Fuglsang abandons Tour de France after stage 16 crash
Dane Jakob Fuglsang was forced to abandon the Tour de France Tuesday after a crash with about 27km remaining on Stage 16. The incident left Fuglsang with what an Astana statement called “heavy contusions and abrasions of his hand, arms, and knees.”
Fuglsang, winner of Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Criterium du Dauphine this season, was sitting ninth overall, 5:27 behind race leader Julian Alaphilippe, when he went down in a fall that also involved Sunweb sprinter Cees Bol.
Almost immediately after the crash, Fuglsang took off his helmet and walked over to the race doctor, who had stopped near the crash site, and ultimately pulled out of the race.
This Tour had been plagued with problems for the Astana rider, who also hit the ground on the opening stage in Brussels. He then missed the split in the crosswinds on Stage 10 into Albi, losing 1:40 on the general classification. He finished 12th on the Stage 13 time trial in Pau, and 10th on Stage 14, finishing atop the Tourmalet.
— Astana Pro Team (@AstanaTeam) July 23, 2019
In an unusual coincidence, Fuglsang also won the Dauphiné in 2017 and then abandoned the Tour on Stage 13 due to fractures to his left elbow and wrist sustained in a crash two days earlier. Until Tuesday, it was the only time the Dane had abandoned a Grand Tour.
Bol, who was involved in the crash with Fuglsang, finished the stage but will not start Stage 17 Wednesday, his Sunweb team announced.
Defending champion Geraint Thomas also crashed earlier on the stage that started and finished Nimes, though the Team Ineos leader was quick to remount a new bike and did not appear to be significantly injured.
Australian Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) on the stage, taking the field sprint ahead of Italian Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick Step). Other than Fuglsang’s departure, there were no major changes on the general classification.
Fuglsang’s Tour de France destiny is chronically unfulfilled. Can’t help to feel crushed about it slipping out of his hands once again in the best season of his life.
— Brian Nygaard (@nygaardbn) July 23, 2019