Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Crash

So it has been a long time since my last post. This was generally due to a new job I had gotten. Seeing that now I had to work a normal day job and dress “appropriately”, my job didn’t give me much time to blog privately nor on this page. Even so, the only riding I got was to and from work. So, during that time, I decided to do my 17 inch rear wheel conversion.  It took quite some time but it was done well. I even used a superbike tyre for better grip.

So one day I decided that I have had enough riding starvation and wanted to test out the new tyres to carve corners. As the bike lanes in Malaysia are riddled with nice but dangerous turns, I decided to do it there (also because I live right there). Since I was riding to and from work with the narrow  “barely 1 car wide” lanes everyday, I was familiar with it by then.

The best part is, the advice I tell everyone as a rider in Malaysia for so long is “never use the bike lanes” I didn’t listen to my own advice. As I was preparing to go for my solo ride, i was planning what to bring with me. I knew I was going to speed so obviously my helmet would be in full face mode. I wore thick jeans and my safety boots (which I swear by because I have crashed hard and hurt my feet quite badly before. As  was about to wear my leather jacket, I looked out at the hot sun, shrugged and put it back down thinking of the heat. As such I thought it would suck if I were seen wearing my gloves without a jacket. So I didn’t. then, thinking to myself, if I crashed and my phone was in my pocket, I would break and I can’t call for help; so I placed that in my phone pouch on the handles.

Dressed in a thin shirt I was given by one of my company subsidiaries, I went off for my ride. Each lap was at least 15 to 20km and with barely any straights to rest, it was a challenge. I went 4 laps and on each corner I pushed the bike faster and faster scraping the pegs trying to find out how fast I can push it before I can’t anymore. By the 4th lap, on the beginning of the last quarter, I had pushed the bike to turn at 90kmh. I know how most of you may think “bah big deal” but consider this, I was on a dragstar that was lowered by its previous owner at least 2 inches, the lane was so small 2 bikes of my size could not ride next to each other comfortably, and it was a 90 degree turn. Knowing that the front disks were warped (wasn’t because of me), I took that chance anyway.

Before I leaned into the turn where the crash took place, here are the things that happened.
1.      I was dehydrated
2.      I was overconfident
3.      My favourite song was playing in my headset
4.      My front brakes didn’t work well
So, me being thirsty and tired, I was focused on getting to the pit stop up front for a break. Being overconfident, I did not expect  the turn to be that sharp and thought that I had space to lean still. As my favourite song played, I knew that if I sang along, I would lose some concentration but did it anyway..

Once I took the turn, I knew it had gone wide, I throttled it to try to keep it leaned in but realised that I had reached its limit. My bike was scraping on the frame. It must had lifted the rear tyre slightly as I tapped on the rear brakes because the rear gave way. Still throttling, I tried to correct my trajectory with the front brakes but because the disks were crooked, I couldn’t apply the proper amount of pressure to steer.

The condition of the bike lane didn’t help as well as the government had tarred the place over so many times that it made the side of the already narrow lane into a sort of ditch. As I rolled into the grass, I blinked and felt impact. I had hit the railing. As I opened my eyes, I was doing airtime that would make a skater blush.

When I came to my senses, I was facing face down in the grass with my full face on. Before getting up, I checked to see if anything was broken. At the time my right thumb hurt so I had assumed that it was a bad bruise; experience taught me to keep it close and not to move it. After assessing the damage to my body, I found I was quite badly scraped up and sprained my leg.

I walked around to find my phone and started calling my friend (and always the guy who rescues me) EelMan and my wife. While waiting for EelMan and my wife, some random Chinese dude on a KR150 pulled up and helped me out. There was also a random malay guy who asked me if there was anything he can do for me. The strange thing about the Chinese man on theKR150 now that I think about it is very similar to a friend I know called Zachary. I swear they are very similar but it couldn’t be Zachary because he cant speak Chinese.

Anyway, away to the hospital, and I was found to have:
1.      Broken scaphoid bone
2.      Bruised ribs
3.      Badly sprained left ankle
4.      A hole in my shin
5.      A small cut under my right arm (seems like hard impact)
6.      A cut from the right of my stomach spiralling all the way to my back on the right.
I have been in a fiberglass cast for 4 months and am finally free but only have under 50% movement to my wrist.

I would say although it was painful and scary for many people around me, I was glad I did it. It was the ride of my life. And I can proudly say “who says choppers cant turn?” the things I did take back from this accident was that I should source for new shocks, a good helmet is worth the money, wear safety gear and DON’T RIDE ON THE BIKE LANE!

By Vy

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