x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Sky consider legal action over car crash in Tour de France

A television crew sent the team's Spanish rider Flecha flying and badly injured in the ninth stage on Sunday. Video

AURILLAC, FRANCE // Team Sky are pondering whether to take legal action against the television car that sent their Spaniard rider Juan Antonio Flecha flying during the race's ninth stage on Sunday.

Flecha and the Dutch rider Johnny Hoogerland survived being hit by a France Television car as it overtook their five-man breakaway group 35km from the finish line.

The car was later excluded from the race by furious organisers and France Television later issued an official apology.

Dave Brailsford, the team principal, said the crash "shouldn't have happened", adding the team were going over all their options. "There are different options available, but [we'll wait] until we've got the facts.

"We need to have a clear picture of what those options are before we then decide which one we may or may not wish to pursue."

Flecha, who along with Hoogerland started yesterday's stage, is now afraid he will not go much further. Three consecutive stages in the Pyrenees start tomorrow.

"I'm more concerned about the Pyrenees. I can't bypass the Pyrenees," said the Spaniard, who suffered mainly cuts and grazes.

Hoogerland had 33 stitches after landing in a barbed-wire fence.

Team managers are hoping the number of crashes so far in the Tour will lead cycling's governing body to reconsider its decision to ban radio communication during race.