Thru Axle Lever Impales Cyclist’s Leg in Horrifying Race Crash

Now here’s a crazy, crazy - that actually happened? - race crash injury…

The category 3 crit had been going smoothly until the last lap, when two racers in front of Reuter crossed wheels and one went down. Reuter couldn’t avoid the mix-up and fell as well, landing on the other rider’s Cannondale.
The force from the impact drove the bike’s thru axle lever into his left leg. Reuter realized something was wrong as soon as the immediate shock wore off.

Thru Axle Lever Impales Cyclist’s Leg in Horrifying Race Crash

Some will recognize the injured rider’s name, Colin Reuter, a big part of Here he’s done a quick analysis video of the crash on YouTube too:

1 Like

Time to get out the pitchforks and ban through axles in competition


Seems like clickbait by highlighting that it was a thru-axle, no? QR lever would’ve done the same thing :man_shrugging:


I saw the pictures on another site. No wish to repeat the experience. Hopefully the chap heals up well. What I saw certainly wasn’t pretty.


Clickbait? (I’ll assume - in the spirit of our constructive forum environment - you’re leveling that accusation at, rather than at me.) How else would they have briefly and accurately described it in a headline?


Well, it’s factually correct and I can’t actually think of a term that you’d use to describe both QR and thru-axle levers, so you know… :man_shrugging:


Original heading:

  • Dog bites man!

Non-trigger heading:

  • Man gets time off work.

Sure if you hit a blunt pointy thing hard enough there’s a good chance of it piercing your skin. Personally though I’d be much more worried about chainrings - is it just dumb luck that most pile-up type cycling crashes seem to happen while everyone is in the big ring?

Seems like a good reason to use thru axles with removable levers or no levers. Plus moar aero.

I always take my thru axle leaver off, mainly cause it looks better. I also have a scar on my hip from being skewered with a brake lever many years ago.

Bikes have lots of spiky or sharp things and every mountain biker knows that a mid-crash riderless bike becomes a bloodthirsty flesh seeking monster.


No no, not you. Reason I thought of it as a bit of clickbait is because ‘thru-axle’ and ‘impales leg’ is what caught my attention and that of a couple of my friends as well. Anyway, not important. Glad it didn’t do any major damage!

Another reason to not race crits…

1 Like

To comment on this whole debate, this specific incident occurred with a Cannondale SystemSix. I have one of these bikes and they use a specific thru-axle lever that does not use a cam operated closure. It is a fixed lever blade that threads the entire thru-axle. Some thru-axles use a cam to secure the wheel basically the exact same as a qr lever. Not saying that this couldn’t have happened on a qr or cam operated t-a, but I’d argue it’s much less likely to happen. Also, any thru-axle can be replaced with a 6mm allen wrench one from Robert Axle Project which does in fact make them for the System Six. These are more aero and apparently less likely to impale someone.

Thanks for sharing and making me cringe a few times. OUCH!
I love his youtube video and the way he’s moving on. Plenty of ways to hurt yourself while riding and on any number of other bike parts. Last time I checked the ground and surrounds can be a whole lot less forgiving than a thru axle lever.

Danejackson. Do you have a pic of the offending item? A little sick, I know, but I’d love to see if the design played an obvious part.

1 Like

I haven’t clicked it, but i have clicked on one of my local mtb injury pictures page. Has both the shark bite from a chainring in their calf and a few impaled by a random punji stick