July 16, 2012
Tour De France Urges Tacks 'Sabotage' Inquiry
Tour de France officials have asked French police to investigate after tacks punctured the tyres of several riders on stage 14 of the race.
Speaking on French TV, race director Jean-Francois Pecheux said any search for who was responsible for scattering the tacks on the course would be "difficult" as thousands of people lined the roadside during the stage's Mur de Peguere climb.
"It was obviously done on purpose. We have the tacks but we don't know who spread them," Pescheux added.
The stage's eventual winner Luis Leon Sanchez and other breakaway riders were minutes ahead of the peloton and were spared the apparent sabotage on the route between Limoux and Foix.
At the summit of the Mur de Peguere - the second of two category one climbs on the day's route - Tour leader Bradley Wiggins and defending champion Cadel Evans were among those to suffer punctures.
Evans was standing by the road for several minutes as his BMC team car was already speeding down the descent and teammate Tejay Van Garderen passed without noticing him.
At the end of the stage, Wiggins said: "What can you do? It's something we can't control. There's nothing stopping more of that sort of stuff happening.
"It's sad. Those are the type of things we have to put up with as cyclists.