Greg Van Avermaet reveals details of mountain bike crash that caused broken ankle

Belgian seeing the positive of extra rest ahead of 2017 season

(Image credit: Watson)

After having successful surgery on his broken ankle on Monday, Greg Van Avermaet has given details of the crash that caused the small left fibula fracture.

"It was my first training ride after a few weeks off," said the 31-year-old BMC rider.

"I went into a corner, maybe a bit too fast and there was water on the ground and I didn't want to go straight into that, so I put my foot down, and this is what caused the fracture."

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Despite his injury, Van Avermaet is remaining positive about his recovery, and seeing the bright side with regards to the timing of the crash.

"I feel fine. Of course it's better to not have an injury like this but I cannot change it, and it's better now than in January.

"I now have some extra weeks to recover before getting back on the bike in about four weeks, and then I'll still have a big block of training before the season starts, so it should be fine."

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After crashing out of the Tour of Flanders in April, Van Avermaet was forced to miss the rest of the 2016 Classics including Paris-Roubaix.

However, he recovered his season in the second half of the year, taking a stage win and wearing the yellow jersey at the Tour de France, and beating the climbers to take the gold medal in the Rio Olympic road race.

Henry Robertshaw

Henry Robertshaw began his time at Cycling Weekly working with the tech team, writing reviews, buying guides and appearing in videos advising on how to dress for the seasons. He later moved over to the news team, where his work focused on the professional peloton as well as legislation and provision for cycling. He's since moved his career in a new direction, with a role at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.