Jakobsen involved in collision with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen; Groenewegen apologises for crash and says he feels “terrible” about what happened
Last Updated: 07/08/20 2:11pm
Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen is in a “good” condition after being woken from his medically-induced coma following a crash at the finish line on stage one of the Tour de Pologne, officials said on Friday.
The 23-year-old’s team Deceuninck-QuickStep confirmed he had not suffered brain or spinal injuries after he collided at high speed with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen on Wednesday in the final downhill sprint and crashed over the barriers into an official.
Jakobsen was airlifted to hospital and placed in a coma, before he underwent facial surgery and regained consciousness.
A short statement from the official Tour de Pologne Twitter account read: “We have good news from the hospital in Sosnowiec! Fabio Jakobsen is awake now from the coma. Condition is “good”.”
The incident was caused by Jumbo-Visma sprinter Groenewegen drifting into Jakobsen’s path and, after he had been disqualified, the 27-year-old’s action was condemned by cycling’s governing body.
A UCI statement read: “The Union Cycliste Internationale strongly condemns the dangerous behaviour of rider Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Wisma), who sent Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quickstep) into the barriers a few metres from the finish, causing a collective crash at the end of the first stage of the Tour of Poland.
“The UCI, which considers the behaviour unacceptable, immediately referred the matter to the disciplinary commission to request the imposition of sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the facts.”
Groenewegen, who rides for the JumboVisma team, apologised for the crash in a team statement.
“I find it terrible what happened,” Groenewegen said. “I can’t find the words to describe how sorry I am for Fabio and the others involved.
“What matters most now is Fabio’s health. I think about him all the time.”
JumboVisma director Richard Plugge said Groenewegen, who had surgery on a broken collarbone, “feels terrible” about what happened.
“He was deeply affected by it. Soon we will discuss the incident in detail with him,” he said.
The crash took place exactly a year after Belgian cyclist Bjorg Lambrecht died in hospital from injuries he sustained when he crashed into a concrete barrier during the third stage of the 76th edition of the Tour de Pologne.
The 77th Tour de Pologne was meant to be held in July but was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The race began on Wednesday, with the 196km first stage taking the riders from the Slaski Stadium in Chorzow, southern Poland to Katowice.
It was reduced to five stages from the seven originally planned in order to leave room on the calendar for other re-scheduled races.