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Leipheimer uncertain for Amgen Tour of California

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Levi Leipheimer is in town

Levi Leipheimer is in town
(Image credit: Luis Barbosa)
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Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) was attentive as usual

Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) was attentive as usual
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Stage winner and GC leader Levi Leipheimer

Stage winner and GC leader Levi Leipheimer
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Race leader Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma Quick Step)

Race leader Levi Leipheimer (Omega Pharma Quick Step)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Three-time Amgen Tour of California winner Levi Leipheimer's participation in the 2012 edition of the race is uncertain after he fractured his left leg in a crash with a car earlier this month.

The Omega Pharma-QuickStep rider was training alone before the Tour of the Basque Country when he was hit from behind by a car traveling at high speeds.

In speaking with Cyclingnews two weeks ago, Leipheimer was optimistic about recovering before his home Tour, since the fracture to his left fibula did not require surgery, but he has found recovery to be more difficult that previously imagined.

"The situation isn't pleasant at all," Leipheimer said in a team press release."Ever since the day of the accident I haven't managed to get back on my bike out on the road, and I honestly don't know when that will be possible. Recovery is slower than we expected. I still have pain in my leg and I'm having trouble walking. I also have pain in my ribs and hips due to the fall, this is limiting my movement."

Back home in Santa Rosa, Leipheimer is now hoping just to get to the start line on May 13, much less contend for his fourth overall victory.

"The Tour of California was one of the objectives for my season," Leipheimer said. "I wanted to be competitive in order to win a fourth overall title. At this point, merely participating will be a success. I will put in my best effort to manage to be on the starting line, even though it won't be easy."