Fabio Jakobsen (QuickStep-AlphaVinyl) has apologised for comments he made following Sunday’s sprint finish in Sønderborg on stage 3 of the Tour de France.
The sprint was won by Team BikeExchange-Jayco’s Dylan Groenewegen, with Jakobsen finishing in 5th place, after problems with positioning cost him in the final push for the line.
Following the race, Jakobsen said in an interview: “It’s nice for him to win but it doesn’t really affect me.”
“I have to say that before the crash I admired his palmarès and I kind of looked up to him a bit.
“But now that is completely gone after the crash because of the mistake he made.”
On Tuesday, Jakobsen was a little more circumspect. “Of course I understand that he and his family have also been through a very difficult time,” Jakobsen told NOS (opens in new tab). “I have every respect for that. Sunday I was a little frustrated. My apologies for that.”
Jakobsen’s crash at the Tour of Poland in August 2020 left him with life-threatening injuries and he later had to undergo multiple surgeries to repair damage to his jaw and teeth. Groenewegen received a nine-month suspension for his part in the incident, and was subjected to hate mail and death threats in the wake of the accident.
There has been no love lost between the two riders in the intervening two years, with Jakobsen previously claiming Groenewegen had not apologised, despite a meeting between the two riders in April 2021.
Both riders have seen a return to form since their time away from the sport.
Jakobsen made his comeback at last year’s Vuelta a España, winning three stages and the points classification. He currently wears the Tour de France’s green jersey on behalf of Wout van Aert, following his sprint victory on stage 2 in Nyborg, Denmark.
Groenewegen has taken wins in the Saudi Tour and the Tour of Slovenia so far this year, but the Tour de France stage victory is his biggest victory since 2019.