Damiano Cunego (Nippo-Vini Fantini) was forced to quit the Giro d'Italia after he broke his right collarbone in a crash during stage 18 on Thursday. The Italian was taken to a hospital in nearby Gallarate and will undergo surgery to correct the fracture, according to a team press release.
The stage started in Melide and ended in Verbania with a pass over the Monte Ologno. Cunego was part of the day's decisive breakaway before he and Roberto Ferrari (Lampre-Merida) were involved in the crash. His team confirmed in a press release that Cunego broke his right collarbone and has a hematoma on his right elbow.
Cunego is the second rider from the Nippo-Vini Fantini team to abandon due to a crash after sprinter Daniele Colli crashed during stage 6 and broke his left humerus. He was transported via ambulance to the Grosseto for an immediate operation on the arm. That crash happened when a fan looked to have leaned out into the road with a camera and a zoom lens during the finish of the stage.
"In this Giro d'Italia with young talented riders we had one great captain and one great morale leader," said team General Manager Francesco Pelosi. "Both of them have been very unlucky. After losing Daniele Colli when he was in his best moment, today has been Damiano Cunego to be involved in a bad fall when he was attacking in a stage that was fitting perfectly to him.
"We want to thank the medical equipe of the Giro d'Italia, with the doctor Tredici, always fast and professional with riders in the race. Now we are really sad, we are with our rider and we want him to rest and be with us again as soon as it will be possibile. Damiano and Daniele will both come back with more and more determination to win together."
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