Vande Velde update: more tests needed on injuries from Giro crash
Here is the Garmin-Slipstream team's update on injured Lemont cyclist Christian Vande Velde, which tempers a bit the enthusiasm he expressed over the phone to me three days ago about making it to the July 4 start of the Tour de France, in which he finished fourth last year:
Team Garmin-Slipstream’s Christian Vande Velde, who crashed out of the Giro d’Italia during stage three (Monday), continues to undergo examinations at home in Girona (Spain). The results so far have confirmed that he sustained one rib fracture, a severe contusion and sprain to his mid-back and a hairline fracture to his pelvis, but team doctor Prentice Steffens cautions, "We need to continue to run tests, so it is still too soon to speculate on the extent of his injuries or how they will affect racing and training.''
"Christian is incredibly strong and a seasoned pro, so we know he will pull through this. As a team, we just want him to take the time to heal properly. That is what’s most important,'' said Matt White, director at Garmin-Slipstream.
Vande Velde remains cautiously optimistic: "I’m taking it day by day. The first couple of days were excruciating but the pain is getting more manageable. I’m going to keep working with the team’s medical staff and let them determine when I can get back on the bike. I can’t thank everyone enough for all of the concern and support. ''
-- Philip Hersh
Photo: Christian Vande Velde (center) in the 2008 Tour de France. Vande Velde hopes to race the 2009 edition despite his injuries in the Giro d'Italia. Credit: Getty Images.