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Steff Cras opens up about his horrific crash at Basque Country

Steff Cras opens up about his horrific crash at Basque Country

This spring has been full of some incredible races–but also marked by some horrible crashes. Wout van Aert saw his Classics season cut short by a brutal wipeout at Dwars door Vlaanderen. The Belgian cyclist suffered a severe crash leading up to the Tour of Flanders on March 27. This incident also impacted other contenders, including Jasper Stuyven and Biniam Girmay.

Then there was the frightening crash at the Tour of the Basque Country that saw Jonas Vingegaard, Remco Evenepoel, and Steff Cras hit the deck hard. The defending Tour de France champion was the worst off. He fractured his collarbone and ribs in the accident, and further tests revealed the Dane also suffered a pneumothorax and pulmonary contusion. Evenepoel broke his collarbone.

The damage

Cras was diagnosed with a perforated lung, a broken rib, and eight fractured transverse processes–that’s the small pieces of bone on vertebrae that stick out. Cras recently opened up to Sporza about the crash, and his difficult recovery.

Unable to sleep properly for weeks

For three weeks after the crash, he couldn’t sleep in a bed. Instead, he would sleep in a chair. However, things are slowly getting better for Cras–he’s even been able to ride indoors. “It’s been much better since I returned from Spain. I can do everything by myself again, and since last week, I’ve been able to ride on the rollers. However, outdoor training is still not an option for him.”

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The Belgian crashed hard, landing in the gutter just beside the road. Cras jokes that as he sat there, “It was as if I was in a bathtub.” What’s not funny is just how close he was to even worse injuries. “If I had flown into the concrete block nearby, I might not be sitting here now.”

Unable to breathe

He also says that when he first hit the ground, it was very scary because of his collapsed lung. “For the first thirty seconds, I couldn’t breathe and felt like I was suffocating,” he shares.

“I thought it was over. But after about half a minute or so, the lung opened up a bit, and I managed to get just enough air to breathe.” Many have…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Canadian Cycling Magazine…