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“My general classification is gone. My chain was derailed the first time and I was involved in a crash afterwards. A few kilometres after that crash, the peloton split up."

Photo: Sirotti












05.07.2015 @ 21:57 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Wilco Kelderman and Robert Gesink lost time in the second stage of the Tour de France. Crashes and echelons told the story of the ride through the rain in Zeeland. Kelderman fell and lost more than five minutes. Gesink was held up by another crash and crossed the line 1-27 minutes later. André Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) won the stage in a group with Chris Froome and Alberto Contador.

“It was a bad day,” sports director, Nico Verhoeven said. “We were proud on top of the classification yesterday, but we took a dive. We had nobody in the first group and that’s bad, especially when you’re having some ambitions in the general classification.

“It starts with Wilco’s crash. Laurens and Tom Leezer were involved in that crash too. Three men stopped to wait for them afterwards, but they left our other front man, Robert, only with Sep. That’s where it went wrong. Four men waited there with good intentions because Wilco is a front man too. We didn’t lose our ambitions in the general classification with Robert, but we did with Wilco, unfortunately.”

Kelderman agreed.


“My general classification is gone,” he said. The Dutch national time trial champion was unlucky two times in the stage. “My chain was derailed the first time and I was involved in a crash afterwards. A few kilometres after that crash, the peloton split up. I was hoping that I could limit the damage, but I lost five minutes in the end. That’s a lot.”

Laurens ten Dam, who was involved in the same crash, was fed up with the outcome of the stage.


“We were in charge, but today, it was the other way around. I’m fed up with that. It’s disappointing for Wilco, but for me as well.

“It was hectic. After the crash, we ended up in no man’s land. I knew that we were going to lose time at that moment, but we still have three weeks to repair this. Yesterday, we showed that it’s not about our form. We have to put ourselves back together.”

Steven Kruijswijk showed the others how to do that in the Giro d’Italia. He lost five minutes as well, so he must think about other things again.


“We have to aim for other targets,” he said. “We knew that it was going to be hectic with all those passages through little villages and the crowds. The weather was turning and there was a lot of wind, so it became dangerous and there were many crashes. Unfortunately, Wilco, Laurens and Tom were involved in one. It was about chasing.” 

Robert Gesink became the highlight of the day for a while, when he was part of the first echelon together with Sep Vanmarcke.


“I was going quite well, actually,” he explained. “We already saw that the weather was turning and we prepared for that. I was well placed together with Sep, but when Nibali crashed, we ended up at the wrong side of the road. We had to ride there for four kilometres even before they started riding half-road. It was unlucky.”

The general classification isn’t lost for Gesink, who is out to prove that in Monday’s stage.


“That’s going to be one for the overall riders,” Verhoeven said. “I think that the stage suits Robert. He was good today and fell out of the leading group because a little bit of bad luck. I expect him to finish with the best tomorrow.”



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