Jake Montgomery was an up and coming triathlete. He was 12th in the world and was about to embark on the biggest race of his career, the World Triathlon Championships.
But less than 24 hours before he was supposed to line up on the starting line, tragedy struck.
See Jake's story, as televised on Full Cycle, in the video below.
"But we’ve got a story now on Jake Montgomery, an up and coming triathlete who was ranked 12th in the world last year.
The day before the World Triathlon Championships, he went for a bit of a ride in the afternoon to 'freshen up' for the race, and was taken out by a car. Have a look at this."
"So this was probably going to be my biggest race of the career, first attempt at a world championship race. And it was actually about 16 hours before I was to hit the start line and that’s when everything flipped upside down.
I remember the morning of, the first 10 mins of my ride and then I’ve got a month blank. I don’t remember hospital, being at home or anything, what I remember is probably about 4 – 5 weeks later sitting on the lounge at home not being able to move a muscle.
Definitely considered giving up at one point there, when I couldn’t move, I could barely walk, the most I could do was get to the kitchen and back, and going from 25hrs of training a week to absolutely nothing, it was like am I ever going to be able to be back, the neurologists were saying that not to attempt running for 4 months, well is this the end?
Rehab for me started off pretty much as small as you could get, pretty much like taking my first steps again. I’d walk for 10 mins a day and then build gradually from there like I’d walk 10 the first week and then 20 the next week and just build up, build up, build up.
I was super lucky to have a good support group behind me; mum and dad, if it wasn’t for them I doubt I would have made a return to triathlon, while they didn’t push me to say that you should be back, they actually tried to help me back, they were there to help my decisions and were looking after me every step of the way.
Fortunately I was recommended to Jamie Shine, she works for Shine Lawyers, and she’s a brain injury specialist. I thought she is going to understand my case 100% and know the actual ins and outs of it all and know how long it’s going to take, know the reoccurrences that things can have. I’ll be in safe hands here and well looked after. If you ever have an accident, don’t give up. Do your best to get back out there. Whether you start on the trainer like I did, you find a group of mates to go out with, have a ride together and stay within the bunch and then you feel a bit more protected."
"We certainly wish Jake all the best in his recovery and getting back to that level. 12th before the World Championships and then to have that happen. Obviously, there is a real benefit to being a member of Cycling Australia because of that connection now that we have with Shine Lawyers, that you’re covered when you’re out on a bike." "Well, also because these types of events generally happen when they’re most unexpected. Maybe it’s on your normal bunch ride, or maybe it’s the day before a World Championship. But, I think the great part of the story as well is the support that he had. He’s back racing and pursuing his dream to be a triathlon World Champion and suppose that’s the thing you want is that people can have these unfortunate events, but get on with life."
Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: October 16, 2018.