Lille - Reigning champion Chris Froome has suffered an early crash on Tuesday's
fourth stage of the Tour de France but was able to carry on.
The 29-year-old Briton was knocked over after two riders touched in the peloton and one swerved into him.
pictures then showed the Team Sky leader with ripped shorts, grazes on
his elbow and leg down the left side, while he was seen grabbing his
left wrist after he got up.
He dropped back to the medical car for treatment.
Race doctor Florence Pommerie told France Televisions that the champion's wounds were superficial.
essentially a few scratches, but that's got to hurt nevertheless. He
also hurt his wrist, but we'll have to wait and see how it goes," he
Froome's left thigh was strapped up and he was given a
bandage for his right hand, while he was later seen flexing his left
hand as well.
The crash took down several other riders, including Dutch outsider for the overall victory Bauke Mollema of Belkin.
Last month Froome also fell on his left-hand side at the Criterium du Dauphine.
He had been leading that race until the sixth stage crash.
lost the lead to Alberto Contador the very next day and then cracked on
the eighth and final stage, finishing more than five minutes behind the
winner and dropping to 11th in the overall standings behind American
champion Andrew Talansky.
It's been a tricky year for Froome who
also suffered a lower back problem earlier in the year that forced him
out of March's Tirreno-Adriatico race while illness kept him out of the
Liege-Bastogne-Liege Ardennes Classic in April.