Irvine bruised but not broken after Gent Six crash; team expects him to be able to return to competition soon
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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Irvine bruised but not broken after Gent Six crash; team expects him to be able to return to competition soon

by Shane Stokes at 7:56 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Track, Injury
 
World champion hit by bad luck on Tuesday’s opening night

Martyn IrvineAlthough there were initial concerns that he may have fractured his femur when he fell heavily on Tuesday’s opening night of the Gent Six, world scratch race champion Martyn Irvine has received confirmation that his condition is not as serious as that.

The Irish rider was paired with the Dane Marc Hester, the winner in the 2012 Copenhagen Six-Day, but hit the deck hard and was forced out of the competition.

He was stretchered off the track and given medical assessment. The diagnosis is, according to his UnitedHealthcare road team, better than some initially anticipated.

“Martyn Irvine was involved in a bad crash yesterday during the Ghent Six Day Track event in Belgium,” stated team spokesman Wesley Mallette. “Although X-Rays showed nothing was broken, Martyn did suffer significant bruising and had to withdraw from the event. However, he is in good spirits and would like to thank everyone for their kind thoughts and support following this crash.”

Irvine made history earlier this year when he became the first Irishman in 116 years to win a world track race title. He took his scratch race victory just over an hour after finishing second in the individual pursuit, and the double of big results was hailed by some as the big performance of the championships.

His luck changed one month later when he crashed heavily in the Tour of Taiwan and broke his femur. He had an operation to insert a pin and then gradually healed, returning to competition in August.

Despite the disruption, he was able to build solid form and finished third in last month’s Omnium race at the European championships. More recently he won the points race in the Manchester World Cup.

The world track championships are a key race for him this season, and while he will need to get over this injury, he should still have ample time to be in top condition.

UnitedHealthcare believes his fans won’t have to wait too long to see him. “We expect him to recover well and return to racing soon.’

He will remain with the American team in 2014 and is hoping to take part in the Giro d’Italia. To do that, his team will need to be given a wildcard invite to the race, and he will then need to be selected by the squad.

However his chances are boosted by the fact that the race starts in Belfast, close to his hometown of Ards, and will pass close to his new home in the Republic of Ireland on day three.

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