Team Sunweb’s Wilco Kelderman suffered an unfortunately timed mechanical at stage six of the Vuelta today, after an incident caused his back wheel to break in the final 19 kilometres.
A crash in the closing 25 kilometres of the stage brought Mike Teunissen down, with Wilco Kelderman’s rear wheel also caught up in the impact. Wilco initially continued to ride but with his brakes rubbing on his wheel, he was forced to stop at the side of the road for a bike change. With support from the team Wilco was able to limit his losses, eventually crossing the line one minute and 44 seconds down on the first group.
The stage begun with a fairly relaxed few kilometres, with a three-man break able to break free in the opening three. The trio opened out a three minute advantage over the peloton, but were eventually brought back with 29 kilometres of racing remaining. As soon as the catch was made the pace was high in the peloton, and not long after a crash in a village split the bunch in two, with both Mike and Wilco impacted by the incident. The sprinters battled it out for glory in the first peloton made up of 30 riders, with the team bringing Wilco across the line in a group of around 70.
Wilco said: “It was already a really hectic stage because of the side-tailwind. We went into a village and there was a crash in front of me and Mike. I managed to brake but Mike unfortunately crashed. I carried on riding but my back wheel was really rubbing on my brakes. Initially I was still there but the bunch went full gas and after the bike change I had already lost a minute or so. The team did an awesome job but of course I’m really disappointed. Luckily I didn’t crash and still have good legs. The Vuelta is not over yet so we will see what happens in the upcoming days.”