Both of the Norwegians cycling in this year’s Tour de France came close to lap victories on the fifth day of the Tour de France. Top cyclist Alexander Kristoff had to struggle, though, after his teammates crashed and he was left on his own, if up front.
Kristoff was in the lead with just 100 meters to go, but ended up in fourth place as Andre Greipel took his second lap victory. “It wasn’t so easy,” Kristoff told state broadcaster NRK after his colleagues from Russian Team Katusha crashed around 30 kilomters from the finish in the 189.5-km run to Amiens. He thus faced “a lot of wind” with “not so very good legs” on an uphill stretch, and he missed on out on yet another potential victory.
Despite all the hype around him before the race started, Kristoff hasn’t been doing very well in “Le Tour.” His fourth-place finish was a lot better than his opening results, though, and he was gearing up to ride on to Le Havre on Thursday.
Edvald Boasson Hagen, the only other Norwegian taking part in this year’s gruelling race around France, also did better, ending fifth right after Kristoff despite falling himself at an earlier stage. He was quickly back up on the saddle and told NRK he felt he’d had the power to get beyond riders blocking him.
“But it was fun to be in the lead again in a sprint,” Hagen said. The race runs through July 26.