Your Wednesday Daily News Digest

by Neal Rogers

July 19, 2017

In today’s Daily News Digest: Michael Matthews takes Stage 16 win at Tour de France after crosswinds wreak havoc; Brennauer seals GC victory at Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour, Schneider takes Stage 6 win; Degenkolb upset, says Matthews ‘did not hold his line’ in Tour de France sprint; Bad day for Quick-Step at Tour de France as Kittel loses points, Martin loses time, Gilbert abandons; Bennett forced to abandon Tour de France with illness; Zubeldia to end 20-year career at San Sebastian; Cannondale-Drapac team in ‘super-promising’ negotiations with two potential sponsors; Pinarello announces Dogma F10 Disk; Silca reintroduces Pista floor pump, releases 100-year HX-One tool kit; Foundation announced in honor of American Chad Young; Video: GoPro’s Tour de France Stage 16 highlights; Video: The moment Michael Matthews realized he’d won Stage 16 at Tour de France.

Degenkolb upset, says Matthews ‘did not hold his line’ in Tour de France sprint

by Neal Rogers

German John Degenkolb was angry with how Michael Matthews rode the final 200 metres on Stage 16, saying the Sunweb rider pinned him against the barriers, costing him the win. Though his Trek-Segafredo team did not lodge a protest, Degenkolb said Matthews’ sprinting forced him to stop sprinting for fear of crashing.

“Matthews did not hold his line in the sprint, and that cost me the chance for victory today,” Degenkolb said. “I was on his wheel, in the perfect position to launch the sprint at 200 meters, and I started the sprint. I clearly came with more speed from his wheel, and he saw me on the right side and closed the gap on the right side. It made me stop the sprint — stop sprinting for the victory. I felt like I had the legs to win today. It was very clear he went off his line into my line. In the heat of the situation, you are immediately angry if the chance for a win has been taken away when you know you have the legs to overtake him. It’s very disappointing.”

Matthews said that Degenkolb grabbed him by the neck and shouted at him after the finish. “We were waiting for the official result and he grabbed me on the way past,” Matthews said after the stage. “The officials saw that. I’m not sure what they’re going to do about it but I don’t think it’s very sportsman like. I did my sprint and I think it was a clean sprint. I didn’t do anything wrong, but obviously he saw it in a different way. That’s up to him. I didn’t see it from his angle, but if I did something wrong the officials would say something.”

Trek-Segafredo did not file an official protest and left it up to the race jury to decide if Matthews had done an irregular sprint. And while Degenkolb’s name did not appear in the post-race communique from the UCI jury for his confrontation, a punishment could be levied against the German up until the start of Stage 17 on Wednesday.