- Published: Wednesday, 08 July 2015 17:35
- Written by Jamie Naragon
BMC Racing Team's Greg Van Avermaet finished 10th Wednesday at the Tour de France to remain sixth overall while teammate Tejay van Garderen kept his hold on third place, 25 seconds off the lead.
Van Avermaet was involved in one of several crashes that plagued the 189.5-kilometer race through intermittent rain and strong winds.
"A Garmin-Cannondale guy slipped away just in front of me and I went down with two guys," Van Avermaet said. "Today was really dangerous with the wet roads and the wind. Knowing how quickly you can go down in the Tour, I hope this is my only time. It was not such a hard fall, so I think I will be 100 percent for tomorrow."
Van Garderen said the weather conditions made it far from a relaxing ride on stage that featured only one bonus sprint and no categorized climbs.
"Everyone thought today was going to be the relaxed day of the tour," van Garderen said. "But the wind and the rain made it anything but relaxed. Luckily, I have one of the strongest teams here. All the guys just sat on the front all day. I never had to leave third position. It costs a bit of energy, but it is worth it to stay ahead of the splits and the crashes."
André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) earned his second stage win by out-sprinting Slovakian national road champion Peter Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Mark Cavendish (Etixx-Quick Step). Cavendish's teammate, Tony Martin, remains the race leader 12 seconds ahead of Chris Froome (Team Sky).
BMC Racing Team's Manuel Quinziato said many riders were physically and mentally tired a day after the longest stage of the race, which included seven sections of cobblestone roads.
"It was a really hard race," Quinziato said. "A lot of guys were hoping to have an easy day. But it was exactly the opposite: strong wind all day, rain and slippery roads. You had to race in the front, so that is what we did. The team rode great - every guy, starting from Rohan Dennis, who did an amazing job. And Damiano Caruso before the rouleurs like me, Michi Schär, Daniel Oss and Greg. Everybody did a big contribution to keep Tejay safe."