Adam Hansen's run of Grand Tour participations is safe for now as the Australian escaped serious injury following a crash on stage 14 of the Giro d'Italia. Hansen, who had been one of several riders trying to get into the breakaway, crashed on the run into the one and only climb of the day to Santuario di Oropa.
The Lotto Soudal rider was able to finish the stage in one of the last groups on the road some 16 minutes behind the winner Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb). His team confirmed immediately after the stage that he had injured his hand but would undergo further examinations. Hansen allayed any fears that his run of Grand Tours was about to come to an abrupt end with a tweet on Sunday morning.
"Thanks for all the support guys. It's just my hand, not my legs so no excuse. It's race time," he wrote.
Hansen has ridden every Grand Tour going since the 2011 Vuelta a Espana, completing all of them. This year's Giro d'Italia is his 17th straight participation at a Grand Tour, giving him the record for the most consecutive participations. He is one of only 33 riders to have ridden all three Grand Tours - the Giro d'Italia, Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana – in the same season. He is still 10 participations short of the most total Grand Tour rides, a record held by Matteo Tosatto who competed in 34 three-week races in his 20-year career.
Hansen's Grand Tour run has faced bigger challenges in the past. In 2015, he dislocated his shoulder on stage 2 of the Tour de France, a repeat of an injury that he had suffered almost a month earlier. Despite the injury, he was able to finish the race.
There is still a week of racing for Hansen to get through with the Giro d'Italia taking on some of its most challenging stages to come. The first test of Hansen's hand will be stage 15 from Valdengo to Bergamo, which may prove a chance for the overall contenders.