Matthews and Degenkolb tangle in Tour sprint.

Matthews versus Degenkolb

No argy, no bargy.

Seriously, don’t know what people are yapping about. Michael Matthew (Sunweb) and John Degenkolb (Trek Segafredo) opened their sprints in stage 16 of the Tour de France into Romans-sur-Isère.

Matthews won, Degenkolb reached a hand out to choke Matthews just past the finish line.

We’re wondering about the exact nature of Degenkold’s complaint. Sure, it wasn’t a straight line sprint and how many really are? Matthews came off Greg van Avermaet’s wheel on the right side and kept moving slightly to the right. At no point did he seriously box out, close off and chop the German’s wheel.

Degenkold still had room on the right side of the barriers — which he appeared to not even touch. While both sprinters had their elbows out, they never touched elbows, shoulders, hips, bikes, nothing. Honestly mystified what Degenkold was so streamed about other than coming in second place and missing yet another opportunity to win a Tour de France stage when Andre Kittel, Peter Sagan and Andre Demare weren’t in the picture.

We watched the sprint on youtube a few times and the evidence simply doesn’t exist. Haven’t ever heard that Matthews has a reputation as a dangerous or crazy sprinter. On the contrary, Matthews has been quoted on several sprint stages of this Tour saying he’s not going to risk his life pulling some of the crazy moves that other sprinters like Demare and Bouhanni were trying.

Here are his exact words after stage six: “I’m not really a guy that’s gonna go crazy in the last few Ks and risk my life for being a top five or a top three. We really need to work on nailing that lead-out. That’s how I’ll get the best result in the sprint.” Doesn’t sound like a cowboy, right?

Degenkold seems like a pretty good guy and maybe we missed something from far out in youtube-land. Seems like Matthews is 50 points closer to the green jersey and also deserves an apology.

 

 

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