Thomas Casarotto of the Generali team is in intensive care after crashing into a car during the third stage of the Giro del Friuli Venezia Giuli, the race organisers announced.
Casarotto was descending the Sella Ciampigotto when he struck the car, and was airlifted to a hospital in Udine. He is in critical condition with a cranial hematoma.
"This is the kind of news that you never want to receive," said Casarotto's team director Roberto Zoccarato, who made the decision to remove the entire Generali team from the race.
"This is no condition in which to continue to compete: all of our thoughts have turned to Thomas, and we would not be happy in the peloton thinking that he is still struggling between life and death. We will take the numbers from our backs at least until Thomas is out of danger. "