Remco Evenepoel has shared an update on his condition from his hospital bed in Belgium after his Il Lombardia crash.
The Deceuninck – Quick-Step rider says his 2020 season is over after he suffered multiple injuries in a shocking fall in Italy last weekend, which saw him hit a low wall on a bridge and fall into the ravine below.
Evenepoel, who has now been transferred from Italy to a hospital closer to home in Belgium, now expects to miss the rest of the season but says he will come back even stronger in 2021.
The 20-year-old said: “First of all, I want to thank all the people who supported me and helped me in the last couple of hours starting from the moment of the crash until now actually.
“Unfortunately, my season is over so far. We have no rush. And we have all the time to plan a good comeback physically.
“We will do everything to become a better rider and to become stronger than ever before.”
Evenepoel was the favourite to take the win in Il Lombardia, despite the race being his first time lining up in a Monument.
After making it into an elite group at the front of the race, Evenepoel suffered a huge crash inside the final 50km when he hit a bridge wall and fell down the drop below.
Evenepoel suffered multiple injuries, including a pelvis fracture and a contusion to his right lung.
He added: “I want to thank you all because you supported me so much. I could not answer all the messages because there were so many, but just I see everything and I feel everything. So just know that your support really touches me and will help me in a positive way.”
The crash has derailed an outstanding season for Evenepoel, who has won all four stage races he has entered so far this year.
He was due to make his Grand Tour debut at the Giro d’Italia in October and had been tipped as the favourite by despite his inexperience in three-week racing, but instead Evenepoel will have to look to 2020 to ride the biggest races.