Sánchez cracked bone in Tourmalet stage crash

Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) crashed early in the stage but kept third place overall.

Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) crashed early in the stage but kept third place overall. (Image credit: Stephen Farrand)

Euskaltel-Euskadi have revealed that team leader Samuel Sánchez cracked the radius bone in his right arm when he crashed early on in the crucial Tour de France stage to the summit of the Col du Tourmalet. The broken bone became apparent when the Olympic road race champion underwent an "exhaustive medical check" after the finish of the Tour.

Euskaltel described the injury as a "small crack in the radius" that was picked up in medical tests designed "to determine with precision the extent of the damage that Sánchez had suffered as a result of a really heavy fall" that occurred on the approach to the Col de Marie-Blanque. Sánchez was laid out for some time on the road following the crash, but recovered to claim fifth place on the stage.

The incident provoked a good deal of controversy when Cervélo's Carlos Sastre attacked despite the attempts of yellow jersey Alberto Contador to rein in the bunch until Sánchez had recovered.

According to his team Sánchez, who finished a career-best fourth overall at the Tour, should be able to continue with his programme for the rest of the season despite the cracked bone.

Although Sánchez has yet to confirm his presence in the Vuelta a España, the Spanish press is suggesting that he will start the final major tour of the season, where he finished runner-up to Alejandro Valverde last year.

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Peter Cossins has written about professional cycling since 1993 and is a contributing editor to Procycling. He is the author of The Monuments: The Grit and the Glory of Cycling's Greatest One-Day Races (Bloomsbury, March 2014) and has translated Christophe Bassons' autobiography, A Clean Break (Bloomsbury, July 2014).