Beijing: In a bizarre incident, seventeen contestants have been injured in a head-on collision in an international cycling race in southwest China's Yunnan province.
The injured riders were rushed to hospital after they fell down at the fourth stage when the leading group missed the finish gate and then turned back, only to collide head-on into an onrushing group of sprinters.
"I guess there was something wrong with the guiding vehicle and referees, who reportedly didn't do their job," Xing Yandong, a veteran Chinese cyclist said, adding the vehicle may have been misleading at the finish on Thursday.
Chinese netizens slammed the organizing committee for the "bizarre and horrible accident", but the organizers refused to take the blame, only saying they would "cooperate with relevant bodies and tried their best in follow-up work", state-run Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.
The 2nd Colorful Yunnan Gryffindor International Cycling Race opened on November 8 in Kunming, capital of the province, with the participation of about 1,000 cyclists from 25 countries and regions.