Crash sidelines Jacques-Maynes in hometown Californian stage

Ben Jacques-Maynes, l, in stage two of the Tour of California. His brother, Andy, crashed and had to quit the race.

Ben Jacques-Maynes, l, in stage two of the Tour of California. His brother, Andy, crashed and had to quit the race. (Image credit: Garrett Lau)

By Kirsten Robbins in Santa Cruz, California

Team Bissell twins Andy and Ben Jacques-Maynes planned to give their family members a show at the Tour of California stage two finish held in their hometown Santa Cruz. Ben suffered through the treacherous weather conditions in an day-long escape, but a crash along Highway 1 put Andy in an ambulance with a concussion.

"We have our entire family, friends, fans coming out to watch the finish of the race today," said Andy Jacques-Maynes before the start of the stage in Sausalito. "It's going to be great. My wife made T-shirts for everyone that read, 'Jacques-Maynes' on the front and 'Bissell' on the back."

Andy crashed along Highway 1, midway through the 186.6-kilometre stage. The incident happened almost immediately after Lance Armstrong collided with a motorcycle.

"I don't know any of the circumstances as to how he crashed," said Ben of Andy after the race. "I heard there was a quick change of direction and a parked car involved. I know that he came down and hit his head and had a problem with his ankle. They transported him to Santa Cruz.

"It's disconcerting when you hear that your teammate has crashed and is in an ambulance because that's a serious crash. He's had enough hard crashes to last a lifetime. I'm just glad that he is okay."

After six years of racing on separate teams, Andy joined his twin brother Ben in the Bissell roster. The Tour of California was Andy's debut at the professional level racing.

The twins helped the organizing committee in Santa Cruz design the stage. "I know every inch of every road on this stage and that's a great trick to pull out of your hat."

He finished near the front of the field after it caught his escape.

"I've been thinking about this for a long time. To see what a success this stage has been, all the people, massive crowds is just spectacular to have that kind of response from the community. It really validates what everyone on that organizing committee put forth to make this happen."

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