Riders praise race organisation at Etoile de Bessèges after heavy crashes on stage two

One incident left a rider hanging from a bridge in the aftermath

Greg van Avermaet
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Riders involved in the Etoile de Bessèges stage race have praised the race organisation for its quick response to stage two's dramatic crash, which left a rider hanging from a small bridge.

The terrifying incident took place with approximately 24 kilometres left to race as the riders reached a pinch point on the route, caused by a small stone bridge across a ravine.

Valentin Madouas of Groupama-FDJ praised the race organisation's quick response on social media after the incident which saw yesterday's stage subsequently neutralised.

Writing on social media, Madouas said: ”Congratulations to the organisers at Etoile de Besseges! The safety of the riders above all!”

After the crash had initially taken place, there was a hold up of more than 25 minutes while the race organisers decided what to do. Eventually the stage was cancelled due to a lack of ambulances and medical cars to safely continue in the event of further incidents.

Meanwhile Valentin Ferron (TotalEnergies) was fortunate to escape with “minor superficial wounds” after he was forced to cling onto the bridge to stop himself falling into the ravine below.

Thanks to some quick-thinking from Axel Laurence of Alpecin-Deceuninck, Ferron escaped further serious injury.

According to a report from Cyclingnews, Ferron said that the horrifying incident was “all a bit of a blur”. 

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Tom joined Cycling Weekly in early 2022 and his news stories, rider interviews and features appear both online and in the magazine. 

He has reported from some of professional cycling's biggest races and events including the Tour de France and the recent Glasgow World Championships. He has also covered races elsewhere across the world and interviewed some of the sport's top riders. 

When not writing news scoops from the WorldTour, or covering stories from elsewhere in the domestic professional scene, he reports on goings on at bike shops up and down the UK, where he is based when not out on the road at races. He has also appeared on the Radio Cycling podcast.