Thursday, 19 January 2012

Roelandts out of hospital, planning return

(image credit: Matthieu Riegler CC BY 3.0)
Jürgen Roelandts, the Lotto-Belisol rider who sustained a fracture to his sixth cervical vertebra (the parts of the spine directly below the skull) at the Tour Down Under two days ago, has been released from hospital and told the Gazet van Antwerpen newspaper that he plans to return to competition in time for this year's Tirreno-Adriatico - thus scotching reports soon after the 70kph crash that he might never cycle again.

"The doctors here have told me I'll need to wear a collar for six weeks, but [I can continue] limited training," says the 26-year-old from Asse, Flanders; adding, "We'll see what the Belgian doctors think." The race will be held between the 7th and 13th of March and is used by many riders as preparation for the Milan-San Remo, one of the Monument races in the European Classics, but Roelandts has not given indication that he plans to compete in that event too.

Directeur sportif Herman Frison is also optimistic: "There'll be some more tests - first, our team doctor, who may forward the rider to specialist Dr. Toon Claes in Herentals. How soon will Roelandts be back? I'm no doctor, but as a rider he's very impatient and won't want to be stuck on the sidelines for long."

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