Defense of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad title hampered
Former World Cup champion Emma Johansson (Hitec Products - Mistral Home Cycling Team) is recovering from a double surgery to repair two broken collarbones she sustained in a collision with a car earlier this month.
The Swedish champion was training on Gran Canaria on January 14 when an oncoming car attempting to pass traffic pulled into her path.
Following the incident, Johansson traveled to Herentals in Belgium to consult with a specialist, who decided to perform the surgery on January 19.
Because her training was impacted, the 28-year-old may not be able to repeat her victory in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on February 25.
"It was a scary crash and I was close to a frontal collision with the car. Two broken collarbones was not the worst thing that could happen, and I'm happy to still be alive," Johansson said in a press release. "The operation was the best thing I could have done. My progression after I came out of the hospital has been very quick. Now I do almost everything myself and I look forward to get back on my bike again. I will start roller training tomorrow or Tuesday."
While her first race was scheduled to be the Het Nieuwsblad, Johansson is not not sure when she will return to competition. "I need to get my training done so I have the base and ground of training who can keep me going the whole year. What I'm sure of is that I will be in shape for Ronde van Vlaanderen."
Last year, Johansson was one step off the podium in fourth at the Tour of Flanders. After claiming victory in the Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen and podiums at the Iurreta-Emakumeen Bira, Giro del Trentino Alto Adige - Südtirol and Profile Ladies Tour, Johansson was the UCI's second-ranked rider behind Marianne Vos in the 2011 season. She was third overall in the 2011 World Cup.