Demonstration interrupts Tour stage
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Monday, July 7, 2008

Demonstration interrupts Tour stage

by Steve Jones at 5:13 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
Today's third stage of the Tour de France was disrupted by demonstrators around the 58k to go mark.

Tour director Christian Prudhomme thought quickly and stopped to negotiate with the trade union leaders in front of a television camera to allow them to be heard. The mass of striking demonstrators were threatening to block the passage of the race as it headed towards Nantes.

For Prudhommes efforts, the four riders leading the stage were able to slide through the crowds losing very little time on the main peloton.

Fortunately, the time the break lost did not factor into the end result. The stage win eventually went to Samuel Dumoulin one of the four riders that had been away all day.

During the stage winner presentation another demonstration took place in front of Dumoulin. The first time stage winner was trying to enjoy his moment in the spotlight.

Fortunately for Dumoulin, five time Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault has had a history of "dealing" with protesters during a bike race and knew just what to do - grab him by the scruff and throw him off stage. There's a reason he was nick named "The Badger", and if you think that was brutal you should have seen how dispatched of competitors on two wheels.

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