Cavendish jeered and sprayed with urine during Tour de France time trial
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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Cavendish jeered and sprayed with urine during Tour de France time trial

by VeloNation Press at 8:52 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France
 
Backlash likely related to Veelers crash yesterday

Mark CavendishFollowing his clash with Argos Shimano’s Tom Veelers yesterday, Mark Cavendish was on the receiving end of some abuse today by some spectators on the route of the stage eleven time trial at the Tour de France, with insults and urine being hurled at him.

The bizarre behaviour was first revealed by his team-mate Jermoe Pineau on Twitter, and later confirmed by the Omega Pharma Quick Step squad.

“Yesterday I was very proud to be on my roads and encouraged like that but today I am ashamed,” said Frenchman Pineau. “I’m ashamed that my friend @MarkCavendish told me that he was whistled at and even sprayed with urine during the entire ride. It’s scandalous."

It seems likely that the incident was related to the spectators’ reaction to the Veelers crash yesterday. The latter dropped off the leadout train as the sprint started, drifting slightly right. Cavendish was going around his outside and clashed with him, with his shoulder hitting the Dutchman’s arm and sending him to the ground. Several commentators predicted that he would be disqualified from his third place.

After viewing replays, the jury eventually ruled that Cavendish was not at fault and would not be sanctioned. The Briton later apologised to Veelers by telephone.

Omega Pharma team CEO Patrick Lefevere told AFP that he believed yesterday’s clash was the reason. “Probably some spectators were not very pleased with what happened yesterday and they yelled to him and then one other idiot threw urine at him,” he said.

“Mark is really disappointed because he thinks he didn’t deserve this.”

Omega Pharma chief Marc Cooke was far from impressed at today’s news, as he made clear on Twitter. “I am really pissed off with the reactions to our champion @MarkCavendish,” he wrote.

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