South Africa’s Robbie Hunter succumbed to the pain of a fractured arm and pulled out of the Tour de France on Thursday.
The Garmin-Transitions rider suffered the injury in a crash on the 10th stage and despite being diagnosed with a fracture near his right elbow he was keen to start the 11th stage from Sisteron to Bourg-les-Valence.
Hunter, however, did not turn up at the start line — leaving his team short of one of their key elements for the sprint train of American Tyler Farrar.
Farrar came into the race as the number one rival to HTC-Columbia’s Mark Cavendish, but has so far failed to win having picked up a wrist fracture during the crash-marred second stage.
Cavendish has won two stages so far, the same as Italian rival Alessandro Petacchi.