Tour de France: Nacer Bouhanni hopes to start despite injury

Nacer Bouhanni
Bouhanni won the green points jersey at the Criterium du Dauphine earlier in June

Nacer Bouhanni is hopeful of starting the Tour de France despite crashing in France's national road race on Sunday.

The 24-year-old Cofidis sprinter, who had been favourite to win the national title, went down in the closing stages.

Bouhanni, who will be one of Mark Cavendish's rivals for the green points jersey, said on Twitter: "No fractures but damage to the rib cartilages."

He had said straight after Sunday's race: "Certainly out of the Tour. Rib cracked or broken."

Bouhanni joined Cofidis this year after winning three stages at the Giro d'Italia and two at the Vuelta a Espana in 2014 and the French outfit have built their Tour de France squad around the sprinter.

He won two stages at the Tour warm-up race, the Criterium du Dauphine.

Relative unknown Steven Tronet, 28, won Sunday's race.

Elsewhere, former world champion Rui Costa won the Portuguese equivalent, while three-time Tour de France green jersey winner Peter Sagan was crowned Slovak champion for the fifth time in a row.

Peter Kennaugh of Team Sky won the British national title in Lincoln on Sunday.

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