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Jack Haig’s first Grand Tour GC campaign is over after less than three days. The Bahrain Victorious leader was forced to abandon the Tour de France after crashing heavily with just over 4 km remaining in a chaotic stage 3.
Haig fell on a sweeping, downhill left-hander and spent some time lying on the road as he received medical attention. He later went and sat by the roadside before being taken to Hospital Centre Bretagne.
“Jack suffered a fractured left collarbone and concussion following the crash,” Bahrain Victorious doctor Piotr Kosielski said in a team press release. “He is conscious and OK and scans showed no head trauma. He will remain in hospital overnight for observation following the team and UCI protocols.”
Haig’s GC campaign had started in promising fashion. Despite hitting the deck in a crash-marred opening stage Haig managed to finish in fourth place on the day – second highest among the GC contenders, with only Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) ahead of him. On stage 2 Haig finished in 10th place, leaving him in sixth on GC by day’s end.
The 27-year-old will now have to wait for another opportunity to fight for GC at a Grand Tour.
🏥 Team Doctor Piotr Kosielski: @jackhaig93 suffered a fractured left collarbone and concussion. He is conscious and okay and scans showed no head trauma. He will remain in hospital overnight for observation following the team and UCI protocols.— Team Bahrain Victorious (@BHRVictorious) June 28, 2021
🗞️ https://t.co/KS7EjTQfcK pic.twitter.com/CY3iOxiqOX
In a conversation with CyclingTips just days before the Tour, Haig twice flagged the difficulty of the race’s opening days in Brittany.
“Where we’re starting now, in Bretagne, the roads are quite technical and it’s quite easy for something to go wrong – just a small little accident or a lapse of concentration or just bad luck,” he said.
“Making it through these first four stages here in Bretagne is going to be pretty critical,” he added later. “I think it’s not that unrealistic to see maybe one to two riders that were in the hunt for a GC position more or less eliminated either from the race or from general classification just through some bad luck or a crash.”
Haig’s prediction turned out to be correct. In addition to Haig himself leaving the race, Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers), Richie Porte (Ineos Grenadiers), Roglič, and Tadej Pogačar have all lost footing in the GC battle due to crashes.
Haig is due to represent Australia in the Olympic road race in Tokyo on July 24. It’s not yet clear what impact his injuries will have on that plan.