Colombia’s 2019 Tour de France champion Egan Bernal confirmed Saturday he would not participate in any of the three Grands Tours in Europe as he recuperates fully from an accident. Bernal was back on a bike last week, two months after hitting a bus at speed in a crash from which he was lucky to escape with his life. The 25-year-old Team Ineos rider, who was left nursing multiple broken bones, has made a remarkable recovery, but insisted that multi-stage racing was definitely not on the cards in the near future.
“The Vuelta a Espana would be a bit too much,” said Bernal, who currently uses a cane to help himself walk.
“Obviously I wouldn’t be ready to race it, it would be too much to ask of my body.”
The Vuelta, scheduled for end-August to early September, is the last of the three Grands Tours after the Giro d’Italia in May and the Tour de France in July.
“To take part in this type of race, you cannot improvise,” Bernal told journalists at a press conference during which he rode a static bike on Zwift.
“If you’re in pain, it’s obvious, and then you can’t push to your maximum. It would be a dream to get back into competition this year, but I don’t want to give any date, that would be a little bit irresponsible.”
RBA/AFP Photo: Bettini