Martin making progress in recovery from fractures
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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Martin making progress in recovery from fractures

by VeloNation Press at 5:31 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Injury
World TT champion able to ride bike once again, date of return uncertain

Tony MartinDespite suffering multiple fractures in a training ride crash last Wednesday, Tony Martin has already been able to return to the bike. In contrast to his Omega Pharma Quick Step team-mate Levi Leipheimer, who yesterday confirmed that he is still unable to train after his own crash on April 1, Martin is making a quick recovery.

"I am really happy to be able to get back on my bicycle on the road," the world time trial champion stated. "I pedaled for thirty minutes yesterday on a bike path near home and today I went out again riding my bike for about an hour.”

Martin was hit by a car last week while training. He suffered a range of injuries, including fractures to his cheekbone, jawbone and eye socket. Two days later his team announced that he also had small fractures in his left shoulder blade and upper arm.

Returning to exercise is a good sign, although he emphasizes that there’s a lot of work ahead. “Obviously, these aren't training sessions, but just some pedaling to get used to the bicycle and the road again. I am trying to listen to my body and I'm pedaling without taking any type of risk,” he said.

Still, it’s a step forward. “It's a very pleasant feeling, especially thinking about the fact that a week ago I was lying in a hospital bed."

Martin had been riding well this season, netting second in the Volta ao Algarve and fifth in the recent Vuelta al Pais Vasco.

He has identified the Olympic Games as one of his major targets for this season, with riding well in the Tour de France another goal.

However it’s too soon to know when he will be able to get back racing. "Right now I am focusing on my body and I am only thinking about recovering fully,” he explained. “I will start more intense training sessions only when I feel like I'm ready for it and the team's medical staff will say it is ok to do so.”

Leipheimer is similarly uncertain about when he will be able to return. He was hit by a car while training in Spain on April 1, and suffered a fractured fibula.

He said yesterday that he was unable to use his bike, and that he had difficulty even walking. That’s made one of his targets a very uncertain one.

"The Tour of California was one of the objectives for my season," he said. "I wanted to be competitive in order to win a fourth overall title. At this point, merely participating will be a success. I will put in my best effort to manage to be on the starting line, even though it won't be easy."

The race begins in his hometown of Santa Rosa on May 13th, three and a half weeks from now.


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