The UCI says it “firmly condemns the racist attacks” aimed at Nacer Bouhanni.
French rider Bouhanni recently revealed the wave of racist abuse he had been subjected to in the last week, following a racing incident in a French one-day race.
Bouhanni was disqualified from Cholet-Pays de la Loire for dangerous sprinting, after he forced Groupama-FDJ’s Jake Stewart into the barrier during the sprint finish.
The UCI then released a statement condemning Bouhanni’s actions in the sprints and calling for the Arkéa-Samsic rider to face further sanction.
After Bouhanni and Stewart exchanged words on social media, Bouhanni was then subject to an influx of racist abuse both in online comments and sent directly to his social media accounts.
On Wednesday morning (April 7) the UCI released another statement, this time condemning the racist attacks on Bouhanni.
Cycling’s international governing body said: “The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) wishes to firmly condemn the racist attacks aimed at the French rider Nacer Bouhanni on social media following his disqualification for dangerous conduct during the final sprint at the Cholet-Pays de la Loire.
“However serious the fault of the French rider – which forced the UCI to refer the incident to its Disciplinary Commission and demand the imposition of sanctions against him – , nothing justifies the insults he has been subject to in the days following the act he is accused of.
“The UCI would like to reaffirm its unqualified commitment to fighting against all forms of discrimination, whatever the reasons behind it. Our federation, via its constitution, its code of ethics and its various programmes, upholds and promotes the principles of inclusion and the respect for others.”
Bouhanni said he has been “putting up with this for a long time and I’ve kept silent” but added he won’t let it go anymore.
The 30-year-old plans to report those sending the racist abuse to the authorities.
Jake Stewart also posted online after Bouhanni revealed the racist attacks, with the Brit saying he stands united with Bouhanni.