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Mark Cavendish breaks two ribs in heavy crash at Ghent Six Day (+ video)

Incident happened on final day of Belgian track meet

Mark Cavendish broke two ribs in a heavy crash on Sunday's final day of the Ghent Six Day track meeting in Belgium, it has been confirmed.

In a statement issued on Monday morning, his Deceuninck-Quick Step team said: 

Following his crash at the Ghent Six Day, Mark Cavendish was taken to the Ghent University Hospital where he was kept overnight.

Examinations showed that Mark has suffered two broken ribs on this left side and has a small pneumothorax, both of which have been treated with medication and he has been kept in the hospital for observation.

It is expected that Mark will be discharged either later today or tomorrow morning, and will then undergo a period of recuperation.

Everybody at Deceuninck - Quick-Step wishes Mark a speedy recovery.

According to Sporza, the crash happened when the rider Gerben Thijssen skidded over a wet patch during the team race, though he managed to stay upright.

Riders behind tried to avoid crashing themselves, but Lasse Norman Hansen came down, leaving Cavendish with nowhere to go.

The 36-year-old rolled down the track of the t’Kuipe velodrome and was treated by paramedics.

He was subsequently helped to his feet and waved and blew kisses at the crowd.

However, Sporza says that he was later taken away from the venue on a stretcher, and his Deceuninck-Quick Step team confirmed that he has been taken to hospital.

Cavendish and his partner Iljo Keisse had been lying in fourth position at the time the crash happened.

The 80th edition of the event was won by the Belgian pairing of Kenny De Ketele and Robbe Ghys.

Cavendish, who earlier this year won four stages of the Tour de France to equal Eddy Merckx’s record of 34 victories, is currently in negotiations with his team over a possible extension to his contract, which expires at the end of next month.

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.

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