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Tiesj Benoot fractures neck in training crash

SAN SEBASTIAN SPAIN JULY 30 Tiesj Benoot of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma crosses the finishing line on third place during the 42nd Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa 2022 Mens Elite a 2248km race from San Sebastian to San Sebastian Klasikoa2022 on July 30 2022 in San Sebastian Spain Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo MorenoGetty Images
Tiesj Benoot (Jumbo-Visma) at Clásica San Sebastián 2022 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Tiesj Benoot was injured while training in Livigno in Italy on Monday, fracturing a vertebrae in his neck, with his injuries ending his 2022 season. 

The Jumbo-Visma rider was taken to hospital and took to social media to explain his injuries were not life threatening after worrying reports emerged in the Belgian media.     

"First of all, I want to let everyone know that I’m doing OK," Benoot said via a message posted on Instagram.

"Yesterday I was involved in a crash in the Italian Alps. I’m now in the hospital, receiving good medical care to recover from the crash.

"Despite the seriousness of the situation - examinations shows that I suffered a small fracture in my neck - I was never in a life-threatening situation and I am stable."

"Thanks everyone, for sending me all your kind messages. In the following weeks I will fully focus on my recovery."

An initial report in Het Laatste Nieuws which did not identify its source, said the 28-year-old Jumbo-Visma rider was injured on a descent after a driver apparently pulled out in front of him from a car park.

Benoot, who won Paris-Nice in 2020 and Strade Bianche in 2018, had a lean season in 2021 however he quickly found his way back to the podium after a late shift from Team DSM to Jumbo-Visma this year. 

His new team were quick to recognise his value as both a support rider and one that could also take his own chances, delivering a swift extension of his contract before the Tour de France to secure the rider from Belgium through to the end of 2025.

The extension came after Benoot proved a valuable ally to compatriot Wout van Aert in the spring and then landed on the podium with a second and third as he took the reins for the team at Dwars door Vlaanderen and Amstel Gold Race. The rider slotted back into a support role at Critérium du Dauphiné, where Primož Roglič took victory, and then he worked for Jonas Vingegaard as he rode into yellow at the Tour de France. 

Benoot then carried through after the Tour de France, taking the opportunity to go for his own result at the climb-heavy Clásica San Sebastián. He came third after Remco Evenepoel (QuickStep-AlphaVinyl) rode to victory following an attack at 44km to go. 

After taking to the podium again, his third time this year, Benoot was taking a race break with the altitude training in Livigno preparation for the second part of the season. 

That was expected to include a crucial support role for Van Aert, not with Jumbo-Visma this time but with the team from Belgium at the Road World Championships in Australia in September. 

Benoot's injuries mean he will not race again in 2022.

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Production editor

Simone joined the team as Production Editor based in Australia at the start of the 2021 season, having previously worked as Australian Editor at Ella CyclingTips and as a correspondent for Reuters and Bloomberg.