Welsh rider Geraint Thomas was forced off his path by French rider Warren Barguil during Monday’s Stage 16 of the Tour de France and crashed into a telephone pole. He was able to continue the race.
Turning a hairpin bend near the end of the stage, Thomas, a Team Sky teammate of race leader Chris Froome, was to the left and slightly ahead of Team Giant-Alpecin’s Barguil, who veered too far toward the middle of the road and collided with Thomas. Thomas was unable to regain control before colliding with a telephone pole just off the track and tumbling down a hill.
He was able to continue the stage. Afterward, he remained in sixth place at +5:32. Barguil was 10th at +11:03.
Froome kept his overall lead at 64:47:16. Spanish rider Ruben Plaza Molina, with Team Lampre-Merida, won Stage 16.
Afterward, Thomas tweeted he was OK.
Thanks for all your messages guys! All good with me luckily!! Wrong place wrong time I guess...— Geraint Thomas (@GeraintThomas86) July 20, 2015
Thomas also discussed the crash with TeamSky.com.
“I’m all right. I’m a bit shaken up but I’m fine,” he said. “I have had a lot worse. It’s frustrating because you try so hard to get over that climb. I don’t know why guys don’t just sit where they are on descents.
“I was just following the wheel and then all of a sudden Barguil was just going straight on, and pushed me off into a big lamppost and down a ditch!”
Barguil said he was trying to brake but his finger slipped, leading to the collision with Thomas.
“I was very frightened,” he said. “I didn’t do it on purpose.”
Barguil apologized to Thomas “directly after the finish,” according to Team Giant-Alpecin’s Twitter account.
- Mike Fiammetta