Crashes wreak havoc at Tour de France Femmes opener on Champs-Élysées

Tour de France Femmes on July 24 2022 in Paris France
Tour de France Femmes on July 24 2022 in Paris France (Image credit: Michael Steele/Getty Images)

A crash-marred finale at the opening stage of the Tour de France Femmes saw one rider transported to hospital and several others lose significant time in the overall classification on the Champs-Éysées on Sunday.

Alana Castrique (Cofidis) time at the Tour de France Femmes has ended after she bore the brunt of the first crash on the famed boulevard with 12km to go.

The Belgian rider went down with Luxembourg National Champion Christine Majerus (SD Worx), but while Majerus was able to get back on her bike and finish 136th, Castrique received medical attention at the side of the road. She was then lifted by stretcher from the course and transported by ambulance to hospital for further checks.

"Following her fall, Alana Castrique is taken care of by the Tour de France Femmes medical teams. We hope for reassuring news from our rider very soon," Cofidis said.

Contacted by Cyclingnews for a medical update, Cofidis representative Antoine Grenapin said that after being transferred to hospital with ASO's medical team, they are awaiting confirmation of her injuries. Cofidis also confirmed that their team doctor is at the hospital with Castrique.

The next crash happened with 5.6km to go after a touch of wheels mid-pack brought down BikeExchange-Jayco riders Amanda Spratt, Ane Santesteban and the team's GC leader Kristen Faulkner.

All three riders got back on their bikes but were unable to get back into the field that was already speeding into the set-up for the bunch sprint won by Lorena Wiebes (DSM).

Spratt finished the race in 126th place at 56 seconds, Faulkner in 128th at 1:11 and Santesteban in 129th, 1:40 back.

"Not the result we were after, but we'll go again tomorrow," said BikeExchange-Jayco.

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