Warren Barguil has been disqualified from Paris-Nice 2020 after he drafted his team car following a crash on stage one.
The race jury made the decision following the conclusion of the opening day of the French stage race, won by Bora-Hansgrohe’s Max Schachmann.
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The Arkéa-Samsic rider was also fined 200 Swiss Francs (around £160) and his sports director Yvon Caer 500 CHF over the incident.
Caer was fined an additional 500 CHF for not respecting the instructions of the race commissaires and will also have the last place in the team car convoy for stage two as the French squad look to aid Nairo Quintana’s hopes for overall victory.
With 65km to go, Warren Barguil was brought down alongside Romain Bardet, with the Ag2r La Mondiale rider left clutching his elbow before gingerly getting back on his bike.
Barguil looked in rough shape as he lay sprawled out on the tarmac before he was quickly attended to by team staff. Eventually, he got up and remounted, then pedalling slowly behind his team car as the race went up the road ahead.
He then got off his bike, seemingly to abandon the race, before giving some choice words to the tv moto that had stopped to capture the moment, with the Frenchman then getting back on his bike and persisting.
Barguil eventually finished fourth last on the stage in 132nd, nearly 15 minutes down.
At the 2019 Yorkshire Worlds, the Netherlands’ Nils Eekhoff won the men’s U23 road race before being disqualified for drafting behind his team car.
Instead, Italy’s Samuele Battistella was awarded the victory in what was a hotly debated moment of the championships.
Paris-Nice continues until next Sunday, with many top riders arriving in Paris-Nice following the cancellation of Italy’s March races, including Tirreno-Adriatico, due to the developing coronavirus outbreak.