Voeckler Fractures Collarbone while Preparing for Tour Down Under 2014
Team Europcar's Thomas Voeckler collided with a car in his first training ride after arriving in Australia for the 2014 Tour Down Under.
X-rays conducted at a hospital in Adelaide following the crash revealed Voeckler has fractured his right collarbone.
34-year-old Voeckler arrived in Adelaide this morning with his Europcar team mates and at midday they headed out for a short training ride around the Adelaide suburb Glenelg. During the ride Voeckler accidentally crashed into a stationary car and was taken to Sportsmed SA.
"When we went training this morning a pedestrian crossed the road so a car braked very quickly and I didn't have time to brake and I bumped into the car," Voeckler told RoadCycling.com and continued "I immediately understood that my collarbone was broken again as it's the third time it's broken."
"After (the crash) we went immediately to the hospital and the x-ray picture showed it (the clavicle) was broken so I have to go back to France and go to the hospital and see how much time I will need before I'm on the bike again."
Voeckler fractured the same clavicle for the first time in 2009 in a stage of the Paris-Nice race and again in a race crash during the Amstel Gold Race in April last year. That crash ended his 2013 Spring Classics campaign.
He underwent a minor operation earlier this month to remove the metal plate that was put in after the Amstel Gold crash.
"It's been just 12 days since the other plate was removed and it was okay, but I was told not to crash on it," a frustrated Voeckler explained. "There was a small risk and it's the first time in my 14 year career I hit a car in training. That's the way it is. It's a pity."
"When it's during a race you say to yourself it's your job there are risks. However, when it's dumb like this morning I crashed into a car, it's not the car's fault but it's a dumb crash, a really dumb crash but that happens sometimes. This time it happened to me."
Voeckler, the winner of four stages and the 2012 mountains classification jersey at the Tour de France, was looking forward to his debut appearance in the Santos Tour Down Under. Following his crash he is now forced to fly back to Nantes on the Loire river in West France to undergo further treatment.
"I was really happy to spend two weeks here even if my shape is not yet 100 percent," Voeckler explained and added "When I am racing somewhere I always try to attack or take a breakaway that was my goal this time and to train for the other racing of the 2014 season. Now I have to take time to get better and we'll see step by step."
Team Europcar Manager Andy Flickinger explained the team will not replace Vockler in the team's Tour Down Under line-up and will start with the remaining six riders Yukiya Arashiro, Perrig Quemeneur, Bjorn Thurau, Kévin Reza, Jérome Cousin, and Angélo Tulik.
"Today the whole team is very disappointed that Thomas has had to give up before the start of the race," Flickinger told