Arnaud Demare's chances of riding Paris-Roubaix have been described as 50-50 by FDJ team manager Marc Madiot after the Frenchman crashed out of the Tour of Flanders, suffering road rash and bruising to numerous parts of his body.
Demare won Milan-San Remo but will now have to lick his wounds and train in pain this week if he hopes to ride Paris-Roubaix next Sunday. He was one of several riders who crashed, including Greg Van Avermaet (BMC), who fractured his collarbone.
The FDJ team was careful to ride near the front of the peloton, protecting Demare, but he crashed hard and brought down several other riders on a straight section of road, with 143km to race, before the start of the major climbs in the race. Road rash was visible on his back, shoulders and legs. Demare managed to get back on his bike but quit the race after a couple of kilometres. He was taken to hospital by a race ambulance for treatment but later headed home with his parents.
“He’s got road rash all over him,” Demare’s father told French newspaper l’Equipe.
It seems the crash was Demare’s fault.
“He was holding the bars with one hand as he was about to get his bidon but he didn’t see a hole in the road, his wheel turned and he went down,” FDJ directeur sportif Martial Gayant told l’Equipe.
“We don’t know how he’ll feel after the crash but it’s definitely a handicap. He’ll take a couple of days to see how he stiff he feels.”
Demare jokingly tweeted that he’ll need a new jersey after shredding the back of his FDJ kit in the crash.
If Demare does no feel any serious affects of his crash, the FDJ team suggested he could even ride Wednesday’s Scheldeprijs race. It is more likely he will join his teammates for reconnaissance ride on the Paris-Roubaix cobbles on Thursday or Friday.
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