By Antonio J. Salmerón
The young team Caisse d'Epargne rider, José Joaquín Rojas, crashed during the final sprint of the fourth stage of the Challenge of Mallorca, was transported after the race to the hospital of Inca (Mallorca) where he was diagnosed with a fractured right scapula and some abrasions and a cut to his right hand. The promising sprinter had come into physical contact with Philippe Gilbert (Francaise des Jeux) and ended up hitting the tarmac with the right side of his body.
"There may be too much risk, but when you are in a full sprint, you don't have the coldness to calculate risks. If you win, it goes well and nobody ever says you risked too much," said the 22 year-old rider after being taken to the medical center.
In addition to immobolizing his shoulder for three to four weeks, Rojas received two stitches between his fourth and fifth fingers of his right hand.
"The worst thing is that now I have to stop [racing for] three or four weeks and it interrupts my whole planning part of the season. Above all, it hurts me to miss Milan-San Remo," lamented Rojas.
He'll also miss Volta a la Comunidad Valenciana and Paris-Nice, which he had scheduled for the coming weeks. "I hope to return to my schedule with the Tour of Flanders, but it will cost me to get back to the point where I am now." Rojas had been in second place in the Challenge Volta a Mallorca after a stage three win Tuesday.