Your Thursday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

November 17, 2016

In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Resurrection man: Keagan Girdlestone’s remarkable recovery from a near-fatal crash; Norwegian federation alleges junior rider intentionally struck by police vehicle in Qatar; Thomas Dekker confirms ‘Luigi’ as his Puerto code name; Wiggins breaks media silence at Ghent Six Day; Allan Peiper believes Richie Porte can with the 2017 Tour; Dutch Giro start organisers report loss of 400,000 Euros; Segafredo extends sponsorship for two years; Norma Gimondi running for head of Italian Cycling Federation; ORICA-BikeExchange finalises roster; Mike Creed talks about plans for new team; 100th anniversary of record-breaking ride from Adelaide to Darwin celebrated; 1992 AIS road team documentary.

Resurrection man: Keagan Girdlestone’s remarkable recovery from a near-fatal crash

by VeloClub

Perilously close to death in June and written off more than once by doctors, Keagan Girdlestone’s recovery from a brutal crash has been nothing short of astounding. The South African rider collided into his team car during the Coppa della Pace race on Sunday, June 5, hitting the rear window while chasing back on a descent. Suffering huge blood loss due to lacerations to his carotid artery and his jugular vein, he was hospitalised in severe condition. Girdlestone had uncertain prospects of survival and remained in a coma several days. He exceeded medical expectations in living, and also at several other key points along the way. Here is an excerpt from the feature:

So where now for Keagan Girdlestone? As those doctors will readily admit, the progress he has made is stunning and has defied expectation. He’s in a far better place than was envisaged. He is also setting an example which will doubtlessly motivate others in the future. However he’s frank in saying that he’s still a long way off where he used to be.

“I have a paralysed bicep, and partially paralysed shoulder,” he explains. “Through rehab the shoulder is getting stronger but not enough to lift my arm. The bicep is ‘never’ – to quote the doctors – going to work again. However hopefully through surgery I’ll be able to flex my bicep and lift my arm up. The time frame is said to be around three years. I also have approximately lost 30% of the right side of my brain during the strokes. So, the left part of my body is significantly weaker and has little coordination. This is an unknown timeframe and might probably never come right again. I guess time will tell.”

While he’s made huge progress in light of those injuries, his father admits he is personally feeling a lot of frustration.

“To be honest I think Keagan has handled everything better than I have. I’m angry, I’m frustrated and continually asking the question why,” he states, emphasising the final word. “Please don’t get me wrong … Keagan’s recovery is nothing short of a miracle. But when you know what he was capable of, I do struggle to accept where we are now. I’ve been coaching a long time and without doubt Keagan was born to do this. His physical and mental attributes were second to none.”

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