Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig out of action after fracturing sacrum at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

Dane to miss Strade Bianche and out for ‘undetermined’ period after crash

Clock13:19, Wednesday 28th February 2024
Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig will miss the upcoming Classics after crashing in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

© Getty Images

Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig will miss the upcoming Classics after crashing in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (FDJ-SUEZ) will be out of action for an “undetermined” period of time after fracturing her sacrum in a crash at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, her team confirmed on Wednesday.

The Dane was one of a number of riders who crashed during the peloton’s first visit to the Belgian cobbles, and she did not finish the race. Further checks confirmed Uttrup Ludwig had fractured her sacrum, the bone at the base of the spine which connects to the pelvis.

“Medical examinations revealed a fracture of the sacrum, which will result in a period of unavailability for the athlete, the length of which is so far undetermined,” a statement from the team read.

Recovery periods for sacral fractures can vary depending on the severity, with some riders back racing after a matter of weeks, and some taking longer to come back from the injury.

Uttrup Ludwig was expected to race a full complement of Spring Classics, apart from Paris-Roubaix, before targeting the Ardennes Classics, and the Tour de France Femmes in the summer. The Dane started her season early at the Tour Down Under, where she won a stage, before taking a break before the Classics.

Read more: 'Winning is different' – Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig aiming at more than just consistency in 2024

She is now certain to miss the upcoming Strade Bianche, where she would have been a favourite for the win, and it’s not yet known when her first race back will be.

“The sole priority for FDJ-SUEZ is Cecilie’s well-being and full recovery,” the team said.

“The team is working to provide Cecilie with the best support possible, and is working on a personalised recovery programme in order to facilitate optimal recuperation and a return to competition in the best conditions possible.”

Uttrup Ludwig is the second FDJ rider to be consigned to the sidelines in the early season, with Marta Cavalli also currently recovering from a bone bruise sustained in a crash in training.

With both riders out of competition, the team will now look to the likes of Grace Brown, Vittoria Guazzini and Amber Kraak in the upcoming Classics, and have emphasised their focus on supporting Uttrup Ludwig.

“Although Cecilie’s recovery period cannot be precisely determined at this point, we are totally confident in her ability to overcome this challenge. Cecilie has always shown extraordinary determination, a quality which will without a doubt benefit her in her preparation to return to competition.”

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