Monday, September 08, 2008


Today's post isn't written by me. It's a copy of an email sent out by Paul Craft, promoter of the Friday night RAW Track Racing Series and all round cool dude.

What else can you say about the sport of track cycling when this is what they do for you?

Well the least I could do is provide a link and show the RAW logo!!

Dear Club members.

Could you please include the following letter as correspondence at your next committee meeting.
Cheers Paul

Dear CNSW club

I am inviting your club to participate in the Alex Simmons benefit night on the 1st of November 2008, to be held at the DGV with a post race function being held in the HBT, including an auction of cycling memorabilia and other goods. The plan is to raise enough money to purchase Alex a purpose built cycling leg attachment (est. value $5,500).

Specifically, I am asking your club to enter a three person team consisting of 1 x Women, 1 x Sprinter and
1 x Track endurance rider to compete in a short but jam packed 1 ½ hour race program. Team entry is $100 and all proceeds go towards purchasing Alex a cycling leg.

Information About Alex Pre accident:

Alex Simmons is an accomplished cyclist from BiciSport club. In the summer of 2006/7 Alex won silver at the Australian Masters Points Race (MAS2) and consequently earned the right to wear the Australian skin suit at the pending World Master Championships to be held in October of that year. Other than his accomplishments on the bike Alex had also become a coach
of many of Sydney’s aspiring cyclists as well as a number of Master riders. He also became a CNSW commissarie and was regularly seen at open events he wasn’t competing in. Added to all this he is also a cycling columnist for Velosport Magazine as well as his very popular Cycling Blog which takes a big interest in Sport Science.

The Accident:

11th April 2007 - Alex was on a normal morning training ride as scheduled by his coach. As usual it was an early morning ride, out at about 5.30am. He rode south from his home out to Taren Point, a route he had ridden literally hundreds of times over the past decade. Turn around via Sylvania Waters and back over Taren Pt Bridge on the way home using the cycleway on the eastern side of the bridge. That cycleway leads you into the car park of the St George Sailing Club in Sandringham and straight onto Riverside Dr. It was 6.15am as he crossed the bridge. Coming off the cycleway Alex was greeted with a closed boom gate, he hit it flush at speed, no time for braking or avoidance manoeuvres. The left leg, just below the knee took the full force and this impact. Multiple operations and many weeks of treatment later, the complications could not be resolved, resulting in the need to amputate the now non-viable lower leg. Alex spent the next 4 months in a hospital bed.

The below quote is from Alex’s Blog dated August 2007:

“So I went from my best ever personal race result, to losing my leg in a short space of time and dreams of competing at the world champs dashed. I was really looking forward to donning the Aussie skinsuit in the points race (an honour granted due to my result at the Nationals).

Still, I look forward to getting my prosthetic, walking again, losing all this puppy fat and ultimately getting back on the bike and being as competitive as before. It will take a while though but it will happen.”

Post accident;

Alex has become an inspiration to cyclist all around the world, many of whom regularly comment on his blog site; Alex is also the regular commissaire at RAW Track. He was instrumental in organising the Women’s Master Day at the DGV recently and continues to coach a number of Athletes. He has also gotten back on the bike and recorded a 500m time on 8th of August at RAW Track and competed at Heffron Park. Alex continues to give back to the sport he loves.

About the racing event.

• Track program starts at 5:30pm 1st November 2008.

• Program is run as a club omnium with points bei
ng awarded to the clubs in each of the three categorised races, Women’s, Sprinters and Endurance.

• The final event is a club team sprint.

• The club who win the most points will be crowned best all round NSW Track club.

• Alex Simmons will be riding a 500m TT to beat his previous time of 46.51 set Friday 8th August 2008.

• If you are struggling to fulfil one of the required team positions please contact us as we may be able to assist.

• Track program will conclude at 7pm.

About the Post race function

• Function starts at 7:30pm in the HBT main room.

• Cost is $15 which includes first drink and Canap├ęs.

• Members of the Australian Paralympics team will be welcomed home from their successful Beijing campaign.

• Video replay of racing event on big screen.

• Winning club from racing event will be presented with Trophy.

• The Auction is scheduled to start at 8:30pm.

About Auction

• All proceeds go directly to the purchase of purpose built carbon Fibre leg for Alex.

• Items can be pre bided on before the Auction

• Successful bidders must put down a minimum 30% deposit on item.

• Items for Auction so far;

1. CSC Jersey signed by Stuart O’Grady specifically for this Auction

2. Australian National Jersey signed by 2002 World Sprint Champion Sean Eadie specifically for this Auction

3. DGV rental for private club training day/night with CNSW coaches including world renowned coach Gary Sutton

4. Velocity Track wheels

5. Framed Signed Photo series of Robbie McEwen’s Successful TDF, Green Jersey, Yellow Jersey and Australian Jersey.

6. Framed Photo of Beijing 2008 Australian Team Sprint, team with signed Olympic ticket.

7. More to come

I have since learned there have been other very generous donations to the auction, including an Anna Meares signed jersey and some carbon race wheels from an
anonymous sponsor.

My only other comment is a minor correction - I won the Bronze medal in the MMAS3 Points Race at the Australian Masters Track Championships, behind the ever fast Graeme Albon and uber-cool dude Victorian Stuart Vaughan. It was an honour to share a podium with riders of that class.