Every year there are nasty crashes in the Tour de France, and we’re sure 2016 will be no exception. How will they rank next to the worst of all time though? We thought we’d take a look back through the history of the Tour de France so you can see how this years event compares.
1) Wim van Est’s Crash, the 1951 Tour de France
Wim van Est was victim to one of the most savage crashes in Tour de France history when he tumbled down a rocky ravine in the 1951 edition of the Tour de France.
The Netherlands rider was the first man from his country to wear the yellow jersey when he claimed it in 1951, and he was also the first – and only – one to fall down a ravine full of rocks while wearing it.
Wim’s slip came courtesy of a flat tyre and a big slip. The ravine was 70m deep, and the Dutch man wasn’t wearing a helmet. Having lived through WW2 though, he wasn’t going to be struggling here. With no major injuries, he got back up with the help of spectators and got back on the road… albeit to head straight to hospital.
2) Bernard Hinault’s Crash, the 1985 Tour de France
Having won the Tour de France four times already, you’d think that Bernard Hinault would have nothing to prove when he went into the 1985 Tour. Wrong. He still had to prove that he could win it five times!
The Frenchman was on route to doing exactly that when he was victim to one of the most catastrophic Tour de France crashes ever in the final moments of stage 14. Riding to the line in pursuit of Greg LeMond, Bernard became entangled in a five man crash.
Needing medical treatment, Hinault took only the essentials from doctors before riding across the finish line to hold on to the yellow jersey – which he would keep for the rest of the Tour despite having broken his nose in the crash.