• Alexander Kristoff (Katusha-Alpecin) gets attention from the medics and pedals on (AAP)Source: AAP
Stage 19 of the Tour de France would have suited Alexander Kristoff (Katusha-Alpecin) on a good day but instead the Norwegian suffered through oozing skins wounds and pain from bandaged limbs just to finish.
Sophie Smith

Cycling Central
22 Jul 2017 - 8:45 AM 

Kristoff was dropped on the first categorised climb of the undulating 222.5km race from Embrun to Salon-de-Provence and grimaced as he moved around the convoy to try and get back on.

The 30-year-old suffered facial injuries as well as contusions to his left shoulder, arm and leg when he crashed heavily on the descent of the Col d’Ornon in stage 17 through the Alps.

Speaking at the finish of what was the longest stage of this year’s Tour, the two-time former stage winner admitted he hadn’t slept well since with wounds still seeping through gauze and his jersey.

“I’m not feeling super. I’m feeling quite bad, actually,” Kristoff said.

“Today I was dropped alone in the start and was almost out of the cars, but luckily for me they [the peloton] stopped for a pee after the break went away and I could come back. After this, I managed to stay but I did not have a good feeling.

“I lost a lot of skin so mostly this is the problem but when the body tries to recover from all the wounds you don’t recover the legs. I feel quite empty, I don’t have much energy.” - Alexander Kristoff

Kristoff finished with the main group, 12 minutes and 27 seconds down on winner Edvald Boasson Hagan (Dimension Data).

The versatile sprinter hasn’t figured greatly in the Tour so far, his best result a second place to Arnaud Demare (FDJ) in Stage 4. The penultimate 22.5km time trial in Marseille on Saturday should provide an opportunity to recover further before the Sunday’s sprint finale on the Champs Elysees.

“I hope I will be good in Paris, or better in Paris. The problem is for every bump I hit I hurt a lot so I don’t know how the cobbles will be,” Kristoff said.

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