• Taylor Phinney ices his face after Stage 19 (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Taylor Phinney (EF Education First-Drapac) survived a nasty downhill crash to remount and finish Stage 19 of the Tour de France.
By
Cycling Central

28 Jul 2018 - 7:46 AM  UPDATED 28 Jul 2018 - 7:47 AM

Phinney limped into the finish in last place, two minutes behind the final group on the road and over 40 minutes behind stage winner Primoz Roglic (LottoNL-Jumbo).

Roglič drops off the Aubisque to land on Tour podium
It was a double celebration for Primož Roglič with the LottoNL-Jumbo rider winning Stage 19 of the Tour de France and capturing a place ahead of Team Sky's Chris Froome on the overall podium.

While the race for stage honours was up the road, Phinney was fighting his own personal battle along with the other non-climbers to make the time cut. Then, some of the bad fortune that regularly attends cycling races struck.

"I just was in a group, we were about to go down the descent before the Col d'Aubisque," said Phinney. "I don't know, I just hit a bump or something and just got off-balance. I ended up going face first into the trees."

"I tried to get the doctor to straighten out my nose as quickly as possible. I could feel (touches his nose gingerly at this point) that it's maybe not straight. I was like 'put me back on my bike, I can do this'. I've had concussions before, I wanted to make sure that I wasn't putting myself at risk."

Phinney has a long history with bad accidents. In 2014, he crashed out of the US national road race, suffering a compound fracture in his leg. It took a number of years for Phinney to race at a level approaching his best again and a long process that involved finding his love of cycling again.

"I do a lot of work mentally to kind of know where I am, as far as being stable," said Phinney. "So I was just checking in. The first couple of minutes were a little bit weird but then I started riding and started to feel a bit better."

Phinney managed to finish the race inside the time cut and headed to the x-ray van at the finish to get scans on his nose. Further tests were performed at the local hospital, with the American revealed to have suffered two fractures; on to his nose and another to his right eye socket.

Phinney signed off in typical fashion.

"The fans were awesome, a couple of people were a little freaked out by the way I looked. I was just thinking about my dad and... Phinney-style, you know."

Sagan fights another day
A sixth green jersey is all Peter Sagan's, if he can make it to Paris. He nearly didn't make it through Stage 19.