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Tour de France 2017: Froome takes control as Porte, Thomas crash out

Tour de France 2017: Froome takes control as Porte, Thomas crash out

The last descent of the day with seven climbs saw a terrifying high-speed crash involving Richie Porte, who had been fifth overall but is now out of the race.

Overall, Froome leads Aru by 18 seconds and Romain Bardet by 51 as two-times victor Alberto Contador of Spain cracked on the last climb and dropped out of contention.

His team Racing BMC say he has been taken to hospital.

However, organisers said he was conscious and speaking but was being taken to hospital.

The Col de la Biche was the first of three hors categorie climbs to be tackled on a brutal day of racing through the Jura mountains.

Briton Froome's four bonus seconds on the line helped him increase his lead to 18 seconds over Italian Fabio Aru, who moved up a place to second with Thomas having quit the race.

"I had a mechanical problem with my gears, I had to change bike", said three-times champion Froome.

Bardet, riding on familiar roads - his AG2R-La Mondiale team is based here - attacked on the final descent and got clear.

He also went down in the second, fourth and eighth stages.

"He (Porte) did it four times before the race, he did it in training, he did it in a race (the Criterium du Dauphine)".

If Quintana - 2:13 down in eighth place - kept his faint hopes of a first Tour crown alive, then the same can not be said of Contador: the former double Tour champion is now more than five minutes down on Froome in the GC.

He careered across the road and clattered into Ireland's Dan Martin, bringing the two crashing into the rocky side of the road in the final 25km of the 181.5km stage from Nantua to Chambery. Other riders out include LottoNL-Jumbo's Robert Gesink.

After a well-earned rest day, the Tour resumes on Tuesday with a largely flat 178km Stage 10 from Perigueux to Bergerac, which should reopen the doors to the sprinters.

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