The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

July 1, 2013

At Tour, walking wounded win by soldiering on

— AJACCIO, Corsica (AP) — Behind Jan Bakelants, the Belgian who rode with guts and guile to win Stage Two at the Tour de France, there were other smaller but no less impressive victories Sunday that don't get so widely noticed — by the race's riding wounded.

In other circumstances, logic would prescribe rest, recovery and TLC for the likes of Geraint Thomas, who was among the more badly beaten up of the dozen or so riders who slammed into the tarmac in a vicious high-speed pileup a day earlier in the frenetic end of Stage One.

But the moving circus that is the Tour waits for no man, even those with deep cuts, evil bruises or, like Thomas, teeth-grinding pain in his left hip that made it difficult for him to walk, let alone hold his place in the world's toughest bike race.

In other sports, players who pick up knocks generally get at least a few days to heal before the next game. But the Tour's injured are afforded no such luxury. For them, the choice is either to soldier on with their aches and pains, hoping for a better tomorrow, or be among the first to quit. Which, for many of them, isn't much of a choice at all.

So a whopping 17 minutes and 35 seconds after Bakelants gave the chasing pack the slip and got the stage win that, for now at least, also secured him the race leader's yellow jersey, Thomas hauled himself across the finishing line.

"It feels a bit like a win in itself," said the 27-year-old Welshman who rides for Sky, the team of Chris Froome, this year's favorite.

At 97 miles, the stage from the east to the west coast of Corsica, from Bastia to Ajaccio, both of them ports, was one of the shortest of this 100th Tour. But for Thomas, it felt "like an eternity."

Text Only
Sports
  • Manning getting used to new faces on Broncos

    The quarterback who thrived on the familiarity of playing with the same receivers is now having to adjust to a revamped offensive roster to start his third year in Denver.

    July 24, 2014

  • Auburn's Nick Marshall pays citations in Georgia

    That means Marshall won't have to appear at a September court hearing.

    July 24, 2014

  • Jaguars sign former Crimson Tide DB Belue, waive RB Blankenship

    Deion Belue played two seasons at Alabama after beginning his career at Northeast Mississippi Community College. He started his final two seasons with the Crimson Tide, totaling three interceptions, 13 passes defensed and 7 1/2 tackles for loss.

    July 24, 2014

  • CEO: Sterling staying on a 'disaster' for Clippers

    Coach Doc Rivers has said he'll resign from the Los Angeles Clippers if Donald Sterling remains owner, the team's interim CEO testified, saying such a move would be a "disaster" for the franchise.

    July 23, 2014

  • Survey finds sharp increase in teen use of HGH

    In a confidential 2013 survey of 3,705 high school students, 11 percent reported using synthetic HGH at least once — up from about 5 percent in the four preceding annual surveys.

    July 23, 2014

  • CEO: Clippers coach to quit if Sterling stays

    CEO Richard Parsons testified at a trial to determine whether Sterling's wife, Shelly, can sell the team for $2 billion to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer as the NBA looks to force Donald Sterling from the league over racist statements.

    July 23, 2014

  • dunk.jpg Tedford, Potts take on the South

    While the North team has a lengthy winning streak in the basketball series, Tedford and Potts will face a tough battle against three players already committed to SEC schools on the South team.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Arkansas State player earns conference honors

    Qushaun Lee led conference in tackles with 134 —the sixth most tackles in conference history and most by an Arkansas State player since 1991.

    July 22, 2014

  • Clippers' future on line as probate trial resumes

    The future of the Los Angeles Clippers is closer to decision as testimony resumes Monday in a probate trial over whether a deal negotiated by Donald Sterling's estranged wife to sell the team for $2 billion is authorized under a Sterling family trust.

    Sterling, the volatile owner of the team, agreed to the sale but then tried to revoke consent in spite of a signed letter instructing his wife Shelly Sterling to sell for the highest price she could get.

    July 21, 2014

  • Tuesday could be time to 'play ball' for Biloxi

    July 21, 2014

Photos


Poll

Do you believe America will ever make another manned flight to the moon or another planet?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 U.N. School in Gaza Hit by Israeli Strike Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Officials Warn of Avoidable Death in Hot Cars Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: UN School Used As Shelter Hit by Tank Shell Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee