Some cyclists chiming in and were spot on. Thing was a sail / parachute... At about halfway he was toying with his hand on his jacket zipper for a good 5 seconds, not sure if he should take it off, weighing in the cold vs. wind resistance.
Costly mistake. Today was basically a cycling stage, about hiding from the wind. The front runners blew up big time... Desi and kawauchi were tucked in longer.