With his broken back having been diagnosed, Theo Bos (Rabobank) can start his recovery as he looks to resume racing in next month's Tour of Poland. The 28-year-old crashed in the Giro d'Italia on stage 2. He was initially diagnosed with just superficial injuries and battled through the pain before retiring on stage 16. However an MRI scan post-race revealed a fractured L3 vertebrae in his lower spine.
"I had no power and was in a lot of pain with my back. I didn't have the strength that I'd had before and then during the Giro I thought and hoped I'd get better but that was really just wishful thinking. I hoped to make the second rest day because there was a little improvement but because of my back the legs weren't good," Bos told Cyclingnews.
Bos can at least ride his bike now, meaning that his start in the Tour of Poland should be secured. However he must take small steps, increasing his mileage gradually and avoiding any hills.
"I can do whatever as long as it's not painful. So I can ride easy, and on the flat, but if I do any climbs and start standing then it hurts once I've stopped training."
Partnership with Mark Renshaw
Rabobank's Giro was one to forget after they returned from Italy without a single stage win. The Dutch team's build-up had looked promising with Bos and teammate Mark Renshaw winning three stages between then at the Tour of Turkey. However both riders were unable match those results in Italy, leading to further questions of compatibility between the two.
However Bos pointed to his crash in the Giro, which not only put paid to his chances, but also eliminated him from supporting Renshaw.
"He's a strong rider, the whole team is learning a lot from his expertise, and he's a really strong leadout man and sprinter," Bos said of Renshaw.
"If you look at Giro he was always there and every finish he was able to do his thing. Also in Turkey in the hard finishes he was there and with the flat stages I was there and he was there with me. He's a better cyclist than me and I can still learn a lot from him."
"For us and the team it's important that we win so if Mark is strong and plays his cards then we go 100 per cent for him."
"Mark is an all-rounder. He can survive hard races, climb really well and that's important in sprinting, nowadays, really important. I have to improve. I'm a good sprinter, I'm fast but in the other aspects of cycling, I'm not as good as Mark or other cyclists. He's more of an all-rounder."