Wout van Aert is still unsure when he will be back to racing after a gruesome injury he suffered at the Tour de France.
The Belgian star fell in the final 2km of the stage 13 time trial in Pau after hitting a barrier, suffering a deep wound to his right leg.
Van Aert has undergone two surgeries since the crash 10 days ago, and his Jumbo-Visma team are still not sure when he will return to competition.
Team doctor Toon Claes said on Tuesday (July 30): “There are no signs of any infections and the wounds are healing nicely.
“The extent and complexity of the injury call for a slow, meticulous rehabilitation. Intensive rehabilitation is only started after two months, when the injury was healed sufficiently. “
Van Aert suffered a deep wound hit his right buttock area and had the wound surgically purified and sutured in hospital in France, and underwent a further operation after moving to hospital in Belgium.
The 24-year-old, who won a stage from a bunch sprint on his first time in the Tour de France, had been targeting a return to the cyclocross circuit this winter.
But recovery from his injury is slow and his season is now in doubt.
Van Aert said: “Last week, I had an operation in Pau and afterwards, I stayed in the hospital for four days.”
“Everything went well. I could walk on crutches and the doctor said I needed some time to recover. After that, I was transferred to another hospital. Over there, they examined me again. It seemed the first operation wasn’t enough to ensure the recovery. That’s why I needed a second one.”
Van Aert has impressed on his debut season with a WorldTour team, scoring podium places at Strade Bianche and E3 BinckBank before he took two stages and the points classification at the Critérium du Dauphiné.