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The most dramatic crashes of the 2021 Vuelta a España

A reminder that bike racing can be very dangerous

Photo by: Flobikes

Watching a Grand Tour you may fantasize about exploring the European roads you see top cyclists take on during the race and riding in a big peloton of pros, but professional cycling is a dangerous job and the risks associated with racing at that level are high.

There are crashes in most tours and, while riders know to expect the unexpected, it doesn’t reduce the pain of the injuries or make the situations any less scary.

At the 2021 Vuelta a España there were a number of crashes that changed the way the race unfolded. Here are a few of the scarier events that reminded all viewers that these riders are one wheel touch away from some serious injuries.

Valverde Stage 7

Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) crashed hard on Stage 7, falling off the road and into a ravine. Though he got back on his bike, he later abandoned the race due to injury.

Stage 2 final kilometers

With just 4.2km to go, a number of riders went down in a big crash, including Adam Yates (Ineos Grenadiers) and Hugh Carthy (EF Education-Nippo), causing both riders to lose time.

Crosswind dangers

Stage 5 of the Vuelta a España saw a massive crash in the peloton. With about 11km to go, the peloton was riding into some strong crosswinds when a large pileup caused many riders to go down. Race leader Rein Taaramäe (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux) crashed and lost the red jersey to Kenny Elissonde (Trek-Segafredo).The crash also ended Romain Bardet’s general classification hopes.

Favourites go down

On Stage 12 a number of favourites went down in a large crash on the Alto de San Jerónimo climb, including Roglic and Yates.

Red jersey

GC jersey leader Odd Christian Eiking (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux) and Aleksandr Vlasov(Astana Premier-Tech) crashed hard while descending in the rain on Stage 17, putting Roglic back in the red jersey by the end of the stage.