Egan Bernal, who had been due to lead Team Ineos at the Giro d’Italia which starts next Saturday in Bologna, is out of the race after breaking his collarbone in training yesterday.
The 22-year-old Colombian has been in Andorra training for the race, where he will take on a leadership role in a Grand Tour for the first time.
Team Ineos, which last year as Team Sky secured its first overall victory in the Italian race as Chris Froome won his third successive Grand Tour, confirmed Bernal’s injury on Twitter and said more details would follow.
Bernal impressed on his Grand Tour debut at the Tour de France last year where he rode in support of defending champion Chris Froome and overall winner Geraint Thomas.
He finished the race 15th overall himself, but was out for two months after crashing at the Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian in early August.
Winner of the Tour de l’Avenir in 2017 and the Tour of California last season, when he was also runner-up at the Tour de Fomandie, he is seen as perhaps the hottest young prospect in stage racing.
This year, he has consolidated his growing reputation further by winning Paris-Nice and last month he came third overall at the Volta a Catalunya.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.