Tour de Drama: Sagan’s controversial expulsion

A day after winning stage 3 (shown here), world champion Peter Sagan was disqualified for sending Mark Cavendish into the barrier and to the hospital. Photo: Tim De Waele |

Today Velonews published two pieces on Peter Sagan’s controversial expulsion from the Tour de France:

Why the jury is wrong on Sagan’s DSQ

It is unclear who is at fault for Mark Cavendish’s crash, and this lack of clarity is precisely what makes Peter Sagan’s disqualification absurd.

In disqualifying Sagan, the race jury cited a stipulation in the UCI rulebook that allows the jury to extend the normal penalty associated with “endangering other riders” to a full disqualification in a “serious case.”

Did it meet the “serious case” standard? Such a designation assumes a certain a level of intent and aggression. Assigning motive based solely on an action is always tricky, and even more so at 70 kilometers per hour.

Let’s take a look.

We have two video angles of the incident. One from the front and one from above. The frontal shot compresses the image, just as it does in a sprint finish, so it’s difficult to discern whether two body parts in the same plane are touching. The helicopter shot misses a key moment, when the two riders first come together, because a tree gets in the way…

Read more here

Sagan disagrees with Tour de France expulsion

VITTEL, France (AFP) — World champion Peter Sagan is out of the Tour de France after accepting his disqualification for racing dangerously, as the race favorites are set for their first mountain battle Wednesday.

The 27-year-old Slovak had been hoping for a last-minute reprieve after his Bora-Hansgrohe team appealed against his sanction for what UCI jury president Philippe Mariën said was a “very serious maneuver in the sprint” at the end of Tuesday’s stage 4.

With 200 meters left, Dimension Data’s Mark Cavendish tried to pass Sagan through a small gap along the barriers. What happened next is not entirely clear from video replays, but Cavendish crashed hard into the barriers and Sagan’s right elbow went out as Cavendish was going down.

Cavendish suffered a broken shoulder blade and is also out of the race.

On Wednesday morning, Sagan said he disagrees with the UCI’s decision…

Read more here

Watch multiple camera angles from Guardian Sport

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