Olympic gold medalist Matt Walsh was hospitalized after being sent flying over the barriers and into the crowd following a huge crash on day three of the Commonwealth Games track cycling event, which also injured spectators.
Walls’ GB team-mate Matt Bostock, a Manx rider, was also caught in the multi-rider accident, with both athletes taken to hospital by ambulance along with Canadian rider Derek Gee. A man in the crowd was treated for cuts to his arm, while a young woman also received minor treatment.
Walls, who won omnium gold in Tokyo last year, was competing in the men’s scratch race on Sunday when the accident happened.
The rest of the session – with one sprint race remaining – was called off as medical staff attended to several riders, including Walls, and spectators amid reports one was “badly bloodied”.
The England team initially said Walsh was “alert and talking” and “being treated in hospital”.
British Cycling later updated his condition with a statement: “Following medical treatment in hospital, Matt Walls has been discharged with stitches to his forehead, but thankfully no serious injuries. Our best wishes go out to all riders and spectators who were involved in the collision and thank you go to the medical teams for specialized care.”
Bostock also had a CT scan from which the initial prognosis is said to be positive. The 25-year-old is being checked that he has no other serious injuries.
A statement from Team Isle of Man said: “Team Isle of Man wishes to extend its best wishes to the other cyclists involved in the incident, particularly Matt Walls, and to the spectators who were injured and affected by the collision.”
The PA news agency reported that eyewitnesses said that because of the tilt of the table, spectators in the front row could not see the crash.
Walls was trying to avoid riders who had fallen in an incident that started at the entrance to the corner. The batting pair of New Zealander George Jackson and Australia’s Josh Duffy surged up, forcing Walsh into the barrier and then over it.
Canada’s Gee also surfed the top of the barrier but managed to avoid following Walls into the stands. Canadian Mathias Guillemette was disqualified for causing the initial crash.
A Birmingham 2022 spokesman said: “Following a collision in the morning track and para-track cycling session at Lee Valley VeloPark, three cyclists and two spectators were treated by the on-site medical team.
“The three cyclists have been taken to hospital. The two spectators did not require hospital treatment.
“We would like to send our best wishes to the cyclists and spectators involved in this incident and thank the medical team for their swift action.”
A London Ambulance Service spokesman: ‘We were called at 1.05pm. today for reports of an incident at the Lee Valley rink. We sent three ambulances to the scene. Our crews have treated three patients for injuries and are in the process of transporting all three to hospital.”
It was the second serious accident involving Team England riders in two days after sprinter Joe Trueman was briefly knocked unconscious before being wheeled away after colliding with Australia’s Matthew Glatzer in the second round of the men’s keirin on Saturday.