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Vehicle Hits Endurance Cyclist Jay Petervary During His Great Divide FKT Attempt

Accomplished ultra endurance cyclist Jay Petervary was struck by a vehicle with less than a thousand miles to go on a Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMTBR) FKT attempt.

Jay Petervary on Arkansas High Country RouteJay Petervary on the Arkansas High Country Route in 2020; (photo/Dana Treat)
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Endurance cyclist Jay Petervary was struck by a vehicle while attempting a speed record on the GDMTBR, according to a social media post by his wife, Tracey Petervary. Per the cyclist’s tracking information, a vehicle collided with Petervary 30 miles outside of Salida, Colo., on the afternoon of August 27. An ambulance later transported him to Colorado Springs Memorial Hospital.

“He is alive with some broken bits,” the cyclist’s wife wrote on Facebook. She indicated a family friend would join Petervary at the hospital.

A later update posted in the early morning hours of August 28 listed the extent of Petervary’s injuries. The list is long, but thankfully, nothing is life-threatening. Tracey Petervary wrote that Jay was “able to feel whole body, could move and was aware.” His injuries included an L2 vertebra burst fracture, a left forearm fracture, a right humerus fracture, a cut cornea (but no blurred vision), and abrasions on his buttocks, hip, and elbow.

According to the post, Petervary will undergo arm surgery on August 29 and will be in the hospital for 2 to 3 days. During this time, doctors will conduct a spinal review. Petervary will likely be in a back brace for 4 to 6 weeks, his wife noted.

Petervary was attempting to set the fastest known time (FKT) on the Adventure Cycling Association’s 3,000-mile Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. The journey stretches from Jasper, Alberta, to Antelope Wells, Canada.

Shortly before the accident, Petervary’s team updated his social media accounts with a progress report. It indicated the cyclist was on day 14 of his attempt and on track to beat the current record. When the vehicle struck him, Petervary had less than 1,000 miles remaining.

In addition to making an FKT attempt, Petervary was raising money for bikepacking scholarships through the Be Good Foundation. Petervary’s trip marked his eighth ride along the GDMBR. In 2021, the endurance athlete won the Tour Divide, a race along the route.

“I am still obsessed with the challenge to unearth the deeper layers of this great puzzle; how to further focus my physical and mental skills to perfect fast travel on this route and my life’s mantra to #rideforward,” the cyclist wrote on Be Good’s fundraising page.

If his wife’s Facebook post is any indication, Petervary will still have the opportunity to solve that puzzle.

“Doc says he’s like Ironman,” she wrote.

Arkansas High Country Route

Bikepacker’s Paradise: Jay Petervary on the Arkansas High Country Route

Arkansas has created a growing buzz in the cycling community for a few years now. So Jay Petervary decided to experience the Arkansas High Country Route for himself. Read more…

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