KINGSTON, Mass. - Grief struck the South Shore cycling community Saturday when news spread that Bill Sykes, 65, one of the most influential people in New England cycling, had been critically injured after a collision with a car.
The crash reportedly occurred Saturday in Kingston while Sykes enjoyed a training ride with longtime friend and former Irish pro Paul McCormack.
A lifelong resident of Plymouth, Sykes sustained serious injuries after being struck head-on. He was taken to Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, where he remains.
Few other individuals have had as much influence on New England cycling than Bill Sykes. As a long time elite racer, he and his brother George led the Massachusetts Bay Road Club for decades. He owned and operated Corner Cycle in Plymouth, from where he developed Mass Bay Road Club into one of the nation's best racing clubs.
The crash occurred just after 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 26, at 399 Bishop's Highway in Kingston, near the Sacred Heart School.
As a promoter he hosted the Race for the Rock Criterium and the U.S. National Cyclocross Championships on two occasions. Working with club leaders Paul Curley and Tom Stevens, Sykes gave rise to the sport of cyclocross in New England.
The emergence of two other brothers from Plymouth, Frank and Mark McCormack, however, changed his career. Sykes personally coached and directed those brothers to several national elite and pro titles. He created and directed pro teams that raced at the international level.
He has been instrumental in the logistics of the Best Buddies Challenge rides for decades. Recently his work has been alongside his son, Adam, who created International Cycling, a highly successful event logistics firm.
Sykes has also been a passionate fund raiser and rider of events that support the MS Society.
The Kingston Police did not comment on any charges being filed.