Geraint Thomas withdrew from the Giro d’Italia with a fractured pelvis from crashing over a stray water bottle that lodged in his front wheel on Monday.
Thomas, the 2018 Tour de France champion, was about a mile into the neutral start within the peloton when he ran over the bottle that rolled across the road.
He remounted and finished the third stage, dropping from 23 seconds behind to more than 11 minutes back of leader Joao Almeida of Portugal. Thomas suffered abrasions up and down his left side.
Initial X-rays showed no broken bones, but he withdrew before Tuesday’s start.
“As a precaution he will be withdrawn from the race as it’s an injury that could easily be aggravated,” Ineos Grenadiers team doctor Phil Riley said in a press release.
Thomas, an Olympic track cycling champion for Great Britain, was controversially left off Ineos’ Tour de France roster despite finishing first and second in the last two editions of that Grand Tour.
“It’s so frustrating,” Thomas said in the release. “I’d put so much work into this race. I did everything I could, and feel like I was in just as good, if not better shape, than when I won the Tour.
“It does make the decision easier when there’s a fracture in some ways, because obviously I don’t want to do anymore damage.”
Ineos’ Tour dominance ended as 2019 champion Egan Bernal of Colombia cracked in the mountains and abandoned.
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We've been sent footage of Thomas' crash by Scordia CT.
— La Flamme Rouge (@laflammerouge16) October 5, 2020