Page last updated at 14:36 GMT, Monday, 1 March 2010

Cyclist Jason MacIntyre's widow in tears as DVD played

Jason MacIntyre
Mr MacIntyre was not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident

The widow of cyclist Jason MacIntyre broke down in tears as footage of him training was shown at the fatal accident inquiry into his death.

Caroline MacIntyre, 33, also told the first day of the inquiry of the last time she saw her husband alive.

Described as one of Scotland's finest cyclists, he was hit by a van on the A82 near Fort William in January 2008.

Council worker Robert MacTaggart was later fined £500 for careless driving. He said he had not driven since.

Mrs MacIntyre told the inquiry at Fort William Sheriff Court she did not think the possible use of a mobile phone as a factor in the accident was properly looked at.

A DVD was played in court showing her husband training and being interviewed.

I simply can't explain how it happened. I did not see him
Robert MacTaggart

The bike he was riding at the time of the accident was also brought into the court.

Mrs MacIntyre said the last time she saw her husband alive was when she said goodbye to him as he cycled down the hill from their home.

Asked by fiscal Alison Wylie what had happened, Mrs MacIntyre said: "It was 9.55am when I last saw him.

"We were outside and he was holding onto the roof of the car as he was clipping his feet into the pedals.

"I asked how long he was going to be and said it would not be very long, probably about three hours."

She added: "It was a nice day, a bit cold, but it was very clear and dry. He carried a presence on the road, especially as he is tall at 6ft 2in."

Mr MacIntyre was not wearing a helmet.

A pathologist told the court that the cyclist's head injuries were so severe that a helmet would have made little difference.

Highland Council worker Mr MacTaggart, who was fined and banned from driving for six months after the local authority vehicle he was driving was involved in the crash, gave evidence after Mrs MacIntyre.

He said he had not driven since the incident.

World champion

Mr MacTaggart denied he had been distracted by the radio playing in his truck, or using a mobile phone.

He told the court: "I have never reapplied for my licence and don't intend to drive again."

He added: "I simply can't explain how it happened. I did not see him."

In January 2008 more than 400 mourners gathered for his funeral, including former world champion cyclist Graham Obree and representatives from Scottish Cycling, the sport's governing body.

Mr MacIntyre broke Scots' cyclist Graham Obree's 10-mile time trial record in 2007.

He began professional cycling at the age of 18 and went on to win the Tour of the North in Ireland at 23.

He took two years away from racing to help his wife following the premature birth of his daughters, Chloe and Morgan, now 11, before going on to win 13 Scottish titles and three British Championships.

The athlete was selected to represent Scotland in the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester and won the British 25-Mile Time Trial twice.

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