Fabio Jakobsen is in a stable condition in hospital and has underwent facial surgery following his high-speed crash at the Tour of Poland.
The Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider was involved in a collision in the closing metres of stage one of the WorldTour race after being forcibly moved into the barriers by Dylan Groenewegen and hitting a race official.
The latter was disqualified from the race and is under investigation by the UCI for his move that resulted in the hospitalisation of Jakobsen.
The Dutch sprinter was flown by helicopter to hospital in Katowice in the immediate aftermath and initial testing thankfully revealed that he had not suffered brain or spinal injury.
But the 23-year-old had suffered a number of serious injuries and was placed in an induced coma. His condition was described as serious but stable.
On Thursday morning, his team announced that he had facial surgery during the night. In a statement, they said: “His situation is stable at the moment and later the doctors will try to wake Fabio up.”
Race doctor Barbara Jerschina commented on Wednesday night: “His condition is very severe. There is a danger to his life.
“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.”
The incident has provoked much debate, relating to Groenewegen’s move and also the nature of the finish line, with safety concerns about the downhill slope and the barriers.
Tragically, on August 5 last year, 22-year-old Bjorg Lambrecht of Lotto-Soudal died during the same race after hitting a concrete culvert during the race’s third stage.
Cyclists and teams have sent their well-wishes to Jakobsen who is regarded as one of the most highly-rated young sprinters in the peloton.
Subsequently awarded the stage win in Katowice, Jakobsen won Grote prijs Jeane-Pierre Monsere on Monday, his first race back since the coronavirus-induced stoppage.
Prior to that he had won two stages in the early season and collected seven wins in 2019, including two in the Vuelta a España.