Message from Mike

  1. John you are correct walking puts a lot more strain on a new ankle but let me pass on what the so called experts atv Epsom have said to me. Last year I saw two surgeons and they both came up with same prognosis. Whatv promted me to seek advice was when I was in Worthging in the spring last year I came across a chap who was in agony. I said to hime what have you done and he said some 3 months ago I had a new ankle. Then more recently some two weeks ago he stepped down a 6 inch step and broke the ankle, not the ankle as such but where the new ankle was glued to the leg. He was now still waiting to see the surgeon again to find out the next step forward. So I went to my GP and got a referal to an ankle surgeon in Epsom. He told me that medical science was still a long way from perfecting the replacement of ankles which is the most complicated joint in the body.

    The main problem is the fixing of the new ankle to the foot and leg. It is a long way from being perfected. The surgeon asked me if I wanted to continue cycling or was I prepared to change my life style and I said that I wished to carry on cycling for as long as I could to which he replied the problem of haveing a new ankle is that if it goes wrong there is no chance of a second ankle due to the problems of fixing the second one to the leg etc! So with this I decided to carry on. But as many of you will have observed I have been having difficulties in walking for some time on Easter Tours etc. (evening walkabouts!) So I decided to seek a second opoinion and again was reffered to anothe rexpert at Epsom. This time the surgeon happened to be a keen cyclist and was fully aware of my predicament. He asked the same daft question do you want to continue cycling? To which he said yes! To which he replied then you will have to get someone else to carry out the poperation - was not prepared to ndo it for fear it did not work out. I then asked him if I could have the ankle fuzed to which he said yes but explained that he would not recommend fuzing as it would prevent toe and healing which he maintained was essentil for the most efficient way of cycling. He reiterated again that I could get another opinion and maybe find a surgeon to do it but he would not!

    So John untill this latest catastrophy that is where I was at still managing to time trial and do my best to get H/C points

  2. I appricate that my track record on giving any advice on anything cycling is pretty dire.

    But the electric bike suggestion was not frivilous  I have ridden them and they make a massive difference.Thinking about it somemore I guess if  you do pedal with the ball of your foot over the pedal spindle then that is putting some tourque on the ankle which can't be a good thing if it's just glued together. I think you could ride  an electric bike mid sole  or almost with your heels, as derny riders do, plainly you would have to drop your saddle, the purpose being to minimise the flex in the ankle and apply the power ( only about 50 watts or so) more or less straight down the shin bone.I really think this would be doable. Cleats of course  would not be a good thing.

    Your potential surgeon needs to try out an electric bike. Surely it just has to be less stressful on ankles then walking.

    Might be worth putting a post on the Cycling UK or AUK  forums somebody out there must have been through this.

  3. Thank you John you really are the most thoughtfull and helpful man. Actually I ran out of steam in replying to your comment as I had not meant to dismiss your suggestion of an electric bike. In fact I was talking to Bernard from MWW on the Wednesday before my accident at Leatherthead. Last year he was Doored by an errant motorist along with Toni de Italia near Sutton Bus station and got some compensation via CTC. At Leatherhead he was riding a newly aquired BOSCH electric bike which looked very smart with hydraulic discs and the lot and quite a powerfull motor. I suggested it must have cost around six Grand & he said around £3.5K. I have to say however it seemed to weigh a Tonne but according to Bernard was very comfortable. 

    So John I have not dismissed your suggestion at all. In fact I have always wanted a Brompton but found them very expensive. They have now launched an electric version and I plan to look furthe into that!

    On the other hand, while I have given up the idea of any more racing this year (I was planning to ask you if you would pace me again in the Redmon 2-up) despite all my Adversity I have not given up the idea of doing TT in 2018. Clearly I have to wait and see how I recover but I am not put off by the idea of riding my bike again.

    Thakn you John & Carolyne for your support as ever.

  4. Mike, I trust you are recovering and it is good to hear that you are planning for next season.

    In the meantime you could convert a bike for £700 by using one of these conversion kits: Bafang Mid Crank Drive Electric Bike Kit

    On Saturday our MTB group went to Stoke D'Abernon and met up Mickey Ayliffe and Barry Gregory. They were on their road bikes and both were using this conversion, done by Barry in a couple of hours. They were both delighted and although it does add  weight to the bike it doesn't matter unless you have to lift the bike eg over a gate. This system can be fitted to offer either pedal assistance or giving power without pedalling at the press of a thumb throttle. There are a variety of available batteries, the most powerful being attached to the frame and giving a range of over 55 miles.

    Clearly this kit isn't going to do a lot for your training, well not until if runs out of juice! but it will get you out of the house and back to your social circles.


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