Seven months after his horrific crash at the Giro d’Italia that left him with life-threatening injuries, Rabobank rider Pedro Horrillo has returned to the site of the incident on the Culmine di San Pietro. The Spaniard had been hoping to ride up to the point where, he says, “that day my second life began”. However, heavy snowfall in the region north of Bergamo meant that the journey had to be done by car.
Travelling with Horrillo were members of the rescue team who located him 80m down in a ravine after he crashed over the roadside barrier while descending. They were able to point out details of the rescue, about which Horrillo has no memory whatsoever.
Horrillo also visited doctors and other staff who treated him in Bergamo’s hospital for a number of weeks after the incident. He spent several days in an induced coma while he was treated for a wide range of injuries, including fractures of his femur and kneecap as well as the loss of half of his blood.
“I’ve regained 100% of the functionality in my [left] leg,” Horrillo told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “I’ve returned because I’ve been born twice. The first time on the 27 September 1974. The second time on 16 May last, when I crashed down onto the rocks. I’ve seen the place where it happened and it’s incredible that I’m still alive. It’s really shaken me up. I feel like a cat with nine lives.”
During his visit, Horrillo was awarded the Emilio Paganessi prize given for outstanding achievements in the Bergamo region.