Tour de France: Dan Martin loses ground after two falls

by Dwayne Torres July 10, 2017, 0:10
Tour de France: Dan Martin loses ground after two falls

Pre-race favorite Richie Porte of Australia (BMC Racing) and Froome's lieutenant Geraint Thomas crashed out.

The BMC Racing rider hit the rocks on his right-hand side and was attended to by medics, who carried him into an ambulance on a stretcher.

Overall, Froome leads Aru by 18 seconds and Bardet by 51. Organizers said he was conscious and speaking.

"I had a mechanical problem with my gears, I had to change bike", said three-times champion Froome.

Prior to the crash that ended Porte's Tour, the Australian had endeared himself to fans - and his former Sky team-mate Froome - after Aru had launched what looked to be a decisive attack on the Mont du Chat at the same moment as the yellow jersey suffered a mechanical.

Long identified as one of the key days of this year's race, the stage through the Jura mountains, which had there Hors-Categorie climbs, was marred by a number of crashes, with Thomas and Porte the two highest profile victims.

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In the confusion that followed, Bardet used his local knowledge of the roads to ride clear and catch his compatriot as the road levelled out in the run into Chambery.

The 31-year-old had come into the Tour after his bid to win the Giro d'Italia in May ended in a crash - caused by a police motorbike -during stage nine to Blockhaus. He is now eighth overall, a massive 2:13 off the pace.

Porte missed a left-hand bend, cartwheeled across the road and bowled over another rider, Dan Martin, before slamming into a grassy bank.

He was already without team mate Geraint Thomas, who abandoned after crashing in the slippery descent of the Col de la Biche, one of three out-of-category ascents of the day.

Three riders from the day's break - Movistar's Jesus Herrada plus Alexey Lutsenko and Bakhtiyar Kozhatayev of Astana - had crashed on the same corner as Thomas minutes before the peloton arrived.


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