Marina Romoli, a rider for the Safi-Pasta Zara Manhattan team who was due to compete in this Sunday's Women's World Cup in Spain, was seriously injured in an accident during training in Italy yesterday, according to her team.
Just days shy of her 22nd birthday, Romoli was doing an interval ahead of her two training partners near Airuno in Lecco when a driver turned in front of her. The rider from Treviso crashed into the side window and suffered deep lacerations to her face and fractured vertebrae.
Romoli was unconscious when she was transported to the hospital in Lecco, and was then airlifted to the San Raffaele hospital in Milan where she was placed in an induced coma.
Doctors performed a nine-hour long operation this morning, using some 500 stitches to rebuild her face and were confident her life was no longer in danger. They were still concerned about the injury to her spine, but will decide if further surgery is warranted in the coming days.