Garmin-Sharp bikes stolen before Tour of Mediterranean’s Mont Faron stage
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Saturday, February 09, 2013

Garmin-Sharp bikes stolen before Tour of Mediterranean’s Mont Faron stage

by Shane Stokes at 4:43 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Team set to withdraw from race

Garmin SharpThe Garmin-Sharp team is facing a likely withdrawal from the Tour of the Mediterranean today following the shock realisation that sixteen race bikes were stolen overnight from the team hotel in Aix en Provence.

Mechanics discovered this morning that the team truck containing the bicycles had been broken open and the majority of its contents removed.

Team soigneur Matt Rabin made the news public, stating on Twitter that ‘unscrupulous local scallywags’ had stolen all the bikes, despite precautions taken.

The car was parked up against the back of the truck as is standard, but they moved the car & moved it back, unbelievable,” he wrote.

Garmin-Sharp climber Dan Martin had been looking forward to the Mont Faron stage but indicated that he would likely not be able to start. “Please RT. Stolen bikes. 16 brand new di2 equiped cervelo R5. Still with race numbers. #couldntmakeitup no race today then,” he tweeted.

The team’s sole chance of competing rested on the race organisation or other teams giving them bikes to use. However the situation is clearly not ideal, with the precise setup of their own bikes very difficult to replicate at such short notice.

In the last few minutes team rider Michel Kreder has indicated that such an offer was made, but the team won’t carry on. “Latest news.. Different teams want to give us bikes to race on.. But it's not the same feeling as our own bikes so we will not race today.”

The team’s riders have appealed for people to watch out for the bikes on Ebay and other such marketplace sites.

Thieves have struck other teams in the past, with Team Type I losing its bikes in March 2011. It was forced to withdraw from the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali as a result.

Today’s stage of the Tour of the Mediterranean is due to start at 12.30 local time.
 

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