Here's what go us talking during stage eight of the Vuelta a España

On a day that will be remembered for a large crash that forced out Tejay van Garderen and others, here’s what caught our eye on stage eight of the 2015 Vuelta a España.

Race vehicle involved in a crash, again

This year has seen several crashes caused by or involving race vehicles and motorbikes. This appears to have happened again at the Vuelta a España when Peter Sagan was reportedly knocked down by a motorcycle.

He was clearly very angered by the incident, in no small part due to the fact that he may have won the stage had he reached the finish line with the lead group.

This will once again ignite the debate around the actions of the support personnel around professional cycling and see the input of the UCI.

Tejay’s bad luck continues

Tejay Van Garderen on stage three of the 2015 Tour of Spain

Tejay Van Garderen on stage three of the 2015 Tour of Spain

BMC team leader Tejay van Garderen was forced to abandon the 2015 Vuelta a España after getting caught up in a crash with about 50km remaining on the stage.

The American came to the Vuelta hoping to make up for his unfortunate Tour de France where he was forced to withdraw with illness, at a time when a podium finish still looked like a plausible outcome.

… as does Bouhanni’s

Nacer Bouhanni crosses the line on stage three of the Vuelta a España (Sunada)

Nacer Bouhanni crosses the line on stage three of the Vuelta a España. Photo: Yuzuru Sunada

Also a casualty of an early exit from the Tour, but through a crash rather than illness, Nacer Bouhanni was also hoping to make amends in Spain.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be as he was once again taken down in the day’s large crash. In contrast to the other fallers – van Garderen, Kris Boeckmans (Lotto-Soudal) and Daniel Martin (Cannondale-Garmin) – Bouhanni was seen to be back on his bike and riding.

He was later forced to abandon the stage further down the road, however, as the extent of his injuries became clear.

Froome’s not out of it yet

Froome Vuelta stage eight by Watson

Chris Froome in relaxed mood on stage eight of the Vuelta a Espana. Photo: Graham Watson

After dropping time to his main rivals on the previous day, Chris Froome and Team Sky showed that they aren’t out of contention just yet.

The British team massed on the front at important points during the stage, including the stretch of road that saw the main crash of the day, and worked to protect their leader (or leaders, depending on how the race pans out).

Protecting their interests in the shape of both Froome and Nicolas Roche, who sits third on GC, the team rode well and saw their men safely across the finish line in the same time as the other main GC contenders.

Dumoulin once again strikes out

Tom Dumoulin on stage seven of the 2015 Tour of Spain (Watson)

Tom Dumoulin on stage seven of the 2015 Tour of Spain. Photo: Graham Watson

As mentioned yesterday, Tom Dumoulin is clearly no slouch. Today he once again rode off the front of the peloton in his quest to overcome the small time deficit Esteban Chaves (Orica-GreenEdge) holds over him in the race for the red jersey.

What’s more, for a tall time trial specialist, the Dutchman made his attack on an uphill section of the finishing circuit.

It’s probably fair to say that neither rider will be vying for red when the race rolls into Madrid on stage 21, but for the time being this seems to be the race within a race.


    My bad…meant the Tour of Flanders.

  • David Bassett

    Shimano had 2 big incidents at this years Tour ????

  • David Bassett

    A fish and chipper is a 3rd / 4th cat road race.
    It is such a shame to see P.S. hurt (or any rider) I do hope he bounces back for the Worlds. No pun intended.


    With all the hoopla regarding drones and the incredible video footage they can shoot, I’m surprised cycling has not stepped up and tried to embrace this technology. It might work out better and safer than the whizzing motor bikes and cars that seem to be taking out more riders the last 2 seasons like Phinney, Van Avermaet, Fuglsang, and now Sagan just to name a few…and that’s not even counting the ones taken out by support or media cars. Again Shimano had 2 big incidents at this years Tour.

  • dourscot

    There’s clearly some kind of experience vacuum among the support vehicle drivers – where are they getting these people from and have they proved their skills?

    Former cyclists would be the best possible people to use.

  • Nic Lowe

    When those covering the race become the race then we have a problem. Take heed of what Sagan says, something needs to change.

  • FPCyclist

    A fish and chipper?

  • David Bassett

    Once again we will be inundated by comments from people that will never been involved in anything bigger than a sportive, or a fish and chipper. ALL the vehicles in a race have a job to do. There are no free rides. Except maybe in the back of some official car.
    It is a great shame Peter Sagan came off his bike, I don’t think any one can say he was actually nocked off until we hear his side of what happened. One thing is for sure, no one set off on todays stage and said to themselves I shall try and nock someone off to day.
    Take away all the vehicles and we can go back to when we got a half hour show on a Saturday showing us some awful shots from the week of the TdF.
    Todays coverage was some of the best I have seen in a long time, from a race that if it keeps this up will be one of the best in a long time.

  • Remraf

    It’s about time the UCI get a grip on how many motor cycles need to be racing about, weaving between riders at speed and way to close – surely they are not all needed!

  • poisonjunction

    Cyclists are so very vulnerable. and wear little in the way of ‘protective’ clothing generally and hardly anything literally, when training or racing. So I imagine I’m not alone in sympathising with Peter Sagans utter fury and frustration at the behaviour of todays accompaning motor cycle – particularly as not only was he injured, how seriously is not yet clear, but he was also put out of contention in the final sprint where even ‘another’ 2nd place would have been better than being floored.
    Sadly this may not be the end of his worry’s if the commissar’s adopt an uncompromising stance on his completely understandable bahaviour afterwards and issue penalty’s – hopefully he wont be ‘nibalised’!