Porte counting his blessings after horror Tour de France fall

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Richie Porte felt he was lucky to have come away with a fractured collarbone and pelvis in a sickening stage-nine crash which ended his hopes of winning the Tour de France.

Porte was seen as one of the main contenders to prevent Chris Froome from winning the most prestigious of Grand Tour races for a fourth time.

The BMC Racing rider's race came to a dramatic end on Sunday, though, after he lost control on a descent of the hors category Mont du Chat and came off his bike before ploughing into the mountain.

Porte, who collided with Dan Martin after careering into the grass, was treated on the road and remained in hospital overnight after it was revealed that he sustained a broken right clavicle and also fractured his pelvis.

The Australian was naturally low after such a horrific incident which brought his participation in the Tour to an end, but said it could have been much worse.

Porte said in a video clip posted on his team's website: "Obviously I've felt much better than I do right now. I'm in a fair bit of pain and it's a big disappointment to be honest.

"I was in great form and the team were really strong around me, so it's a disappointing.  But I've just seen the crash and I feel that I'm lucky I've come away with the injuries that I have."

Asked about his recollection of the crash, he said: "I remember I came into the corner and it wasn't like we were going too fast, but I just remember I locked the ball wheel up and that was it really. Next thing I was heading for the grass verge on the corner.

"I stayed conscious the whole time and I remember the whole thing. I must say thank you to the medical staff on the race and in the hospital, they have been absolutely fantastic.

"I don't think I'll be back on my bike for a good while now. The team has been good in saying 'just recover; there is no rush to come back'. Hopefully I will pull the BMC jersey on by the end of the year."