Wout van Aert’s cyclocross season still in doubt after Tour de France crash

The Belgian star is still recovering from a nasty wound suffered in the fall a month ago

(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Wout van Aert’s cyclocross season remains in doubt, a month after he suffered a gash to his leg at the Tour de France.

The Jumbo-Visma star fell in the closing kilometres of the stage 13 time trial in Pau, leaving him with a deep cut to his right leg.

Van Aert has been undergoing rehab as the crash has had a bigger impact than expected, and it is unclear if he will be able to return to racing this winter.

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The 24-year-old said: “I still hope that I can ride some cyclocross races this winter. If only in preparation for the spring. The difficult thing that cyclocross races require an even greater strain on my hip and all the muscles that have been hit than cycling races on the road.

“The goal is to get back to my old level in spring and preferably to be a little better.”

Van Aert, who is still walking on crutches, told Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad that he still has to rest for three weeks before the wound will be healed enough to let him train.

The team believe it will take 10 to 12 weeks to get the former three-time cyclocross world champion back up to full fitness.

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Jumbo-Visma sports director Merijn Zeeman said: “In a rehabilitation you have two phases: the medical rehabilitation and the sports rehabilitation. Only when the wound and the injury are completely healed can we proceed to the sportive rehabilitation and muscle building. We have to be patient.

“Because in the case of Wout we still do not know how the injury is evolving, we cannot comment on a period.

“It will be difficult to get Wout back to his old level by the spring.”

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Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.