Shocking CCTV footage captured the moment that 46-year-old Gary Reed, from Hastings in East Sussex, was whacked across the face with a metal bar after he failed to give up the bench press machine.
The actual footage is pretty horrible so we’re not going to show it here, but take it from us, it’s a seriously cheap shot.
The assailant told Reed that he wanted to use the machine while he was on it, but after Reed told him that he wanted to finish up his set, he stormed off and grabbed a seven-inch bar before cracking him right across the head with it.
The incident, which took place in Pattaya on 17 May, left Reed in hospital with 60 stitches to his face, as well as a cracked eye socket and bleeding to his retinas.
He also needed a CT scan in order to check for brain damage.
After the brutal assault, Reed did try to get up and remonstrate with the man, wrestling before the security cameras that captured the incident.
Speaking from hospital, Reed said: “There was no queue for using the equipment so I just laid myself down on the bench to start lifting weights like I normally do.
‘You can see in the video, my weights were at the side of the bench the whole time, which basically means I’m still using it.
“Then this guy just walked over and said he wanted to use the bench press.
“I was like ‘mate, just let me finish, I’ll be done in two minutes’, but he wasn’t having it. There were others available to use, so I think he was looking for a fight.
“I carried on working out then he just came at me from behind like a coward and proper smashed me in the head.
“As far as I’m concerned, he could have killed me.
“If you hit someone in the head with a hammer, it’s like attempted murder.
“This was a piece of metal as big and almost as heavy as a hammer. I’m lucky it didn’t knock me out.”
He continued: “This guy was still trying to hit me but I was strong enough to overpower him then he legged it.
“I’ve been left with a big hospital bill, so he needs to pay for that.
“I want the police to catch him so he can’t do this to anyone else.”
So far, Gary has already paid 25,000 Baht – about £579 – in hospital fees, but that could increase significantly if he needs surgery or further treatment.
Police are currently hunting for the suspect.
Lieutenant Khuntum Khantiwong said: “We already have the identity of the attacker from the gym’s membership log and encourage him to cooperate so he can explain his side as well.
“If he doesn’t hand himself in we will find him and he will be questioned about the attack on the CCTV video.”