The Tour is celebrating its 100th running, but did not get off to the type of start racers or organizers would have liked. A team bus stuck in the archway of the finish line worried organizers as the peloton was approaching the finish
Riders suffered through two crashes that injured riders and caused others to miss their chance at winning the stage in a final sprint.
In one of the crashes, over 20 rides fell. Among those who crashed were Alberto Contador, a two-time champion and sprinter Peter Sagan. Both riders were able to get back on new bikes and continue.
Mark Cavendish the British rider who is considered one of the world’s best sprinters was caught up behind the crash. He was unable to get around it in time to catch the lead pack and participate in the final sprint for the stage win. He had been hoping to sprint and win the first stage in order to wear the coveted yellow jersey for the first time in his cycling career.
Kittel said he felt as if he was wearing gold when he put on the yellow jersey signifying the race leader following the stage.
One of Cavendish’s teammates, Tony Martin, was rushed to the hospital following the crash as he lost consciousness. Spain’s Contador was able to finish the race even though his shoulder was bloodied and his uniform torn.
Sunday’s second stage is much shorter at just 97-miles, but has three difficult climbs including a category 2 before a long downhill sprint finish.