One of cross-country mountain biking’s biggest stars, Jolanda Neff, suffered serious injuries after crashing on her bicycle in Pisgah National Forest in North Carolina.
Neff, the 2017 UCI cross-country world champion, revealed on social media that she ruptured her spleen and suffered broken ribs and a collapsed long in the accident. Neff said that she crashed into a pile of tree trunks after coming off the trail at high speeds.
Neff, 26, described the injuries as “life threatening” in her post, which VeloNews has republished below:
While I was riding my mountain bike in Pisgah Forest, North Carolina, I came off the trail at high speed and crashed onto a pile of tree trunks with spiky branches. My lungs partially collapsed, I broke a rib, and my spleen got ruptured which caused internal bleeding.
To stop the bleeding, the medical team first wanted to remove my spleen with emergency surgery but luckily the trauma team at Mission Hospital in Asheville, NC, had an expert who could do a procedure called embolization, which meant he went into the artery of my leg to go up to the artery of my spleen to block it with a plug. I am very lucky to be in such good hands!
Luca Shaw has been taking such great care of me and I can’t thank him and his fantastic family enough for being here for me 24/7. Also big thanks to Steel City Media for getting me out of the woods. The people at Mission Hospital did an excellent job in a life-threatening situation and my guardian angel has been amazing the last couple days. Trek has been super supportive and sent me a bouquet of beautiful flowers. I‘m still in a lot of pain and breathing is hard, but my condition is stable now. I’m sleeping a lot. Further plans have not been made yet. Thank you to everyone for your messages!
Neff is among the favorites to challenge for the Olympic gold medal at the Tokyo games this summer. Earlier this year she fought a season-long battle with American Kate Courtney for the UCI World Cup overall; Courtney grabbed the title after finishing fifth place at the World Cup finals.
Neff was also slated to participate in select cyclocross races this month prior to the UCI Cyclocross world championships.
We here at VeloNews wish Jolanda Neff a speedy recovery.