A BLACK Country motorcyclist and rugby player died from multiple injuries after a road crash in France after an 80-year-old woman dozed off at the wheel, an inquest heard.

Father-of-two David Cook, who played for the veterans at Old Halesonians Rugby Club, Hagley, was hit head on while riding his motorcycle towards Calais after a touring holiday in southern France with friend Bernie Brinkmann from Stourbridge.

The 41-year-old, known as Cookie, was taken to hospital in Marseille after the crash, which happened on June 14 2013 at Goult, but he was pronounced dead.

Mr Brinkmann, who watched in horror as the tragedy unfolded just as he’d managed to swerve out of the way himself, said Mr Cook had for some reason on that fateful day decided to travel at the back instead of in front, as he usually did.

He said: “He was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

South Staffordshire coroner Andrew Haigh said Mr Cook, who worked at Evans & White Manufacturing Ltd in Kingswinford, died of multiple injuries as a result of a road traffic collision.

Cannock Coroners’ Court heard the elderly driver of the car, which had drifted onto the wrong side of the road, was convicted of involuntary homicide by a motor vehicle in the French courts.