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Belgium Tour stage 3 abandoned after motorbikes cause big crash

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The photo motorbike showing signs of the crash

The photo motorbike showing signs of the crash (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Niki Terpstra back at the bus

Niki Terpstra back at the bus (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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A police presence at the Belgium Tour

A police presence at the Belgium Tour (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders roll in after the canceled stage

Riders roll in after the canceled stage (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Olivier Chevalier's shorts torn up

Olivier Chevalier's shorts torn up (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tony Martin (Etixx-Quickstep)

Tony Martin (Etixx-Quickstep) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Yves Lampaert lucky to be safe

Yves Lampaert lucky to be safe (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders were quick to check in with family and let them know they were safe

Riders were quick to check in with family and let them know they were safe (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Number 13 proved lucky for Yves Lampaert

Number 13 proved lucky for Yves Lampaert (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The bikes went back on the cars after the stage was canceled

The bikes went back on the cars after the stage was canceled (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Niki Terpstra (Etixx-Quickstep)

Niki Terpstra (Etixx-Quickstep) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Tony Martin (Etixx-Quickstep)

Tony Martin (Etixx-Quickstep) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Frederik Ludvigsson (Giant-Alpecin) injured by a motor vehicle for the second time in 2016

Frederik Ludvigsson (Giant-Alpecin) injured by a motor vehicle for the second time in 2016 (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The motorcycle fallen

The motorcycle fallen (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Olivier Chevalier

Olivier Chevalier (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Frederik Frison (Lotto Soudal)

Frederik Frison (Lotto Soudal) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Kristoffer Skjerping (Cannondale)

Kristoffer Skjerping (Cannondale) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stig Broeckx (Lotto Soudal) was the worst injured

Stig Broeckx (Lotto Soudal) was the worst injured (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Chaos as a huge crash stalls the Belgium Tour

Chaos as a huge crash stalls the Belgium Tour (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stage 3 of the Baloise Belgium Tour

Stage 3 of the Baloise Belgium Tour (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Riders come in after the stage was canceled

Riders come in after the stage was canceled (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Lars Boom (Astana)

Lars Boom (Astana) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Stijn Vandenbergh and Vicente Reynes

Stijn Vandenbergh and Vicente Reynes (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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The bikes went back on the cars after the stage was canceled

The bikes went back on the cars after the stage was canceled (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

The third stage of the Baloise Belgium Tour was called off part-way through after a big crash, which was caused by two motorbikes, left numerous riders needing medical attention. 

Race organisers told Cyclingnews that the crash occurred on a descent some 65km into the stage, when one motorbike collided with another that was at a standstill, sending both into the bunch of riders. The stage was initially neutralised and then abandoned altogether. 

The Cofidis team reported that 19 riders were involved and that 11 of them were taken to hospital. Several of those riders reported on HLN.be to have been involved in the incident include Jesper Asselman (Roompot Oranje Peloton), Pieter Jacobs (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise), Tony Hurel (Direct Energie) and Loïc Chetout (Cofidis, Solutions Credits). The extent of the injuries have not been confirmed.

Among the most serious seems to be Lotto Soudal's Stig Broeckx, who has reportedly taken a blow to the head and has been taken to Aachen hospital. The Belgian rider was hit by a moto earlier this year at Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne. 

Several images have been captured of the incident and the neutralization of the stage, and posted to Twitter.

 

The UCI posted a statement on Twitter regarding the new rules that it introduced regarding the conduct of motorcycles in races, and wrote that it would look into the incident to determine if those rules were broken.