Aussie Michael Matthews Slips Into Green
Aussie Michael Matthews is on a comfortably paved way to winning the 2017 Tour de France green points jersey. This after yet another sprinter has been forced to abandon the race after a massive pile-up around the twenty-kilometre mark during Wednesday’s 17th Stage in the Alps. Marcel Kittel sustained multiple injuries to his shoulder and knee as well as walking away with a totalled bike to boot.
Kittel is the third high-profile sprinter to abandon the 2017 Tour de France due to injuries.
The unfortunate circumstances relating to Kittel’s crash aside, Aussie Michael Matthews no doubt welcomes the points lead – as this places him back on the well-deserved road to securing the 2017 points victory. Well-deserved because the Aussie has been putting up a valiant fight for the green since starting out – and having gone into Stage 17 a mere 29 points behind Kittel, with third runner up Andre Griepel lagging behind at a massive 140 points further back still.
Griepel being a sprinter, it’s highly unlikely that he will be gaining on Matthews any time soon – especially considering the much anticipated mountain-top finish at the close of the 18th Stage.
If Matthews is successful in holding on the green jersey until the end, he will become only the third Australian ever to reign victorious in the points classification of the Tour de France.
Primoz Roglic Wins 17th Stage
Primoz Roglic, a former ski-jumper from Slovenia, has strutted his stuff in a big way by winning the 17th Stage of the 2017 Tour de France, crossing the finish line over a minute before runner up Rigoberto Uran (Columbia) the rest of the breakaway pack.
Roglic’s sterling victory is all the more remarkable when considering that he only started cycling in 2012. Ironically enough, Roglic’s ski-jumping career came to an end after a near-fatal jump at the age of 17.
Roglic certainly redeemed the unlucky number on Wednesday.
It may very well have been the Slovenian’s taste for risk and adventure that led to the Stage 17 win. Stage 17 comprised of several steep descents and harrowing climbs – a landscape that is right up the adrenaline-junkie’s avenue.
Roglic is currently in 30th place overall and might very well be looking at yet another Stage victory during Saturday’s individual time-trial, should his legs and stamina continue to perform at maximum capacity.
Roglic has pointed out that his main weakness was not being very comfortable with riding in a peloton – something that has counted in his favour in a big way on Wednesday when it prompted him to break away early.
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