Published: Sun, July 07, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Cavendish 'heart-broken' at Tour de France snub

Cavendish 'heart-broken' at Tour de France snub

The first Dutch rider to wear the race leader's jersey in 30 years, Teunissen was a surprise victor of Saturday's opening leg.

The 106th Tour de France began with 176 riders, with the most notable absentee being four-time victor Chris Froome after the Team INEOS rider suffered multiple injuries in a major crash during the Criterium du Dauphine last month.

Thomas was involved in a mass pile-up in the closing stages but appeared okay.

Cavendish hasn't missed a Tour since his first in 2007.

"Like I say, I gave myself enough space and avoided the actual crash but with the barriers there was nowhere to go", Thomas continued.

Another potential contender for the general classification yellow jersey, Astana's Jakob Fuglsang, managed to finish the stage despite a heavy fall 20km from the end that left his face bloodied from a cut over his right eye, earning him a trip to hospital.

"After that I thought "I'm still fresh", and everyone was dying in the last metres, even Sagan".

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Initially it looked as though the 34-year-old Dane might lose touch but his team mates helped him recover and he worked his way back to finish safely in the peloton although he went straight to the medical area afterwards. "Hopefully when Dylan heard it was me who won he could still smile".

"I don't feel pressure to prove that my win wasn't a fluke, or whatever negative angle people want to take from it".

The Grand Depart takes place in Brussels to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Belgian legend Eddy Merckx's first Tour de France victory.

Belgium's Olympic champion Greg van Avermaet made an early move to the front, much to the delight of local fans.

Teunissen completed the opening race in 4 hours, 22 minutes and 47 seconds, beating Bora-Hansgrohe's three-time world champion Peter Sagan on the line to win the first leg.

Jumbo Visna will seek to hold the yellow jersey in Sunday's 27.6km team time trial.

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