Tao Geoghegan Hart abandons Giro d’Italia after crash involving Geraint Thomas

Tao Geoghegan Hart has been forced to abandon the Giro d’Italia  (AFP via Getty Images)
Tao Geoghegan Hart has been forced to abandon the Giro d’Italia (AFP via Getty Images)

Ineos Grenadiers rider Tao Geoghegan Hart has abandoned the Giro d’Italia after a crash also involving teammate Geraint Thomas.

Geoghegan Hart, winner of the maglia rosa in 2020, had been in third place in the general classification standings, five seconds behind Thomas.

With about 68km to go in Stage 11 from Camaiore to Tortona, a group of riders hit the deck after UAE Team Emirates’s Alessandro Covi appeared to lose his back wheel rounding a corner.

Thomas, immediately behind Covi, also went down, followed by a number of his Ineos teammates.

While the Welshman was able to rejoin the peloton after getting back to his feet, Geoghegan Hart and PAvel Sivakov received treatment at the roadside.

And the London-born rider was taken away in an ambulance and forced to abandon the race.

The incident continues a heavily disrupted edition of the Giro d’Italia.

Remco Evenepoel was forced to withdraw from the race having been in the lead after testing positive for Covid-19 on Sunday night.

On Wednesday, it was announced that four of the Belgian’s teammates at Soudal Quick-Step (Jan Hirt, Josef Cerny, Louis Vervaeke and Matteo Cattaneo) would not start the eleventh stage after their own positive tests.

“I guess we need to be a lot more aware of it and go back to what we used to [do] when we were in our own little bubble and wearing masks, in public spaces,” Thomas said about the threat of the coronavirus on the peloton earlier this weel. “As a team we’re going to go back to that kind of strategy.

“If everybody on the race does the same thing then it will stop other riders going home,” Thomas said. “Obviously it’s a massive loss losing any rider to Covid, especially a world champion like Remco.”

The Giro d’Italia is due to conclude in Rome on Sunday 28 May, with Thomas now likely to vie with Primoz Roglic of Jumbo-Visma for overall victory.