Farrar sustains ‘severe’ concussion, abandons Tour of Britain

American suffers head injury, under evaluation by team medical staff

Photo: Casey B. Gibson

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Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Sharp) withdrew from the Tour of Britain Monday morning after sustaining a severe concussion in a crash in Sunday’s stage 1, according to a statement on the team’s Facebook page.

The American sprinter went down in a late-stage crash inside 3km from the finish, which also took down the likes of Mark Cavendish (Sky) and Sep Vanmarcke (Garmin), and claimed at least 11 riders in total.

“Tyler was unable to take the start at the Tour of Britain today after crashing heavily during stage 1, significantly hitting his head and suffering a severe concussion,” Dr. Prentice Steffen said. “The team has a strict head injury policy and protocol and Tyler continues to undergo evaluation. Team medical staff is working closely with him to monitor his condition.”

Garmin-Sharp’s policy on head injuries states that, “Even in the absence of obvious injury to the head or damage to the helmet, the rider will then be questioned for signs of confusion, memory loss, loss of consciousness, imbalance, or any other behaviors that indicate the rider is not at his/her normal baseline mental functioning.”

The crash puts Farrar’s participation in the world championship road race, which takes place on Sunday September 23 in Valkenburg, Netherlands, in doubt. Farrar has seen a season befallen by crashes. In May he crashed heavily at the Giro, which was won by his teammate Ryder Hesjedal, and was forced to abandon with a severed artery in one hand.

During the first week of the Tour, Farrar hit the deck three times in three days, struggling to finish the race. Farrar got his season back on track in August, winning two stages at the USA Pro Challenge, but his crash on Sunday may see him miss the worlds.

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