The 'sickening' crash that brought down a host of riders before the second stage finish at the Tour Down Under yesterday in Mannum, including HTC-Highroad's Mark Cavendish also claimed the general classification hopes of Garmin-Cervelo's Tyler Farrar.
The US sprinter had hoped to be right in the mix when it came to claiming overall honours come Sunday's final stage, but after just two days, Farrar's hopes were in tatters.
Three crashes marred the finish of stage two from Tailem Bend to Mannum on the Murray River, but it was the first which came when the bunch rounded a sharp bend with around four kilometres to go which hurt Farrar.
"I went down but I kind of just ended up on top of the pile so I came off much better than most," he told Cyclingnews before the start of the third stage in Unley.
Dubbed the 'mayhem in Mannum', the incidents resulted in injuries to around a dozen riders including Farrar's Garmin-Cervelo teammate's Cameron and Travis Meyer. Remarkably all three were on the start line in Unley sporting nothing more than a few plasters.
Team director Matt White wasn't too pleased with the way that the stage panned out for his riders but found some joy in the fact that Cameron Meyer was still in contention for the general classification after he crashed within a hundred metres of the finish line.
"There's too many sprinters here and everyone's too fresh," White joked in Mannum.
Heading into today's third stage, Meyer sits just 10 seconds off the leading time of fellow Australian Robbie McEwen of Team RadioShack. Farrar is at three minutes and 52 seconds.
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