There had apparently been rush in the peloton before a descent down Gorge Rd, near the fast finish of stage 3 of the Tour Down Under when Cameron Scott came unstuck.
Details on how the crash happened were sketchy but according to one account the Bahrain Victorious pro was travelling at speed when he went over the top of a pile of riders in front of him.
Rudy Molard’s tour ended there. The Groupama-FDJ climber later posted a selfie from hospital on social media, his face, knuckles and shoulder badly lacerated.
Luke Plapp (Jayco-Alula) eventually pulled himself from the ground and pedalled slowly into Campbelltown, missing half the skin from his back that was red raw and exposed, his paper-thin green and gold lycra jersey in tatters.
Following UCI concussion protocols, Bahrain Victorious sports director Neil Stephens had asked Scott a specific set of questions when he pulled up in a team car at the crash site.
The Australian passed the simple, cycling-specific questions he was asked – like what stage of the race it was, what the name of the start town was, the finish town – so got back on his bike to complete the remaining 13-odd kilometres, albeit at a slow pace.
However, the next morning, before the start of stage 4, both he and Plapp had abandoned. Three Astana Qazaqstan riders involved in the same stack continued, despite walking gingerly around sign-on.
In a second standard assessment after stage 3, Bahrain Victorious team doctor Matthew Brown had determined Scott had whiplash and a mild concussion. His race was over.
“Later on, you sit the rider down and do what we call a SCAT test and that stands for Sport Concussion Assessment Tool. It’s used all around the world in different sports and basically, it’s the best thing available to test for concussion,” Brown told Cyclingnews at the start of stage 4.
“You test their memory, balance, co-ordination, you assess the symptoms that they have. And what we do at Bahrain, and what other teams will do as well – because the UCI have pushed this rule now – is at the start of the season we do one of these concussion tests on all our riders.
“So that if there is a crash, like there was with Cam yesterday, I can do that test in the hotel last night and then compare it to the one we did at the beginning of the season. We can look at his balance, memory and see if there is a significant difference to the beginning of the season when he was well,” Brown continued.