‘I really thought I was going to die’ – Billionaire Richard Branson in severe biking accident
Virgin founder Sir Richard Branson has said his “life flashed before his eyes” after he was in an accident on his bicycle.
The 66-year-old was cycling with his children Holly and Sam on Virgin Gorda in the Caribbean when he hit a speed hump at speed.
“The next thing I knew, I was being hurled over the handlebars.” said Branson. “I went flying head-first towards the concrete road, but fortunately my shoulder and cheek took the brunt of the impact, and I was wearing a helmet that saved my life.”
Branson said his bike went off a nearby cliff and was not found until later “crumpled” and “completely destroyed”.
The billionaire had been training for next month’s Virgin Strive Challenge, an endurance event from the base of the Matterhorn in the Alps to the summit of Mount Etna in Sicily.
Despite suffering a cracked cheek, severe cuts and torn ligaments Branson still hopes to participate in the event.
The accident comes on the fifth anniversary of the fire which destroyed the entrepreneur’s luxury home on Necker Island and Branson joked: “What a way to mark it!”
This year has been injury-filled for Branson, who has already knocked his teeth out twice playing tennis, been “kissed by a ray” while swimming, and run into a bulletproof door.
Branson said: “My attitude has always been, if you fall flat on your face, at least you’re moving forward… At least I’m practising what I preach – though a little too literally!”
On Monday Branson’s Twitter account released images of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn walking past empty seats on a Virgin train. Corbyn was filmed sitting on the floor complaining about the “ram-packed” carriages on these train services shortly after the footage.