Teenage cyclist hit by deer stood 'no chance'
A TEENAGE cyclist who was killed when he crashed into a deer "stood no chance", an inquest heard.
Witness Lisa Harrison was travelling along Elloughton Dale when she saw the deer jump over a barbwire fence into the path of Brough 15-year-old Ben Madden.
Ben, a South Hunsley School pupil, was estimated to be travelling close to 40mph on his Cube Litening racing bike.
Miss Harrison gave evidence yesterday at the inquest into his death.
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"I saw four cyclists riding in single file," she recalled.
"I immediately clocked a deer coming down when it suddenly jumped the barbwire fence.
"It ran right into the path of the cyclist and he could not have seen it at all.
"It happened so quickly that he couldn't even react to bring his hands down and he landed on his head.
"He had no chance of avoiding the deer."
Ben, who was not wearing a crash helmet, spent four days in a coma following the accident on Tuesday, July 26. He died on Sunday, July 31 at Hull Royal Infirmary.
In a statement read out at the inquest, Ben's dad, Darren, said his son was an experienced cyclist.
"He had recently excelled at cycling," said Mr Madden.
"At a cycling event called the Big G, he received backing from Richardson's Cycles in Hull.
"He was an experienced rider who would think nothing of travelling 100 miles.
"He was confident as a rider and as a person.
"His bike could reach speeds of 45mph and may have been travelling at 35-40mph at the time.
"He would normally wear a helmet, but I'm not sure if it would have made a difference on this occasion.
"He was doing what he loved and no one could have predicted the circumstances surrounding his death.
"He was a popular boy who had many friends and lived life to the full."
Vehicle examiner Michael Waudby confirmed the bike was in good working order at the time of the accident.
Hundreds of tributes poured in for Ben following his death.
A Facebook page set up by his friends has nearly 3,000 members.
Ben lived with his mum Kate, Darren and sister Evie. The family did not wish to speak when contacted by the Mail.
As well as cycling he was also a star defender for local football teams, performing at county level.
In recording a verdict of accidental death, Coroner Rosemary Baxter accepted there was no chance for Ben to avoid the collision.
She said: "The deer jumped the fence right into Ben's path and he had no time to react and hit the back end of the animal.
"There was no opportunity to take evasive action and his head impacted on the road surface."