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Last year’s third-place finisher at the Tour de France, Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma), will miss this year’s edition due to a shoulder injury sustained at the Criterium du Dauphine.
Kruijswijk was one of several riders to crash while descending off the Col de Plan Bois on stage 4 of the Tour’s biggest warm-up race last week. The 33-year-old abandoned the race with a dislocated shoulder.
Kruijswijk’s Jumbo-Visma team confirmed on Thursday morning European time that the Dutchman had also fractured his shoulder in the incident and that he’ll miss the Tour de France as a result of his injuries.
“Unfortunately, the consequences of my crash in the Dauphine turned out to be more serious than hoped,” Kruijswijk said via a team statement on Twitter. “To my great disappointment, I cannot participate in the Tour de France due to a fracture in the shoulder and the many abrasions.
“I am now going to work on my recovery first and then I will focus on the Giro d’Italia as a new goal. I wish the team the best of luck in the Tour. I am very disappointed I cannot be part of it.”
Jumbo-Visma confirmed shortly afterwards that Norwegian champion Amund Grondahl Jansen will replace Kruijswijk in the team’s Tour line-up. The rest of the squad comprises Primoz Roglic and Tom Dumoulin, who will lead the Dutch team’s GC ambitions; George Bennett, Sep Kuss and Robert Gesink who will provide valuable support in the mountains; Tony Martin who will be the team’s workhorse in the flatlands; and Wout van Aert who will combine domestique duties with stage-hunting.
In the aftermath of stage 4 of the Dauphine, several riders were highly critical of the inclusion of the Col de Plan Bois descent in the race. Among the most vocal was Kruijswijk’s teammate and compatriot Tom Dumoulin who said “it was a disgrace that that descent was in a race. The whole descent was really tricky but the first two or three kilometres were full of gravel, potholes, bumps in the road, 15% drops down … this downhill should never be in a race.”
Bora-Hansgrohe’s general classification contender Emanuel Buchmann, who finished fourth at last year’s Tour de France, crashed out of the Dauphine on the same descent. His Tour de France berth appears to be in jeopardy as well.
The news of Kruijswijk’s absence from the Tour comes a day after Ineos announced that four-time Tour winner Chris Froome and 2018 champion Geraint Thomas hadn’t been selected for the team’s 2020 squad.
The 2020 Tour de France, rescheduled from its traditional July timeslot due to coronavirus, is set to run from August 29 to September 20.