Chris Froome in intensive care following surgery after horrific crash

Chris Froome is expected to remain in intensive care for at least two more days after suffering multiple fractures in a crash which has ruled him out of the Tour de France.

The four-time Tour winner suffered a broken leg, a broken elbow and broken ribs during his reconnaissance ahead of stage four of the Criterium du Dauphine on Wednesday.

The 34-year-old underwent an operation which lasted almost eight hours at a hospital in St Etienne, where he has been joined by his wife Michelle and Team Ineos doctor Richard Usher.

Speaking to reporters ahead of Thursday’s stage five of the Dauphine, Ineos team principal Dave Brailsford said: “He had surgery to repair his femur, his hip, his elbow. He’s got broken ribs, a little bit of internal damage as well, so he’s staying in intensive care for the next couple of days and then we’ll go from there.

“He’s being very well looked after. Our doctor is with him now and Michelle is with him. We’ll keep monitoring the situation as see how it develops.”

Brailsford said Froome was being looked after in “exemplary fashion” but that it is too soon to put any sort of timetable on his rehabilitation programme.

“First things first,” he said. “For now, let’s just concentrate on today and getting him through today, and then tomorrow et cetera and see how this situation develops from there.

“The first thing in all these situations is to get that first stabilisation, that first phase of medical surgery done really and then go into the recovery process.”

Brailsford revealed on Wednesday night that Froome’s data showed he went from 54 kilometres per hour to a dead stop as he struck a wall on a descent. The accident happened when Froome wiped his nose and a gust of wind caught his front wheel.

Juan Jose Cobo (centre) and Chris Froome (right) on the Vuelta podium in 2011.

“He came down a technical descent and on to a straighter piece of road with houses either side,” Brailsford told BBC Sport’s Bespoke Podcast.

“He signalled to (team-mate) Wout (Poels) that he was going to clear his nose, he took his hand off the bar to do that and a gust of wind took his front wheel, he lost control and went straight into the wall of a house.

“We have had a look at his data, he went from 54kmh to a dead stop.”

Meanwhile, it emerged today that Froome stands to retrospectively become Britain’s first Grand Tour winner and add a seventh title to his collection after 2011 Vuelta a Espana champion Juan Jose Cobo was found guilty of a doping violation.

The UCI announced on Thursday that Cobo had been found “guilty of an anti-doping violation (Use of a prohibited substance) based on abnormalities from 2009 and 2011 detected in his Biological Passport”.

As a result he was ruled ineligible for a three-year period and will lose his 2011 Vuelta crown. Froome finished second in the race with Bradley Wiggins third.

Cobo, riding for Geox-TMC, won the 2011 Vuelta by just 13 seconds from Froome, with Wiggins one minute 39 seconds down in Spain.

The 38-year-old Spaniard has one month in which he can launch an appeal against the decision before the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

But should the ban stand and Cobo lose his title, Froome will become Britain’s first Grand Tour winner, 10 months before then Team Sky team-mate Wiggins won the Tour de France in 2012.

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