FOUR budding Irish professional golfers narrowly cheated death in a car smash as they prepared for a mini tour event in Austria.
Former Irish amateur internationals Dara Lernihan (Castle), Brendan McCarroll (Ballyliffin), Richard Kilpatrick (Banbridge) and Gareth Shaw (Lurgan) were driving to practice for this week’s Alps Tour event when their hire car collided head on with a motorbike on a twisting mountain road. Miraculously, they walked away from the crash with nothing more than cuts and bruises and while shaken by the experience, they hope to tee it up in the 54-hole Gosser Open at Golf club Erzherzog Johann tomorrow.
“We were going around a corner when a motorbike overtook another motorbike on the far side of the road,” said 24-year old Dubliner Lernihan.
“We just ploughed straight into him. If we had veered to the right to avoid him, we would have gone off the edge of a big drop. The guy on the bike was okay. I thought he was going to be dead. It was a fair smack. He hit the front left of the car and the whole front of the motorbike came off. Brendan McCarroll was driving and he has a cut on his arm but the others are okay, just feeling a bit stiff right now.”
All four were taken to hospital for a check up and x-rays before giving a statement to local police.
Lernihan added: “We were lucky enough. It could have been a lot worse. There won’t be much practice done today.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved