Cyclist sues fellow rider for £370,000

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A CYCLIST is suing a fellow bike rider for £370,000 damages after claiming he failed to keep a proper hold on his handlebars before a crash.

College lecturer John Telfer blames school teacher Gordon Macpherson for causing the crash in which he suffered a head injury after being sent flying over his handlebars.

The pair were part of a group of enthusiasts who regularly met up on a Sunday morning for a road cycling outing.

But the Court of Session in Edinburgh heard that Mr Telfer was seriously injured during a group run on June 15 in 2003.

Mr Telfer, 47, of Overton Crescent, East Calder, in West Lothian, has raised a compensation claim against the other cyclist.

A 12-strong jury was told that damages have been agreed at 370,000 in the case, but that liability is disputed.

The jurors will have to decide whether the accident on the B8020 road near Winchburgh, in West Lothian, was caused by Mr Macpherson, from Columbia Avenue, in Livingston.

Mr Telfer said nine members were taking part in the group outing which had seen them cross the Kincardine and Forth Road bridges before returning towards Livingston.

His counsel James Campbell QC asked what he next remembered and the accident victim said: "It still goes through my mind pretty much every day. It is quite correct when people say that things slow down.

"I saw Gordon Macpherson do this movement from left to right across the road. I remember seeing his hands go down to the side of the handlebars.

"I got a clear view of when his hands came down and effectively lost control of the bike.

"His weight seemed to go totally forward. His chest practically made contact with the stem of the handlebars," he told the court.

He said Mr Macpherson lost control after his front wheel reached a manhole cover and came off his bike. The following riders, who were ahead of him, also fell off.

Mr Telfer said he had time to react and changed direction to try to avoid the fallen, but that took him onto a verge, where he was pitched over the handlebars.

"I just remember an almighty crunch at the back of my neck and I lost consciousness for a period of time. I regained consciousness and was unable to move," he told the court.

The trial continues.

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