Michael Woods (Israel Start-Up Nation) helped create the day's main breakaway on stage 14 of the Tour de France but his chances of victory were hampered by a downhill crash. However he found consolation by taking the lead in the mountains competition and by pulling on the polka-dot jersey.
The Canadian hit the deck with 50km remaining when he slipped out on a gentle left-hand bend. He took the impact on his upper left leg, which ripped his shorts and left him with road rash.
Woods was leading the 14-man breakaway at the time and while Mattia Cattaneo (Deceuninck-QuickStep) had to swerve to avoid him, none of the others were caught up. Woods quickly remounted and set about chasing back on, although he looked far from comfortable as the road continued to snake downhill.
Several kilometres later, as the road began to flatten out, he managed to regain contact with the breakaway but then Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) launched his solo attack to victory.
Woods had helped form the day's break on the Col de Montségur and had moved into the virtual lead of the mountains classification after battling with Wout Poels (Bahrain Victorious) for mountain points on the trio of short mid-race climbs.
He ended the stage in pain but proud to have the polka-dot jersey.
"I’m not disappointed, I’m really happy to be in the jersey. The only thing I'm disappointed about is that I crashed. I'm a bit scraped up and my ego is a bit bruised but I'm okay," he said post-stage, talking about his bottle for every mountains point during the stage and how he will try to defend the jersey on the mountain stage to Andorra.
"Wout is a champion and a great guy. We knew we would be going head to head, he is a great competitor but I was lucky to get the upper hand on him at the end of the day," he said.
"The stage tomorrow is on home turf, as I know every climb. It’s going to be exciting to race there and near my family. I hope I can get a good nights sleep and not stick to the sheets too much."
Click below to follow how the stage unfolded via our live coverage.
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