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Cyclist Boonen racing with broken rib

London, England (Sports Network) - Belgian cyclist Tom Boonen will have a broken rib when he starts the men's Olympic road race this Saturday.

Boonen suffered the injury earlier this month in a crash at the Tour of Poland. But after riding in the Tour de Wallonie over the weekend as a fitness test, he was cleared to compete and travel to London with the Belgian team.

The 31-year-old Boonen focused this part of his season around the Olympics, skipping the Tour de France to prepare, and is one of the favorites for the 250-kilometer medal event. During the spring, he showed his form by winning his third Tour of Flanders and fourth Paris-Roubaix -- equalling the record for both races.

After Monday's stage at the Tour de Wallonie, Boonen told Belgian broadcaster Sporza that his legs felt good, but that his racing form isn't perfect because of the injury.

Patrick Lefevere, Boonen's trade team manager, said it's hard to tell how the injury will affect his performance.

"His preparation is hampered by the injury, obviously," Lefevre said. "It will be an unusual race anyway. With only five riders in each team it will be difficult to control."

Boonen will be surrounded by a strong cast of Belgian riders for the road race -- Philippe Gilbert, Jurgen Roelandts, Greg Van Avermaet and Stijn Vandenbergh.

07/24 12:06:25 ET


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