Van Garderen knocked out of Romandie by flying tree branch

Van Garderen was knocked out of the Tour de Romandie after being hit by a flying tree branch in Saturday's stage

BMC’s Tejay van Garderen was within striking distance for the GC going into Saturday’s Tour de Romandie stage 4, but he won’t be able to contest the final time trial tomorrow after being knocked out of the race by a flying tree branch in Saturday’s stage.

Van Garderen was struck in the face by the wayward branch as winds gusted to 60kph on the high speed descent off the Col des Mosseas. He required a few stitches to his nose, BMC Racing Team Chief Medical Officer Dr. Max Testa said, but nothing was broken.

“He’s doing fine and feeling good,” Testa said. “It’s just a soft tissue injury, but the cut was pretty deep. He’ll have to take it easy for a few days.” Van Garderen had been sitting 15 seconds off the lead when he had to withdraw barely 50km into the 184km race.