We’re normally not big fans of bike races (except the kind as a kid where you’re racing your friend downhill into a yard full of trees with no brakes) but when you combine the grace of cycling with the brutality of a bar fight, we think the Tour de France might be on to something. Maybe there should be drinking and bouncers and, well, you get the idea. But, for some reason, the normally open-minded Frenchies think there’s something wrong with headbutting in cycling.
Here’s more from then Wall Street Journal (video below):
Three sprint teams, HTC-Columbia, Lampre-Farnese and Garmin-Transitions, led the way into the flat final stretch. Then the fireworks started.
Mr. Renshaw, a 25-year-old Australian, created a hole for Mr. Cavendish by headbutting Julian Dean of the Garmin-Transitions team three times. Mr. Dean was squeezing the HTC-Columbia riders against the rail. Mr. Renshaw’s headbutt pushed him into the middle of the pack and helped Mr. Cavendish slice through for the win.
Aggressive moves are common in a pack sprint, especially among so-called lead-out men, riders like Mr. Renshaw who are tasked with blocking out opponents, cutting a path through the wind, then peeling off at the end. But the headbutt went beyond normal aggression. The two losing teams complained. As a result, Mr. Renshaw became the first rider kicked out of the Tour this year. The expulsion “was a symbolic move, I hope it will prevent dirty riding,” said Matthieu Perget, a French rider who was in the back of the scrum.
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