Crashes force Wilson Peña and Awet Habtom to leave Aosta
55th International Cycling Tour of the Aosta Valley – Mont Blanc
This Thursday’s stage was not so sweet for Polartec-Kometa despite the great victory of Kevin Inkelaar and his promotion to the team standings of the Giro d’Aosta. During their dispute, the Madrid squad lost the services of Colombian Wilson Peña and Eritrean Awet Habtom as a result of the crashes. Cycling, a confluence of factors.
The first to leave was Peña, who was involved in a major crash that took place in the first kilometers and that, among its various consequences, also led to the withdrawal of the Danish who started with the yellow jersey of leader: Jonas Vingegaard. Consequence for the South American: a micro-rupture in his left ankle, contusions and several stitches in one knee. I will know more precisely on Monday, when I will have a consultation with a specialist,” he says. The Colombian climber has not had a good night. “I slept very little because of the pain. And my knee burns.”
“The stage, from the start, was downhill and at kilometre 6 I was riding ahead, perhaps in the first fifteen positions. Precisely to save from falls. And look, the fall was just two or three runners ahead of me. I couldn’t do anything. I tried, but it was impossible to save her. That’s where the leader fell, too. We went down like 30 bikers. The race stopped, neutralized; the ambulances worked. I tried to keep going, but it was impossible. I couldn’t push with my left foot,” Peña recalls.
Later it was Awet Habtom. During the descent of the Col des Combes, the Eritrean made a bad curve, made a straight line and fell down a small slope. “It was a big scare, but fortunately it all came to nothing,” Habtom explains. Transferred to a nearby hospital, the doctors diagnosed him with head trauma and placed a neck brace on his neck. “In the first corner of that descent he entered too quickly, didn’t have time to brake and was fired”, laments the director Jesús Hernández.
Two casualties that reduce to three cyclists the representation of the Polartec-Kometa in the race: “Yes, there is no doubt that the team will notice it, they are two very important casualties. Wilson was tenth overall after a time trial and that was a sign that he was doing very well. They were both very fit. Two important losses, but well, this is cycling and there’s no other way we can adapt to the circumstances; I’m sure the boys will continue to be the protagonists”.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)