A THRILLSEEKING Barrhead biker has told how his dream American road trip took an unexpected turn – when he broke his arm after tripping over a tyre stopper.

Thomas Wilson, 54, was more than half of the way into the 2,400-mile-long Route 66 journey when the unthinkable happened.

Having organised the cross-country ride to celebrate son Adam’s 30th birthday, the adrenaline junkies planned to complete the Chicago-Los Angeles challenge as they had started it: on bikes and with all their limbs intact.

Unfortunately, a poorly painted tyre stopper put paid to those aspirations, landing personal trainer Thomas in hospital with a dislocated elbow, three fractures and his arm ligament torn off the bone.

However, determined to see out the remaining miles, the duo managed to reach their destination, albeit in a rented Cadillac.

With theories as to how he had sustained the injuries circulating Barrhead, Thomas was eager to set the record straight, even if he did find the tall tales amusing.

And despite hitting speeds of more than 110mph on certain stretches of road – where there is no speed limit – it was walking across a filling station forecourt at little more than 1mph that did the damage.

He said: “The rumours were flying I’d come off my bike and fallen down the mountains – the truth being I had tripped. I preferred everybody else’s Chinese whispers.”

Thomas added: “We pulled into a petrol station and I parked my bike beside the pump and the forecourt is painted pure, brilliant white that you’d paint your walls.

“There was a tyre stopper right in front of the door; it’s also pure, brilliant white and it’s New Mexico and the sun is blazing down so it’s just dazzling.

“As I was walking I didn’t see the tyre stopper, my foot caught it and I went straight down walking a mile an hour across a forecourt from doing 110mph the last 1,500 miles and totally smashed my arm.”

Although the incident put a slight dampener on the trip, the Wilsons had reason to reassess their disappointment following the Las Vegas attack on October 1.

Ten days prior, the pair had taken a detour from the original Route 66 to stop off in the city for a few nights and had stood just yards from the scene where gunman Stephen Paddock killed 58 festival-goers.

Reflecting on how his outlook altered after returning home, Thomas said: “What put it into perspective was when we came back and the attack in Las Vegas happened.

“We were there 10 days before that right at that spot. It made my broken arm feel not so important.

“The diagnosis was bad at the start but I’m a quick healer and it seems to be healing quite quickly so I won’t be off training and work as long as I thought I’d be.”

Thomas’ Route 66 effort is just the latest in a long line of impressive accomplishments – many of which were for charity.

The former policeman counts Mount Everest’s Camp One, Mount Kilimanjaro, the Three Peak Challenge and Ben Nevis (on 20 separate occasions) as previous conquests.

He has also cycled from one end of Vietnam to the other, as well as Land’s End to John O’Groats, and can tick off the Edinburgh, London, Berlin and New York marathons to boot.

All of the aforementioned were completed for charity – something Thomas intends to continue doing once his arm has fully healed.

Thomas told the Barrhead News he hopes to tackle Mount Elbrus, in Russia, Europe’s highest peak, or Cotopaxi, in Ecuador, for Diabetes UK.

He added: “They’re both safe, the difficulty comes when you walk across a garage forecourt!”