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The Dutchman – the victim of a horrendous pile-up and devastating injuries at the 2020 Tour of Poland – suffered a cut cheek and swollen eye after being struck in the face as he roared down the inside line in Sunday’s San Juan sprint.
“Someone reached out there with a phone. I think a lot of people got a déjà vu after that stage in the Tour of Poland,” Jakobsen said at the finish. “This was partly my own fault, but there was room. I hadn’t seen the hand.”
😡Tremendo golpe en el rostro sufrió 🇳🇱Fabio Jakobsen (Soudal-QuickStep) en el sprint final de la Etapa 7 de la Vuelta a San Juan 2023 🇦🇷 #VueltaSJ2023 #Ciclismo #Noticiclismo #VueltaASanJuan pic.twitter.com/rssaao5Ui3
— NotiCiclismo ➡ 🇦🇷 #VueltaSJ2023 (@Noticiclismo1) January 29, 2023
Video captured the scene Sunday as the Soudal Quick-Step speedster blasts tight along the barriers, inches from huge crowds of cheering spectators.
One member of the crowd can be seen holding out a phone for footage – and getting a very close-up frame of Jakobsen’s face.
Jakobsen’s glasses and the offending mobile can be seen clattering to the ground. The 26-year-old sprinter somehow stays upright while squeezing between the boarding and rival sprinter Giacomo Nizzolo.
“I should have followed [leadout man] Mørkøv, but hesitated for one second and stayed with the other sprinters,” Jakobsen said.
“I thought Nizzolo was going to slide to the left, but I should have known better and drove too tight along the boarding.”
Jakobsen went on to blitz into second place behind stage-winner Sam Welsford. The spectator is reported to have been taken away by local police for questioning.
“I have a cut and it’s a bit thick, but this could have been much worse,” Jakobsen said of his injuries. “Fortunately, it ends well.”
Jakobsen’s teammate Remco Evenepoel called out San Juan race organizers after the opening stage of the Argentine race when he almost collided with a spectator in what he called a “hectic and dangerous” finish.