Romain Bardet disqualified from Paris-Nice for taking car tow

Romain Bardet has been thrown out of Paris-Nice after race commissaires rule that the Frenchman took an illegal car tow when returning to the peloton after a crash.

(Image credit: Watson)

Romain Bardet has been disqualified from Paris-Nice for taking shelter behind his team car when attempting to rejoin the group he was in following a crash.

The AG2R La Mondiale crashed late on in the opening stage of the Race to the Sun, but as he successfully returned to the chasing group he was part of, he was aided in his efforts by being protected from the wind by his team's car, thus enabling him to fall into the vehicle's slipstream.

Afterwards, the race jury ruled that the 26-year-old was to be disqualified.

The Frenchman had a frustrating day in the saddle. When FDJ - who won the race through Arnaud Dèmare - split the race after 40km and causing echelons, Bardet found himself in the fourth group on the road.

He was able to join the group containing most of the GC riders, but suffered another crash with Michael Schar (BMC Racing), Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) and Trek-Segafredo duo John Degenkolb and Jarlinson Pantano as the race reached its climax.

Sporting cuts to his knee, it was when he was chasing back to the second group on the road once more that Bardet took too many illegal tows, of which was captured by the TV helicopters.

Bardet is scheduled to be next in action at the Vuelta al Pais Vasco, starting on April 3.

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Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.

Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.