Cyclist Groenewegen banned nine months over Jakobsen horror crash

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Fabio Jakobsen's bike flies through the air after he collides with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen at the Tour of Poland
Fabio Jakobsen's bike flies through the air after he collides with compatriot Dylan Groenewegen at the Tour of Poland

Dutch cyclist Dylan Groenewegen has been suspended for nine months for causing a crash at the Tour of Poland that left compatriot Fabio Jakobsen in a coma, the International Cycling Union (UCI) said Wednesday.

Groenewegen, 27, "collaborated with the investigation and accepted to serve a period of suspension until 7 May 2021," the UCI said in a statement. He has not ridden since the accident in early August.

Jakobsen spent two days in a coma and required facial reconstruction surgery after he was thrown into and over barriers at the finish of the opening stage of the race in Katowice.

The 24-year-old was racing elbow-to-elbow with Groenewegen at 80 km/h (50mph) before the latter veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival of Deceuninck-Quick Step into the security wall.

Jakobsen somersaulted over the barriers before colliding with a race official.

Groenewegen went on to win the stage but was later disqualified with Jakobsen declared the winner.

Jakobsen was left fighting for his life and underwent a five-hour operation immediately after the accident after sustaining severe injuries to the face.

"I am very grateful that I am still alive," Jakobsen said after his condition improved sufficiently for him to be moved back home to the Netherlands. 

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