Geraint Thomas crashes out of Tour de Suisse

Defending Tour de France champion taken to hospital

Geraint Thomas (Team Ineos) has crashed out of the Tour de Suisse on stage 4. The British rider hit the ground with around 30km to go and is currently receiving medical treatment at the side of the road.

The Tour de France champion was set to lead Team Ineos in July after Chris Froome crashed out of the Critérium du Dauphiné last week. However, those plans are on ice as Thomas will now leave the Tour de Suisse for medical checks.

Thomas came into stage 4 in Switzerland sitting eighth overall after a solid start to the race, but he crashed just after an intermediate sprint.

Thomas was able to sit up almost immediately and could be seen moving both of his shoulders as he talked to the medical staff by the roadside, which would likely rule out a collarbone break. He has cuts to his back and right side, as well as a cut just above his right eye.

"There was a lot of road furniture about, and a rider crashed in front of [Geraint]," Team Ineos director Grabriel Rasch said in a statement posted on the team's wesbite. "He got a little cut over his eyebrow, which was bleeding. The doctor felt it was safest to take him to the hospital for further checks. We’ll have to wait until they check him properly, and then we’ll know more.

"I think all riders are the same," Rasch said of Thomas' desire to continue in the race. "They want to go back to the bike and race. But thankfully we have a doctor in the car and it’s his decision to make."

Chris Froome is currently in hospital recovering from a horrific fall at the Dauphine. The four-time Tour de France winner was riding recon for the stage 4 time trial last week when a gust of wind carried him into a wall at over 30mph. He suffered several fractures, including those to his right femur and right elbow. He underwent eight hours of surgery last week in Saint-Etienne and will miss the Tour de France and the rest of this season.

Thomas had a slow start to the 2019 season finishing 44th overall in the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, but he showed glimpses of form with 12th in Strade Bianche. He failed to finish Tirreno-Adriatico due to illness before another unspectacular ride in the Tour of the Basque Country in April. His third place overall at he Tour de Romandie later that month represented his best performance of the season so far. 

More to come…

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