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Sebastian Haedo KO’d by police motorcycle at Paris-Nice; De Weert also injured

2011 Paris-Nice, stage 2
Many riders went down at Paris-Nice Monday. Here Frank Schleck and Wouter Weylandt assess the damage after a spill.

Monday’s second stage at Paris-Nice saw scores of crashes, including one that sent Sebastian Haedo (Saxo Bank) packing after he was hit by a police motorcycle from behind. Kevin De Weert (Quick Step) also crashed and was taken to the hospital after the stage ended; his team will decided Tuesday if he will continue in the race.

Saxo Bank reported that Haedo’s knee was stitched together at a local hospital and is understandably disappointed about leaving the race like that.

“Unfortunately, Sebastian was hit by a police motor bike on its way through the field to lead the pack in the right direction and by accident, he was hit and crashed,” said Saxo Bank-SunGard sports director Bradley McGee in a team release. “It has been a very nervous day in general with lots of wind and a nervous peloton which kind of make things difficult for both riders and the organizers trying to protect them. Now, we’re looking forward to the coming days. Our guys are motivated and in good shape.”

De Weert’s crash came about 30km from the finish. He was bruised on his shoulder, hip and knee and injured his right leg near his groin. He received stitches for that wound.

“The fall was really awful” De Weert said. “We were going pretty fast. A rider in front of me fell and there was no way I could avoid him. I slided for about 50 meters on my right side but I wanted to finish the stage. I think I was lucky, anyway, because the fall could have had much worse consequences.”

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