Tour de France 2019 Winner Egan Bernal Suffers Spinal Injury in High-Speed Training Accident

·2 min read
Egan Arley Bernal Gomez
Egan Arley Bernal Gomez

Stuart Franklin/Getty

Cyclist Egan Bernal, who won the 2019 Tour de France, was involved in a high-speed collision with a bus while training in Colombia.

Bernal was training with his Ineos Grenadiers team on Monday when the accident occurred. He was transported to the hospital, where he was in stable condition, according to a statement from the team.

According to a statement from the Clinica Universidad de La Sabana on Tuesday, the 25-year-old was in the intensive care unit following procedures to repair his fractured femur and kneecap as well as spinal surgery to keep "intact the neurological integrity and conserved the functionality of the segments involved."

Explaining the spinal surgery further, the statement said that "the neurosurgery team carried out a reduction of a displaced fracture from the T5 [vertebra] to the T6 [vertebra] with a traumatic herniated disk. Under constant monitoring for nervous system activity, a tool was put in place from the T3 to the T8."

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Bernal also suffered a collapsed lung and several fractured ribs from the accident, the hospital said.

Bernal "immediately" begun the rehabilitation process, and he will spend at least 72 hours in the ICU to "see the response to the course of treatment established for this high-energy trauma," according to the hospital.

Following the accident on Monday, local news outlet Chasqui Deportivo shared a photo from the scene of the crash.

In the photo, a cyclist presumed to be Bernal can be seen lying on the ground behind a bus, which has a large dent in its rear bumper.

Bernal's 2019 Tour de France victory made him the youngest winner in over 100 years. Last year, he also won the Giro d'Italia.

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He has been riding with the Ineos Grenadiers for four years and recently signed a contract extension to stay with the team through 2026.

Following the news of his accident on Tuesday, several other cyclists shared well wishes for Bernal on social media.

"We are all hoping you are ok @Eganbernal," his teammate Tao Geoghegan Hart wrote on Twitter. "So scary to read this news. A sad reminder how dangerous our training can be."