By Jonny Long
Sam Bennett has been relegated after barging another rider in the run-in to the finish line on stage nine of the Vuelta a España 2020.
The Irishman was captured on the TV helicopter barging another rider out of the way who was trying to get onto the back of his sprint train, the Deceuninck - Quick-Sprint sprinter hitting the Trek-Segafredo twice with his shoulder as he maintained his position in the bunch.
The decision took race commissaries 26 minutes before Pascal Ackermann stepped up to the podium as stage winner, with Gerben Thijssen (Lotto-Soudal) bumped up to second and Sunweb's Max Kanter now third.
The decision is said to have taken so long because the UCI decided not to send its video truck to either the Giro d'Italia or Vuelta a España in an apparent cost-cutting move, cycling's governing body not having escaped the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Bennett had timed his sprint to perfection, coming out of the cover of his lead-out late to avoid the headwind and easing past his rivals, having time to sit up and celebrate as he crossed the line.
Ackermann therefore takes his first-ever stage win at the Vuelta a España, in his first participation in the Spanish Grand Tour, while Bennett was denied a second victory at this year's race, having won the bunch sprint on stage four.
More to follow...
Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races. I'm 6'0", 26 years old, have a strong hairline and have an adequate amount of savings for someone my age. I'm very single at the minute so if you know anyone, hit me up.
Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab, reporting about students evacuating their bowels on nightclub dancefloors and consecrating their love on lecture hall floors. I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).
I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.
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