Professional cycling is the toughest sport in the world and the Tour de France is the toughest race in the toughest sport. Beyond the three weeks of day in, day out gruelling stages, hours on end riding 'on the rivet' desperately holding onto the wheel in front of you, the massive mountain stages where survival becomes more important than racing and the dangerous 100km/h high speed descents, is the simple danger present everyday from riding in a large bunch fighting for the front.
It is unusual to get through the whole three weeks without hitting the deck at least once and, as you can see from this compilation of crashes, there is danger everywhere. If it isn't another rider taking you out it could be a spectator's dog or an unfortunately placed piece of road furniture.
Often though, it can also be the cyclists desperation to take the risks required to get to the front and win, or merely overcook a corner while descending that is the undoing of themselves and anyone unlucky enough to be caught behind.
Some of these videos are funny, some not so much...some are tragic. But this is why the Tour de France is called the toughest event in the world: It is ridden by hard-men willing to go to hell and back for victory.
Sit back and enjoy, or wince, or cringe...but whatever you do also give thanks and appreciation for these hardy souls doing crazy stuff for our enjoyment!