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Tour de France: Defending champ Chris Froome mistakenly upended by policeman

By Alex Butler
Tour de France: Defending champ Chris Froome mistakenly upended by policeman
Movistar team rider Nairo Quintana (L) of Colombia talks with Team Sky rider Chris Froome (R) of Britain as they stand on the grid line prior to the 17th stage of the 105th edition of the Tour de France cycling race over 65km on Wednesday between Bagneres de Luchon and Saint Lary Soulan col du Portet, France. Photo by Kim Ludbrook/EPA-EFE

July 26 (UPI) -- Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome was upended by a French policeman and taken off of his bike during stage 17 of the race.

The collision occurred on Wednesday during the 65-kilometer stretch from Bagneres-de-Luchon and Saint-Lary-Soulan. Froome was wearing an oversized rain jacket and riding his bike back to his team bus when the officer pulled him off of the bike, causing him to fall.

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The officer realized his mistake and helped Froome pick up the bike. But Froome voiced his frustration by yelling an expletive at the officer before riding off. Spectators recorded video of the altercation.

"Obviously he thought I was a spectator going down the race route or something so he grabbed me," Froome told reporters. "I was going at some speed so I came off obviously, but it was just a misunderstanding."

RELATED Tour de France delayed after protest; cyclists accidentally tear-gassed

This isn't the first time Froome has had an unfortunate incident at the 2018 Tour de France. On Tuesday, Froome was accidentally hit with tear gas from police who were clearing the course of protestors during stage 16 between Carcassonne and Bagneres-de-Luchon.

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Froome finished No. 8 in the stage, behind fellow Team Sky cyclists Geraint Thomas and Egan Arley Bernal Gomez. Colombia's Nairo Quintana from the Movistar Team led the stage.

Thomas leads the Tour de France, while Froome sits in third place. Team Sky's Tom Dumoulin is currently in second place.

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Thursday's trek includes a 172-kilometer ride from Trie-sur-Baise to Pau. The final stage of the 2018 Tour de France is on Sunday, wrapping up in Paris Champs-Elysees.

RELATED Tour de France 2017: Britain's Chris Froome wins fourth Tour de France title

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