The Lotto-Soudal sprinter went down hard on his face in a 30-rider crash on stage eight of the Vuelta and was placed in a coma at a Murcia hospital. After he was woken up, Boeckmans was transferred to a Belgian hospital where he underwent eight hours of facial surgery that left him unable to speak for two weeks.
But the Belgian was pictured back on his bike at the end of September as he continued his remarkable recovery.
“On a scale of one to ten I came from so far away that now I am almost at zero,” Boeckmans told reporters.
“Physically, I feel like I can handle more and more, but I can not force myself. I can already do five minutes on the bike.”
“I sometimes have that dirty feeling like you’ve been to the dentist. I have no headache, but do feel tired. As soon as I feel a slight pressure on my brain, I stop and I’m have to rest.”