Accident puts Godfrey’s nationals campaign in doubt

New Zealand track rider Hayden Godfrey is hopeful he’ll recover from a training accident in time to contest the International Cycling Union (UCI) Track World Championships in Copenhagen, Denmark next month. Godfrey underwent surgery on his arm last week to remove glass and paint fragments from his arm after a car turned in front of him while training shortly after returning from the Track World Cup round in China.

Godfrey believes it’s unlikely he’ll return quickly enough to contest New Zealand’s national track championships on March 1. “At this stage I have not pulled out of nationals but I am being told it is very unlikely it will be healed enough to race with,” Godfrey told Cyclingnews. “I have little strength in my hand and the biggest problem is the wound is right where my aerobar pad sits under my forearm. I was looking forward to racing the Omnium at nationals and with my current form expect I would have gone pretty good."

Godfrey took a silver medal in the men's scratch race at the Chinese World Cup round in Beijing. He’s hopeful that performance will help with his selection in the Worlds squad, providing his recovery is on track.

“The nationals are an important selection race for worlds but after the Beijing World Cup I think I've proved I’m on track for worlds,” he said. “It’s obviously going to depend on the next couple of weeks, to see what training I can do and how well the injury heals. Worlds are still seven weeks away and I’ll be working closely with BikeNZ medical staff to rehab the arm as fast as possible and make sure my form is at 100 percent come race day, but right now only time will tell.”

The vehicle turned across Godfrey while he was training on a straight piece of road. With no warning of the car’s sudden movement, Godfrey said he looked up and simply had nowhere to go.

“My handlebar has broken the window of the car and I have stuck my arm through it then gone over the car, pulling my arm back out, cutting my forearm quite deeply in a U shape flap before flipping over the car and landing head first,” he recalled. “My helmet definitely saved me from serious head injury and was destroyed. It was a real bleeder, but apart from my arm I came out relatively unscathed.

“At the hospital they decided pretty quick it needed operating on especially after an x-ray reveled glass and paint fragments imbedded deep in the wound,” he added. “I didn't get the operation until the next morning when they pulled the glass and paint out and sewed the muscle back together.”

Godfrey claimed the UCI’s world champion rainbow stripe jersey in the omnium at the 2008 worlds in Great Britain.

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