Jake Stewart has responded after Nacer Bouhanni revealed he has been subject to racist abuse.
British pro Stewart and rival sprinter Bouhanni were involved in a public dispute after a sprinting incident in a French stage race late last month.
Arkéa-Samsic rider Bouhanni was disqualified from Cholet-Pays de la Loire for dangerous sprinting, after he forced Stewart into the barrier during the bunch sprint.
After the pair exchanged words online and in the press, Bouhanni revealed the racist abuse he had been subject to, saying he has been “putting up with this for a long time but won’t let it go any more.”
Stewart, 21, has now responded to the racist abuse suffered by Bouhanni, saying he stands united with the Frenchman.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Stewart said: “Despite our recent difference of opinion, let’s be absolutely clear, I stand united with Nacer Bouhanni.
“We will all agree and disagree on certain things, but one thing that should not be of question is racism.
“The comments and racist directed towards Nacer this week are absolutely deplorable. There is no place for racism in this world.
“To the so-called ‘fans’ of cycling that have made these comments, you are not welcome here.”
The wave of racist abuse aimed at Bouhanni comes after he was disqualified from Cholet-Pays de la Loire for forcing Groupama-FDJ rider Stewart into the barrier during the sprint finish.
British sprinter Stewart was able to stay upright but suffered a broken hand in the incident, as the UCI later released a statement condemning Bouhanni’s actions.
The 30-year-old now faces a possible suspension as the UCI referred the incident to its Disciplinary Commission.
Last year, Jumbo-Visma’s Dylan Groenewegen banned from racing for nine months after he forced Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) into the barrier, causing a major crash, in the Tour of Poland.
The UCI has not yet made a statement on the racist abuse Bouhanni has received.