American Chris Horner sustained serious injuries in a crash while training near Lake Como, Italy today. The Lampre-Merida team announced that the rider may have been hit by a car, but circumstances around the wreck were unclear. Horner was transported to a nearby hospital in Lecco, and was diagnosed with a punctured lung, broken ribs and a cut to his head which required stitches.
Fortunately for the 42-year-old, it appears he escaped without a concussion. Horner had already suffered a severe concussion from a crash on stage 7 of the 2011 Tour de France. He finished the stage dazed and confused, 12 minutes down, but left the race the next morning. Weeks later, he developed a blood clot in his lung.
One of the oldest riders in the professional peloton, Horner joined Lampre-Merida for the season as a late signing, despite having just added the Vuelta a España overall victory to his palmares last year, as few teams were keen to take the risk on an older rider at his salary grade.
He pulled out of Tirreno-Adriatico with tendinitis in March, and then dropped out of the Volta a Catalunya as the injury worsened.
Last season, Horner spent the better part of the year out with a knee injury, but bounced back at the Tour of Utah with a stage win and second place overall before going on to win the Tour of Spain.