The annual Tour de France is in progress this month, overseas in, you guessed it, France! This is not to be confused with this coming weekend's Tour de Paris (TX) however. I will ride the Tour de Paris, but never the Tour de France.
This year however, I think it should be renamed the Tour de Crash. It has been brutal on the riders this year, losing several marquee riders to serious injury. On day one, Mark Cavendish crashed in his mom's hometown, separating his collarbone/shoulder upon impact in the finish line sprint. He required surgery. Oh, and he took down at least 2 other riders. Then returning champ and favorite to win, Chris Froome, crashed several times, ultimately withdrawing on the wet day on the cobblestones. Talansky, Van De Velde, Vansummerin, and a ton of others have gone down, hard. Today's stage 10 victim? Alberto Contador, who crashed on the first mountain stage. You could tell it was bad, by the way the field doctor was working on his knee...then Contador got back on the bike, and took off. With what turned out to be a broken tibia! He rode for some 2-3 more miles before the pain was enough to force him out of the race. Yeah, he rode part way up a mountain with a broken tibia...it too will require surgery to repair.
Many of the crashes have happened due to road conditions--it has been raining in France for the last week. Today was no exception--it poured! I wish they would send some of that rain back over here...we could use it.
Still, the race has been exciting, and it looks like Vincenzo Nibali for Astana, wants to win yellow in Paris(France, not Texas). But he's going to have to survive 2 more weeks of crashes. With the way riders have been dropping like flies, I wonder if he will make it!