Monday, July 11, 2011

TDF: Car Crash Fallout - Graphic Pics

Team Sky Manger Dave Brailsford is considering filing charges against the driver of the vehicle that slammed into Johnny Hoogerland and Juan Antonio Flecha yesterday during Stage 9 of the Tour de France.

We would say "Considering?" Considering what? How much you are going to sue for?

What happened was inevitable considering that the Tour is followed and supported by dozens of cars - mechanical supply cars, food and water cars, medical cars, TV news cars, etc...However, that doesn't excuse what occurred. It's shocking how HARD the guys were hit and it's a miracle they were able to finish the stage, although both were in such obvious pain that it was written across their faces in winces and scowls.

The vehicle in question, a French media car, was immediately sidelined and thrown out of the race. And it was the second vehicle induced crash of this years tour after last Wednesday a photographer's motorbike was involved in a crash with Danish rider Nicki Sorensen of Team Saxo Bank.

As of right now, the police are officially investigating the accident.

The Spaniard, Juan Antonio Flecha, feared he had suffered a fractured elbow, but plans to start tomorrow's 158km 10th stage from Aurillac to Carmaux. He said: 'Tomorrow I'll be able to ride, how well I don't know but I really don't care. 'At first I want to see how everything goes. I'm thinking more long term. 'I'm more concerned about the Pyrenees. I can't bypass the Pyrenees.'

Spoken like a Tour Rider. As avid Watchers, we cannot bypass the Pyrenees either!

The crash was nothing short of spectacular though as Hoogerland flew head over heels and landed in barbed wire.

Later Hoogerland will refuse to place blame, not even on the driver of the car, who is kicked out of the race. He says that in his pain, his mind turned to Wouter Weylandt. "I just said to Flecha – we're still alive, and Weylandt died," he said. Hoogerland will later claim he was lucky. It could have been worse. Every cyclist rides with a fresh memory of Wouter Weylandt's death on a descent in May's Giro d'Italia.

This years Tour is full of broken bones...and dreams

Here are the photos:

Johnny Hoogerland's falls hard into a barbed wire fence

He has to be carefully extracted
Mind the family jewels there!

He's helped back to the road

His injuries are "superficial" but terribly painful

Johnny bleeds his way to the Podium,
dripping blood all over France

Johnny breaks down in tears,
after winning the famed polka dot jersey for Best Climber,
earned before the horrific crash

Video of the car crash

Johnny Hoogerland (Who is very cute, btw) cries at the podium.
We're pretty sure if we went head first into a barb wire fence and then rode 34 more miles we would have cried LONG before the podium.

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