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"He lost three minutes to the other riders in the general classification, which is of course a lot. We will now have to see how the injury this morning will affect him. Then we will decide what to do about the general classif...

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13.07.2014 @ 00:47 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Going into today's first mountain stage of the Tour de France, Leopold König had already suffered several time losses. Unfortunately, a crashed caused him to lose another three minutes and NetApp-Endura is now considering a change of tactics.

 

After the first week, the eighth stage of the Tour de France was on the calendar for today, taking riders 161 kilometers from Tomblaine just outside Nancy to the Vosges Mountains. On the final stretch in Gerardmer, riders had to battle their way up a 1.8-km climb with a gradient of up to 13%. Bel Kadri (Team AG2R) clinched the win of the day on the first summit finish of this year’s tour with a solo ride. Tiago Machado and Leo König of Team NetApp – Endura reached the finish line in 34th and 38th place respectively. König crashed on the rain-covered road just before the finish line and lost valuable time in the general classification.

 

“Today our riders worked well together and everything worked out just the way we had planned.Leo’s legs were good, and I think it was easy to see that he was in a good mood. He rode into a good position up until his unfortunate crash. He lost three minutes to the other riders in the general classification, which is of course a lot. We will now have to see how the injury this morning will affect him. Then we will decide what to do about the general classification, i.e., if it makes sense to continue pursuing this goal or if we should instead focus on the individual stages. Right now, I am assuming that we will still have our eyes set on finishing in the top 15 overall,” said Enrico Poitschke, drawing his conclusion about today’s stage.

 

Paul Voss, who crashed yesterday, started the stage today with a broken nose and a broken small finger on the left hand. He was observed by the sport directors constantly during the stage. The stage went better than expected for Voss. Only the stabilized finger affected him during the day when braking. At no point during the stage it was considered that he abandons.

 

Tomorrow’s stage will continue through the Vosges Mountains. After starting in today’s destination of Gerardmer, the riders will reach Mulhouse in Elsass 170 kilometers further on.The day will feature six mountain classifications, including one category-1 climb. After descending the final mountain, the final 20 kilometers of the stage are flat all the way to the finish line.

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