The defending champion, whose hopes of winning a fifth title faded when he cracked in the finale of the last 16-km climb up to the Col du Portet, was asked by a police officer to stop, which caused him to crash, Team Sky explained.
The incident prompted an angry exchange between Froome and the police officer, before the Sky rider rode away.
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Froome's wife Michelle told reporters that she believed he had been mistaken for a fan because he was wearing a black raincoat. She added that he was not injured in the crash.
A lot of fans climb up the mountains on their bikes before the riders to find a spot where they can watch the peloton ride by.
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