Dutch Cyclist Fabio Jakobsen in Coma After Terrifying Chain Reaction Crash During Tour de Pologne
In footage of the race, the 23-year-old can be seen elbow-to-elbow with cyclist Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma before crashing into a barrier right before the finish line
Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen was placed in a medically induced coma after suffering serious injuries at a crash during the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne in Katowice, Poland on Wednesday.
"Fabio Jakobsen’s situation is serious but at the moment he is stable," the Deceuninck-Quick Step said in a statement. "Diagnostic test didn’t reveal brain or spinal injury, but because of the gravity of his multiple injuries he is still kept in a comatose condition and has to remain closely monitored in the following days at the Wojewódzki Szpital in Katowice."
In footage of the race, the 23-year-old can be seen elbow-to-elbow with cyclist Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma before crashing into a barrier before the finish line. Jakobsen tumbles over the security wall and collides with a race official as debris spills onto the track causing several other riders to fall and then others to fall on top of them.
"His condition is very severe. There is a danger to his life," race doctor Barbara Jerschina told the BBC. "Unfortunately, it is quite a serious injury to the head and brain. He has lost a lot of blood. He is very strong. I hope he will survive."
Jerschina said the race official suffered head and spinal injuries as a result of the collision, but was speaking when he was transported to a hospital.
Jakobsen was declared the winner of the stage, while Groenewegen was disqualified from the race by Union Cycliste Internationale — the sport's governing body — upon further review.
"Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) strongly condemns the dangerous behavior of rider Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma), who sent Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) into the barriers a few meters from the finish, causing a collective crash at the end of the first stage of the Tour of Poland," the organization said in a statement.
"The UCI, which considers the behavior unacceptable, immediately referred the matter to the Disciplinary Commission to request the imposition of sanctions commensurate with the seriousness of the facts," the statement read. "Our Federation is wholeheartedly with the affected riders."
WARNING: Video below may be disturbing to some viewers
Groenewegen's team also released a statement following the incident, reading: "Our thoughts go out to Fabio Jakobsen and other people involved in today’s terrible crash in the Tour of Poland. Crashes like these should not happen."
"We offer our sincere apologies and we will discuss internally what has happened before we may make any further statement," the team tweeted.
Other cyclists who were injured in the crash include Marc Sarreau of Groupama-FDJ and Damien Touze of Team Cofidis.
"Marc Sarreau suffers an important trauma to the shoulder and also from multiple tearing of the ligaments. He is going to need further medical tests," Sarreau's team tweeted. "He is of course not starting tomorrow. Thank you for all the support addressed to Marc."
According to a statement from Team Cofidis, Touze "stayed conscious after the crash and is at the hospital for extra exams. We will give you some news when we’ll have a full diagnostic."