Leipheimer sidelined with fibula fracture

Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) and Tejay Van Garderen (BMC) on the attack.

Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) and Tejay Van Garderen (BMC) on the attack. (Image credit: Rafael Gómez Alonso)

The Omega Pharma-QuickStep team of American Levi Leipheimer announced today that the 38-year-old American sustained a fibula fracture in his left leg due to the accident that occurred the day before the start of Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco, in which he was hit from behind by a car.

X-rays confirmed the fracture and at the moment it's not believed that surgery will be necessary. Leipheimer, at home in Santa Rosa, California, will need to respect a period of absolute rest for two weeks and at that time more information on his recovery time will be announced.

"After the crash, I understood immediately something was wrong when there was swelling, and I couldn't bear weight on that side," said Leipheimer. "Now I need to stay calm and recover as fast as possible to try to be competitive for the Amgen Tour of California. I am really disappointed, but the real victory here is that I survived the collision and that I'm alive to meet that challenge at all.

"It's amazing that all I did was break my fibula. I was in a panic state after [the collision] happened; I couldn't calm down. I can't communicate how close I came to being killed and that was incredibly scary. More than anything, I'm really grateful for the chance to come back from this injury. This could be a good thing for me in events like the Tour de France and the 2012 London Olympics. While the Tour of California will be more of a challenge for me now, I still have my sights set squarely on a win again this year."

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