Colombian climber Dani Martínez will miss out on the Tour de France next month as he recovers from injuries sustained while training in Colombia on Monday. The 21-year-old had been riding downhill during the recovery time between training intervals when he crashed on an oil spill, landing on his hands.
“Dani’s crash unfortunately resulted in broken bones in both hands,” said EF Education First Pro Cycling head of medical Kevin Sprouse. “He underwent surgery to repair the fractures. The surgery and subsequent healing will require that he miss the Tour de France this year.”
“I have about two months of recovery in front of me,” said Martínez. “My hands hurt a lot, and I cannot do anything without help. I’m very sad to miss the Tour de France. I’ve trained a lot for that. But this is just the way cycling is.”
Martínez made his Tour de France debut during his maiden season for the team. A super-domestique for compatriot and Tour de France general contender Rigoberto Urán, Martínez instinctually handed over his bike to Urán following a late race crash on stage four of the 2018 Tour to keep Urán’s general classification ambitions alive.
The roles were reversed at the 2019 Tour of Colombia where Urán, recovering from illness, raced in the service of Martínez, who finished in third overall on home roads. Martínez also claimed the Colombian time trial title, before he won the queen stage of Paris-Nice.
Martínez last raced at the Tour de Romandie in early May. He was home in Colombia, training regularly with Urán, and since the Tour of California, with Tejay van Garderen, in preparation for July.
“Certainly, we’ll miss Dani at the Tour as he was a key part of our plans, but the Tour is full of surprises, and we just got one a little early,” said EF Education First Pro Cycling CEO Jonathan Vaughters.
Following surgery on Wednesday, Martínez’s recovery will be closely monitored by the team’s medical staff.
“Dani’s health and successful recovery are the priority,” said Sprouse. “The timing of future races will only be determined as his healing process unfolds.”
“There are other races I will need to think about now that I cannot race the Tour,” said Martínez. “I want to recover well for the new goals.”