on November 11 during a leg of the Tour of Southland.[/i]

Meant to say I was talking to some people from Southland last weekend and they have been doing a fair bit of fund raising for Paul.

Bold, yeah it was bloody windy with a number of riders blown off their bikes.

Yeah, its a silly thing sports, in a fast sport like pro cycling, high winds are pretty dangerouras. So why would they let the race still happen in the 1st place. Are they waiting for people to actually Die before making judgement calls on stuff like that? Are “near misses” part of the game?

It is actually a race that has mainly amateurs or semi pro’s in it. Bad weather is standard during it with snow a regular feature and strong winds the norm. :eek:

I’m guessing they underestimated the severity of the winds during that stage. I know they reduced others and may have even cancelled some.