Girmay out of Giro after prosecco cork eye injury

JESI, Italy (AP) — An accident with a cork of prosecco while celebrating his historic stage win at the Giro d’Italia forced Biniam Girmay to retire from the race on Wednesday.

The Eritrean rider became the first black African to win a stage on a grand tour when he sprinted past Mathieu van der Poel to the line at Jesi on Tuesday’s 10th stage. But he had to be taken to a local hospital after sustaining an injury when he stuck a cork of prosecco into his eye during the podium celebration.

The 22-year-old Girmay celebrated with his Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux teammates on his return from the hospital.

“When I arrived after the hospital, the wrong time, I had a little fun with my teammates, the staff, everyone,” Girmay said in a video on his team’s social media channel. “I’m also happy now. I was a bit sad about what happened with the champagne but when I came back to the hotel they were super happy too.

“They were a bit scared but when I looked good we really enjoyed it. But today luckily I didn’t start because my eyes still, I need a rest to give more power to the eye… I’m fine now, see you soon.

In March, Girmay became the first rider from a sub-Saharan country to win a one-day classic in the Gent-Wevelgem race.

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