By Jonny Long
Miguel Ángel López (Astana) has escaped punishment after punching a road-side spectator who caused the rider to crash during stage 20 of the Giro d'Italia 2019.
The UCI jury apparently called López's actions a "human reaction", and will not sanction the Colombian.
The UCI rules (22.2) state that an act of violence towards any person other than a rider during a race results in elimination and a 200 Swiss Franc (CHF) fine.
An act of violence towards another rider results in a 200 CHF fine and a one minute penalty, with elimination from the race only considered for "particularly serious assault".
In the final 5km as the riders climbed towards the finish line, a spectator ran alongside a group of GC riders that included López. The man was then forced into the way of the riders by another fan who was standing in front of the line of spectators.
López appears to be brought down by this spectator, with the Colombian reacting angrily, punching the spectator who is on the ground before knocking his cap off.
The Astana rider then fiddles with his chain and receives some assistance from team-mate Jan Hirt before getting back on his bike and taking up the chase back to his GC rivals.
López eventually finished 1-49 down on stage 20 winner and team-mate Pello Bilbao, who pipped Mikel Landa (Movistar) on the line, finishing in a group that also included race leader Richard Carapaz (Movistar).
Going into tomorrow's final time trial stage, López sits in sixth place on GC, 7-18 down on Carapaz.
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