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Canadian cyclist shot in random attack qualifies for Paris-Brest-Paris

Craig Premack, whose forearm was shattered in June shooting, rode 600km event two months later

A cyclist from Canada who sustained shattered bones in his right forearm after he was shot while on his bike is back in the saddle – including riding in a 600km endurance event that qualifies him to take part in Paris-Brest-Paris next year.

According to the newspaper The Province, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are still looking for the person who shot Craig Premack in the incident near Spences Bridge at around 1am on 1 June this year.

Officers say the 55-year-old cyclist was lucky no to be killed when he was shot as he headed back towards Vancouver while taking part in a 600km rider organised by BC Randonneur cycling club.

With the bullet having passed through his arm, shattering the bone, Premack managed to stem the bleeding by improvising a tourniquet out of a pair of cycling shorts.

However, he says he will not let what happened to him affect him mentally, telling the newspaper: “If I got super uptight about it, it would be almost like he beat me another way.

“You don’t want to dwell on it. You want to do your best to get over it.”

Some tasks are too difficult for Premack to undertake because they hurt too much due to his injuries, and he said of his qualification ride for Paris-Brest-Paris – undertaken in August, just two months after being shot – “that was an exercise in pain.”

He is making a gradual return to work as a machinist, but with the work involving pulling wrenches, he is in continual pain.

“It’s not like something where I forget about it and a couple of hours later I’ll go, ‘Oh, that hurts’,” he explained.

“It’s something that hurts just about every minute I’m at work. I’m just going to tough it out.”

Premack, who plays the piano, said his doctor, also a bike rider, had told him he hoped his arm would fully heal eventually.

“He never made any promises. He said, ‘Do what you can, push it as much as you want.’ He said even though the bone was damaged so badly, the bones healed. Pulling on wrenches and that sort of thing, I’m not going to damage it.

“All I’m going to do is build strength. If it hurts, you’re not damaging it,” he added.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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