The incident occurred with 60 km remaining from Friday’s stage in Carcassonne, with several riders exiting on a downhill road bordered by a gravel surface.Simon Yates (Team BikeExchange) and Roger Kluge (Lotto Soudal) retired at the time, but the crash has now forced two more outings.
Kragh Andersen was one of the many DSM riders who fell into the ravine by the side of the road and had to rush. The Dane completed most of the remaining 60 km on his own and finished second to last, 16 minutes behind the peloton.
After the stage, he was placed under overnight observation by his team’s medical staff and diagnosed with concussion.
“We kept a close eye on Søren during the evening and very quickly decided that he was no longer fit to run after seeing signs of concussion,” said team doctor Camiel Aldershof.
“Søren will now take a full rest period and we will continue to assess his progress, before considering a plan for his return to the bike. “
After winning two stages on the Tour last year, it’s the sad end of a more difficult outing this time around for the 26-year-old. He suffered a fall earlier in the race and was already in pain by week two, struggling to finish just three seconds from the allotted time on the Mont Ventoux stage.
It’s also a tougher Tour for DSM in general, who won three stages last year but hasn’t had an impact yet with Kragh Andersen becoming their third rider to start following crashes after Jasha Sutterlin and Tiesj Benoot.
“I am really disappointed and I don’t want to leave the Tour de France. In my heart, I know that the decision of the medical staff on the team can only be the right one, ”said Kragh Andersen.
“I hope this is the last bad luck for the guys here at the race, and I wish them all the best for the last week. “
The other non-party from Stage 14 was Barguil, who has also touched the bridge several times so far and was caught in the same crash on Friday.
The French finished in a group four minutes from the peloton but was in pain and announced his withdrawal on Saturday morning.
“Unfortunately, I won’t be at the start of stage 14, which was a goal for me because the course suits me well. Yesterday I fell in the big fall on the gravel descent. I was able to finish the stage and I wanted to finish the Tour, but I think it was one fall too many.
“My back and buttocks were affected, which made it difficult to feed my right leg. Together with the team and the medical staff, we decided it was best not to start.
“It’s heartbreaking for me. I experienced a lot of emotions on this Tour and on the Tour in general. I’m not someone who normally gives up like that, but for health reasons it is sometimes important to know how to say ‘stop’. “
Arkéa-Samsic sprinter Nacer Bouhanni was also caught in the crash but continues in the race, although the team is reduced to four riders after already losing Clément Russo, Anthony Delaplace and Dan McLay.