John Hawkes was thrown off his bike in an alleged hit and run last Thursday. He doesn't remember much, but what he does recall makes him grimace.

The keen Rotorua cyclist was in a bunch of 12 to 15 riders returning from racing in Waikite Valley at 7.30pm.

John Hawkes was knocked off his bike in an alleged hit and run on Thursday night. Photo / Andrew Warner
John Hawkes was knocked off his bike in an alleged hit and run on Thursday night. Photo / Andrew Warner

Riding in the road shoulder on State Highway 33 near SH5, cyclists in the bunch estimate the driver of a black Ford sedan was going 80km/h when it hit Hawke's back wheel.

The crash scene on January 17, 2019. Photo / Sam Shaw
The crash scene on January 17, 2019. Photo / Sam Shaw

Hawkes was hurled over the bonnet, head first into the road, and slid down the seal as it tore off parts of his skin, helmet, cycling jersey and bike.

Advertisement

The carnage left the rest of the group toppling over one another, unable to focus on the offender's vehicle details as it sped off. One rider was hospitalised.

Read more:
Mutual courtesy needed between Rotorua cyclists and motorists, says AA
Opinion: Remember, cyclists reduce congestion

Hawkes knows his injuries could have been much more severe than heavy grazing, a head cut and a badly bruised ankle.

John Hawkes' torn cycling jersey. Photo / Andrew Warner
John Hawkes' torn cycling jersey. Photo / Andrew Warner

Just three months ago his mother, Francisca Hawkes-Buchanan, was killed in Rotorua when a car and her scooter collided on the corner of Arawa and Rangiuru streets.

Hawkes has always been "more safety-conscious than most," especially after losing his mother.

Francisca Hawkes-Buchanan in Rotorua before her death. Photo / File
Francisca Hawkes-Buchanan in Rotorua before her death. Photo / File

Hawke's wife Laurelle told the Rotorua Daily Post the past few days had been "terribly painful" for their five children, raising memories of their grandmother's death.

"It's just not hitting a rider, there's a family there."

The Arawa St/Rangiuru St intersection, the scene of Francisca Hawkes-Buchanan's scooter crash. Photo / File
The Arawa St/Rangiuru St intersection, the scene of Francisca Hawkes-Buchanan's scooter crash. Photo / File

Hawkes believed the driver had to go out of their way to "cause mayhem" and said the driver lacked a "moral compass or a conscience".

Advertisement
John Hawkes was knocked off his bike in an alleged hit and run on Thursday night. Photo / Andrew Warner
John Hawkes was knocked off his bike in an alleged hit and run on Thursday night. Photo / Andrew Warner

Police are still piecing together what happened, and who's responsible.