Critical Section

TDF stage 9 - Sanchez wins from break, Voeckler takes yellow; unbelievable crashes continue

Sunday,  07/10/11  08:02 PM

TV car swerves into break, hitting Flecha and knocking Hoogerland into fence :(Wow.  Stage 9 of the Tour had a little of everything; eight categorized climbs (some of those Cat 2s were pretty tough), a powerful breakaway destined to succeed, horrible crashes which took out several contenders and injured others, and a TV car running riders off the road, changing the results of the race.  If you missed it, go back and watch.  Wow.

Johnny Hoogerland is knocked into barbed-wire fence; he continued (!) and took the polka dot jerseyToday's break was not five guys out to get TV time for their teams, they knew they had a chance, and they rode like it.  Chasing behind the peloton had a number of horrible crashes, and Dave Zabriske, Alexander Vinokourov, and Jurgen van den Broeck were forced to retire.  With the finish in sight a TV car swerved into the five-man breakaway, hitting Juan Antonio Flecha and knocking him to the deck, and causing him to crash into Johnny Hoogerland who somersaulted into a barbed wire fence.  This enabled Luis-Leon Sanchez and Thomas Voeckler to escape, with Sanchez ultimately winning the stage but putting Voeckler solidly in Yellow, two minutes ahead of the GC contenders.

Luis-Leon Sanchez leads break; he ultimately won and sits second on GCWith a rest day tomorrow that leaves the GC at Voeckler in yellow, Sanchez (1:49), Cadel Evans (2:26), Frank Schleck (2:29), and Andy Schleck (2:37).  Other contenders include Andreas Kloden (2:32), Ivan Basso (3:36), Robert Gesink (4:01), and Alberto Contador (4:07).  You could have won money betting that Contador would be in 16th that far back after week one.  After the rest day there are a couple of days for the sprinters - 5 hours of touring followed by 5 minutes of racing - and then Thursday (ta da!) we go into the Pyrenees, with stage 12 featuring a Cat 1 and two HCs.  Yay.  Stay tuned!

[ Tour de France 2011: all postsindex ]

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