Christian’s Giro Crash


by Byron on May 11, 2009 at 5:59 PM

The photos coming from the Giro are incredible, including these two showing Christian Vandevelde down and out of the race (sucks! Get well and back on the bike.). Reader IronmanBobby noticed on Twitter


Photo: Reuters/Stefano Rellandini

“it looks like the front wheel is sheered all the way up to the handle bars!”


Photo: AP

Damn that bike looks folded. Reminds me of Hincapie’s sheered steerer tube and that scene from the TDF, where a racer hits a dog and the frame turns in on itself.

As Matt White said in the NYT

“There’s no soft landing at 50k.”


Material debate? Too light?

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That bike definitely looks farked, though (and I haven’t watched the stage) I think that the failure occurred as a result of the crash, not the other way around?

In which case, even a steel bike would probably be unrideable and they’d have replaced it out with a spare bike.

I think he’d be out of the race after a crash like that regardless of the fame material.

But man, that’s like watching one of those videos where a guy’s arm is broken playing football and suddenly it’s just pointing THE WRONG WAY!

Just checked on the NY Times article on this (since when does NY Times do live coverage of the grand tours? In my day we had to walk both ways uphill to get an Italian newspaper with coverage….) and the broken looking bike issue came after the crash for sure.

“Vande Velde — the Garmin-Slipstream team leader and the fifth-place finisher in last year’s Tour de France — had crashed after nearly 90 miles of the 123-mile stage. As he was going about 30 miles an hour, his front tire touched the tire of a bike ahead of him, causing him to tumble.”


The author of the article is at the Giro and [on Twitter](

Remember the crash in the 2008 TDF where that Gerolsteiner rider’s bike snapped into two pieces?  Thinking of the guy who hit the traffic island in one of the later stages.

Gutted for Vande Velde by this crash - Garmin aren’t having much luck this season at all :(

I do remember that one. I also switched carbon bars after a bike of mine got doored, the bars exploded. It was shocking how thin the walls were on the bar and how epically if failed. Yes I know that’s the nature of carbon, but I’ll sacrifice a few grams for a more robust bar.

That is why I have been sticking with titanium.  It’s light enough (I weigh 200 lbs so 100 grams ain’t going to kill me), and when it fails, it doesn’t fail like carbon or even aluminum, it just bends.