You had to figure it would catch up with Lance at some point. Cycling is a fairly dangerous sport, but Lance had managed to avoid accidents and spills for years. He’s definitely had his share of good luck.
Yesterday’s mountain stage was devastating for Lance. He was involved in 3 crashes, and fell to the ground hard during one of them. He hurt his hip on the fall, and couldn’t pedal hard to catch up to the leaders and make his way up the mountain.
He ended up losing 12 minutes to the leaders, a completely insurmountable amount of time. Lance himself told reporters his chances of winning were done. He now begins the task of enjoying the last two weeks of the Tour, hopefully trying to win a stage.
It’s a very bittersweet moment for me, one of the ten cycling fans in the US. I was never a cycling fan until Lance started winning. I happily jumped on the bandwagon and enjoyed the ride. Along the way, I learned a lot about cycling, and immensely enjoyed the Tour after Lance retired the first time. I’m sure I’ll enjoy it again next year.
But, a part of me was sad watching Lance suffer yesterday, looking old for the first time. He had a realistic shot to win the Tour when it started this year, and was still in the running despite bad luck on the cobblestones.
His return has heightened awareness for Livestrong and cancer research again, and for that I’m thankful. So, instead of mourning the end of the greatest career in cycling, I’ll celebrate the chance to raise more money for cancer research!