January 17, 2006 — Quebec cyclist Pierre-Olivier Boily, pilot for tandem duo with teammate StÃ©phane CÃ´tÃ©, out-raced death on Sunday night, January 8. Boily was returning from dinner with a friend on Highway 10 at Exit 140 (near Sherbrooke), when a vehicle approached them driving in the wrong direction down the highway. The resul was a head-on collision which instantly killed the 74-year old man driving the other vehicle.
Boily’s leg and pelvis were fractured, as well as his knee and ankle. “For the moment I’m completely dependant on others,” commented Boily who’s ungone surgery several times already. “Now I’m feeling better and I’m in good spirits. Sure my riding plans are trashed, but you can’t stop there.”
When teammate StÃ©phane CÃ´tÃ© heard of Boily’s accident he was in a state of shock. “When I heard the news I was beside myself. Since then we’ve spoken a lot, and everything’s fine — we’ll come back even stronger next year,” said CÃ´tÃ©.
“P-O isn’t just a teammate, he’s someone I’ve spent the majority of my time with for the past four years. During our preparation for the 2004 Olympics I think I spent more time with him than with my girlfriend! Certainly the accident has a huge impact in terms of being an athlete, but above all it’s tough simply as a person,” added CÃ´tÃ©.
Boily hasn’t begun to walk yet but he is approaching the accident with philosophy and humour. “I’d rather be here than dead, I just don’t want them to have to do an anti-doping test!,” he quipped.
“The fractures will repair themselves, and at least I didn’t lose a limb. Of course, then I would have become a handisport athlete. Overall I’m very lucky and I still want to ride and I know I will ride. I’m very motivated and there are many people who are supporting me,” he added.
Note to readers: a bulletin board has been created by Guy Maguire on the Veloptimum site for those who wish to send their best wishes and encouragement to Pierre-Olivier Boily. You can send emails to firstname.lastname@example.org – messages received will be published on the following page: