Froome crashes after police mistake him for fan

Froome crashes after police mistake him for fan

Colombia's Nairo Quintana, left, and Britain's Chris Froome talk prior to the start of the seventeenth stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 65 kilometers (40.4 miles) with start in Bagneres-de-Luchon and finish in Saint-Lary-Soulan, Col du Portet pass, France, Wednesday July 25, 2018.

Tom Dumoulin is keeping hope but considers the Tour de France win nearly impossible given how race leader Geraint Thomas (Sky) has been unflappable so far.

Riders were competing again within five kilometres, Julian Alaphilippe eventually claiming victory after capitalising on Adam Yates' late crash while Thomas retained his advantage of one minute and 39 seconds over Sky team-mate Chris Froome in the general classification.

Yellow jersey holder Geraint Thomas and world champion Peter Sagan were among the riders rinsing their eyes as the stage was stopped for 15 minutes.

Team boss Dave Brailsford said they will now plan to make sure Froome joins Thomas on the Tour de France podium: "He's not out of it necessariy, there's a big mountain day to come, and the time trial".

Before that, Gilbert posted a video online explaining why he would be unable to finish the race.

It was a gift, but Alaphilippe didn't care as he cruised to his second stage win of this year's Tour. "It is the future of cycling, I think", says Tom Steels, the Quick-Step team sports director and a former rider who won nine Tour stages over his career.

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"Froomey said on the radio (at) maybe 5k or 4k to go that he wasn't feeling super", Thomas said.

Race organizers have struggled to deal with angry fans protesting Froome's participation. He looked up to his soigneur and said "hold me" but he didn't hear what Martin had said and the rider began rolling down the hill until his soigneur and several journalists grabbed hold of his bike. "I stood on Val Louron after riding the Peyresourde and then stood on the Pla d'Adet".

"We feel safe. Obviously on some of the climbs not everyone's our fans but we don't feel threatened", Thomas said.

"My first experience of the Tour de France was in 1999", he said.

After the Tour's second rest day, the first drama of the stage came early on and from an unlikely source - the race temporarily neutralised after 29km because of farmers blocking the road with hay bales.

But he lost the front wheel on a corner 6.5km from the end, and Alaphilippe zipped by in the polka dot jersey to collect his second stage win of the Tour.

The incident resulted in a fifteen minute pause, but riders soon continued the remaining 192km of the stage. "That last climb is possibly the toughest climb in the Tour - 16 kilometers, 2,200 meters (altitude)".