Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-QuickStep) expressed his surprise to learn Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) had spoken to the media about a personal meeting they shared last month, stating that their discussion was confidential and intended to stay between them and their respective legal teams.
In a statement published on social media Thursday, Jakobsen confirmed the purpose of the meeting was to reach an understanding but that Groenewegen has not offered a personal apology for his part in causing his career-threatening crash at the Tour de Pologne last August.
"I was surprised to read the comments made by Dylan Groenewegen with regard to our recent meeting. The meeting was arranged to try to reach a common understanding relating to the accident in Poland last August," Jakobsen wrote in a post on Twitter.
"The content of this meeting was supposed to stay confidential, between the two of us and our legal teams. I am disappointed that Dylan has talked about our meeting publicly. I will not do so.
"I would like to set the record straight, though: Dylan has not offered a personal apology and he has not shown willingness to take any responsibility for his actions. I still would like to reach an understanding with Dylan, but it takes two to tango.
"Further proceedings are now being taken care of by my legal team and for that reason I will not be able to make any further comment."
In an interview with Sporza two weeks ago, Groenewegen stated that he was in communication with Jakobsen's father which led to a meeting between the two riders.
"We sat opposite each other in a small room in Amsterdam," Groenewegen told Sporza. "We both got to unburden our hearts a bit. It was a nice conversation, but I prefer to keep the content to myself."
Groenewegen served a nine-month suspension, which expires on Friday the day before the start of the Giro d’Italia, for causing a horrific crash at last year’s Tour de Pologne that severely injured Jakobsen and almost ended his career.
The incident took place on August 5, 2020 on the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne, when Groenewegen deviated from his line in an 80 kph sprint finish in Katowice and forced Jakobsen into the barriers, which gave way upon impact.
Jakobsen suffered severe facial injuries, was placed in a medically-induced coma and has gone through multiple surgeries.
Groenewegen, who suffered a broken collarbone in the crash, was expelled from the race, then suspended from racing by his Jumbo-Visma team. In November, the UCI Disciplinary Commission issued the nine-month suspension, to be served from the date of the incident.
He was remorseful about the incident and the day following the crash he stated, “I hate what happened yesterday. I can't find the words to describe how sorry I am for Fabio.”
After a long recovery, Jakobsen made an emotional return to competition at the Tour of Turkey, and he is currently competing at the Volta ao Algarve with his Deceuninck-QuickStep team.
Groenewegen is expected to join Jumbo-Visma and begin racing again at the Giro d'Italia on Saturday.
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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.
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