Giant-Alpecin‘s Tom Dumoulin – favourite to take the yellow jersey after stage three – has abandoned the Tour de France after a huge crash at the midway point of the stage.
The time trial specialist hit the tarmac hard after William Bonnet went down near the front of the peloton at high speed with around 60km to go.
Yellow jersey holder Fabian Cancellara was also grounded but got back on his bike despite complaining about vision issues, while several riders were forced to abandon the race.
Dumoulin put in a strong effort in the stage one time trial in front of his home fans, but couldn’t become the first Dutchman to hold the yellow jersey since 1989.
It was on stage three where it was thought he may be able to snatch the maillot jaune from Cancellara, but his injuries were severe enough from the crash to force him out of the race completely.
Bonnet and Simon Gerrans also abandoned the stage as the race was completely stopped to wait for Cancellara to regroup.