Every one of Tour de France’s race’s three mass-start stages has been shaken up by a late crash. Fernando Gaviria won Stage One from a reduced group, then found himself unable to challenge Peter Sagan for the win the next day after a rider in front of him played a corner wrong and took him out. Stage Two’s crash occurred within the final three kilometers, which meant that all time gaps were negated, though the chaos on Stage One saddled several serious contenders for the yellow jersey with imposing time gaps.
Stage Four was no different; with about five kilometers left, something happened that sent a rider flipping into the air right in the middle of the peloton. Most crashes at the Tour tend to take place on the margins, when the road narrows and riders collide as they try to squeeze in. A collision at high speed in a big crowd is the most dangerous possible crash, and it appears that at least one rider will be out of the race.
AG2R’s top mountain lieutenant Axel Domont is reportedly out of the race with a broken collarbone, and young Belgian star Tiesj Benoot limped across the finish line with a bloodied face.
Only Ilnur Zakarin lost time today, though he’s not exactly a top-tier contender for the overall title. When the race reached the finish in Sarzeau, most everyone was safely nestled back in the peloton, and Gaviria went nuts again. The hotshot 23-year-old Colombian launched first then held off late charges from better positioned riders to take his second Tour win.