Julian Alaphilippe suffered a terrible end to the Tour of Flanders when he collided with the rear wheel of a motorcycle in an accident in which the world champion in road racing went over his bars onto the road.
The Frenchman Alaphilippe was about 22 miles to go on the Tour of Flanders in Belgium when a disaster struck when he broke up with Mathieu van der Poel and Wout van Aert.
With his rivals stepping out of the motorcycle’s slipstream, Alaphilippe barely had time to react when his front wheel slammed against the rear of the vehicle.
That made the hapless Deceuninck Quick-Step rider dash to the ground as his bike morbidly blew up and hit the deck at speed, which was a shocking end to his challenge.
The guy is a joy to watch races but should have been careful. Not Moto’s fault.
– Kevin D. (@kdelaneyster) October 18, 2020
Also because Van Aert did not move enough to his left to give Van Der Poel and Alaphilippe enough space and time to react. It was not intended by Van Aert, but who was 3rd would have hit the moto
– Sophie Dorigny (@sophie_dorigny) October 18, 2020
After he first spread out on the street, the dejected Alaphilippe tried to stand up while officers tried to help him.
He soon realized the extent of his injuries, which appeared to have been caused to his wrist and collarbone, and could hear screams in pain when a medic arrived at the scene.
Speaking to Eurosport, who reported Alaphilippe broke his collarbone, former world number 1 Sean Kelly said the speed of the bike could have surprised him.
“The bikes got a little slower and slower than the riders,” noted Kelly.
Nobody wants to see an injury or the accident that caused it, but you can’t blame the motorcycle for it – Alaphipippe crashed into them!
– Stuart Feather (@stuart_feather) October 18, 2020
Terrible crash that literally only speaks of the “curse of the rainbow jersey” when it happened. I hope Julian is fine 😢
– Gaill (@_AngelLady_) October 18, 2020
It’s nobody’s fault, just bad luck. Really hope he’s fine! Some of these comments are just ridiculous 😂
– Holly McElhone (@McElhoneHolly) October 18, 2020
“Van der Poel was also very close and flicked out and came around her, but Alaphilippe didn’t see it in time, touched the side of the bike and seems to have done some damage.”
Van der Poel beat Wout van Aert on another frustrating day for Alaphilippe after falling from the opening stages of the Tour de France after a technical problem.
Some fans on social media noted that Alaphilippe may have been distracted by a conversation on his microphone shortly before the accident, while others questioned the motorcycle’s location.
The fall could mean the 28-year-old’s season is over, although neither Alaphilippe nor Deceuninck-Quick-Step released a medical update immediately after the race.
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