French UCI WorldTour team Cofidis has revealed that its rider Max Walscheid was hit by a driver yesterday evening while on a training ride close to his home in Germany’s Franconia region, with the 28 year old reflecting that “I was incredibly lucky to survive this incident.”
Walscheid, who had been preparing for upcoming races including Paris-Roubaix, was airlifted to hospital in Neuwied, where he was placed in intensive care.
His team said that he did not lose consciousness following the crash, but did sustain numerous bruises.
Walscheid joined Cofidis during the close season from Team Qhubeka-Nexthash, and has been in the best form of his career in recent weeks.
During the past fortnight, he won the French race Grand Prix de Denain-Porte de Hainaut, and in Belgium finished runner-up at the Danilith Nokere Koerse and, this Wednesday, was fourth at the Minerva Classic Brugge-De Panne. Cofidis says that his injuries will rule him out of upcoming races, however.
In a statement released by his team, Walscheid said: “The first thin that comes to my mind is that I was incredibly lucky to survive this incident. Even if we haven't done all the X-rays yet, I obviously don't have any broken bones.
“I was just doing classic training after Brugge-De Panne. I was on a calm road, in perfect conditions. Fortunately, I was not moving very quickly, on the side of the road.
“A car came from the opposite direction. She turned suddenly to the right, without blinking, rushed at me and hit me. I didn't even have time to do anything or be scared before the accident happened. So I got hit in the face.
“I jumped over the car and fell a few metres away, luckily in the ditch and not on the asphalt. My bike was completely destroyed, 10 metres away.
“People quickly came to help me, the ambulance and the police too. I was then transported to the hospital and admitted to the emergency services where they made a scan of my whole body.
“Even though they didn't find anything broken, I had to spend the night under observation. We will continue the tests and examinations this Friday, in particular for my head and to check my breathing and my electrocardiogram.
“I still can’t believe I got through this without much deeper wounds. It’s just beyond comprehension.
“At the same time, it’s very hard because I was particularly comfortable in the race, I had good results and the potential to do more.
“But today, I prefer above all to rejoice that I am still alive,” he added.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.