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Showing posts from December 10, 2010

How I Would Have Died--If I Lived 100 Years Ago: Bicycle Racing

Latest post on my work blog:


On Wednesday, May 9, 2007, twelve riders (including me) started down a 3/4-mile winding descent known as Turkey Hill. If you live in the Northeast, you probably have eaten Turkey Hill ice cream. It's that Turkey Hill—a real place on the west side of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Turkey Hill is a coasting race; no pedaling allowed. Riders sweep down the hill crouched as low as they can get on their bikes, passing each other using the momentum of the draft. On that lovely spring afternoon, I started at the back of the group and picked off the riders one or two at a time as we went faster and faster down the hill. Just before nearing the finish line, I swept left to pass the lead rider. I timed it perfectly—except that the lead rider moved left. We touched wheels. I remember less than two minutes of the next three days. When two-wheeled vehicles touch wheels, the back rider crashes. According to the ten riders behind me, I flipped through the air and landed…