The wife of Olympic rower James Cracknell has told The Telegraph newspaper that the helmet worn by the athlete cushioned the blows sustained in his recent Arizona truck smash 'effectively, keeping the damage to a minimum'.
Television show host Beverly Turner told the paper: "He feels so passionately about bike safety and had just bought a new Alpina bike helmet that sits lower on the back of the head. It took the blow far more effectively than a normal helmet and kept the damage to a minimum.
Turner added: “The doctors say his cycling helmet – which was shorn in two with the impact – saved his life and that it was a miracle he didn’t fracture his spine or any other bone, although the bruising is horrendous.”
Cracknell has still sustained heavy injury, with doctors reporting a 'contrecoup injury to his frontal lobe, with bleeding, bruising and swelling in the area that governs personality, decision making and motivation', something Turner says "are all the characteristics that make James who he is.”
The 38 year old had been attempting to break an endurance record at the time of the smash. His goal was to make the journey from Los Angeles to New York inside 16 days and this was being documented by the Discovery Channel.
The camera crew, however, were not filming the events that took place in Arizona, where it is believed a truck hit him from behind, despite the athlete being kitted out with a strobe light.
For further updates, see Cracknell's website, here.