Tour de France 2014: Veteran Briton Brian Robinson suffers suspected broken collar bone after being knocked off his bike

Robinson became the first UK competitor to complete the Tour in 1955 and won his first stage three years later

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Cyclist Brian Robinson - the first Briton to finish the Tour de France - has been admitted to hospital after a collision with a car while on his bike.

The veteran road racer, 83, was cycling with friends when he was hit by a car just three miles from his home in West Yorkshire.

Emergency services were called to Lees Hall Road in Thornhill Lees at around 1.20pm and rushed Robinson to hospital where he was being kept in overnight and being treated for a suspected broken collar bone and cuts and bruises.

The pioneering cyclist's son-in-law Martyn Bolt, a Conservative councillor for Mirfield in West Yorkshire, said the family was "shaken up" by the crash.

He said: "He was descending a road when the collision happened. He has suffered multiple bruises and lacerations and what looks like a broken collar bone. Skin and blood came off.

"Your leg is one of the places that is hurt when you are hit and bounce across the road, but unlike many cyclists on the Tour de France, he hasn't got as much padding as some of the younger ones.

"We don't know how long he will be in hospital for, but we are hoping he will be back on his bike before too long. He likes to go out twice a week to keep fit and spend time with his friend. Inactivity is not something that sits well with him. It has obviously really shaken the family up."

He said Robinson's wife Audrey dashed to his bedside at the surgical assessment unit at Pindersfield Hospital after hearing the news.

Robinson, who lives in the small town of Mirfield, was a trailblazer for British cycling on the Continent, becoming the first Briton to finish the Tour de France in 1955 and the first to win a stage in 1958.

He was an ambassador for the hugely successful Yorkshire leg of the Tour de France, which saw millions of fans line the county's streets to cheer on the world's best cyclists earlier this month.

Gary Verity, the man behind Yorkshire's Tour de France bid, said on Twitter: "Thoughts & prayers tonight for Brian Robinson please."