World time trial champion Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) is recovering from a successful surgery in Hamburg to correct the fracture he sustained at the 2012 Tour de France.
Martin crashed during stage one of the race, fracturing his wrist, and was ultimately forced to withdraw as he bid to recover for the Olympic time trial event.
The German competed at the Olympics, finishing second to Bradley Wiggins, but it was later discovered his fracture had failed to heal correctly.
Consequently the decision was made for the time trial ace, who also crashed during the opening stage of this year’s Tour de France, to undergo surgery during the off-season, which his team say went successfully.
A statement said: “Martin was always assisted by team medical staff, and the surgery went very well.”
Although Martin must now wear a cast for six weeks, he has been provided with a bike-specific one so as not to disrupt training, and he is expected to be fit for the start of 2014.
Despite the wrist problem, and his severe road rash injuries sustained in Corsica this year, Martin endured another successful year on the bike – not least against the clock.
Crowned by his third successive world time trial victory in Florence – having already won helped Omega Pharma-Quickstep retain their team title – Martin achieved a further ten victories against the clock.
He secured individual time trial victories at the Volta ao Algarve and Tour of Belgium – both of which helped him to overall victory – as well as retaining his national time trial jersey.
He also defied the injuries he sustained at the Tour de France to storm to victory during the stage 11 time trial and ended his year by winning the Chrono des Nations for a record-equalling third time.
Martin also impressed on the road, not least with an incredible solo break during stage six at the Vuelta a Espana, where he was only caught in the final few metres after riding alone for 175km.
The German will now be targeting a fourth world time trial win next year, to equal Fabian Cancellara’s record.
Another OPQS rider hoping to defeat Cancellara this season will be Tom Boonen, who will target the classics having extended his contract with the Belgian team.
The team will also welcome new signings Rigoberto Uran (from Team Sky), Thomas De Gendt and Wouter Poels (Vacansoleil-DCM), Jan Bakelants (Radioshack-Leopard) and Mark Renshaw (Belkin) for next year.
Renshaw’s arrival looks set to boost Mark Cavendish’s hope of success at the Tour de France – with the Manx Missile targeting the yellow jersey with victory in stage one from Leeds to Harrogate.