Remco Evenepoel crashed twice during Stage 5 of the 2023 Giro d’Italia Wednesday, but it wasn’t the slick conditions that brought the race favorite down the first time.
The 23-year-old Soudal Quick-Step rider was already 152 kilometers in during the 171-kilometer race when a dog on a sidewalk appeared to run into the street as the peloton passed.
Video showed the animal beeline toward the pack, forcing Evenepoel to the ground. Teammate Davide Ballerini also went down as a result of the crash.
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According to Reuters, Evenepoel was back in the race just two minutes later and crashed again with several other cyclists in the final sprint with less than 2 kilometers left.
“He has a lot of pain on his right side and a hematoma with contraction of his muscles and some problems with his sacrum bone,” Soudal Quick-Step team doctor Toon Cruyt said. “Hopefully, with some good massage and osteopathic treatment followed by a good night’s rest things will be better.”
“After a rainy day comes a sunny day,” Evenepoel wrote in an update on Twitter Thursday.
“Yesterday was difficult but after a good night and great care by the staff, today’s feeling was good and I’m looking forward to the next days. Thanks to the team for always doing everything possible to get me safe over the finish line.”
Danish cyclist Mads Pedersen, 27, surged to the top Thursday to win Stage 6. He has now won stages at all three Grand Tours.
The Giro ends in Rome May 28.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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