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by Shane Stokes
May 11, 2017
In today’s edition of the Daily News Digest: Gaviria takes field sprint in Messina as Quick-Step Floors monopolizes podium; Démare bounces back to win stage two of the Four Days of Dunkirk; Knee surgery means Alaphilippe will miss 2017 Tour de France; Bennett third, but gains ‘so much confidence’; Race leader Jungels looks ahead after first day in pink; Fahlin and strong Wiggle High5 lineup psyched for Amgen Tour of California; Three year jail sentence for pregnant motorist who rammed cyclist into a tree; Lilian Calmejane: French cycling’s next big thing; Brian Cookson: ‘Professional sportspeople and teams will always push any rule to the very limit’; Video: André Greipel – a portrait of the Gorilla; Video: A catch-up with Laurens Ten Dam after his crash on Giro d’Italia stage 4; Video: This is the life of Team Sunweb’s mechanics at the Giro d’Italia; Video: Giro d’Italia Backstage Pass – Stage 4 post-race; Video: Giro d’Italia Backstage Pass – Stage 5 pre-race
Julian Alaphilippe had a storming season start this year, taking a stage in Paris-Nice, netting fifth overall and also landing the green and white jerseys, and then placing third in Milan-San Remo. However hopes that he would shine in the Ardennes Classics were dashed when his team announced that he would miss them due to a knee injury.
The 24 year old Frenchman’s recovery has been slower than planned, as it explained in a press statement on Wednesday.
“After picking up a patellar lesion at last month’s Vuelta al Pais Vasco, the team tried a conservative treatment. But as this didn’t give the desired results, Quick-Step Floors’ medical staff decided surgery on his right knee was necessary. Julian will need two weeks of complete rest before starting his rehabilitation, but it will be only after an additional two weeks that he will start training again on his bike. As a result, the 24-year-old will not race the Tour de France.”
The surgery was carried out on Wednesday by Doctor Toon Claes at the AZ St.-Elisabeth Clinic in Herentals, Belgium. While he should be soon back on track in terms of training, missing the Tour is a blow.
“I can’t tell you how sad I am,” he said. “There’s really no words. The Tour de France was my primary goal of the year, and to miss it, after previously being forced to skip the Ardennes Classic, is very disappointing. Now my focus is on making a full recovery and arriving in a good condition for the second part of the year. Fortunately, the season is still long and I hope to bounce back.”