Nine most bizarre non-cycling injuries sustained by professional cyclists

From supermarket trolleys to tractors, the real world can be a dangerous place for pro riders

With the news that Dylan Teuns suffered an injury in an unusual tractor accident while gardening after the Tour de France, we got thinking about some of the other strange non-cycling injuries that have hit professional riders over the years.

1. Nacer Bouhanni's pre-Tour punch up

Nacer Bouhanni's boxing background got him in trouble in 2016 (Credit: Graham Watson)
(Image credit: Watson)

With his well-known boxing past, Nacer Bouhanni still likes to step into the ring to keep his fitness up during the off-season, but for some reason decided to put his skills to good use in a fight with drunken hotel guests on the eve of the 2016 French National Championships, and just a week before the Tour de France.

Unfortunately for the Cofidis sprinter, he came out worse from the little altercation, breaking his hand and needing surgery after the 4am bust-up, putting him out of the Tour.

2. Yves Lampaert's Lidl accident

Yves Lampaert missed a whole Classics season due to one trip to Lidl (Credit: Yuzuru Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru Sunada)

Going into his second season with Etixx-Quick Step, Yves Lampaert was looking forward to taking on the full complement of the northern Classics in 2016, something that was ruined while doing his weekly shop in Lidl.

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Perhaps distracted by a great deal on a 15 pack of circular saws in the famous Lidl middle aisle, Lampaert's girlfriend rammed the trolley into the back of his leg, causing an inflamed Achilles tendon that would put him out for the whole of April.

3. Ed Clancy's heavy luggage

Ed Clancy's Olympic preparation was delayed by heavy luggage (Credit: Andy Jones)
(Image credit: Andy Jones)

You would have thought British Cycling would have people to do this sort of thing for him, but for some reason, with the 2016 Olympics less than a year away, Ed Clancy was picking up heavy bags.

The first man in the British team pursuit suffered a slipped disc in his back that put him out for a number of months and eventually required surgery to put right. Thankfully the story had a happy ending, with Clancy taking gold as part of the team pursuit.

4. Greg LeMond's shooting accident

Greg LeMond won the 1989 Tour de France with 35 shotgun pellets in his body (Credit: Graham Watson)
(Image credit: Graham Watson)

By far the most serious accident on this list, Greg LeMond almost lost his life after being accidentally shot by his brother-in-law while on a turkey hunting trip in California in the build-up to the 1987 season.

LeMond lost 65 per cent of his blood and came within 20 minutes of bleeding to death before receiving life-saving emergency surgery. Remarkably, and still with 35 shotgun pellets in his body including three in the lining of his heart, LeMond return to top-level cycling to win the Tour de France just two years later.

5. David Millar's low slung beam

David Millar at the 2014 Vuelta a España (Credit: Graham Watson)

If you're ever sitting next to David Millar on a train and he's stinking out the whole carriage with an egg sandwich, try to bear in mind that he won't know how much it reeks after he lost his sense of smell while walking around a hotel in 2013.

Working as a consultant on The Program (a film about Lance Armstrong), Millar walked into a low beam while looking at his phone, knocking himself out in the process. Thankfully losing his sense of smell was the worst of his injuries, with Millar joking that that was Armstrong's choice of revenge for him working on the film.

6. Mark Cavendish's Wii setback

Mark Cavendish at Milan-San Remo (Credit: Yuzuru Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru Sunada)

After taking the cycling world by storm in 2008 by winning four Tour de France stages, Mark Cavendish had earned a bit of downtime during the off season, which obviously included some virtual snowboarding on his Nintendo Wii.

Unfortunately, Cavendish wasn't quite as assured on a virtual snowboard as he was on a bike, falling in his living room and injuring his calf muscle in the process. Thankfully, this took place in November, and didn't stop Cav taking six more Tour stages the following summer.

7. Luke Rowe's stag-do leg break

Luke Rowe at the 2017 Tour de France. (Credit: Yuzuru Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru Sunada)

Welsh Team Sky rider Luke Rowe suffered what can only be described as a horrific leg injury after an incident during his brother's white-water rafting stag do in August 2017.

Rowe jumped into the water, which was not as deep as he expected and he shattered his right leg. “Being a bike rider you get in a lot of scrapes and you get used to injuries, but I knew straight away that it was a bad one,” Rowe said after the incident.

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Rowe required surgery to repair a broken tibia and fibia, and was ruled out for the rest of the 2017 season as a result. His subsequent recovery went well, but he ruled out taking part in the 2018 spring classics.

8. Dylan Teuns and his tractor accident

Dylan Teuns was injured in a gardening accident at his home (Photo: Yuzuru SUNADA)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Riding high after the biggest victory of his career at the Tour de France 2019,  Dylan Teuns returned home in Belgium for some humble gardening during some hard-earned down time.

Unfortunately, gardening wasn't the most relaxing of pursuits for the Bahrain Merida rider when his tractor malfunction and stopped suddenly, sending him head first into the steering wheel.

Teuns needed 15 stitches in his forehead after the incident at his home in Halen and was forced to skip the Clásica San Sebastián.

According to Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad, Teuns said: “I was working on earthworks at home with my tractor with a machine behind it.

“The machine suddenly stopped working due to a technical defect. That also brought the tractor to a halt. Because of that sudden stop I hit my head on the wheel.”

9. Niklas Larsen dancing leg break

Denmark's Niklas Larsen on the podium for the U23 men's road race at the 2019 European Championships (Photo by Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Danish pro Niklas Larsen broke his leg during a night out partying with his team.

"I was dancing when I twisted my foot. I knew right away something was wrong," Larsen told Danish newspaper Skive Folkeblad.

Larsen was taken to hospital where doctors confirmed he had broken his leg in the freak accident and he would have to wear a boot for six weeks.

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