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Chris Froome crashes on stage 1 of Tour de France

Chris Froome crashes on stage 1 of the Tour de France
Chris Froome crashes on stage 1 of the Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images)

Chris Froome, a four-time Tour de France winner, was taken to hospital for further examinations after crashing during the opening stage of the Tour de France, where fractures were ruled out. 

The Israel Start-up Nation rider was part of a mass-crash inside the final 10 kilometres of the stage into Landerneau and finished the stage 14:37 down on winner Julian Alaphilippe. He was examined by race doctors, complaining of pain in his left groin and difficulty breathing. A number of his teammates, including Reto Hollenstein, were also involved in crashes during the stage.

"Further checkups at the hospital have ruled out any fractures for [Reto Hollenstein] and [Chris Froome] after their crashes today," said the team on a Twitter update. "They will be monitored by the team’s medical staff overnight."

Froome's crash occurred with 7.6 kilometres to go in the 197 kilometre race from Brest to Landerneau in what was the second major crash of the stage. 

There was a touch of wheels that ignited the crash that took down riders near  the front of the peloton. Riders were down and bikes were spread across the road, and onto the sides of the roads on the grass where spectators were standing.

Froome appeared to be in pain as he sat on the tarmac at the side of the road. Also involved in the crash were Froome’s teammates André Greipel, and their GC leader Michael Woods, who finish 8:49 down. 

Froome looked to have taken the brunt of the crash as several of his teammates surrounded him while he remained sat on the side of the road.

Froome eventually received help to stand up by race medical staff and got back on his bike and slowly road to the finish line with help from teammates Omer Goldstein, Rick Zabel, and Reto Hollenstein.

He crossed the line in 171st place and 14:37 minutes behind the stage winner Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep).

Froome, 36, is racing in his first Tour de France since suffering a devastating fall while previewing the course for the time trial at the 2019 Critérium du Dauphiné. Froome lost control on a descent and hit a stone wall at 60kph, suffering a double femur fracture to his right leg, multiple other fractures and a collapsed lung.

He underwent extensive surgery and rehabilitation, returning to racing at the beginning of the 2020 season but failed to find enough of his old form to make the Ineos Grenadiers team for the Tour de France after the season resumed amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Froome left Ineos for Israel Start-Up Nation this season but came into the Tour de France as a support rider for Woods after a string of sub-par performances.

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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.