Monday, July 5, 2010

VandeVelde Out of Tour; Farrar Barely In

Garmin-Transitions suffered more than any other team from the crashes in Stage 2 today. According to this report at Cyclingnews.com, GC contender Christian VandeVelde, who seems to crash out of just about every big stage race, is out after breaking a couple of ribs. Meanwhile, Garmin announced that their sprinter, Tyler Farrar, will start tomorrow's stage, despite suffering a sprained elbow and fractured wrist. On a normal stage of the Tour, such injuries would be excrutiatingly painful. But tomorrow is not a normal Tour stage; it is a mini-version of the Spring classic, Paris-Roubaix, otherwise known as the "Hell of the North." Who the hell is crazy enough to even try to ride dozens of kilometers of the world's worst pave (cobbles) with a broken wrist and sprained elbow? Sometimes, discretion is the better part of valor. IMHO, Garmin should withdraw Farrar from the Tour now, and try to get him healed up in time for the Vuelta in September.

Speaking of the cobbles tomorrow, iff the Schleck brothers are not too banged up from their crashes today, I expect Cancellara to make a concerted effort to recover the yellow jersey he gave up today to protect their GC positions. Still no word, however, on the condition of Andy Schleck, who looked pretty  beat up immediately after the crash, but then seemed to recover a bit on the bike.

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