Backstage Pass 3 - Shocking Spills

July 07, 2015

Today's Backstage Pass starts off on a positive, with some local Orica-GreenEDGE fans responding to Matt's earlier suggestions of food donations. A bunch of friendly Aussies turns up with a local Belgian specialty - something we can't spell but that apparently is like caramel and peanut butter sandwiches. Doesn't sound bad at all.

Not that Matt stops there... As he moves down the queue it becomes apparent that Orica-GreenEDGE fans are more than willing to keep the team fuelled, so there's offers of waffles and other regional treats that are sure to go down well among the team (or at least the support crew).

Stage 3 was always earmarked for Michael Albasini, and Backstage Pass catches up with him as he rather nervously waits for the day to get underway.

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There's some awesome footage from the bike cameras as riders get into it, with Svein Tuft copping the team's first mechanical for the day. If only that were the extent of it...

Because then the carnage begins, and we see from chopper footage just how extensive the day's first crash was, with riders falling like dominoes as the peloton surges. It's total mayhem with support vehicles, officials, emergency response, media and riders lining the road. Not something you ever want to happen to any cyclist, let alone those who've put so much on the line to get to this point... We watch as everyone tries to shake from the shock and return to business as usual.

It's total, utter madness and mayhem and Backstage Pass throws you in the thick of it.

Matt and the team work to restore order, announcing Gerro, Bling, Yates and Impey are impacted by the spill. We find out later just the extent of their injuries - breaks for both Gerro and Impey spelling the end of their 2015 Tour de France campaign.

It's a pretty heart-breaking Backstage Pass, this one. You get a sense of just how much the guys put on the line to make it this far, and to have it taken from them - especially so early in the game - is gut-wrenching. We really feel for all the boys.

Tomorrow's the longest day of riding in this year's Tour, so we are hoping the rest of the team recover and recoup.

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