MENTAUGOU, China (VN) — The Tour of Beijing has not been kind to two Americans riding in the debut edition of the race.
Andrew Talansky (Garmin-Cervélo) was forced to pull out of Thursday’s second stage with a bad stomach while Brent Bookwalter (BMC) fell hard in a late-stage crash as the peloton roared in for a sprint finish.
Talansky was already sick going into Wednesday’s time trial, when he finished well below his normal capacity with 136th at 2:03 off Tony Martin’s winning pace.
Other Garmin riders are also struggling with a stomach bug, including Paris-Roubaix champion Johan Van Summeren.
Bookwalter, meanwhile, was left with heavy cuts and scrapes to his face, elbow, knee and back when he was tangled up in a crash in the closing kilometers as the peloton ramped up for the sprint.
Bookwalter was able to finish the stage and immediately left for the team hotel.
Later he said he was uncertain whether he would continue in the race.
“I’ll see how I feel. It’s definitely not worth doing damage,” he said.
He said the crash was near the front of the pack.
“If I was like some and just sitting at the back I would have been fine. Instead I was trying to help our sprinters.”
Also caught up in the crash was Quick Step’s Dario Cataldo, who also suffered cuts and scrapes.
“Someone crashed behind me and came into my wheel,” Cataldo said. “It’s never good to crash. I hope I am OK for the coming races.”