2014 Tour de France – Stage 1

6 Jul

Would you believe me if I told you there wasn’t a single crash on the opening stage? Didn’t think so. Of course there were crashes!

Just ask sprinter and Brit, Mark Cavendish.

The script was written: Begin the Tour de France in England, have possibly the largest crowds ever watching and cheering it all, make the finish in Cavendish’s Mum’s hometown and have Cavendish win and take the yellow jersey, his first ever. The royals were there, his family and fellow countrymen all there to witness Cavendish’s dream come true.

What transpired was Cavendish’s worst nightmare. Not initially though. His team had provided him with the perfect lead out, delivering him near the finish, near the front.

All sprints are hotly contested with riders jockeying for position, but especially sprints in opening stages when a win results in the yellow jersey. Cavendish was to the outside of nemesis Marcel Kittel and to the inside of Simon Gerrans when Cavendish tried to headbutt Gerrans out of his way. They both ended up going down, clearly Cavendish’s fault and Kittel and Peter Sagan raced for the win. Kittel won, taking the yellow  jersey, which most had expected Cavendish to take, just like last year.

Unlike last year, this one was Cavendish’s own doing.

 

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