Laura Kenny risking Tokyo 2020 dreams by refusing surgery on broken shoulder after horror crash

LAURA KENNY vowed to win three medals in Tokyo — despite doctors saying she will not make the Olympics.

Yet she admits it is a huge RISK returning so quickly to the saddle at the UCI World Track Cycling Champs in Berlin.

Essex legend Laura Kenny, who has won four Olympic golds, knows she is taking a big gamble by not having an operation
Essex legend Laura Kenny, who has won four Olympic golds, knows she is taking a big gamble by not having an operation
Rex Features
Laura Kenny won two gold at the 2016 Olympics, following two in 2012, and here celebrates with now-husband Jason
Laura Kenny won two gold at the 2016 Olympics, following two in 2012, and here celebrates with now-husband Jason
Reuters

Four-time Olympic champion Kenny broke a bone in her shoulder and suffered concussion in a horror World Cup crash in Canada last month.

The 27-year-old decided against an op — but has admitted for the first time she was told she might not make Japan this summer.

Kenny said: “I was slightly worried when I sat down with the collarbone specialist.

“He asked my time frame and I said four weeks. He said no chance. Then he said, ‘What’s after that?’ I said six months and the Olympics. He said even that was off the cards.

“I looked at our doctor Nigel and was like, ‘You’re having a laugh’. Nigel said ignore him — and here I am.

I  told  the  team member, ‘Please don’t let go of me because I think I’ve broken my arm

Laura Kenny

“I didn’t need an op and can ride a bike. But my scapula is broken — it will never be the same again.”

Kenny, who has a two-year-old son, Albie, with fellow rider Jason, was brought down accidentally by rivals in an omnium race in Milton.

She admitted: “I don’t remember much and don’t know who picked me up from the side of the track.

“I  told  the  team member, ‘Please don’t let go of me because I think I’ve broken my arm’.

“Our doctor told me to take paracetamol — but I wanted something stronger as I was in so much pain, saying, ‘Please, can I have gas and air’.

Laura Kenny vows to recover from what she calls the three most challenging weeks of her career by going for Olympic gold again
Laura Kenny vows to recover from what she calls the three most challenging weeks of her career by going for Olympic gold again
Getty Images – Getty

“I knew from giving birth that gas and air is just wonderful. I just wanted something to get rid of this pain. It felt horrendous.

“The amount of impact to break a shoulder is insane. When I went to hospital they asked if I had crashed a motorbike.

“It’s been the most challenging three weeks of my career. The first week I couldn’t pick Albie up or put him on the change table.

“Jason has been doing everything and has even had to wash my hair. I actually went 36 hours without having a shower when I got back home.”

In Germany this week, Kenny has been dropped from the signature team-pursuit event and madison and will instead race the omnium and non- Olympic scratch race.

She won two golds at both London 2012 and Rio 2016.

No Brit woman has won three gold medals at a single Olympics and Kenny does not want to give up on her dreams just yet.

Ahead of the worlds, starting tomorrow, she promised: “I’m still going for three medals. This has taken me out of one race.

“I fully believe I can be fine. Even the doctor thought I had gone crazy putting it on the line at the worlds and there are risks.

“It’s a lot weaker now if I crash and I’d be putting myself back a lot if I do. But it’s a risk I’m willing to take.”

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