As participants in the “Sea-to-Sea” Expedition Race, the promoter tells Historic City News reporters that the intense three-day adventure-racing event involves sufficient risk to require execution of an injury waiver before the athletes can compete.
At about 2:34 a.m. Sunday morning, February 28, 2021, Florida Highway Patrol Crash Investigator, Trooper Kevis Coley, responded along the event route to the scene of an accident involving a motorist-vs-bicyclist.
The race started in Pine Island Park in Spring Hill on Florida’s west coast and finished in St. Augustine. In Sea-to-Sea, participants navigate roads and waterways, with the help of kayaks and bicycles, as part of the extreme adventure sport. Participants raced in teams and had 72-hours to complete the race and get as many points as possible by hitting checkpoints along the way.
Homicide Investigator Corporal J Bowen determined that a 27-year-old male was driving his sedan northbound on US-1 in the outside lane. The driver’s name is being withheld at this time; however, we were able to confirm that he is a St Augustine resident.
According to police reports as well as public posts recovered from social media, the crash occurred on US-1 northbound, about a mile and a half north of the Interstate 95 intersection near the Flagler County line. The motor vehicle came to a controlled stop on the right side of the roadway beyond the crash site.
All three bicyclists were traveling northbound on US-1 in the bicycle lane when they were struck. All three bicyclists were at final rest on the east grassy shoulder of US-1. The lead bicyclist, Troy Manz, a 46-year-old male who lived in Evansville IN, suffered fatal injuries and died on the scene.
Manz served eight years in the Marines, according to the university hospital where he was employed. He was actively involved in the 126th Medical Group Air National Guard.
Trish Wilkinson, a 46-year-old female residing in Freeburg, IL, and Barbara Gilmore, a 41-year-old female residing in St Louis, MO sustained serious injuries when the vehicle veered right and struck all three bicyclists. Both women were taken to UF Health Jacksonville reported being in serious condition.