Tour de France: Hesjedal ‘as okay as you can feel’ after crash
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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Tour de France: Hesjedal ‘as okay as you can feel’ after crash

by VeloNation Press at 9:20 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France, Injury
 
Canadian continues in Tour after early scare

Ryder HesjedalMemories of Ryder Hesjedal being forced to withdraw from last year’s Tour de France after a crash came flooding back yesterday when the Canadian came a cropper towards the end of the opening stage, but fortunately the effects of that have not been serious.

The 2012 Giro d’Italia winner hit the deck with twelve kilometres to go. He remounted and got back into the peloton prior to the finish, with many other riders also delayed in the later crash.

According to Garmin-Sharp spokesperson Marya Pongrace, Hesjedal was relatively comfortable this morning prior to the race start. “Ryder was okay before the start,” she said. “He was as okay as you can feel after a crash, because crashing always hurts. He knows he was lucky and he hopes everyone else who crashed is also okay.”

Speaking to Fairfax media after yesterday’s stage, Hesjedal spoke about how the crash happened.

“'We were trying to stay out of trouble on the side,” he said, referring to himself and the Tour debutant Rohan Dennis. “Then the road opened up [allowing us] to move up. The next thing, guys are clipping the barriers for no reason and I'm hit from behind. We were together and then he helped bring me back.'”

Dennis impressed in the recent Critérium du Dauphiné, finishing second on a stage, leading the race and eventually finishing eighth overall. Hesjedal was impressed by how he was going yesterday.

“I got back with the help of Rohan, who rode real well,” he said.

The duo will aim to steer clear of trouble on today’s second stage and, if opportunity presents, may have a chance to try something on the climbs towards the end of the race.

Hesjedal’s best Tour finish came in 2010, when he was sixth overall. Winning the Giro d’Italia last year showed he had progressed, and he will hope to fight for the podium over the next three weeks.
 

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