Kiwi triathlete Nicole van der Kaay saw her Super League Triathlon come to an end early on Sunday after one of her own teammates sent her flying into a barrier during a brutal wreck. The incident was (supposedly) an accident, and van der Kaay was able to walk away from the crash, but that does not make it any less jarring!
It all went down during the bike portion of the three-legged race in Toulouse, France. Van der Kaay and Italian teammate Alice Betto were jockeying for position on a tight corner and the latter rammed directly into the former from the inside.
As a result, van der Kaay swerved off course and took a nasty spill after she lost her bike out from under her. An attempt to keep herself upright failed, which led to an uncomfortable fall onto the concrete below during which her head made solid contact with the barrier and the ground.
Van der Kaay was in a state of shock as other competitors quickly caught up from behind. Betto was visibly remorseful for the mistake.
𝙉𝙤 𝙡𝙤𝙫𝙚 𝙡𝙤𝙨𝙩 😬
Nicole van der Kaay falls following a collision with her teammate in Toulouse ❌ pic.twitter.com/rF5G0Gm953
— Eurosport (@eurosport) September 3, 2023
Although it was not on purpose, Betto’s bump appeared to be intentional upon first look. It looked like a calculated move.
But she and van der Kaay are teammates, so why would they work against each other?
They were not. The accident was exactly that.
Both triathletes came out and said as much, even though it sure looked otherwise….
Triathletes Nicole van der Kaay and Alice Betto made amends after the bike crash!
“This video does not show it all,” said Nicole van der Kaay on Instagram. “This was an accident, unfortunately crashes happen in races. We pick ourselves up, lick our wounds & prepare for the next race. Mistakes happen, be kind.”
Betto also issued an apology video and wished her teammate a speedy recovery. It also showed her and van der Kaay hugging it out with some tears.
Betto echoed van der Kaay’s statement about the incident and made it clear that the video does not tell the whole story. Their handlebars made incidental contact, which caused Betto to lose control of her bike ahead of the crash.
Van der Kaay had a few scratches and bruises, but she is grateful not to have broken any bones. Just her heart!
Neither woman won the race.