Richie Porte abandons 2017 Tour de France after bad crash on Mont du Chat descent

Former Team Sky man, and leading GC contender, out of race after crashing on final descent

Richie Porte (BMC Racing) crashed out of the 2017 Tour de France on the descent of the Mont du Chat on stage nine.

In a crash-laden stage, which had already seen Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) and Robert Gesink (LottoNL-Jumbo) forced to abandon after crashes, Porte suffered a bad crash on the day’s final descent while riding in the yellow jersey group.

The Australian came to grief on a bend, hitting the grass verge and sliding across the road, with Dan Martin (QuickStep Floors) unable to avoid crashing into the back of him at speed.

The effects of the two impacts saw Porte stretchered into an ambulance with a neck brace on, with his injuries later confirmed as a fractured clavicle and fractured pelvis.

Richie Porte crashed out of the 2017 Tour de France on stage nine (pic – Sirotti)

Martin was able to remount on a neutral service bike to finish the stage, admitting in television interviews he had been lucky to avoid a more serious injury himself.

Porte was fifth overall prior to the crash, having gone into the race off the back of a second place finish at the Criterium du Dauphine – at which he had descended the Mont de Chat on stage six to briefly take the yellow jersey.

But the 32-year-old’s Tour de France challenge ended on the same descent, with Porte transferred to hospital in Chambery, where x-rays confirmed his injuries.

BMC Racing’s chief medical officer Dr Max Testa said: “Richie Porte was transferred to the Centre Hopitalier Metropole Savoie in Chambery where he was evaluated by Dr. Zerr.

“He underwent X-rays to determine the extent of his injuries. His condition was stable from the beginning, he was responsive and he remembered everything that happened before and after the crash.

“X-rays confirmed a non-displaced right clavicle fracture and a non-displaced right acetabulum fracture. Richie also suffered extensive superficial abrasions involving the right side of his body.

“At this stage, the injuries will not require surgery. The plan is to re-evaluate Richie tomorrow morning and confirm that he is stable enough to be transferred home.”

As a result of the injuries, Dr. Testa anticipates ‘four to six weeks’ recovery, providing there are no complications’, raising the possibility of the Australian riding the Vuelta a Espana.

“If everything goes to plan, Richie could be back on the bike at the beginning of August and slowly build his fitness up from there,” Dr. Testa added.

“Based on Richie’s recovery, we will re-evaluate his program for the rest of the season in consultation with BMC Racing Team management.”

Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac) went on to win stage nine, with race leader Chris Froome (Team Sky) – both former Sky team-mates of Porte – extending his overall lead after finishing third.

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