Crashes in track cycling are par for the course, but Aussie Matt Glaetzer was involved in a shocker at the Lee Valley VeloPark that left his hopes of continuing at this year’s Commonwealth Games hanging by a thread.
Glaetzer and England’s Joe Truman came together on the banked corner during the second round of the keirin after the Aussie clipped the back wheel of the rider in front of him.
Both riders hit the ground at more than 70 kilometres per hour, with the Englishman losing consciousness on impact.
Glaetzer was able to pick himself up and limp away, with his thin race suit in tatters.
Truman slid to a stop on his front and lay motionless for several, worrying minutes amid a concerned hush at the usually raucous velodrome.
Truman had to be given oxygen before being taken from the arena in a wheelchair.
It was later reported that he had suffered a suspected broken collarbone, as well as a concussion and multiple abrasions.
Glaetzer suffered multiple abrasions and burns on his right side in the crash.
Channel 7 reported he also had to have a splinter cut out of his elbow.
The 29-year-old, who has come through plenty of hardship in his career, including fighting his way back from thyroid cancer in 2019, is still hoping to compete in Sunday’s sprint race.
The two-time defending Commonwealth Games champion in the keirin from Glasgow and the Gold Coast is targeting a fifth career Commonwealth gold medal, having also won the 1km time trial on the Gold Coast four years ago and been part of the team that won team sprint gold for Australia on day one in Birmingham.
In the keirin final, Australia’s Matt Richardson narrowly missed out on a medal, finishing in fourth.
Maeve Plouffe picked up a silver medal in the 3,000m individual pursuit, finishing second to New Zealand’s Bryony Botha, while compatriot Sarah Roy was beaten to the bronze medal by Scotland’s Neah Evans.
Conor Leahy was also in the medals for Australia, winning bronze in the 4,000m individual pursuit, behind New Zealand pair Aaron Gate and Tom Sexton.