BERLIN: Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen has admitted he feared for his life two weeks after a horror crash at the Tour of Poland left him in intensive care.
“The trauma doctors and nurses at the finish line in Katowice saved my life, for which I am extremely grateful to them,” Jakobsen wrote in a letter published by his Deceuninck QuickStep team on Tuesday.
“I spent a week in the intensive care unit (ICU) at St. Barbara hospital in Sosnowiec. Here they immediately operated on me for five hours and gave me the chance to live. I am very grateful to all employees of this hospital.
“It was a difficult, dark period for me in the ICU, where I was afraid of not surviving.”
Jakobsen, 23, has since returned to the Netherlands to continue the long journey back to health.
“Step by step I can start to live more independently,” he said. “Currently I am at home, where the wounds in my face and my injuries can continue to recover.
“In addition, I have to rest a lot in the coming months because of a severe concussion. In the coming weeks and months, I will undergo multiple surgeries and treatments to fix facial injuries.”
Jakobsen suffered head injuries on the opening stage of the race when compatriot Dylan Groenewegen leaned into him on a sprint finish and slammed him into the barriers.
Groenewegen was disqualified and has apologized while Polish criminal prosecutors opened an investigation into the incident. – dpa