Katowice (Poland) (AFP) – Dutch bike owner Fabio Jakobsen was battling for his life on Wednesday right after he was thrown into and around a barrier at 80km/h in a sickening conclusion to the opening stage of the Tour of Poland.
Footage showed 23-calendar year-previous Jakobsen, of the Deceuninck-Fast Move, racing elbow-to-elbow with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma as both equally gentlemen frantically tussled in a restricted sprint to the line in Katowice.
Even so, Jakobsen came off worst, somersaulting above the boundaries in advance of colliding with a photographer after Groenewegen had veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival into the safety wall.
“His problem is quite severe. His existence is instantly threatened,” tour health practitioner Barbara Jerschina advised Polsat Sport.
“Sadly, it is a really serious head and mind injuries. He has lost a lot of blood. He is pretty solid. I hope he will endure.”
Governing body, the UCI explained they strongly condemned the “hazardous conduct” of Groenewegen.
Deceuninck-Fast Phase tweeted: “Our views and prayers are with Fabio Jakobsen. When we have news, we will let you know.
“Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your assist.”
The incident will come a calendar year to the working day soon after the dying of 22-calendar year-outdated Belgian sprinter Bjorg Lambrecht, who died soon after falling and hitting a concrete composition on the 2019 Tour of Poland.
“It was an unfair combat and just one of the riders experienced tremendously, two additional endured as very well,” Tour organiser Czeslaw Lang informed TVP Sport.
Groenewegen went on to acquire the stage but was later disqualified with the stricken Jakobsen declared the winner.
The UCI claimed it “strongly condemns the hazardous conduct of Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma), who sent Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quickstep) into the boundaries a few metres from the complete, resulting in a collective crash at the conclusion of the initial phase of the Tour of Poland.
A assertion added: “Groenewegen was disqualified from the race by the commissaires’ panel.
“The UCI, which considers the conduct unacceptable, immediately referred the issue to the disciplinary fee to request the imposition of sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the points.”
Others who crashed in the ensuing pile-up incorporated Marc Sarreau of Groupama-FDJ as rivals turned entangled in a desperate bid to keep away from each individual other as perfectly as the particles from the ruined limitations.
“Marc Sarreau suffers an critical trauma to the shoulder and also from many tearing of the ligaments. He is going to want more professional medical exams,” tweeted his team.
Damien Touze “remained aware regardless of the drop. He is in healthcare facility for further more examinations,” his Cofidis team tweeted.
The drama came at the end of the initial phase, raced about 198km from Chorzow to Katowice in southern Poland.
Jakobsen is deemed a growing star of the dash in the peloton who built his title in 2019 with two phase wins on the Vuelta a Espana, a single of the sport’s a few Grand Tours.
Possessing turned specialist in 2018 with Patrick Lefevere’s Brief-Stage crew, Jakobsen donned the Dutch champion’s jersey in June final yr.
In last year’s Tour of Poland he was third on the opening stage.