Tom Boonen (Etixx-QuickStep) dislocated his left shoulder during a crash in Paris-Nice and will need three to six weeks to recover, his team announced today. The injury means Boonen will not compete in the Northern Classics.
Boonen suffered a left acromioclavicular (AC) joint dislocation in the crash, which occurred as the peloton was chasing a two-rider breakaway about 20km from the finish. Boonen, riding near the rear of the peloton, touched wheels with the rider in front of him and hit the tarmac hard. Boonen landed hard on his shoulder and was seen cradling his left arm as he sat on the ground waiting for medical attention. A Cannondale-Garmin rider also went down in the crash.
"An AC-joint dislocation, as we've already seen with other riders of the team with the same kind of injury, requires an extended time of recovery due to the nature of the injury," said Etixx-QuickStep doctor Yvan van Mol. "Unfortunately, because of the injury and the time it takes to recover, Boonen will not be able to participate in the Northern Classics. Tomorrow Tom will undergo further examination in Belgium to diagnose the grade of the dislocation and determine if surgery is necessary based on the grade."
The Belgian Classics specialist has had a solid early season so far, finishing inside the top 10 seven times, including third at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and second during stages in Oman and Qatar.
After Paris-Nice, Boonen, 34, was headed for E3 Harelbeke, which he was won five times. From there, his schedule included Gent-Wevelegem, where he is a three-time winner, Tour of Flanders, which he has also won three times, Scheldeprijs and Paris-Roubaix.