Tour de France 2017: Horror crashes take the edge of successful day for Team Sky's Chris Froome

 
Oliver Gill
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Le Tour de France 2017 - Stage Nine
Olympic gold medalist Geraint Thomas (right) was a key support rider for Team Sky leader Chris Froome (Source: Getty)

Britain’s Chris Froome admitted to mixed feelings after team-mate Geraint Thomas crashed out the Tour de France on a day of carnage that saw a series of spills shake up the overall race standings.

Team Sky’s race leader Froome stayed safe and extended his advantage in the yellow jersey to 18 seconds after contesting a sprint on the 182km stage from Nantua to Chambery, which featured seven categorised climbs.

Second-placed Thomas, a key figure in Froome’s quest for a fourth title, exited the race when he suffered a suspected broken collar bone in a crash halfway through the stage.

Worse was to follow for pre-Tour favourite Richie Porte on the final descent, with a horror crash involving him and Ireland’s Dan Martin forcing the Australian to abandon.

Read more: Thomas shocks favourites by winning Tour de France opener

“Definitely mixed feelings today,” said Froome.

I’m happy to still be in the jersey but at the same time that was a crazy stage. I’ve just seen the images of Richie Porte’s crash and that leaves you with a horrible feeling. I really hope he’s alright and can make a speedy recovery. Of course my team mate Geraint Thomas as well, he crashed out today with a broken collarbone, so I’ve got mixed feelings.

On a day billed as the hardest of this year’s Tour, the peloton was whittled down to a select group of six on the run-in to Chambery. Rigoberto Uran timed his sprint to perfection, pipping Frenchman Warren Barguil. Froome was in third.

Thomas took a tumble on a damp descent of the Col de la Biche, the Welshman’s fourth crash on this year’s Tour and a repeat of his Giro d’Italia, in which his title hopes ended in a crash with a police motorbike.

Later on the slopes of the fearfully steep Mont du Chat, Martin – who was sitting in fourth place at the start of the day – and fifth-placed Porte came to grief, when the latter fell and brought down Martin.

Porte came off worse, following Thomas to hospital, with a neck brace used as a precaution. Martin limped on to the finish but dropped to sixth place overall.

Italian Fabio Aru replaced Thomas in second place going into Monday’s first rest day. Britain’s Simon Yates lies in seventh and retained the white jersey for the Tour’s best young rider.

Read more: Froome gets wake up call after narrow escape

Stage result

RANK RIDER TEAM TIMES GAP
1 URAN RIGOBERTO CANNONDALE DRAPAC 05H 07' 22''
2 BARGUIL WARREN TEAM SUNWEB 05H 07' 22'' + 00' 00''
3 FROOME CHRISTOPHER TEAM SKY 05H 07' 22'' + 00' 00''
4 BARDET ROMAIN AG2R LA MONDIALE 05H 07' 22'' + 00' 00''
5 ARU FABIO ASTANA PRO TEAM 05H 07' 22'' + 00' 00''
6 FUGLSANG JAKOB ASTANA PRO TEAM 05H 07' 22'' + 00' 00''
7 BENNETT GEORGE TEAM LOTTO NL - JUMBO 05H 08' 37'' + 01' 15''
8 LANDA MIKEL TEAM SKY 05H 08' 37'' + 01' 15''
9 MARTIN DANIEL QUICK - STEP FLOORS 05H 08' 37'' + 01' 15''
10 QUINTANA NAIRO MOVISTAR TEAM 05H 08' 37'' + 01' 15''

General Classification

RANK RIDER TEAM TIMES GAP
1 FROOME CHRISTOPHER TEAM SKY 38H 26' 28''
2 ARU FABIO ASTANA PRO TEAM 38H 26' 46'' + 00' 18''
3 BARDET ROMAIN AG2R LA MONDIALE 38H 27' 19'' + 00' 51''
4 URAN RIGOBERTO CANNONDALE DRAPAC 38H 27' 23'' + 00' 55''
5 FUGLSANG JAKOB ASTANA PRO TEAM 38H 28' 05'' + 01' 37''
6 MARTIN DANIEL QUICK - STEP FLOORS 38H 28' 12'' + 01' 44''
7 YATES SIMON ORICA - SCOTT 38H 28' 30'' + 02' 02''
8 QUINTANA NAIRO MOVISTAR TEAM 38H 28' 41'' + 02' 13''
9 LANDA MIKEL TEAM SKY 38H 29' 34'' + 03' 06''
10 BENNETT GEORGE TEAM LOTTO NL - JUMBO 38H 30' 21'' + 03' 53''

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