Cavendish falls in dramatic conclusion to Tour de France day one

Mark Cavendish fell heavily at finish line Photo: ITV

Mark Cavendish fell heavily in a dramatic conclusion to the first day of the Tour de France as the world's greatest bike race returned to the UK.

British fans were denied a fairytale finish to the first stage as Cavendish crashed in the final sprint to the line in Harrogate.

He was left prone on the ground clutching his shoulder after colliding with another rider in the final yards. The Isle of Man rider was able to pedal across the line, but was wincing and clearly in pain.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry looked shocked on the finish line when the commentator described Cavendish's crash.

The royal party clapped the riders as they crossed the line and looked down the course for the stricken sprinter.

Cavendish limped back a few minutes later, passing right in front of the royal enclosure.

William, Kate and Harry again looked shocked as they could clearly see his torn shirt and injured left arm and shoulder just a metre in front of them.

Only half an hour before the royal trio had been chatting to Cavendish's mother who was a guest in the royal area.