Henderson crowned British time trial champion
Anna Henderson has secured the national time trial title in her home country. Th...
The third stage of the Tour de France has ended in a disappointment for Team Jumbo-Visma. In the beginning of the stage Robert Gesink had to abandon the race with a collarbone fracture. In the last ten kilometres Primoz Roglic and some of his teammates crashed. The Slovenian rider suffered physical damage and lost a lot of time.
So far, the 2021 Tour de France is one that will go down in the books as a Tour with a hectic overture. After forty kilometres Gesink crashed hard. The unfortunate Dutchman suffered a collarbone fracture. He was forced to abandon the race. Tony Martin could not avoid the crash, but the time trialist was able to continue.
In the last twenty kilometres, the sprinter teams and the classification riders were keen to ride at the front. The final was known to be dangerous. At ten kilometres from the finish it went wrong at the front. Again, Team Jumbo-Visma had several riders hit the asphalt, with Roglic and Steven Kruijswijk as the main victims. Later in the final two more crashes happened.
On the finish line in Pontivy, the damage was quite significant. Roglic lost more than a minute on his direct competitors. Wout van Aert missed the connection with the front group due to the turmoil. The Belgian champion eventually rode to 15th place in the day’s result.
"We will continue to fight for it no matter what."
Roglic made a confused impression afterwards. However, the Slovenian rider was ready to fight during the remainder of the Tour. “Today was not our best day. I’m covered in abrasions from head to toe. Fortunately, the medical examination showed that nothing is broken. Everything is still in one piece, so I will continue. Fortunately I can continue the Tour. It was a stressful final. I am not the right person to blame the organisation for this. You don’t want anyone to lie on the ground. You train so hard for a certain goal. This bad luck cannot be calculated in. It is now a matter of getting through the next few days. We will continue to fight for it no matter what.”
"This day is a real bummer for us."
Sports director Frans Maassen was not pleased with today’s stage. He is concerned about the physical damage to his riders. “We explored the route well beforehand. At eighteen kilometres from the finish the frenzy started because of the super narrow roads. You can certainly criticise a course like that. Beforehand, together with some other teams, we asked the jury to protect the riders and to time them at five kilometres from the finish. Unfortunately, they did not comply. We came back in pursuit to within forty seconds. Then another crash, just in front of us, ruined the race. Apart from losing a lot of time, Primoz was physically damaged. This day is a real bummer for us”, Maassen said.
"Finals like this are very dangerous."
Sepp Kuss saw his teammates hit the ground. “Finals like this are very dangerous. Everyone is fighting for a good position. It was a dangerous final with narrow roads. I hope Primoz and Steven didn’t suffer too much. Unfortunately we lost Robert. Ultimately it turns out to be a dramatic day for us”, the American said.
Kruijswijk’s right middle finger is stitched. Normally he will be back at the start tomorrow, just like Roglic.