By Susan Westemeyer
Team Gerolsteiner's Stefan Schumacher finished 16th in Milano-San Remo despite a heavy cold, but Directeur Sportif Christian Henn could hardly think about the good result. Instead, his thoughts were with his two seriously injured riders who were spending the night in the hospital.
"I've never experienced anything like that. The results today are of minor importance," Henn said, and team manager Hans-Michael Holczer called it the worst "that I have ever seen."
The most seriously injured was Andrea Moletta, who was one of three in an escape group when he somersaulted into a lamppost and low stone wall. He was taken to the hospital with a broken thigh. He was to be transported later to a special clinic for the necessary operation, Henn said. Although the doctors have said that his season is over, the Italian told his team manager, "Hans, I'll see you at the Vuelta."
An earlier crash took out David Kopp, who lay terrifying still on the pavement for a long time. After he was put in an ambulance, the German TV announcers were informed by the team that Kopp was awake and could move all his limbs. In the end, he was diagnosed with a broken nose and an extremely swollen face.
Davide Rebellin, Heinrich Haussler and Fabian Wegmann also crashed during the race, but without grave consequences. "I hope that we have had our fill our crashes now for a while and that things will quiet down," said Henn hopefully.