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Former Tour de France winner Bernal almost became paralyzed

Former Tour de France winner Bernal almost became paralyzed

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Former Tour de France champion Egan Bernal said Friday he was very close to becoming paralyzed after an accident with a bus on Monday.

The crash took place as the 25-year-old Bernal trained on the road in his native Colombia. The 2019 Tour winner is under intensive care.

Bernal said on Twitter he had a “95% chance of ending quadriplegic” and dying. He thanked his fans, doctors and family for their support.

Bernal is expected to go through two surgeries, one on his right hand and another with his mouth.

The Colombian had trained with several members of his team recently near his hometown of Zipaquira, which is 2,650 meters (8,600 feet) above sea level. Police said he hit the back of a bus that had pulled over to drop off a passenger and was parked in the emergency lane.

Bernal has one of cycling’s most promising careers. The Colombian won the Tour at the age of 21, one of the youngest ever. He also triumphed at the Giro d’Italia last year.

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