– British cyclist Mark Cavendish fell “quite heavily” in the penultimate fifth stage of the Tour of Oman but came away from the crash with relatively minor injuries, the 36-year-old said on Monday.
The Briton, who is competing in his first race since suffering serious injuries in another crash in November, got back on his bike shortly after the fall and finished the stage to remain in contention for the green points jersey.
Czech rider Jan Hirt won the stage for Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert Materiaux on Monday, taking the overall lead from Cavendish’s Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl team mate Fausto Masnada.
“As is normal with the chaos of echelons forming, I had a touch of wheels and unfortunately I came down quite heavily,” Cavendish said.
“I’m lucky that my injuries seem to not be too bad, and I was able to get on my bike with just some bruising and external abrasions.
“I hope that the other riders involved are also OK and I would also like to thank the race doctor for looking after me.”
Cavendish suffered broken ribs and a collapsed lung following a crash in the Six Days of Ghent track meeting in November. In the same month, he was assaulted by four armed men during a burglary at his home.
He enjoyed a remarkable return to form in 2021, sprinting to four stage wins at the Tour de France to equal the record of 34 set by Belgian great Eddy Merckx.