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Jaroslav Kulhavy (Specialized Racing XC) leading Nino Schurter (Scott Swisspower MTB Racing Team) and Marco Aurelio Fontana (Cannondale Factory Racing)
Olympic champion forced to delay start of 2014 season
Olympic cross country champion Jaroslav Kulhavy injured himself after falling on a patch of ice on Sunday. Doctors diagnosed a fractured kneecap, which means the Czech star will have to delay the start of his season. Kulhavy was not on his bike at the time of the accident, but was walking to his car.
The Specialized rider is expected to have to keep his knee immobilized for four weeks. Then he will face at least two more weeks of rehabilitation before he can resume any kind of training.
"It was such an innocent slip on a patch of ice," Kulhavy told cyklonovinky.cz. "The impact, however, was too hard on my knee. It's frustrating - after a super winter of training. Now I have to wait during what will be a few difficult weeks. I'll do everything I can to get back to 100% soon - I just can't say at that time when it will be."
Kulhavy had completed training programs in Mallorca in December and January and was reportedly in excellent condition prior to his fall. He was coming off winning the final round of the 2013 World Cup in Hafjell, Norway, site of this year's world championships.
He will have to skip the Cyprus Sunshine Cup, and it's too early to confirm whether he will be on the start line for the spring UCI Mountain Bike World Cups, which begin in April with rounds in South Africa and Australia.