The return of the alienWell did you see it? The blinding ray of light over Fort William and, hanging in it, the anti gravity machine known as Martyn Ashton? Except, as most sentient homo not so very sapiens know, gravity got sick of being defied and gave Ashton a quick kick in the back.
"I didn't expect much," says Martyn, who was hoping to be fully fit by now, but isn't. "I just wanted to roll around out the front and do a few things."
Well, here it is. Not quite what the organisers of the Fort William event were expecting when they booked Martyn Ashton as the trials cabaret star, but a red letter day for everyone who has been inspired by the alien ever since his parents ship crashed in Roswell all those years ago.
We brought him his bike, he got on and wobbled off down path. That was the big event. The picture shows Martyn just after Doddy let go of the seat post.
Seriously, Martyn's riding again and very happy to be doing what he does best.
"I shall have to wear plenty of protection against landing on the same injured area of my spine - which is something I can't bear to think about. Apart from that, I suppose it will always ache when I do big stuff and I'm going to have to work to get the muscle back. But I'm riding. It's great. I'm thankful".
Martyn was to have been the big trials attraction sponsored by Animal, but apart from the sympathy vote, he wasn't going to go over too big.
"Hawyesie stepped in and he'll be doing the demos riding for Giant but on the Animal rig. We owe him and his sponsors for helping us out."
It does go to show how decent the people in competitive mountain biking can be.
Picture 1: Martin Hawyes took over the demos like the hero he is (some days).