Crash forces Sutton out of Tour Down Under

Australian Chris Sutton is the latest cyclist forced out of the Tour Down Under because of a crash.

The Team Sky sprinter suffered a small fracture to his right wrist when he went down in Monday night’s Adelaide street race.

He went on to finish fourth, but x-rays on Tuesday confirmed the injury.

“It’s a massive blow not to be continuing on with the lads because they did an incredible job for me last night,” Sutton said on the team’s website.

“My groin and my knee were pretty sore in the race but it was only afterwards, on the way back to the hotel, that my wrist started hurting and I couldn’t grip the handlebars.”

Top Italian Giovanni Visconti had surgery on Tuesday morning to have a rod inserted in his right shin bone after he suffered a compound fracture during the same race.

The serious fracture might ruin Visconti’s season.

French star Thomas Voeckler also went home with a broken collarbone last week after colliding with a car on a training ride.

Sutton said he would aim to return to competition at next month’s Tour of Qatar.

Compatriot Nathan Earle, a new signing for Sky, will take his place in their Tour Down Under team.

“It’s a real shame to lose ‘CJ’ because he was in great condition heading into this race,” team director Kurt-Asle Arvesen said.

“What he did last night – getting back on his bike and sprinting the way he did after his fall – took a lot of courage and demonstrated how much this race means to him.

“He’s in great form at the moment and has done a lot of hard training.”

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