Defending champion Chris Froome finished sixth after an historic opening stage of the Tour de France in Yorkshire however there are concerns over fellow Brit Mark Cavendish, who suffered a nasty looking crash in the closing moments.
Cavendish appeared well placed to win the first stage, which saw thousands line the Yorkshire streets as he slotted in behind the back of the Omega Pharma-Quick Step train that pulled away with four kilometres to go.
Fabian Cancellara upset that train though by making a solo attack in the final kilometres and it was with the finishing line in sight that Cavendish hit the deck hard after a collision with Orica-GreenEDGE’s Simon Gerrans.
He struggled to get up initially and immediately clutched his right shoulder before eventually getting back on his bike to cross the finishing line but still nursing what many believe to be a broken collarbone.
Froome, who followed Sir Bradley Wiggins’ lead and kept the Tour de France title in British hands with victory last year, avoided the danger to place sixth while Marcel Kittel took victory on the stage from Leeds to Harrogate.
German Kittel got the better of Peter Sagan and Ramunas Navardauskas in the aftermath of Cavendish and Gerrans’ coming together and he will now wear the yellow jersey on the second stage from York to Sheffield.
© Sportsbeat 2014