RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug 6 (Reuters) - Italian cyclist Vincenzo Nibali was taken to hospital with a possible fractured collarbone after crashing on a high-speed descent near the end of the Olympic men’s road race on Saturday, a team official said.
Nibali attacked in the closing stages, leading a three-man breakaway on a climb late in the day. He tried to ride away from Colombia’s Sergio Henao and Poland’s Rafal Majka before he and Henao lost control in a descent so fast that the motorcycle carrying a television cameraman struggled to keep up.
Nibali was attended by medical staff after failing to finish the race, a fate that befell more than half the 144 riders on a crash-heavy day in which many suffered technical problems during an early cobble-stoned section of the 237.5km course.
The Italian Olympic team did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The 31-year-old Nibali has won all three of professional cycling’s grand tours - in France, Spain and his native Italy - but has failed to win a medal in three Olympic Games.
Gold medallist Greg van Avermaet of Belgium said many riders had taken chances.
“Everybody was taking risks and some went over the limit,” Van Avermaet told reporters. “A lot of guys wanted to go for it.” (Reporting by Scott Malone, editing by Ed Osmond)