HTC-Highroad rider Hayden Roulston, who finished tenth in Paris-Roubaix last year, looks like missing this year’s race which takes place on Sunday after being hit by a car at the end of a training ride near his home in Girona, Spain.
Although the 30-year-old, who was beaten by Bradley Wiggins in the individual pursuit at the Beijing Olympics, did not suffer any broken bones in the incident at the weekend, he is undergoing medical checks and suffered injuries to his left shoulder and his lower back.
"We just didn't see each other," said Roulston, quoted on the NZ Herald website. “We were both going slow which was probably a good thing. I was seconds from home."
The accident is an added disruption to the cyclist’s season. Last month, he pulled out of the Tirreno-Adriatico after two stages due to illness.
"It's been a disappointing and really frustrating three weeks," he confessed. "But I know things can only improve and I'll know more about the extent of the injuries after another visit to the doctor.
"Being sick recently means I have lost some condition which meant racing this week was important to find some race legs and rhythm for Roubaix. I really was on the way back to good form after recent challenges and was really looking forward to this weekend."
Roulston, who won silver in the men’s road race at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi last autumn, had planned to meet up with colleagues on Thursday ahead of his participation in the race nicknamed ‘the Hell of the North’ before returning to his native New Zealand on a break.
His schedule then envisages him undertaking high altitude raining in Boulder, Colorado prior to the Tour of California in May.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.