By Kirsten Robbins in Santa Cruz, California
A motorcycle carrying Astana's official team photographer collided with Lance Armstrong midway through stage two of the Tour of California. According to Armstrong, the accident was not that bad.
"There was a motorcycle with a photographer on it. I don't know, I think the motorcycle [driver] was looking around and he hit a patch of mud. The motorcycle started fish tailing and it went down in front of me and I went up onto it. There wasn't much I could do."
The rain fell on and off through out the stage and strong winds continued to blast the riders from the right as they travelled south along Highway 1.
Armstrong's return to American racing has been mixed with good and bad moments. Astana value his super-domestique efforts to help teammate Levi Leipheimer win the overall; however, the last two stages have been plagued with stolen equipment and a motorcycle collision.
"The sport of cycling is very unpredictable, especially when you have weather like this. This sport can certainly be dangerous enough."
Team Manager Johan Bruyneel noted that the accident was a result of the added stress placed on the entire event due to bad weather.
"It's windy, wet and there is mud on the road," Bruyneel said. "It was a scary moment, but we could quickly see that he [Lance Armstrong] stood up and there was nothing going on.
"When there is bad weather there is always a lot of stress and a lot goes on in the car and caravan. It's been very bad weather for the riders and for the spectators, But surprisingly there were a lot of spectators."
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