Lachlan Morton's summer campaign has been disrupted after the Australian was hit by a car while training on Thursday in Colorado. The Dimension Data rider was hit when a car pulled out in front of him. He was left with a broken right arm and bruised. Morton was set to take part in the Tour de Suisse later this month but those ambitions are over, with the rider facing several weeks on the sidelines as he heals up.
"I'd been up in the mountains riding on the trails, and I was coming down through this downhill drag through town and [the driver] just pulled out from this side street. She didn't see me, and I ended up going right into the side of her car. She left me no chance to stop," Morton, 26, told Cyclingnews from his base in the US.
"I'm in a cast now for maybe a month. It's a bone where your arm meets your wrist. I was supposed to fly out yesterday afternoon to Europe, but I was at the hospital instead having things checked out, and once we saw the crack then I knew I wasn't going to be going to Europe for now.
"This changes things as I was meant to do Suisse," he said. "It's a huge pain in the arse, but it's also one of those things that you can't do anything about. She didn't see me, and she was super upset and super sorry. She probably drives down that road every single day and never looks left, but on this occasion I just happened to be there at the exact time."
Morton isn't the only Dimension Data to be taken out by bad luck this season. Several of the riders on the team have either suffered multiple crashes or illnesses this year. Mark Cavendish endured a difficult spring, Bernhard Eisel went through brain surgery in April, while Ben O'Connor crashed out of the Giro d'Italia while competing for a top-10 place overall.
"It's not good for me, but it's also a bad situation for the team," Morton said. "We've already had such bad luck already this season. I've never been on a team that's had such a run of bad luck in such a short space of time."
Despite the episode, Morton is keeping his spirits up. He was not down to ride the Tour de France in July, but the next few weeks will be all about recovery as he looks towards the second half of the season.
"Me being me, I was trying to ride my bike around the driveway this morning," he said.
"My wife flew to Europe this morning, so I dropped her to the airport and was at home for a minute and thought, 'Now what do I do?' I really smacked my leg so I can't really bend it at the moment, but once the swelling goes down… and I hit the car with my chest so my ribs are bruised… but there's no reason why I can't be on the trainer in the next few days. I'll try and do some hiking to try and stay fit. I have to stay optimistic and try and not drag out the recovery process."