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Lotto-Soudal say Stig Broeckx can converse again

Josh Cunningham
21 Feb 2017

Stig Broeckx, the Lotto-Soudal rider who woke up from an eight-month coma in December, has regained the ability to converse

Lotto-Soudal rider Stig Broeckx, who after a crash at the Baloise Belgium Tour last year slipped into an eight-month long coma, has regained enough consciousness to - in the words of his team manager Marc Sargeant - 'converse' again. 

The crash, caused by a vehicle colliding with the peloton, happened in May, and Broeckx was in a coma until December last year. 'After the accident we got the news that it would not be good,' said Sargeant. 'Put bluntly, he would continue to be vegetative.' 

Sargeant visited Broeckx in hospital again recently though. 'I saw him three weeks ago, and that was incredible,' he said. 'You can converse with him again. He can not answer, but he understands everything. I said the season was about to start, and asked who from the team could win a Classic. When I said Wellens and Roelandts, he nodded. When my wife suggested Frederik Frison, he laughed and shook his head.' 

Broeckx' crash was one of a spree of serious ones involving vehicles and riders, one of which killed the Wanty - Groupe Gobert rider Antoine Demoitie. In light of the tragic incidents and the subsequent increased scrutiny on the issue, the UCI announced revised regulations for any vehicle in the race convoy, and these changes are now being implemented. 

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