Guiilame van Keirsbulck. There’s a name. This guy took off from the first km, and stayed away for quite a while. 193km he stayed there, but now, ten miles from the end, he sees the peloton right on his back wheel. Aw, man. He shakes his head, makes a throat-cut gesture with a sigh. He did damned well.
Oh, man. There are two 90-degree corners at the end of the damned course today. Right before the finish! They’re inside the 3km safe zone, so yay for that, but that’s not going to help the sprinter’s leadouts. I mean, but definition, this isn’t the best sprinters’ finish, but everyone wants those points, so it’s still going to be crazy.
The peloton is out in the country, still, and organized into team lines, already. There are some tempers, too. Sky is staying to the right, keeping to themselves, keeping Froome safe. He’s tucked into the wheel of still-race-leader Geraint Thomas. He just needs to stay near the top of the standings for now.
Speed is cranked up, tension is cranked up. They’re under the 2km banner and fighting for positions. Cav is in third in his train, perfect. Where’s Greipel? Where’s Kittel? Not a lot of time! Oh, man, thank G-d, they’re through the — NO! NO! HUGE crash! Yellow Jersey is down! OH FUCK!
I can’t see who’s down! Sagan is the— boassenhagen! CAV IS THE— where’ this train? SMASH INTO THE BARRIERS! TWO MEN DOWN! FUCK FUCK! It’s Cav and Sagan! No— Degenkolb! And they’re not getting up!
Arnold Demare, French National Champion, has taken the stage, but the medics have run past up the road to the men still on the ground. Cav slammed so hard and so long into the barriers, and John Degenkolb had nowhere to go but a somersault straight over him with his bike. It looks like Cav was trying to get between Sagan and the barrier and it just— disaster.
Fuck fuck fuck— Cav— oh FUCK. Helped back on his bike, crossing the line with a teammate’s hand on his back, because HE’S HOLDING HIS RIGHT ARM TUCKED TO HIS CHEST.
I am literally screaming. SCREAMING. You KNOW what that means in cycling. You know. It means bad bad bad. Most often a broken collarbone. Most often out of the race. FUCK.
There’s a shot of Cav dismounting at his bus. His jersey is split wide open from shoulder to waist, and road rash on his shoulder. His right hand is already bandaged, and blood is already seeping through. He’s holding his right arm against him, someone takes his bike. Peter Sagan is right fucking there at the door, right there to try and see how he is. There is no usual grin, no bright goofiness from Sagan. He puts his hand on Cav’s shoulder, and Cav, face blank in shock, pats him on the back. No hard feelings. It looks on the replays like Sagan threw an elbow to shove him, but he did not— Cav tried to get through where there wasn’t a space at high speed, and Sagan reacted normally, trying to keep his balance. There are no hard feelings, and no complaints lodged. Cav took a risk, and it didn’t work. And it was a risk at 40mph.
So. Geraint Thomas is zipped into yet another Maillot Jaune. Demare, mage winner, is now points leader, so he gets the Green Jersey. He has 124 points, and Sagan only has 95 at second place, so that’s a pretty good gap. Nate Brown is still in Polka Dots, which is an amazing feat for an American. A good day for it, being the 4th. Taylor Phinney is still in third in those placements, with Peter Sagan in between.
Cav’s Sport Director Roger Hammond is talking to the press. Doctor is looking at him, then he’s getting x-rays. He’s throwing some shade on Sagan, but I get that. He’s probably very emotional. Not to mention Cav is absolutely their shining star.
Fuck. I don’t want to go look at the news, but I’m gonna.
oh my g-d.
I literally have nothing to say about this.
oh my G-d.
I don’t agree. I’m just…okay. Done for today.