Battered Voigt determined to reach Paris

Saxo Bank strongman Jens Voigt is all smiles at the start of Stage 6.

Saxo Bank strongman Jens Voigt is all smiles at the start of Stage 6. (Image credit: James Huang)

For the second consecutive year Jens Voigt suffered a bad crash on the Tour de France’s 16th stage, yet in true Voigt style he’s determined to fight through to Sunday’s finish in Paris.

Voigt hit the deck after his front tyre exploded during a descent on Tuesday’s stage, reminiscent of his crash a year earlier where he lost consciousness briefly after hitting the tarmac face first.

Despite suffering a lot of road rash from Tuesday’s incident, Voigt was upbeat when he posted a message to fans on team-mate Andy Schleck’s Twitter account, saying: “Hi it’s Jens, I am ok! Basically only my right ankle is untouched, all the rest of has some roadrush. But I will reach Paris this year - promised!”

Known for his matter of fact style, Voigt told it exactly how it was when recalling the incident on The German rider will try to recover during today’s rest day before helping Schleck’s bid to regain the Tour’s leader’s jersey on the final mountain stage.

“I'm doing 70 kilometre an hour on the first descent when my front tire explodes. Before I hit the asphalt I actually manage to think that this is going to hurt,” said Voigt. “Both knees, elbows, hands, shoulders and the entire left side of my body were severely hurt.

“My ribs are hurting but hey, broken ribs are overrated anyway,” he added. “Fortunately, I didn't land on my face this time and I'm still alive. I was however offered a ride on the truck that picks up abandoned riders but I'm not going to quite another Tour de France. Now, there's a rest day and Paris is not that far away.”

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