A high-speed training crash took down three riders of the Astana Tour de France squad on Sunday. Team captain Jakob Fuglsang is expected to resume training again later this week, but Andrei Grivko and Assan Bazayev are apparently injured severely enough to miss the Tour.
The trio, together with teammates Egor Silin, Fredrik Kessiakoff, Dmitriy Muravyev, Alexey Lutsenko and Kevin Seeldraeyers, were at a training camp on Tenerife. Shortly after starting out Sunday morning, Fuglsang, Grivko and Bazayev "crashed together on a right turn during a high-speed descent," the team said. The other riders were able to stop in time.
The three injured riders were all taken to hospital. Fuglsang injured his back and elbow, but is expected to be able to resume training later this week.
Grivko injured his hand, apparently damaging the scaphoid bone in his wrist. He is said to be "50-50" as to further riding, and will see a specialist today.
Bazayev was the most severely affected, suffering unspecified injures to his face. "He will stop his Tour de France preparations and fly back to mainland Europe for more medical consultation," the team said.
Later, Astana Pro Team Director Sportif Dmitriy Sedoun said the injuries looked less serious on Monday after more medical consultation.
"Bazayev begged me not to take him off the Tour de France preliminary selection. If you look at him you automatically think there is no way he could do the race. Unfortunately thats because he absorbed most of the crash with his face. There is a 4-5cm scrape on his chin, another one on his nose, and the whole side of his body is road rash as well. But he got up and went to train again today," Sedoun said.
"Grivko for sure has a broken scaphoid bone in his wrist, but it is broken in place, and with a cast he can resume riding immediately. So he will go home and defend his road race and time trial national championship jerseys in Ukraine. He also asked to remain on the Tour pre-selection list, but it could happen that in a week or so the pain becomes too much or there are complications and then it becomes impossible to ride. It's a big unknown," Sedoun said.
Sedoun said preliminary plans to announce the final Tour de France roster would be delayed until later in the week.
"Everything is now day by day. For sure Jakob is the luckiest of the crash victims, but Bazayev and Grivko will both need some time to recover and work through their injuries. Sometimes fortune looks the other way," Sedoun said.