Gaviria to return to Colombia after San Juan abandon
Quick-Step Floors' rider will start his recovery at home, with the hope of returning to action at Colombia Oro y Paz.
Fernando Gaviria's participation in the Vuelta a San Juan came to a halt on Wednesday, when the young Colombian hit the deck with 45 kilometers remaining of stage 4, in an incident that took down several riders. After assessing his condition, the Quick-Step Floors doctor decided a further medical examination was needed, and so Fernando was taken to the San Juan hospital by helicopter, where the doctors – after conducting several tests and scans – excluded any fractures.
In the aftermath of the crash occurred on the roads to Villa San Agustin, where Gaviria's teammate Maximiliano Richeze sprinted to the win, the 23-year-old was left with several abrasions on his body, as well as a deep wound on his left knee, that didn't require any stitches.
"I am feeling okay after yesterday's crash. As you saw, we were riding in the side wind and the pace was high, stretching out the peloton. In a split second there was a move in the line of the guys in front of me and my wheel got caught on the wrong side of my teammate. None of us could have done anything to prevent it", said Fernando after leaving the hospital for his home country, where he'll aim to recover for the inaugural edition of Colombia Oro y Paz (6-11 February).
"It's sad to leave the Vuelta a San Juan because it's a fantastic event and I was looking forward to racing it all the way to the end. Tonight, I will travel to Colombia, where I'll have further examinations, which I hope to confirm that there's no serious damage, and try to prepare the best I can for Colombia Oro y Paz. It will be important to see how my body reacts to this crash, but I hope for a smooth recovery", explained Gaviria, who was grateful for the help and support he got from the organizers and doctors.
"I would like to thank the organisation of Vuelta San Juan, the local and provincial sports government, and the medical staff of Hospital Dr. Albarracín and Clinical Castaño for the very professional, fast, and not least, kind service. Everything was handled perfectly and in a professional way", concluded Fernando, who in Vuelta a San Juan scored his 24th victory in the Quick-Step Floors jersey.
Photo credit: ©Sigfrid Eggers