It has been a slow start to the season for the 34-year-old Orica-GreenEDGE rider who didn't compete until March after breaking his collarbone while mountain biking in the off-season. In Strade Bianche, his first race of the season, he crashed and fractured his elbow, ruling him out of competition until recently.
Despite not being in the race-winning form he was last year, Gerrans was optimistic about having a good ride as he builds towards the Giro d'Italia.
“The race was unfolding pretty well,” Gerrans wrote on his website. “We were riding really well as a team, the guys were doing a fantastic job of covering the breaks, supporting me and keeping me up the front where I needed to be and the sensations were good.”
“I was with Daryl (Impey) and we were pretty well placed leading into La Redoute; we were right where we needed to be to make a move to get to the front for the start of the climb. Just as the descent started a crash happened at the front of the bunch somewhere. It was unavoidable; we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time and had nowhere to go, so got tangled up.
“Both Daryl and I hit the ground, were both in a little bit of shock and tried to piece together what happened so we really didn’t bounce up too quickly. That pretty much put us out of contention for the race, from that point on the day was basically over which was disappointing.”
Gerrans was riding a replacement bike when disaster struck again.
“I got up and got going again on my spare bike, because my race bike was un-rideable, and I was just rolling down the hill and on the very first corner I hit, I fell off again.
“That came completely by surprise, I wasn’t going fast, I wasn’t taking any risks but obviously I had brand new tyres on my spare bike and next thing I knew I was sliding down the road again.
“That was the icing on the cake really, what was a bad day turned worse.”
Despite the crashes Gerrans believes he is still on track for the Tour de Romandie and May's Giro d'Italia.
“I am just wondering how much more bad luck I can have this season. As much as this season is not really going my way so far, hopefully it’ll turn around pretty soon.”
“Looking on the bright side today, I had good sensations, my form is obviously pretty close to where it needs to be and I fell off twice, didn’t break anything, just lost a fair bit of skin.
“I am going to be pretty sore for the first few days of Romandie or for the most part of next week I imagine, until I grow some skin back, but I’ll still be on the start line and hopefully I won’t be too disadvantaged by my injuries.”
Pieter Weening was the best of the Orica-GreenEDGE riders finishing in 14th, 24 seconds behind winner Alejandro Valverde.