Jelle Wallays (Lotto-Soudal) may have finished a lowly 151st in the Vuelta a España, but he had to suffer just as much as those at the top of the general classification after revealing that he had ridden the vast majority of the race with a broken wrist and two broken ribs.
The Belgian rider sustained in the injuries in a high-speed crash on stage four of the race, crashing with around three kilometres to go on the stage to Tarragona, taking a while to remount and crossing the line more than six minutes down.
However Wallays was able to fight through the following 17 stages, before returning home to have tests which revealed that he had broken the scaphoid bone in his right wrist and two ribs.
Writing on Instagram, Wallays thanked fans for their support, and celebrated what had been a successful race for Lotto-Soudal, who took four stage victories.
“The Vuelta a España was mentally very hard for me but I did it,” Wallays wrote. “Yesterday I went for a second check of my body and result was broken wrist and two broken ribs.
“We had four victories with my heroes Lotto-Soudal, but I also won a war. Thanks everybody for the past three weeks.”
The injuries mean that Wallays will have to stay off the bike for a couple of weeks, potentially bringing his season to a premature end.