Chris Froome has left hospital to start his recovery from extensive injuries suffered in a crash during the Criterium du Dauphine last week.
Froome’s bike hit a wall at almost 35 miles per hour during a reconnaissance ride for the fourth stage in France.
The Team Ineos racer had been treated at the University Hospital of St Etienne, where he underwent a six-hour operation to repair a fractured right femur, broken hip, fractured elbow and fractured ribs.
It was also reported Froome, 34, had fractured his neck.
The four-time Tour de France champion posted an update on Thursday afternoon as he prepared to begin the long road to recovery.
“As my time at @ChuSaintEtienne has come to an end, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank the doctors & nurses for the exceptional care provided to me,” Froome said on Twitter.
“It’s been a rough week but I appreciate you having made it as comfortable as possible for me.
“This is just the first step to what will be a long recovery. Unfortunately I’m not yet able to go home, but at least I’ll have an opportunity to get a visit from my kids”.
Froome’s team-mate Geraint Thomas suffered an injury scare in a crash which forced him to withdraw from the Tour de Suisse earlier this week.
However, the 33-year-old Welshman remains optimistic about his chances of defending his Tour de France title when the action begins in Brussels on July 6.