Sprinter Nacer Bouhanni fined 100 CHF after a sticky bottle infringement on stage three of the Vuelta a España, where he held on for 12 seconds after a crash

Cofidis sprinter Nacer Bouhanni was fined 100 Swiss Francs for a sticky bottle incident on stage three of the Vuelta a España, just a day after Vincenzo Nibali was thrown out of the race for holding on to his team car.

While Nibali’s actions were more blatant – holding onto his team car to help him get back to the main group after a crash – Bouhanni and his sports director took a reported 12 seconds to hand over a bottle, all while the driver put his foot on the accelerator.

The Frenchman had gone down in a hard crash on a roundabout, which also took down Tinkoff-Saxo’s Daniele Bennati, and took a little assistance to get back onto the main group.

Once back in the pack he managed to get himself in position for the final sprint, finishing a close second to Peter Sagan on the line in Malaga.

“I was angry at the finish because I’d made a huge effort to get back on after the crash and that affected the result. I was 1-30 behind but my teammates waited for me and did a great job. Unfortunately we paid for it in the finale,” he explained to L’Equipe about his post-stage reaction.

“I’ve had enough crashes for now though…I wasn’t feeling 100% during the stage after my other crash buy to lose by just a dozen centimetres makes me angry.”

A small financial fine is a common punishment for a sticky bottle infringement in a race, with some riders hit with a small time penalty as well.

  • Francesco

    Let me understand. The organizers are more lenient because someone is being aided to re-join a group, but it get more serious when someone is helped to pull away from one. Is it a new cycling rule or it only applies to Nibali?

  • Butty

    I believe that he earnt 5,500 euro for 2nd place. Perhaps the energy he saved in getting that little extra pace made the difference between not getting pay cheque?
    If that was the potential outcome then I think that he should have lost the money he won as an example to others.

    It’s lazy management really. A domestique should have been sent up or drop back and paced him back up to the front.

  • Samuel G

    DS should have been expelled and Bouhanni should have been given the maximum fine, relegated to last place on stage and stripped of all points in points competition. time penalties are irrelevant to a rider like him.

  • Yerkanatt Bikeyevv

    because team is from EU… not from Kazakhstan or double standart

  • FPCyclist

    Good point. Maybe hit them with time penalties that hurt a bit….1X, 2X, 3X the total time the bottle was stuck. The Mr. Nibs Getaway is a whole different kettle o’fish. He deserved the boot! Absolutely hi-larious.

  • Mike Prytherch

    This isn’t as bad as Nibali, however 100 CHF is a joke, I think holding on for a few seconds is fine, but the car shouldn’t accelerate away, this car did, so a much bigger fine should of been imposed, but not a DQ

  • RobTM

    Was way too sticky a bottle though. The DS actually seems to pull the rider moving away back to signal “Hold on!”. I don’t think a fine was enough, though DQ-ing the rider would be excessive. Perhaps suspending the DS & one team car for the next stage would be proportionate.
    Now I can imagine Nibali saying “see! My DQ too harsh, Bouhani got a boost to and he got off with the normal fine.”

  • J1

    Nothing like the Nibali incident.

  • dourscot

    Perhaps next time people Nibali might let the riders behind him hold on to him – at least that way it’d be fairer.

  • Keith Allton

    Agree, David Miller on itv summed it up very well when he said Nibali wasn’t being aided to rejoin a group, he was being pulled away from one. However it does leave the organisers etc open to accusations of double standards

  • Kevino Daviessss

    I think if nibali had been towed along with the pack instead of leading them for dead going up a hill then it would have been a fine! As it happened he rode like he’s Valentino Rossi’s team mate!!

  • Gavin Smith

    I didn’t quite see him doing the 60mph that Nibali must have accelerated up to pull away from the chasing group that quick