UPDATE: July 10 at 12:10 p.m. EST
Turns out it was Danish Lotto-Belisol rider Lars Bak who front-flipped on Stage 5, not his Belgian teammate Jurgen Van den Broeck.
Either way, he's still lucky his collarbone wasn't pulped on the cobbles.
---End of Update---
Wrecks are an unavoidable tradition at the Tour de France, and this 2014 campaign may turn out to be one of the nastiest on record.
Between dangerous spectator selfies and the increasingly wet road conditions, it’s likely the racers who don’t chow pavement will be a minority group by the race’s end.
One of the latest big names to turn the rubber side up was Danish rider Lars Bak. The 34-year-old Lotto-Belisol rider flipped end-over-end Wednesday after losing traction on a slick, cobblestone road between Ypres, Belgium, and Arenberg Porte du Hainaut, France.
Bak entered the corner with too much speed and found little resistance when he gripped down on his soaking wet brakes. All you can do in these moments is hold on and wait for the sliding to stop—which BakBak did, drifting to the side of the road and executing a somersault into a field.
The Danish rider was lucky. This is all predicated on the belief that more strong riders continue to have problems. General classification contender Chris Froomewaved the white flag Wednesday after wrecking twice along the soggy route.
To give you an idea of how brutal Stage 5's cobblestone ride was, consider this picture of Lars Boom passing the finish line.
Cycling (@SkyCycling) July 9, 2014
That’s what the winner looks like.
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