Olympics: Horror crash Dutch cyclist tweets picture to reassure fans

Van Vleuten tweeted thsi picture of her swollen and bruised face to assure fans she was fine.
Van Vleuten tweeted thsi picture of her swollen and bruised face to assure fans she was fine.PHOTO: TWITTER

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Dutch cyclist Annemiek van Vleuten tweeted a picture of her swollen and bruised face on Tuesday (Aug 9) to assure fans she was fine following her sickening Olympic crash.

The 33-year-old suffered a heavy concussion and three cracked vertebrae in the dramatic fall in Sunday's Rio road race.

But she was all smiles on Tuesday despite sporting cuts and bruises on her face.

"Thanks for all the messages. Hard to deal with my disappointment but also proud about our performance #teamNL," she said on Twitter, alluding to her team-mate Anna van der Breggen's victory.

Van Vleuten had been heading to victory in the 137km race when she went tumbling over her handlebars on a tricky bend just 10km from the finish.

The crash left her in a motionless heap on the side of the road before being taken to hospital by ambulance.

On Monday van Vleuten had taken to Twitter to tell her followers she was recovering and hoping to leave hospital soon.

"I am now in the hospital with some injuries and fractures, but will be fine. Most of all super disappointed after best race of my career," she had said.

Several other cyclists in Saturday's men's race had also crashed on the same descent where van Vleuten ran into trouble.

Italy's Vincenzo Nibali suffered a broken collarbone, Colombia's Sergio Henao broke his pelvis and Australia's Richie Porte broke a shoulder blade.