This article was first published on VeloNews.com
A crowdfunding campaign for Amy Pieters was launched at Dutch road nationals Saturday.
The start of the women’s race marked the official opening of a program designed to help provide the backing Pieters needs in her recovery from serious head injuries.
“With the agreement of the family, this crowdfunding has been set up so that you can help Amy in her rehab. While insurance might take care of the minimum rehabilitation program, we’re not satisfied with the minimum for our friend. We aim to help her get more and better,” read a note on the crowdfunding platform.
Pieters suffered serious brain injuries during a training incident last December. The Dutchwoman only recently emerged from a coma and is said to still have “a long way to go” in her recovery.
Team SD Worx opened the push for funding at the start of the women’s race in Westerbork on Saturday, with race organizers putting in the first paycheck.
Pieters won the Dutch race in 2021, making for emotional scenes at the start of this year’s event as a big-screen replayed highlights of the 31-year-old’s racing career.
Jumbo Visma rider Riejanne Markus went on to succeed Pieters as Dutch road champion, fending off Shirin van Anrooij on the VAM-Berg.
“The announcement of the crowdfunding campaign for Amy Pieters at the start was an emotional moment, but then the switch had to be turned,” Markus told NOS at the finish. “I think a lot about Pieters. Hopefully she’s proud of me.”
Donations can be made at AmyPieters.nl. T-Shirts designed by Team SD Worx are available to the first big-money contributors.
“We want to offer Amy as many opportunities as possible to get the most out of herself,” the team when it launched the initiative.
“A fund has been set up for Amy so that, partly thanks to donations, she can hopefully make use of all the opportunities that are possible for her. All donations fully benefit the recovery of and by Amy.”