Well, it’s been an extraordinary day in the Tour de France. I would not claim to be an expert cycling commentator on the Tour but even I as a keen spectator would realise that this was not an ordinary day. My thoughts are with Alexandre Vinokourov. I understand that he has been flown to Paris this evening and I hope that he is receiving expert medical treatment. He was in an horrendous crash. The thigh bone is supposed to be one of the most painful bones to break in the human body but as if that wasn’t bad enough, he is also suffering from a broken pelvis. I know that some people have criticised him heavily because they see him as a drugs cheat but personally I think it is no time for that. The whole family of cycling must come together and hope that he makes an excellent recovery. Orthopaedic surgery is very painful to recover from and his career is over. It’s been a terrible way for him to end his cycling career.
After a day of withdrawals and accidents, fate didn’t seem to leave off and Flecha and Hoogerland both had painful falls after the French TV car swerved into them. They have both admirably not got involved in the blame game. I wish them both well and hope that Hoogerland is able to start on Tuesday. They could have both been killed or very seriously injured in that fall and I guess it is some compensation that it wasn’t worse.
Congratulations to Thomas Voeckler on wearing the Yellow Jersey.