New England Racer Ted King Exits Tour de France Early

GERARDMER, FRANCE - JULY 13: Ted King of the United States and Cannondale awaits the start of stage nine of the 2014 Le Tour de France from Gerardmer to Mulhouse on July 13, 2014 in Gerardmer, France. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
GERARDMER, FRANCE - JULY 13: Ted King of the United States and Cannondale awaits the start of stage nine of the 2014 Le Tour de France from Gerardmer to Mulhouse on July 13, 2014 in Gerardmer, France. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
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New Hampshire native Ted King has exited the Tour de France early after crashing numerous times in the first 10 stages of the race.

Writing in his blog, the New England bike racer cited respiratory sickness in addition to the injuries sustained in the Tour’s third and fourth stages. He did not finish Monday’s steep and rainy 10th stage in France’s Vosges Mountains.

“The stress-fest, crash marred first week of the Tour took it’s toll on me,” he wrote. “Even just rolling over in bed — that hurts enough to wake me up a dozen times per night.”

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“My immune system was clearly taxed as I felt as though I was breathing with one lung … It’s an eerily unique, claustrophobic feeling: head to toe my body is screaming in pain from the crashes, I’m panting with all my aerobic might but only inhaling what feels like half the oxygen I need, plus I’m now facing what’s called the hardest sporting event in the world.”

Crashes, rain, and hazardous roadside selfies have marked this year’s Tour de France. So far, two of the Tour’s top overall contenders (Chris Froome and Alberto Contador) and one of its top sprinters (Mark Cavendish) have withdrawn after crashes. Italian Vincenzo Nibali currently leads the race.

King had been racing for Cannondale Pro Cycling in support of his team’s leader: superstar sprinter Peter Sagan, who currently holds the Tour’s green points jersey. King could often be seen wearing his lime green Cannondale uniform while setting the pace at the front of the peloton during this year’s Tour.

King won many fans in his Tour de France debut last year when he courageously raced with a separated shoulder in the team time trial stage. He was disqualified from the Tour when he fell behind his team and missed the stage’s cutoff time by seven seconds.

For King’s full recap, visit: http://www.iamtedking.com/2014/07/6337