HUY, Belgium (Reuters) – The third stage of the Tour de France was neutralised for about 10 minutes on Tuesday after yellow jersey holder Fabian Cancellara was caught in a massive crash that took down a couple of dozen riders.
FDJ rider William Bonnet of France fell off his bike after seemingly touching a wheel in front of him and others all around him were brought down.
Cancellara was one of several top names to hit the tarmac, along with Australian Simon Gerrans and Dutchman Tom Dumoulin, who abandoned.
Bonnet was taken by the race medical staff on a stretcher but he was conscious.
“He’s lucid, he’s wearing a neck brace out of precaution,” said Bonnet’s FDJ sports director Thierry Bricaud.
At one point, Team Sky riders accelerated before Cancellara had made his way back to a bunch that was riding at the minimum pace required when a race is neutralised.
Organisers then decided to stop the race altogether and the peloton came to a halt 82 km from the finish before resuming their ride.