Katusha-Alpecin have confirmed that Viacheslav Kuznetsov suffered a fractured sternum, concussion and a bruised kidney in the high-speed crash that scattered riders across the road inside the final kilometre of stage 1 of the BinckBank Tour.
A touch of wheels on a long straight section of road sparked a domino effect that saw Kuznetsov land on his back. He was then hit by Katusha-Alpecin teammate Baptiste Planckaert. Half a dozen other riders also crashed, including Amund Grondahl Jansen (LottoNL-Jumbo), with others forced to take evasive action onto a nearby bike path and grass verge.
The Bahrain-Merida team confirmed that Yukiya Arashiro was also involved in the crash. The Japanese rider got up to finish the stage but was later diagnosed with a fracture of his radial capitellum bone in his elbow and will be out of action for several weeks.
Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Floors) managed to avoid the crash and find a way through the peloton in the final kilometre to win the stage. Despite losing Kuznetsov and Rik Zabel in the finale of the stage, Marcel Kittel found a way through to the front and used a late burst of speed to finish second. Caleb Ewan (Mitchelton-Scott) was third.
Kuznetsov was clearly in pain after the crash and was unable to move due to his injuries. He was immobilised by race doctors and taken to hospital. He was officially classified as finishing last on the stage but Katusha-Alpecin confirmed that his injuries would prevent him from riding Tuesday’s time trial stage.
Cyclingnews will have daily live coverage of the BinckBank Tour.
If you've ever wanted to know what it feels like to be part of a top-level cycling team, and to be on the ground, inside the barriers, at the Tour de France, then RUNNING WITH WOLVES will take you there. It is available to rent for $3.99 USD or buy for $6.99 USD.