Voeckler hit by car, injured in Tour du Limousin

Former French champion appears to have hurt his left shoulder, was taken to hospital in Limoges for tests

LIMOGES, France (AFP) — French Europcar rider Thomas Voeckler was struck by a car and broke his left collarbone just before the start of the Tour du Limousin in Limoges on Tuesday.

“This is my fourth clavicle fracture,” Voeckler said, “but this is the first time for my left [clavicle], and I’m going to probably have it operated on Thursday.”

Voeckler, 35, was preparing for the start of the first stage of the four-stage race when he was hit by the car at a roundabout, said an AFP correspondent at the scene, who witnessed the incident.

He appeared to have hurt his left shoulder and was taken to hospital in Limoges for tests, with the official Twitter feed of the race revealing that he would not take part and had a suspected broken collarbone.

The two-time French national champion suffered a similar incident in January at the Santos Tour Down Under. There, he crashed into a car that braked suddenly and broke his collarbone.

Voeckler, who has won four stages of the Tour de France and was king of the mountains in the 2012 Tour, will not ride in September’s road world championships in Ponferrada, northern Spain, due to the injury.

“It’s clear that it is not worth thinking of [racing] world championships, for which I’d hoped to be selected,” said the French rider later on Tuesday. “It will be at least two weeks off the bike, which greatly compromises all my goals and racing for the end of this season.”