Tour de Poland race doctors have confirmed Fabio Jakobsen has suffered life-threatening injuries following a crash on the final sprint in the opening stage.
The Deceuninck–Quick-Step rider went crashing into the barriers as he jostled for position and a stage victory with Dylan Groenewegen of Team Jumbo–Visma.
‘It is a severe head and brain trauma. We did what we could, the medical team came immediately,’ a race doctor said.
Fabio Jakobsen suffered a serious-looking crash at the opening stage of the Tour de Poland
‘The biggest problems were with intubation, a huge trauma to the palate, heavy bleeding. The health condition is very serious, it is a direct threat to life.’
The harrowing incident came after Dutch cyclist Jakobsen had raced into the final metres of the race elbow-to-elbow with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen.
But then he came up the inside of his compatriot, and as the pair vied for position, Groenewegen appeared to clip Jakobsen.
He was jostling for position and a stage victory with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen
That moment caused Jakobsen to vault into the barriers and cause havoc amid a domino-like pile-up that saw multiple riders hit the asphalt as they crossed the line.
Jakobsen’s impact knocked advertising hoardings and barriers into the path of the cyclists, sending multiple riders to the ground as they tried to avoid what lay ahead of them.
Groenewegen was declared the winner of the race – with Marc Sarreau and Luka Mezgec also making the initial podium – but he was later disqualified from the race.
Jakobsen’s impact knocked advertising hoardings and barriers into the path of the cyclists
A UCI statement blamed the 27-year-old, stating: ‘The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) strongly condemns the dangerous behaviour of rider Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma), who sent Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quickstep) into the barriers a few metres from the finish, causing a collective crash at the end of the first stage of the Tour of Poland.
‘Groenewegen was disqualified from the race by the commissaires’ panel.
‘The UCI, which considers the behaviour unacceptable, immediately referred the matter to the Disciplinary Commission to request the imposition of sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the facts.
That crash also sent multiple riders to the ground as they tried to avoid what lay ahead of them
‘Our Federation is wholeheartedly with the affected riders.’
The sprint capped off a hilly 195.8km stage that connected two of Poland’s largest sports stadiums.
Riders including Mark Cavendish departed the Silesian Stadium in downtown Chorzow before tackling a hilly route and the finishing sprint at the Sodek arena in Katowice.