Cycling champ injured in 'bizarre' whirlwind accident

A "BIZARRE" accident took cyclist Rohan Dennis off his bike today at the cycling road nationals time trials at Burrumbeet.

Dennis was tonight receiving medical attention in Ballarat.

South Australian Sports Institute cycling manager Brett Aitken was travelling behind Dennis and witnessed the incident.

"The whirlwind came from the side and took his wheel like a sail from underneath him," Aitken said.

"It took his bike from being vertical to horizontal in a split second, so you're talking about a metre off the ground.

"It was just one of those things where Mother Nature hits you head on."

Dennis was 14km into the course when the tornado swept him up about 3.30pm.

Miraculously, the 23-year-old old got back on his bike, and continued riding for a kilometre.

Aitken – an Olympic gold medallist – said he had never seen anything like the accident in 35 years of cycling.

Dennis took out the Under-23 Road Race Championship at the cycling nationals in 2012.