Great Britain's Tom Pidcock has been forced to abandon the Tour de l'Avenir following a hard crash in the final kilometre of stage 6 from Saint-Julien-Chapteuil to Privas on Tuesday.
The winner of the recent Tour Alsace and the espoirs Paris-Roubaix earlier this season posted a photo of himself in the hospital with a bloody nose and swollen face, thanking his followers for the well wishes.
"Just starting to come round. I don’t really remember much at the moment but I remember enough to know what Instagram is and was also told I was going to win, which is a bit shit. Anyway, I’ll live to fight another day," he wrote.
Twenty-year-old Swiss rider Stefan Bissegger won the stage ahead of Kaden Groves (Australia), with American Matteo Jorgensen in third. Giovanni Aleotti (Italy) assumed the race lead.
Pidcock was ranked seventh overall after the stage but will not start stage 7.
He did not discuss the extent of his injuries, but the fall comes just one month before the UCI Road World Championships in Yorkshire where Pidcock, a former junior world champion in the time trial and the current under-23 cyclo-cross world champion, is expected to be one of the favourites for the U23 road race.