• Nairo Quintana is aiming for an ambitious double (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Movistar’s Tour de France leader Nairo Quintana labelled Warren Barguil as “irritating” after the French Giant-Alpecin rider caused a terrifying crash on Stage 16 of the race.
Cycling Central

21 Jul 2015 - 7:54 AM  UPDATED 21 Jul 2015 - 8:28 AM

Stage 16 extras
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Barguil, 22, misread a corner during the technical descent into Gap, cutting through the line of Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas, a mistake that sent the Welshman careering into a telegraph pole.

Thomas fell down a sheer ditch after hitting his head on the pole, and was helped back on to the road by spectators, where he continued to the finish at Gap.

While Thomas was OK, Qunitana had some choice words for Barguil, who is 10th overall and with little chance of a podium finish.

"There are riders who, with nothing to fight for, get in the middle and irritate those of us fighting for the general classification and cause crashes," Quintana said.

Barguil did not take full responsibility for the mishap, blaming BMC’s GC contender Tejay van Garderen for bumping him before he lost control.

"I'm sorry. Just before the bend, Tejay van Garderen touched me with his shoulder and my finger slipped off the brake," he said.

"I couldn't brake. I was very afraid. I thought I'd go straight (over the edge)."

Naturally, van Garderen wasn’t about to accept the blame for what happened.

"Some riders were definitely taking big risks. I was just trying to stay on the wheel I was on," said the American.

Thomas, who has a history of crashing, typically reacted with dry humour to the incident.

"Everyone knows it's a dodgy descent, I just got taken out - 100 per cent it was a mistake (by Barguil)," he said.

"I feel all right for now. I guess the doctor will ask me my name and date of birth soon," he added, before jokingly claiming he thought his name was Chris Froome.

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