Lasse Norman Hansen (Cannondale-Garmin) won stage five of the Tour of Alberta on Sunday in quite bizarre circumstances after the chasing peloton missed a right turn on a circuit, leading to the race being neutralised.
The 23-year-old Dane was on the attack in the final kilometres of the stage to Spruce Grove with Sven Erik Bystrom (Katusha) leading the chase just ahead of the peloton.
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With just under 10km to go a motorbike rode alongside Bystrom to inform him that he’d missed the turning, forcing him to turn round, only to see that the entire peloton had followed him as well.
If you watch the video you’ll see a volunteer marshall doing her best to point out to Bystrom that the correct way to turn was right, but as the highway ahead was not blocked off the Katusha rider says he followed motorbikes ahead of him.
“I attacked alone and at first I didn’t realize there was one guy still ahead since there are no radios in this race,” Bystrom said. “But then suddenly before we hit the local circuits they showed me the wrong way to go, I was just following the moto bikes in front of me. Then they tell me I have to turn around and also the entire peloton who were about 30-seconds behind me. It was over at that point.”
Hansen was awarded the stage with around 2km to go as organisers waved the red flags to neutralise the race.
Trek Factory Racing‘s Laurent Didier took second place in equally strange circumstances. The Luxembourger had been dropped by the main peloton before that point and managed to take the correct turn, leading to him being awarded second by virtue of going the right way.