Grace Brown’s season has come to a premature end due to complications with a shoulder injury sustained at the Giro Donne in July.
In an Instagram post on Tuesday evening, Brown (BikeExchange) explained that her seemingly minor shoulder injury was worse than first thought.
“Off-season is here, much earlier than expected or desired,” Brown wrote. “What seemed to be a benign shoulder injury over a month ago, has stubbornly hung around and revealed itself as something more serious.
“My tendons have pulled some bone fragments from the head of my humerus and are preventing proper healing. Basically I need surgery if I don’t want a bung shoulder for life.”
Earlier this month FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope announced Brown would join the French outfit next season on a two-year deal. As such, the Giro Donne – where Brown crashed on stage 8 – was the 29-year-old’s last race in BikeExchange colours.
“I’m sad about all the good things I will miss, especially my final races with [BikeExchange] and the Flanders World Championships,” Brown wrote. “But I also need to remember that I’ve had such a good year up to this point, and I can be satisfied with that.”
Brown’s season started with silver medals in both the road race and time trial at the Australian Road Nationals. She finished second at Danilith Nokere Koerse, won Brugge-De Panne in late March – her first WorldTour victory – and then won a stage of the Vuelta a Burgos. In a season that included 14 top-10 finishes, Brown took third at the Tour of Flanders, likewise in the individual time trial at the Giro Donne, and finished fifth at La Course.
More recently Brown represented Australia at the Tokyo Olympics where she finished fourth in the time trial, just seven seconds off the bronze medal.