Team Sky's Yates reflects on Siutsou exit
Tour de France favourite Bradley Wiggins' quest for the yellow jersey will be hampered by the loss of Team Sky team-mate Kanstantsin Siutsou, who was forced to abandon with a broken left leg on Tuesday after crashing badly.
Team Sky sports director Sean Yates said: "There's no straightforward day on the Tour de France. You never know what's around the corner. Kansta is an integral part of the team. That was a major blow.
"If we have the yellow jersey we need to defend it, but we've got a lot of strong guys. We just have to deal with it. It will just impact on the workload of the other seven members of the team."
In terms of Mark Cavendish's quest to draw level with Lance Armstrong and Andre Darrigade by claiming a 22nd Tour de France stage win on Wednesday, he added, "I'm sure Cav won't be allergic to sharing the workload."
The talented domestique was involved in one of several crashes that also saw the likes of Movistar's Jose Joaquin Rojas and Rabobank's Maarten Tjallingii exit the race early on with the latter suffering a broken hip.
American warrior Tom Danielson picked himself up off the road to finish the stage for Garmin-Sharp sitting up in his saddle due to a separated shoulder, however he went on to start Wednesday's Stage 4.
Last year's Tour favourite Thomas Voeckler also suffered with a recurrence of a knee injury that could see the Europcar climber leave the Tour on Wednesday, if it doesn't clear up.
One of the nastiest crashes of the day echoed Johnny Hoogerland's 2011 meeting with barbed wire as Simon Gerrans cartwheeled off the road and into barbed wire himself. Thankfully, he dusted himself off and continued.
The Australian revealed: "I'm not too bad, I could be a heck of a lot worse. I got caught up in a bike and just hit the deck from there. I was caught up in the barbed fence, my arm was stuck in there.
"I couldn't get my arm out until someone else hit the barbed wire and gave it a rattle. There are only a couple of scratches - I look like I've been attacked by a wild cat."
To add insult to injury for Le Tour, a sponsor's vehicle hit a bystander 45 miles into the race's third stage.
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