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TdF #4 Froome crashes…

July 11, 2014

Another sprint stage, another Kittel win. Is that all to say?

The big news for the GC was Froome crashing after some contact in the riders in front of him. Typical crash, there are many of these every day. However, Froome lost quite a bit of skin and was holding his hand after he jumped up. So how bad are his injuries? A fracture of his hand would be the most serious, especially considering the Pave that is coming up in the next stages. Even losing skin is a problem as it can be painful and cause loss of sleep. The energy that goes into healing can rob the athlete of performance. Froome lost the Dauphiné after a minor crash for these reasons.

Kittel’s win was not as routine as Stage 3. He had to work hard to get to the line first, did not have a clean lead out and had to fight off some strong competition especially from Kristoff and Demare. Despite OPQS have a good train and delivering Renshaw is the best position, he does not have the speed to challenge Kittel. They are missing Cavendish and look unlikely to win a spring. Greipel is off form as well and is slower than last year. Henderson has crashed out which makes life more difficult for Lotto. He is a key part of their sprint train.

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