Louis Meintjes and Mark Cavendish withdraw from Paris-Nice
Mar 12 2019 06:14 am CET

Louis Meintjes and Mark Cavendish withdraw from Paris-Nice
Louis Meintjes and Mark Cavendish withdraw from Paris-Nice
Team Dimension Data

Dimension Data's Louis Meintjes and Mark Cavendish have been forced to abandon Paris-Nice at the second stage.

Just after the 70-kilometre mark, Meintjes suffered a crash and despite getting back on the bike and continuing, he arrived to the finish line outside the time limit. Cavendish struggled with the chaos of the two stages of the race and took the decision of stepping down from the competition.

"It was a really tough day for the team," said Dimension Data's head of performance Rolf Aldag. "After the conditions of the opening stage, today we again saw the major role played by the crosswinds in the race outcome.

"First we lost Louis who had a crash on a roundabout at the 73km mark. He managed to get back up and riding but lost too much time and was eventually out of the time limit. He was assessed by our team doctor at the finish and will go to the hospital for a further check on Monday evening."

Meintjes struggled to get to the finish line after his crash. "The racing was on and I went through a roundabout and I guess I misjudged it a bit," the South African explained. "It’s pretty painful and I lost a bit of skin, it doesn’t feel like anything’s broken but we’ll have to go to the hospital for a check-up."

Cavendish is still making a return to his form after struggling last season with the Epstein-Barr virus. "While Mark Cavendish was also forced to stop on the back of a challenging two days," Aldag added.

"The race was just his third back, following already tough outings at the Vuelta a San Juan and the UAE Tour; as he continues to work his way back towards full fitness following a long lay-off from racing due to illness last year."



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