Late scare for GC duo in Tour opener

06 Jul 2019

Late scare for GC duo in Tour opener

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Tour de France – Stage one: Brussels - Brussels, 194.5km

Geraint Thomas was able to remount and finish the opening stage of the Tour de France following a late crash on the run into Brussels. 

The Welshman was edged into the barriers in the final metres, flipping over his handlebars as a large pileup held up the peloton. Thomas quickly got up to cross the line, with Egan Bernal also finishing the stage after being forced to stop behind his team-mate.

Team INEOS had been well placed throughout the day, setting up behind the motivated sprint teams in the peloton and ushering the duo of Thomas and Bernal into the final three kilometres – ensuring the pair will not lose time despite the crash.

The team were also alert as the peloton split into three groups briefly following a cobbled section.

Despite his sprint leader Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) among those to go down in the crash, it was Mike Teunissen who prevailed at the finish, edging out Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) to win the stage and pull on the first yellow jersey of the race.
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Reaction

- Geraint Thomas

"I’m fine. It was pretty slow by the time I hit them. I gave myself enough space and avoided the actual crash but with the barriers there was nowhere to go. It’s just one of those things. The main thing is that it didn’t do any damage – the bike took the hit and I just toppled over. 

"It was good to get back in the groove with the boys. We were riding really well together, always at the front. Communication was good and we started on the front foot. We’ll try to continue that now. This first week is all about just getting through.
 
"It’s a big day tomorrow – the team time trial. Hopefully we can all rest up well tonight and give it a good go tomorrow. We’ll go 100% to try and win the stage but there’s a lot of other good teams."
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What’s Next?

Stage two provides an early general classification shake-up with a 27.6km team time trial. The largely flat course around Brussels should see early gaps open out, with teams looking to be well-drilled and avoid mistakes in a bid to take time on their rivals.
Stage one result
 
1. Mike Teunissen (Jumbo-Visma) 4h22'47"
2. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) s.t.
3. Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) s.t.
4. Giacomo Nizzolo (Team Dimension Data) s.t.
5. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida) s.t.
81. Egan Bernal (Team INEOS) s.t.
111. Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS) s.t.
 
Overall Standings

1. Mike Teunissen (Jumbo-Visma) 4h22'47"
2. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) +4”
3. Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) +6”
4. Giacomo Nizzolo (Team Dimension Data) s.t.
5. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida) s.t.
81. Egan Bernal (Team INEOS) s.t.
111. Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS) s.t.

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