— Rémi Morel (@remimorelTML) March 19, 2016
World champion Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) and Fabian Cancellara (Trek-Segafredo) once again showed why they are among the world’s best road bike handlers by avoiding a high-speed crash by Fernando Gaviria (Etixx-QuickStep) in Milan-San Remo on Saturday.
Sagan and Cancellara had just been caught by the peloton as they approached the final run-in to the line, with both riders attempting to stay in contention.
They were following the wheel of Colombian sprinter Gaviria, making his debut in the race. As Gaviria touches a wheel and goes crashing down to the ground, somehow Sagan and then Cancellara managed to swerve around him. At one point it looks like Cancellara’s back wheel is fully locked up.
Not only do Sagan and Cancellara avoid hitting Gaviria, but they also avoid hitting the crash barrier at the side of the road and each other. British rider Ben Swift (Sky) also does a good job of avoiding Gaviria’s bike on the other side.
The crash impeded their progress and both of the riders finished outside the top 10 as Frenchman Arnaud Démare (FDJ) took the biggest victory of his career ahead of Swift.
Although Sagan and Cancellara were out of the running in Milan-San Remo, their crash avoidance tactics mean that they survive unscathed heading into the spring classics in northern Europe.
Gaviria re-mounted his bike, and rolled across the line in tears – imagining what could have been.