Alejandro Valverde abandons Vuelta a España after Nasty Crash
Movistar rider came off at high speed on a descent on Stage 7 and fell into a ravine after hitting a bump in the road
Riding alongside Ineos' Richard Carapaz on a fast descent his front wheel seemed to slide out, going through a gap in the barriers and sliding down a ravene.
The crash occured in the final 45km of stage 7, with reports he hit a bump in the road and lost control of his bike.
The 41-year-old got climbed out of the ravene and received medical checks.
?????? | Oei! We wilden net het finale-alarm gaan laten loeien vanwege een aanval, maar dan schuift Valverde onderuit. Gelukkig valt hij niet de diepte in... #LaVuelta21— Eurosport Nederland (@Eurosport_NL) August 20, 2021
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Astonishingly, Valverde climbed back on his bike, looked after by team-mates, looking to be getting back into the race.
However he soon came to a stop again and climbed off, abandoning his home Grand Tour in an emotional stage.
?????? | Ach, nee! Valverde zat nog eventjes op de fiets, maar hij staat nu opnieuw langs de kant van de weg. Het lijkt einde verhaal. Wat een trieste beelden. ?? #LaVuelta21— Eurosport Nederland (@Eurosport_NL) August 20, 2021
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Movistar confirmed, "After receiving the OK from the race doctor, and after covering a few kilometers with several of his team-mates, Valverde is forced to abandon."
Valverde was the second high-profile abandon on stage seven of the Spanish Grand Tour, as last year's third-place overall Hugh Carthy climbed off after being dropped by the peloton.
The Spaniard was taken to a hospital in Alicante where initial scans didn't reveal any fractures but further examinations took place due to the amount of pain he was in.
A scan then revealed he had broken his collarbone and Valverde will now have an operation to fixed his right clavical.