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Groenewegen releases statement about Jakobsen crash and stands to face UCI disciplinary action

Joe Robinson
6 Aug 2020

Jumbo-Visma rider 'can't find the words to describe how terrible' he feels for his part in the crash

Jumbo-Visma's Dylan Groenewegen has publicly apologised for a crash at the Tour of Poland that led to Deceuninck-QuickStep's Fabio Jakobsen being admitted to hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Jakobsen is said to be in a 'serious yet stable' medically induced coma after a high-speed crash with Groenewegen on the finishing straight of Stage 1 of the Tour of Poland in Katowice.

Groenewegen has since tweeted, apologising for the crash and wishing Jakobsen a full recovery.

'I think it’s awful what happened yesterday. I can’t find the words to describe how terrible I feel for Fabio and others who fell or were struck', Groenewegen wrote on Twitter. 'At the moment, the most important thing is Fabio’s health, I think about him constantly.'

An update from the Deceuninck-QuickStep team confirmed that Jakobsen underwent facial surgery overnight at the Wojewódzki Szpital in Katowice and that the 'situation is stable at the moment and later today the doctors will try to wake Fabio up'.

It was also confirmed Jakobsen did not sustain any serious brain or spinal injuries.

Groenewegen has been referred to the UCI's disciplinary commission following his involvement in the crash with the governing body 'condemning' his actions.

During the sprint finish, Groenwegen is seen to change his line, veering to the right and into the path of Jakobsen, a major factor in causing the collision.

'Groenewegen was disqualified from the race by the Commissaires’ Panel,' a statement from the UCI read.

'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. Our Federation is wholeheartedly with the affected riders.'

The UCI itself, however, has been met with criticism for what some are considering an unsafe finish and the way in which the barriers broke on impact.

With a downhill into the finish straight, riders reached speeds in excess of 80kmh while the barriers along the side of the road catapulted into the road after impact, colliding with more riders.

A series of riders have already expressed their dismay at the finish used in Katowice with Cofidis's Fabio Sabitini writing: 'Tour of Poland must understand that making an arrival at 85km/h is always suicide. And for years I have thought the same way, but they always want the show.'

In response, CCC Team's Francisco Ventoso agreed, calling upon the CPA riders' union to take action: 'Our union that is the CPA allow it. [They have] never done anything for safety. Will they now?' he asked.

The headline of the article was changed after a more-accurate translation of Groenewegen's tweet