Belgian pro criticises Elia Viviani's lead-out after he was 'sandwiched' in sprint

The Belgian came out of Viviani's wheel late to dart for the line but had to brake to avoid Consonni

Timothy Dupont
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Belgian sprinter Timothy Dupont has claimed that the sprint and lead-out by Cofidis' Elia Viviani and Simone Consonni "wasn't clean" at a French stage race.

Viviani sprinted to his second win of the race, as he looked to be getting close to his top form again at the Tour Poitou-Charentes en Nouvelle Aquitaine.

Consonni did a strong lead-out, but he was a long way to the right on the road with Viviani and the rest sprinting over to the left. When Consonni was passed by his leader, he started to move dramatically to the left, blocking Dupont who had to brake so he avoided crashing.

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Speaking to DirectVelo after the stage, the Belgian said: "In my opinion, the sprint was irregular. I was on Viviani's wheel and when I tried to get out, Consonni moved over to the left. I was sandwiched,

"It wasn't clean. I'm disappointed because I was well placed, I had the strength. I don't know if I'd have managed to get past Viviani but I had to brake."

Below is the video posted by Cofidis of the finish where you can see the line deviation from Consonni.

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This is the first race Viviani has competed in since taking a bronze medal in the Omnium at the Olympics and looks to have brought some good form out of the Games.

The former European road race champion voiced his praise for Consonni after his elongated lead-out. Consonni went on to sprint to the line to take third on the day.

Viviani told DirectVelo: "I told Simone [Consonni] to lead me out as if he had to go all the way to the line, because yesterday I was left too far out. Simone did a perfect job. When the train works, we're there and we win."

Viviani has struggled for wins since joining Cofidis, only taking three wins while wearing the colours of the French WorldTeam with two being at this race. 

He was confirmed by his team to be leaving as they replace to Italian with French sprinter Bryan Coquard, who steps up to WorldTour from B&B Hotels p/b KTM 

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.