Trixi Worrack (Canyon-SRAM) will return to racing at the UCI 2.2 Auensteiner Radsporttage tour in Germany on Saturday and Sunday. The two-day stage race will mark her first time racing since rupturing her left kidney in a serious crash at Alfredo Trofeo Binda-Cittiglio in March.
"I am really happy to return to racing and to see my teammates again,” Worrack said in a team press release. “I had a long time out with injury in the 2013 season but this has been the longest time on the sidelines. I've worked hard on my rehabilitation in the last eleven weeks with an intense program of physiotherapy, gym sessions, doctor's appointments, medical tests, several training tests, nutrition and recovery. I'm ready now."
Worrack crashed on a descent 55km into the women's 123km Italian WorldTour race. The race ambulance transported her to the hospital in Cittiglio but following a CT scan she was moved to the hospital in nearby Varese where she had emergency surgery to remove her left kidney.
A recent press release from Canyon-SRAM noted that Worrack has been riding and doing interval training for the last two weeks.
"In training I feel good most days,” Worrack said. “When I'm at maximum efforts on climbs then it can be uncomfortable in my side but otherwise there's no problems. There are a few days where I feel a bit tired but that can be normal in training blocks anyway. I've been given the all clear medically to race and I'm looking forward to it. The doctors are interested to see how I react to the racing and I'll have tests afterwards to monitor my recovery."
With regard to living (and racing) with only one kindey, Worrack cited no immediate concerns or fears. "I might have only one kidney now, but I also only have one heart. Fortunately, you are born with two kidneys and I can continue after losing one. If I was afraid of getting back on a bike, it would be wrong to aim for a return in pro cycling. But I'm not," she told Radsport news.
The Auensteiner Radsporttage will host three stages over two days. Saturday will begin with stage 1’s 88km road race followed by a double day on Sunday with stage 2’s seven-kilometre time trial and stage 3’s 82km road race.
“I think if I'm going to start somewhere then this is ideal and it's nice to race in Germany. I feel ready to race. I am a bit nervous of course because even if in training I'm feeling okay, I still am not sure how I will go and exactly how my body will react to the racing. But I am ready."
Worrack will be joined by Lisa Brennauer, Mieke Kröger, Hannah Barnes and Barbara Guarischi.