Chris Froome out of Tour de France
Defending Champion, Chris Froome is out of the Tour de France, after crashing for three times over two stages. Following his fall on the fourth stage, which caused injury to his wrist he was still optimistic about his chances.
“I took a bit of a knock, but I’m happy to make it through the day and get to the finish line without losing any time to my main competitors.
“The bumps and scrapes are fine but I fell heavily on my wrist so I needed to get it checked out by the doctors. I’m really pleased that I have been cleared to race and I’m looking forward to getting back on the bike tomorrow.
“The wrist is painful and it’s certainly not ideal going into tomorrow’s cobbled stage, but I have a great team around me and we will get through the next few days as best we can.”
Even Team Sky principle Sir Dave Brailsford shared Froome’s optimism: “We have done the tests and we are relieved,” he said. “He will start tomorrow and I hope it will be a great day. We took precautions – you are always concerned when you see your leader on the ground, but that’s part of sport.
“I think we have had quite a few crashes, so it’s normal to be worried, but we are going on. Chris is a fighter, he is not someone who gives up just like that.”
However, as the race turned to cobbles in wet conditions Froome, sporting an injured wrist and cuts and bruises to his shoulder, knees and hip struggled to maintain composure as he jostled for position. German racer, Marcel Kittel, who has won three of the stages has also taken a fall, though for now battles on, competing with Spain’s Alberto Contador, Vincenzo Nibali and Peter Sagan for the lead.
He is understood to have thought long and hard before he abandoned the race after his latest fall, though evidently injuries were having an effect on performance. It was Froome’s second fall on stage five, as he attempted to keep pace with the peloton, though Sagan is now the 9/4 favourite for Stage five.