A very striking interview with the Slovenian medium sports hall appeared on Saturday: where Jumbo-Visma has not or hardly communicated in recent weeks about the condition of the Tour de France injuries of Primoz Roglic, his physiotherapist Mit Bracic suddenly opens a book in the Slovenian media.
Roglic sought the help of Bracic in April this year, when he struggled with knee problems in the Tour of the Basque Country. ‘The team (Jumbo-Visma, ed.) assumed that it was a pain behind the knee and suggested that he take pills, but he himself felt that that would not be enough,’ says the physiotherapist.
“As soon as I examined him with an ultrasound, I realized it was a rupture of the sword muscle tendon. Primož performed another MRI the same day, which confirmed my assumptions,” said Bracic. ‘From that moment on we went to work, several hours a day. We adapted the training so that he could still cycle, but only at a certain intensity, so that there was no risk that the injury would worsen or return.’
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Physio van Roglic would end the 2022 season
Even after his fall in the Tour de France, when it was unclear for a long time what exactly was going on, the Slovenian rider ended up with his compatriot. “The pain was really enormous. He had two fissures in his vertebrae, so two fractures, but we had an even bigger problem with the soft tissues becoming inflamed. These are the tissues that attach to the vertebrae. Also because Primož continued cycling after the fall’, explains Bracic. By the way, Roglic’s girlfriend confirmed in HLN zOn that day, it was also about two vertebral fractures.
At the time, Roglic sought contact again with Bracic, who, if it were up to him, would end the season of the three-time Vuelta winner. “In this case, I left the decision to him. Personally, I was more inclined to pause the season, take the time to recover, do a specific reset and long-term full-body rehab as he has some other issues. Even the damage to the shoulder joint (which Roglic fell on in the Tour, ed.) has not yet fully recovered. In addition, he had the aforementioned problems with his spine, as well as a few other minor things.’
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However, Roglic decided to work towards the Vuelta, where he is currently second in the overall ranking. “It would mean a lot to him if he won for the fourth time in a row. So far he is doing very well in the Vuelta a España, I would say surprisingly good considering what he has been through this season. He has two very serious injuries. Even if he doesn’t win and at least is on the podium, it’s a great success,” Bracic said sports hall.
Physio didn’t know about back problems Roglic: ‘I think they were quiet because it was a team tactic’
In his own words, even Bracic did not know about Roglic’s back problems during the Tour. “Everyone was silent about it at the time. I think they were quiet because it was a team tactic for Primoz to help Jonas Vingegaard beat Tadej Pogačar.” “It was only when they finished the 11th stage, where Vingegaard had a big advantage, that it was clear that Primoz had done his job.”
Bracic is remarkably critical of Jumbo-Visma. “The story repeated itself when the crew told Primoz to take a pill. It wasn’t until Primož took a magnetic scan on his own initiative in Monte Carlo and sent me a photo that we realized that the injury was not so innocent. Shift doctors sometimes forget their Oath of Hippocrates and are prisoners of capital’, says the man who also doubtfully adheres to the Oath with such statements in the press. “They work for the benefit of the team, not the patient or an athlete. Unfortunately’, according to the firm conclusion of the experienced physiotherapist.
If it’s up to Bracic, Roglic puts himself in first place more often. “The fact is that Primoz sacrificed himself for the team goal in the Tour, and there are very few such athletes. Most of them are self-centered and selfish, but Primoz doesn’t even come close to these descriptions. If he had been more selfish, he would probably have been more successful, but then he would no longer be Primoz,” concludes Bracic.