July 5, 2010
Today’s Stage 2 of the Tour de France was unorthodox to say the least. Again, as they did yesterday, crashes animated the stage. Race favourites Wiggins, Contador, Kreuziger, Armstrong, both Schlecks, Basso, and Vande Velde all fell victim to the slippy roads in the wet conditions. By far the worst affected G.C. favourite was Christian Vande Velde who finished 5:53 down on the yellow jersey group.
Both Schlecks also found themselves chasing back on after crashing twice within 200 metres. Luckily, their team mate Fabian Cancellara was wearing the yellow jersey. As the acting patron of the peloton he forced the front of the race practically to a stand still so that the fallen could catch back up. This well intentioned act from Cancellara resulted in him relinquishing his hold on the yellow jersey to Sylvain Chavanel who was busy up the road soloing home for the stage win. A particularly selfless act given the circumstances, as Cancellara’s ultimate goal for this year’s Tour was to wear the Maillot Jaune as the race rides over the cobbles on Stage 3. My question is whether Cancellara had the authority to enforce this decision on (what remained of) the peloton.
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