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Cyclist Girdlestone improves after crash

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 7/06/2016

Christchurch-based cyclist Keagen Girdlestone has improved from a critical to stable condition two days after a serious crash during a professional road race in Italy.

Girdlestone, 19, was admitted to hospital in Rimini with life-threatening injuries following the second of two incidents late in the Coppa della Pace under-23 race on Sunday.

An update to his family-run Facebook page said the South African-raised rider has made encouraging progress.

He has been able to breathe independently for a short spell and his physician declared his condition as stable following the latest scans.

"While his immediate situation has improved, there are many more hurdles ahead," the post read.

Girdlestone is in his first season with the Dimension Data Continental squad.

He won age group titles in South Africa and then in New Zealand after his family moved here in 2013.

His father Wayne is a Christchurch cycling coach while his older brother Dylan races professionally for an Australian team.

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