Almost worse than a doping sanction, Dylan Groenewegen has survived a nine-month purgatory for the violent maneuver that almost ended in tragedy at the Tour of Poland last summer. Nine months of meditation, off duty, to weigh whether a victory is worth that much. Groenewegen threw Fabio Jakobsen against the fences, who almost lost his life in the sprint and has had to rebuild his face with multiple operations to return to being who he was. Groenewegen returns at the Giro d’Italia, which starts on May 8.
“Every time I fell asleep, I thought this is all I’m dying,” Jakobsen confessed in a powerful interview in AD during his stay in the ICU of a hospital in Poland. It made me panic, struggling to survive, struggling to breathe. It was a real fear of dying.
Groenewegen also revealed in an interview with Helden his suffering from the other side. “I received such specific and serious threats that we called the police a few days after the accident.” “Getting out of bed every morning was quite a challenge in that period,” he confessed.
The UCI suspended the Jumbo runner for nine months, mainly due to the seriousness of the accident caused by himself. Since then, the highest authority in cycling has created new rules to avoid dangerous situations in races: the prohibition of egg laying on descents, the limitation of throwing drums to the public only in limited areas …
The Groenewegen sanction ends on May 7, one day before the departure of the Giro d’Italia in Turin. And the Jumbo team has decided to include him in their lineup of eight.
“I’ve received many comforting messages after everything that has happened, but I am also taking into account some negative reactions to my return. That could happen anyway, “said the sprinter in a statement from his team.
“I spoke with Fabio Jakobsen before he went to Turkey and it was good to see how well he did there. I’m looking forward to racing again now and I’m glad I can do it in a beautiful race like the Giro d’Italia.
In the Giro you will find a solvent roster of sprinters, led by Peter Sagan (three times world champion) Giacomo Nizzolo (three stages in the Giro), Caleb Ewan (three stages also), Elia Viviani (winner of the points classification in 2018), or Tim Merlier (the emerging surprise that comes).