Nick Nuyens happy with comeback but pulls out of 4 Jours de Dunkerque
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Monday, May 07, 2012

Nick Nuyens happy with comeback but pulls out of 4 Jours de Dunkerque

by Ben Atkins at 4:10 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Four Days of Dunkirk, Injury
 
Former Ronde van Vlaanderen winner wary of pushing himself too hard in tough fourth stage

nick nuyensSaxo Bank’s Nick Nuyens has reported himself happy with his comeback to racing at the Quatre Jours de Dunkerque, having spent the last two months on the sidelines after fracturing his pelvis in the Paris-Nice prologue. The 2011 Ronde van Vlaanderen winner, who celebrated his 32nd birthday on the second day of the race, finished safely in the peloton in the first three stages, but elected to abandon the fourth as the tough, cobbled climb to the finish on Mont Cassel - which had to be tackled ten times in all - threatened to push him too far into the red.

"It was a very difficult stage,” he told Sporza. “After several climbs of Mont Cassel I decided to call it a day.

“I felt I was forcing myself too much,” he explained. “I was still only pushing with one leg and decided that it was enough.”

Nuyens came down on the wet roads of Chevreuse in the rain-affected Paris-Nice prologue on March 4th; at first it was assumed that there were no broken bones and he tried to ride the following day’s first stage, but it soon transpired that he had fractured his hip and was forced off his bike for several weeks.

Despite not managing to feature in the five-day French race, and feeling it necessary to pull out of its toughest stage, the Belgian feels positive about his recovery.

“I feel that in these four days of racing I’ve already made real progress,” he said. “On Tuesday I’ll go for more medical checks. I’m building on my condition.”

Nuyens Saxo Bank team - which has been struggling for points in the International Cycling Union (UCI) World rankings, and so missed its Classics captain in the spring - is also very pleased with its rider’s recovery.

“Nick was actually feeling better and better during the first few stages of the race but today's stage was brutal going over some hard climbs and he just had to call it quits in order to protect himself,” said the team’s directeur sportif Tristan Hoffman. “Now, he's at home getting physical treatments and he'll be able to retain his training for a few days before starting the Tour of Norway from 16th-20th of May.”

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