BikePortland

Veteran Oregon bike racer Rich Wolf killed by drunk driver in Bend

Photos courtesy Oregon Bicycle Racing Association.


(Photos courtesy Oregon Bicycle Racing Association)

Sad news from our extended community in central Oregon: Rich Wolf was killed while cycling on a road just outside of Bend on Tuesday evening.

The location of the collision on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway is a very popular bike route.

According to Oregon State Police, Wolf was bicycling in the shoulder of Century Drive (Hwy 372/Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway) about seven miles southwest of downtown Bend when 19-year-old Flynn Lovejoy, who was driving a Toyota Land Cruiser in the opposite direction, veered out of his lane and struck Wolf. Lovejoy was arrested for Driving Under the Influence, Hit and Run, and Manslaughter.

Wolf was 61 years old and a prolific racer who competed in mountain bike, road, and track events in Bend and Portland. He raced on the Sunnyside Sports team. The owner of that shop, Susan Conner, told Central Oregon Daily News Wolf was a “highly skilled cyclist” who was an “all-around good guy”.

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“This isn’t about cycling safety,” Conner told the Daily News. “This is about driving safety. Drunk drivers kill people. They kill cyclists. They kill walkers. Drunk drivers are the perpetrators of this.”

Oregon Bicycle Racing Association Executive Director Chuck Kenlan shared news of Wolf’s death in an email to members on Thursday. “Rich was an active racer at Alpenrose and in cyclocross races. Rich’s wife Michelle is also an active member of the OBRA community working as medical support for many of the races in Bend and at Alpenrose, especially during the AVC. We are heartbroken over this sudden and senseless loss of our friend.”

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org
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