Spectators cheer as the pack passes during the first stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 201 kilometers (124.9 miles) with start in Noirmoutier-en-L'Ile and finish in Fontenay Le-Comte, France, Saturday, July 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

Froome and Quintana struggle in opening Tour de France stage

July 07, 2018 - 9:52 am

FONTENAY-LE-COMTE, France (AP) — Overall favorites Chris Froome and Nairo Quintana each had trouble in the opening stage of the Tour de France on Saturday, while Colombian rider Fernando Gaviria took the race's first yellow jersey with a commanding sprint victory.

Froome crashed with about five kilometers remaining in the mostly flat 201-kilometer (125-mile) stage from the island of Noirmoutier-en-l'Ile on the Atlantic coast to Fontenay-le-Comte. The four-time champion with Team Sky finished in a group with rival Richie Porte about 50 seconds behind.

Quintana had a mechanical problem and finished even further back.

Gaviria, the Quick Step rider making his Tour debut, beat world champion Peter Sagan and Marcel Kittel to the line.

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