Jolanda Neff: “The Olympic Games remain my main objective”

(ats) Heavily injured, the 2017 world champion does not give up yet: “The Olympic Games (this summer) remain my main objective,” she said in Dübendorf.

But Neff knows that she will have to be patient. Victim of a fall in the United States just before Christmas, the 27-year-old mountain biker was given total rest and maximum limitation of his movements in order to keep blood pressure low. The Saint-Galloise was rushed to hospital on December 22, then quickly also to the operating room, suffering from a splenic tear, a large internal hemorrhage, a fractured rib and a collapsed lung.

If she was able to avoid a complete removal of the spleen – a central organ of the immune system -, it no longer works. This, in itself, does not necessarily mean the obligation to end your sports career. “But I must at all costs avoid the blows and vibrations because a new tear of the spleen would be fatal,” said Neff, who was able to ride this Saturday on an indoor bike in front of the media. Moreover, signing great victories without his spleen would not be unprecedented, the Briton Geraint Thomas demonstrated by winning the Tour de France.

Despite this seemingly inextricable situation, Jolanda Neff continues to dream of a first Olympic medal. “I am fighting against time, I am motivated and I have already proven in the past that I can recover quickly. I have lost muscle mass but my heart and my lungs are still there! we can get it back pretty quickly. “

Jolanda Neff hopes to compete in the first World Cup race this season in late May at Nove Mesto. “However, I have to be careful and go step by step.”

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