Pedro Horrillo has been released from hospital and is hoping to return to racing, but the Spaniard's chances of making a comeback in the peloton are still unkown. “It would be very painful to have to say goodbye to cycling in this way. But if it is so, then I have to accept it,” Horrillo said at a press conference on Wednesday, having left the hospital nearly six weeks after his horrifying crash in the Giro d'Italia.
“I can only conclude that I am a lucky man,” the Rabobank rider added. “It is a great miracle that I am still alive today.”
Horrillo fell nearly 80 metres in a ravine when he crashed in the Giro's eighth stage. He was placed in an induced coma for five days, and suffered numerous injuries, including two collapsed lungs, a complicated open fracture of his femur, and spinal injuries. At the press gathering, he was still wearing a back and neck brace.
Horrillo's first priority was to return home to his family. During his recovery, he said, his number one priority was to "be better and to be with my family again as soon as possible.” But his profession called to him, too. “Soon I began to dream of cycling again. It is a passion. It haunted me to think that I may never be able to compete again, but fortunately they assured me that this question had not yet been answered.”
The 34-year-old continued, “Now my greatest desire is to return to racing. I know I must be patient and not too fast to force things.” His motivation to return is high, but Horrillo is realistic enough to know that it may not be possible.