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Yorkshire puts on a fantastic show but Cavendish crash brings unwelcome drama

Marcel Kittel won the first stage of the 2014 Tour de France in Harrogate today. A crash inside the final 300 metres meant Omega Pharma-Quick Step rider Mark Cavendish was unable to realise his dream today of winning Stage 1 of the Tour de France, and with it the chance to wear the race leader’s yellow jersey for the first time in his career.

The crash left Cavendish with a dislocated shoulter and torn ligaments - whether wh will continue in the race will be decided depending on the results of an MRI scan.

Cavendish came down after colliding with Orica-GreenEdge rider Simon Gerrans in a crash that only a handful of riders managed to avoid, with Giant Shimano’s Marcel Kittel going on to take the victory and with it, the race lead and the yellow jersey, just as he did 12 months ago in Corsica.

In terms of drama the final sprint certainly lived up to the rest of a fantastic day in Yorkshire that saw huge crowds lining the roadsides - with the climb of Buttertubs producing scenes more reminiscent of the Alps than a 3rd category climb in Northern England. 

After grinding their way around the Yorkshire hills the sprint teams almost had their moment of glory snatched away from them when Fabian Cancellara attacked in the final kilometre - for a moment it looked as if his attack would stick, but he was caught in the final few hundred metres.

Kittel looked to have the race in the bag as Cancellara was caught, and it was while trying to find a way past Simon Gerrans of Orica Greenedge that Cavendish went down - he later acknowledged that the crash was his fault "I tried to find a gap that wasn't there". 

 

Reaction to follow.

 

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

11 comments

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Beefy [380 posts] 2 years ago
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Fab day watching near Haws locals great and really made the place look and feel great. But £70 pound for a car and two man tent on a farmers field with porta loo? Ok it was two night but only wanted one. A touch of greed from some but on the whole a once in a life time experience. Hope The missile can carry on

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SamSkjord [39 posts] 2 years ago
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Poor Cav, his prerace interview with Eurosport was great:
"This must be your D-Day Cav?"
"Why's that?"
"You must want to with in your mothers home town?"
"Thousands of people died on D-Day, this is a bike race"
 41

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Leviathan [2276 posts] 2 years ago
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This is the end for Cavendish.

An apocalyptic statement, and maybe it is just the beginning of the end. But head to head he can't compete with Kittel. I hope he is back in the future, though too injured for this tour.

"Thousands of people died on D-Day, this is a bike race"
Seems like he though it was the Superbowl. Some might consider it a racing accident but Cav brought his accident on himself, he was competing for space that wasn't there when the stage was already lost, trying too hard. The days of 5 stages and green jerseys are gone. Sorry Cav, get well soon, but time your efforts more carefully.

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fukawitribe [1957 posts] 2 years ago
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bikeboy76 wrote:

"Thousands of people died on D-Day, this is a bike race"
Seems like he though it was the Superbowl. Some might consider it a racing accident but Cav brought his accident on himself, he was competing for space that wasn't there when the stage was already lost, trying too hard. The days of 5 stages and green jerseys are gone. Sorry Cav, get well soon, but time your efforts more carefully.

Yeah - cheers for regurgitating what he said himself in a snide and supercilious manner... and then pointing out the bleeding obvious.

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Leviathan [2276 posts] 2 years ago
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fukawitribe wrote:
bikeboy76 wrote:

"Thousands of people died on D-Day, this is a bike race"
Seems like he though it was the Superbowl. Some might consider it a racing accident but Cav brought his accident on himself, he was competing for space that wasn't there when the stage was already lost, trying too hard. The days of 5 stages and green jerseys are gone. Sorry Cav, get well soon, but time your efforts more carefully.

Yeah - cheers for regurgitating what he said himself in a snide and supercilious manner... and then pointing out the bleeding obvious.

Yeah - cheers for regurgitating what I said in a snide and supercilious manner... and then pointing out the bleeding obvious.

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tonyleatham [38 posts] 2 years ago
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Why do people in this country just love to slag off anybody who is successful? Cav is one of the world's best sprinters. We should celebrate this fact, not engage in speculation about whether or not the stage was "already lost" - speculation which is 100% guess because it can only be based upon very,very limited information. Watching on TV gives such a small, limited perspective to be almost useless

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Al__S [1084 posts] 2 years ago
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"It was my fault, I'll apologise to Simon. I tried to find a gap that was not there, I wanted to win,"

I think that ends the "who caused the crash" arguments, he says he did it.

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therevokid [972 posts] 2 years ago
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sad, sad day for cav ... but big up for standing
up and admitting the mistake

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Yorkshie Whippet [554 posts] 2 years ago
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Come on people. The biggest yearly event in the world is in this country. It seemed that half the population of UK stood on some god forsaken hill. And we all cheered till our throats hurt, clapped until our hands bleed and waved our arms till they fell if. Some took home tea bags and memories, other a spotty cap and memories.

I'd call that a very successful day. Let's focus on the good of the day. 30mins and I'll be doing it all again!

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fukawitribe [1957 posts] 2 years ago
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bikeboy76 wrote:
fukawitribe wrote:
bikeboy76 wrote:

"Thousands of people died on D-Day, this is a bike race"
Seems like he though it was the Superbowl. Some might consider it a racing accident but Cav brought his accident on himself, he was competing for space that wasn't there when the stage was already lost, trying too hard. The days of 5 stages and green jerseys are gone. Sorry Cav, get well soon, but time your efforts more carefully.

Yeah - cheers for regurgitating what he said himself in a snide and supercilious manner... and then pointing out the bleeding obvious.

Yeah - cheers for regurgitating what I said in a snide and supercilious manner... and then pointing out the bleeding obvious.

Touché - but I wasn't reguritating what you said, I was criticising it, and pity what I said was obvious no ?

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Shades [313 posts] 2 years ago
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Not often I watch an entire TdF stage but that was a real 'belter' (fans, local roads, Jensie, Fabien breaking). If Cav had won, it would have been etched in my mind forever. Almost wish he'd eased off and accepted defeat in order to avoid the crash, but that's Cav and that's why I think he's great. Greipel must be scratching his head ref Kittel. Message to other sports; that's what real fans look like. No corporate boxes on the Buttertubs!