13 Jul 2019
The Tourist, Simon Clarke's diary, Ep.6
Today’s plan was to take it super easy, like I think most teams who didn’t have a sprinter wanted to do. We tried to recover as much as possible today and stay out of trouble in the finish.
Obviously Tejay’s crash was super unfortunate. It changed the race tactic a little bit. We allocated someone from the team to stay with him at all times. Although we needed to use someone to do that, there were ample people to cover Tejay and look after Rigo it the final. That was not an issue.
Seven days in, and I’m still feeling good. Ready to go again. These next two days will be solid – whether you’re riding in the breakaway or in the bunch.
We’re expecting two super hard stages tomorrow and Sunday – and Monday, too. It’s a possible breakaway opportunity and also very important to look after Rigo. We’ll have to see how we best go around covering both those plans.
ABOUT TEJAY CRASH
It was a crusiey start, and I think everyone was having a moment of relax after a solid stage yesterday. There’s so much road furniture these days in the Tour, obviously it’s for road safety for the car when they’re in two directions, but when we race down the whole road, we constantly have traffic islands in the middle of the road. It’s impossible for the organizers to have a motorbike on every single one. Early on in the stage, Tejay hit one of them. There have been quite a few accidents these first couple of stages with various teams and unfortunately it happened to us today.
It was a small 20cm tall traffic island. They put safety bales there, so if you do hit it, you don’t land on that, but he must have flipped completely over that and hit his head on the traffic island and was quite badly grazed. Let’s hope he’s okay. He’s being properly checked out now, and we’ll see where we go from there.
Tejay can still ride his bike, but he's not riding his bike in the Tour. He’s racing at Formula 1 style level. It’s one thing to be able to ride. It’s another to be able to compete. Whether that’s worth it for the state he’s in will be assessed by the team tonight.