Memorial bike ride set for Saturday

Between Editions: April 25


April 24, 2019

CLOVIS — A memorial bicycle ride is planned for Saturday in memory of Johann Astner.

Riders will start at 8 a.m. at Blackwater Coffee in Clovis, ride to Do Drop In in Portales, then head back to the starting point. Organizer Justin Goodin said the riders understand a 50-mile round trip can be daunting, and that riders have the option to either make the round trip or just go to Portales and arrange their own car ride back to Clovis. A safety vehicle will be driven behind the riders.

Astner, 44, was killed after being struck by a motorist May 8 at mile post 425 on U.S. 70. The incident remains under investigation by the New Mexico State Police.

Justin Goodin, who has been stationed at Cannon Air Force Base about six years, maintains the Clovis Saturday Ride Facebook page where local riders plan weekend rides as a group.

“We have about 100 people on the page,” Goodin said. “We may get three people out, and I’ve gotten 20 people out. It’s really dependent on the weather.”

Goodin never knew Astner, having only heard of him through news accounts of the accident, and admits he hasn’t had much luck researching his story.

Still, he felt a cyclist bond when an opportunity presented itself. One of the riders on the page mentioned he was going to build a “ghost bike” in Astner’s honor. The term is well-known in the cycling community as a bicycle painted completely white and attached to a sign near the site of accidents where a cyclist was killed. Goodin isn’t sure how well-known the tradition is outside of the cycling community, but it is a way to remind motorists to look out for cyclists.

“He said he’d have it ready this week,,” Goodin said, “and I asked, ‘Why don’t we do a tribute ride?’ We can complete the ride, at least down to Portales, that he was unable to do.”

Goodin is anticipating about 10 riders, but is open to more people if they show up a little bit before the 8 a.m. start.

Goodin may be contacted at:

[email protected]


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