Greg van Avermaet: BMC may take legal action over crash

Greg van Avermaet
Greg van Avermaet won stage 13 of this year's Tour de France

Greg van Avermaet's BMC Racing Team may take legal action against the organisers of the Clasica San Sebastian after a crash with a motorbike cost the Belgian a chance of victory.

Van Avermaet, 30, held a sizeable lead on the final climb in Spain but was knocked over by a television bike with under 10km to go and failed to finish.

The race was won by Briton Adam Yates.

"Greg was robbed and the BMC Racing Team was robbed when this happened," said team manager Jim Ochowicz.

He claimed the incident has "cost the team millions of dollars in lost publicity", adding: "We plan to explore every legal option available to us."

Greg van Avermaet tweet

Van Avermaet, who won stage 13 of this year's Tour de France, said: "It was a steep climb and the moto driver was too close to me. He ran right into the back of my bike.

"My frame was broken and my back wheel was broken. So the race was over for me.

"The bad thing is that I think I could have won the race. I had a big gap.

"It is not every year you can win a classic like San Sebastian. So this is really disappointing."

However, Yates' twin brother and team-mate Simon, who finished 14th in the race, criticised Ochowicz's comments as "disrespectful".

"You can't say things like 'we've been robbed' and 'I was going to win' when the race wasn't over," he tweeted.external-link "It just discredits the victory and I think it is quite disrespectful."

Ochowicz added: "The UCI [Union Cycliste Internationale] has been nowhere in this to resolve the problem.

"I am appalled that this could occur in a WorldTour race. This was not a sporting incident."

The UCI is investigating the crash.

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