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Cyclist's brush with peacock

PUBLISHED: 11:43 13 May 2009 | UPDATED: 09:31 06 July 2010

WHEN keen cyclist Angus Jardine travelled to Norfolk for a 25-mile time trial he saw it as this year's best chance of getting a bronze medal.

Instead, he returned home with cuts and bruises, a torn skin suit and damaged bike - after a painful encounter with a peacock.

WHEN keen cyclist Angus Jardine travelled to Norfolk for a 25-mile time trial he saw it as this year's best chance of getting a bronze medal.

Instead, he returned home with cuts and bruises, a torn skin suit and damaged bike - after a painful encounter with a peacock.

The 43-year-old member of Ipswich Bicycle Club was taking part in the Cycling Club Breckland open time trial when the costly collision took place.

Mr Jardine said: “It all happened in about two seconds. I was happily cycling along when I saw the peacock standing by the side of the road on the pavement.

“The first thought that came into my mind was 'don't you dare step into the road' as it was sort of stepping around on the pavement.

“I was only three or four metres away when suddenly it bent its knees, its wings went out and it leapt out in front of me.”

Mr Jardine, of Claydon, near Ipswich, estimated he was doing about 27mph at the time and was only four miles into the 25-mile event.

“The next car to come round the corner found me sitting on the pavement with feathers raining down from the sky,” he said.

“There were feathers in the front tyre of the bike, stuck in the chain and all over the road including those big blue eye-shaped ones.

“The peacock was nowhere to be seen, it had run off. Whether it died later of its injuries I don't know.”

Mr Jardine, a self employed tree surgeon, was able to cycle back to the hall where the trial had begun and was given first aid for a cut knee, bruised face and black eye, and grazed shoulder and elbow.

His bike also needed some patching up as its handlebars and a pedal had been scratched in the collision.

And despite some teasing that the peacock may have been attracted to him due to the colour of his skin suit, Mr Jardine said he had since learnt this was unlikely.

“From what I understand female peacocks are not blue, they are small and brown looking,” he said.

“It is possible that it was challenging me but maybe it was just trying to cross the road and timed it really badly!

“The locals did seem to think it was a bit of a menace and hoped I had killed it as it wakes them up at 5am.”

But he said he did not wish the peacock dead, adding: “I am happy to share the world with wildlife I would just prefer it to learn the green cross code!”

Mr Jardine, who has been a keen cyclist for 12 years, had been hoping to win a bronze medal in the time trial as he did last year but instead has had to content himself with being the butt of jokes such as 'peacock fells lumberjack.'

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