Rabobank's Pieter Weening and Bauke Mollema have each broken a collarbone on the final days of the stage races they were competing in last week. One of the squad's climbers, Weening raced the Vuelta a Burgos and crashed heavily on the descent of the penultimate climb of Sunday's final stage. He was unable to finish the event and was immediately diagnosed with a broken collarbone.
However, team doctor Peter van Esseveldt was positive that Weening may be able to start the upcoming Vuelta a España if he has surgery. "After the operation, he will be back on a bike within three days to keep up his fitness. There is hope," he said.
Mollema, who was completing the Tour of Poland in third place overall on Saturday, also crashed during the final stage but was able to finish. At first, it did not look like his right shoulder bone was fractured.
"I examined him right away and he could move his arm well," said Van Esseveldt. "He was in pain, but it wasn't so bad. It did not look like a break at all, so I let him finish the race."
But on Sunday afternoon upon their return to the Netherlands, the doctor nonetheless decided to have x-rays carried out, which subsequently revealed a fracture. Mollema had won Friday's mountain stage, which lifted him up to third on general classification.
Van Esseveldt and Mollema are still to decide whether to perform surgery or not. "I think Bauke will be able to race again in four weeks even without an operation," he added.