Helicopter and motorbike combination puts Yannick Eijssen out of Tour of Beijing
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Friday, October 07, 2011

Helicopter and motorbike combination puts Yannick Eijssen out of Tour of Beijing

by VeloNation Press at 6:55 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Injury
 
Bad luck for Belgian BMC Racing Team rider

Yannick EijssenA bizarre accident has forced the BMC Racing Team rider Yannick Eijssen to retire from the Tour of Beijing, with the 22 year old climber being knocked from his bike due to the effects of a TV helicopter, then run into by a motorbike.

The incident happened at the start of the final descent, when the TV helicopter apparently flew too close to the peloton, whipping up wind which blew down boarding on the left hand side of the road. Eijssen was knocked from his bike by this, then run into by a TV motorbike which couldn’t stop in time.

According to the team, its doctor Scott Major said that the Belgian first-year professional ‘suffered some facial abrasions, including a small fracture around his upper teeth.’

The injuries prevented Eijssen from being able to tell the team how the accident happened, but more complete details emerged in time. Race organisers are looking into the incident, but any conclusion will come as little consolation to the team and the rider in question.

The squad is already affected by the crash injuries of Brent Bookwalter, who came down yesterday. He suffered today as a result of that fall. “Most of my body loosened up okay, but my knee became really painful throughout the race,” he said afterwards.

Amaël Moinard finished in the 48 man front group, one second behind the winner Nicolas Roche (Ag2r La Mondiale) and his fellow Irishman Philip Deignan (Team RadioShack). He is now the best-placed BMC Racing Team rider in 42nd place overall, one minute 22 seconds behind Tony Martin (HTC Highroad).

“The last two climbs were fast, not so hard, but very fast,” he said. “Then the last 10 kilometers were so fast that some splits happened just before the sprint.”

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