25 January 2011
The first cycling race of the season is done.
Australia organised the Tour Down Under for the 13th time.
As always it was a relaxed and sunny race.
The perfect race for a fresh start of a new cycling season.
With nice weather and lots of Aussie people at the finish.
The organisation calls the riders ‘heroes’.
If you can watch riders only one time a year, that’s not a surprise.
This year big names came to the race.
Lance Armstrong got the most attention,
because it was his last professional race.
But he wasn’t the only big name.
Sprinters seem to love to bring a visit to Australia as well.
Mark Cavendish, André Greipel, Matthew Goss
and Tyler Farrar were all present this year.
No wonder, most stages are flat.
Flat stages mean sprints.
But with sprints there’s a higher risk of crashes.
In the first stage was a crash, but not a big one.
In the second stage, it was much worse.
In a sharp turn to the left, 4 kilometres before the finish,
a couple of riders went down hard.
Sand and gravel made them fall.
Pieter Weening, a rider that crashed, said it was like the Sahara.
He was surprised that the organisation didn’t get rid of all the sand on the road, since it was only 4 kilometres left until the finish.
Mark Cavendish didn’t have much luck either.
He fell hard and hit his head.
He stated that in a professional cycling race, these things shouldn’t happen.
He even threatened not to return next year.
Robbie McEwen had a different view on the crash.
He said that it’s a part of road cycling.
Though he didn’t get hurt and got to wear
the leaders jersey at the end of the day.
Apart from this, the Tour down Under just went smoothly.
Lots of sprinters won a stage, there was a nice atmosphere and a young Australian bloke, Cameron Meyer, won the overall classification.
Everyone happy, you would say.
Well, there was this young Aussie guy, Michael Matthews,
who won the 3rd stage and was the most happy bloke of all.
He even thought that his dance skills before the 3rd stage did the trick.
You can check out his moves in the video below and be amazed!