The Spanish star, Alberto Contador, is anything but resentful about crashing out of 2014’s Tour de France because he believes it could have been worse: he might have died.
After breaking his right tibia (shinbone) during the 10th stage of the tour, and continuing to ride for nearly 20km, Contador eventually gave up. When asked about it, he said “When I think I was going 77kmph at the time and I only broke my tibia, well, on balance, that’s good. Maybe I lost the Tour, but I did not lose my life.”
Contador’s exit came within a week from 2013 winner Chris Froome’s injury retirement following three crashes in two days. The two competitors had come together into the biggest race as joint favorites. Although Chris Froome’s exit was dramatic, Contador’s crash was far more serious.
The Madrid-born rider was a third of his way through the Vosges Mountains into the 161.5km stage, when he came down on a fast and straight downslope, made riskier by the rain.
Contador denied that he was trying hard to make up for the time he lost earlier in the race, but he accepted that the crash was his fault when he was asked at his team TInkoff-Saxo’s training camp in Gran Canaria.
He further added: “A lot of people have spoken about the crash and said things that aren’t true. What I
will say is you’ve got to concentrate for every second on the bike or you won’t win the Tour.”