Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale) has abandoned the 2020 Tour de France after concussion suffered in a crash on stage 13. The Frenchman was able to finish the stage, losing 2-30 to race leader Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) but has since been declared unfit to race onwards.
Bardet was taken for a brain scan following the end of the stage, having crashed around 90km from the finish along with Nairo Quintana (Arkéa-Samsic) and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo), with the latter forced to abandon with a broken wrist.
A brain scan of Bardet after the stage finish showed no damage, but he will not start stage 14 on Saturday following the crash. The 29-year-old appeared to struggle to get to his feet in video footage of the crash from Friday’s stage 13.
Bardet had come to the Tour with hopes of taking stage wins, but looked to be performing well on GC, hlding fourth overall at 30 seconds heading into stage 13. He eventually sat in 11th place at three minutes following the stage into the Massif Central, but will now withdraw from the Tour de France before the start of Saturday’s stage.
“This stage on my home roads was the complete opposite of what I had hoped for,” Bardet said. “The crash was severe, downhill at high speed, and I struggled all the rest of the day.
“The medical examinations confirmed what I already suspected, and I am not able to continue in the race. I know that my team-mates will give their best to finish the Tour de France with strong performances.”
“We are all sad to see Romain leaving us, near his home, on his roads, in a stage where he dreamed of shining,” Ag2r team manager Vincent Lavenu said. “He once again showed admirable courage and fought like a lion to the end of the stage.
“We’ll fight even harder to honor him, with a polka-dot jersey to defend and stage wins to earn. We send him all our support and hope he will come back even stronger very soon.”