Rob Ruijgh on Amstel disqualification: "It's ridiculous!"
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Monday, April 18, 2011

Rob Ruijgh on Amstel disqualification: "It's ridiculous!"

by Jered Gruber at 5:02 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Vacansoleil rider angry over harsh ruling from a fellow Limburger

Rob RuijghYesterday's wonderful edition of the Amstel Gold Race was not without its controversies. Vacansoleil-DCM rider, Rob Ruijgh, racing on his home roads of Limburg, was disqualified during yesterday's race for getting assistance from his team car.

The Limburger was livid and refused at first to leave the race, but when the race juror threatened sanctions on his Vacansoleil team, the Dutchman bowed out.

Afterwards, the angry Ruijgh explained the situation to Sportwereld.

The 24 year old gave a wheel to his teammate, Marco Marcato, after the Italian had flatted, then "the neutral car drove right past me."

Eventually, the Vacansoleil team car arrived on the scene, but the race was well down the road. It was in this critical moment that the young rider and his team employed a common tactic, which bends the rules a fair bit, but allows a rider to get back into the race, who otherwise would never have a chance - the on-the-move bike service.

"When I finally got another wheel from my team manager, the mechanic helped me from the car to adjust my brakes and shifting. In doing so, he naturally helped me along."

Unfortunately, a race juror saw everything and quickly handed down the harsh penalty.

The juror contended that it was too much help from the car, but Ruijgh couldn't get by a simple fact: "He was a juror from this region no less. You only have your countrymen!"

In the moments following the ruling, Ruijgh's anger got the better of him, and he continued riding, dreaming…

"I had a goal: I wanted to be the first winner to end up disqualified on the Cauberg."

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