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“Marcel came down coming out of a roundabout in the last 3km, and it was a real shame that he couldn’t contest a finish which was perfect for him. The good thing is that he is ok and he was feeling good. There will be more oppor...

Photo: Sirotti








13.03.2014 @ 21:31 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

All was set for the first big sprint showdown between Marcel Kittel, André Greipel, and Mark Cavendish in today's stage of Tirreno-Adriatico but when the sprint was launched, one of the key actors was missing. Kittel hit the deck in a roundabout 2.5km from the line but is luckily unhurt and ready to take his revenge in the upcoming sprint stages.


Marcel Kittel suffered an untimely crash in the final 3km of stage 2 of Tirreno-Adriatico today putting him out of contention for the stage. The opening road stage was chalked down as the opening sprint showdown of the Italian stage race but unfortunately for Team Giant-Shimano they could not play a part.


The stage was set as the final rider from a five-man breakaway was caught with just over six kilometres left to race, and the team had Kittel in a strong position near the front of the bunch. The stage had already seen a few crashes and the bunch was looking very nervy.


Kittel was a victim to this and was one of those caught out, hitting the tarmac 2.5km from the line. The pace was too high to attempt a chase back to the bunch and he rolled across the line minutes down.


“Marcel came down coming out of a roundabout in the last 3km, and it was a real shame that he couldn’t contest a finish which was perfect for him,” said coach Aike Visbeek. “The good thing is that he is ok and he was feeling good. There will be more opportunities for him here


“It wasn’t our day today as the train was already a man down as Roy Curvers punctured with less than 10km to go and didn’t get back to the front. Prior to this the team had done a good job and Tom Stamsnijder had done a lot of work on the front helping to control the pace. Tomorrow is another stage and we will regroup and refocus.”


Marcel’s lead-out man, Tom Veelers gave his point of view of the stage: “The break went early on as expected and Tom S rode strong on the front with a rider from Omega Pharma – Quickstep and one from Lotto. Towards the end the last guy  was holding strong so we had to put extra riders on the front to bring him back.


“It’s too bad that Roy punctured. He managed to get back onto the bunch but the pace was too high for him to do anything. At the end Tom Dumoulin, Nikias Arndt, Simon Geschke and I were with Marcel when he came down. I managed to get around him just but had to break a lot and lost my position.


“I fought to get back up there but didn’t get near the front. We will be back tomorrow though to fight it out again.”


You can read our preview of stage 3 here.



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