Italian climber and general classification rider Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain-Merida) will have to miss the Vuelta a España after being injured in a collision with a car while training near Cosensa.
La Gazzetta dello Sport reports the Fiat Punto involved in the incident on Sunday, two days after returning from the Tour of Poland, caused fractures to his right arm and leg.
The incident occurred in the Italy’s southern region of Calabria were Pozzovivo lives. The driver reportedly called for help and Pozzovivo, fifth in both the 2018 and 2014 editions of the Giro d’Italia, was taken to the hospital.
Pozzovivo often works for Vincenzo Nibali, helping him win the 2016 Giro. In the Vuelta, he was due to have a leadership role for Bahrain-Merida.
On Friday, he finished the Tour of Poland 12th overall behind overall winner Russian Pavel Sivakov (Ineos). The race had been overshadowed by the crash and death of 22-year-old Belgian Bjorg Lambrecht (Lotto-Soudal).
Bahrain-Merida’s Nibali is racing the upcoming Tour of Germany. The team is expected to take Sonny Colbrelli and Dylan Teuns to the Vuelta, beginning next Saturday.
In La Flèche Wallonne this spring, 36-year-old Pozzovivo crashed and suffered a concussion. He escaped fractures and managed to begin the Giro d’Italia the following month.
Already in 2014, he was forced to miss the Spanish Grand Tour. During a training camp near Bolzano, he fell when a cat was crossing the road and suffered a fractured tibia and fibula on his right leg.
On Monday afternoon, Bahrain-Merida followed up the incident with a statement, saying: “Team Bahrain Merida rider Domenico Pozzovivo has been seriously injured in a training accident. The Italian rider was training on the roads around Cosenza, Italy, when he was involved in a collision with a car. He was immediately taken by ambulance to Annunziata Hospital in Cosenza for treatment.
“The 36-year-old Italian rider is in intensive care, and although stable and conscious has suffered multiple bone fractures requiring surgery.”