The World Champion made it home after a hectic day in the saddle.
It rained cats and dogs during the peloton’s trek to Salerno – home of the first medical school in the world – and a stray dog ended up playing an infamous role with 150 kilometers to go, when he sparked a crash that took down several Soudal Quick-Step riders, including the first maglia rosa of the race, Remco Evenepoel.
After being checked over by the staff, the World Champion got up and back onto his bike, continuing the stage. Four teammates waited to pace him back to the peloton, which in the meantime had slowed down following this incident, and Remco eventually linked up with the field a couple of kilometers later. Unfortunately, after a couple of calm hours in the saddle following this incident, the last kilometers weren’t that straightforward, and the Belgian hit the deck again, just as a reduced peloton was gearing up for the bunch sprint.
On the bright side, this incident occurred inside the last three kilometers of stage five, which meant Remco got the same time as the winner Kaden Groves (Alpecin-Deceuninck) and retained his place on the overall podium of the competition. He will now be assessed by the Soudal Quick-Step medical team, with an update on his condition after this rain-soaked crazy stage set to come later in the evening.
“After the first crash, things looked to be good for Remco, which at that moment was a big relief. The problem is that following his second crash he has a lot of pain on his right side and a hematoma with contraction of his muscles and some problems with his sacrum bone. Hopefully, with some good massage and osteopathic treatment followed by a good night’s rest things will be better. We will know more Thursday morning, but what’s sure is that stage six will be a difficult one for him”, said Soudal Quick-Step doctor Toon Cruyt.
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