Quick-Step Floors rider Fabio Sabatini has been forced to call time on his 2017 season after suffering a crash during training. According to a press release issued by the team, Sabatini was out riding when he clipped the wing mirror of a parked bike, which resulted in a broken fifth metacarpal (little finger).
"I'm sad because this is not the way I wanted to end my season and I was still motivated to help the team in the few races left this year, but I have to take things as they are," said Sabatini.
"On the plus side, there's no need for surgery, which means I'll be fully recovered by December when we will kick off our training camp."
Sabatini's final race of the season was the Primus Classic on September 16, which was won by his teammate Matteo Trentin. A day earlier, he had helped Fernando Gaviria to victory in the Kampioenchap van Vlaanderen. He had been due to race later this week at the Omloop Eurometropool and the Tour de Eurometropole, followed by the Sparkassen Munsterland Giro next week.
Sabatini has had a strong 2017 season and formed part of the team that helped Marcel Kittel to five stage wins at the Tour de France. With Kittel set to move to the Katusha-Alpecin team next season, Sabatini will become a key lead-out man for new signing Elia Viviani, while he may also be called upon to help the team's other sprinter, rising star Fernando Gaviria.
Quick-Step Floors have not yet confirmed who will replace Sabatini at the upcoming races.