Ineos Grenadiers confirmed 2019 Tour de France champion Egan Bernal suffered significant injuries, including several fractures, following a crash during training near Bogota on Monday
Image: GodingImages/PA Images)
It’s understood Bernal was training alongside team-mates near his hometown of Bogota, Colombia, when he crashed into the back of a parked bus.
Ineos Grenadiers published a statement confirming their rider was taken to hospital and was conscious upon arrival before undergoing surgery at the Clinica Universidad de La Sabana.
A statement from the hospital said doctors had “kept intact the neurological integrity and conserved the functionality of the segments involved.”
“We will wait for his progress over the next 72 hours in the Intensive Care Unit to see the response to the course of treatment established for this high-energy trauma. We have immediately begun the rehabilitation process to achieve the best possible results with our patient.”
Cycling News cited reports from Colombia, which suggested Bernal had broken a femur, kneecap, seriously hurt his spine and suffered one collapsed lung.
A roadside video showed footage of Bernal—last year’s Giro d’Italia champion—collapsed on the floor next to his bike while team-mates tended to the 25-year-old.
Pictures from the scene also showed a significant dent in the back of the bus Bernal is believed to have crashed into, evidence of the speed he was travelling at when the collision took place.
Questions will now be asked as to how long the two-time Grand Tour-winner is expected to be sidelined, or perhaps even whether Bernal will be able to ride at the same standard again.
The Colombian was expected to kick off his 2022 campaign with the Tour de la Provence on February 10, with the fourth edition of the UAE Tour scheduled to start on February 20.
It’s also a major blow to his team considering Bernal is expected to lead Ineos at this year’s Tour in July, though his participation in France may well be in doubt as a result of this setback.
The two parties recently reached an agreement on a new contract that will run until 2026, but the initial portion of that deal will now be spent focused on recovery.
Cycling journalist Ned Boulting wished Bernal well after learning about the crash and wrote: “Just appalling to read.
“I don’t know what more to say – except that we all hope fervently for the best possible outcome. He is a great champion, and, in my brief experience of meeting him, a wonderful man.”
Tao Geoghegan Hart, Bernal’s British team-mate at Ineos, also tweeted: “We are all hoping you are ok @Eganbernal. So scary to read this news. A sad reminder how dangerous our training can be.”