Astana's Vincenzo Nibali disqualified from Vuelta a Espana after accident25 august 2015, 22:12
30th km before the finish line, Nibali ended up in a crash, which resulted in an 88-second setback. Nibali was then shown on TV being helped by the Astana Pro Team car for five seconds. Nibali pursued the main competitors for the following 20 km and finished 31st. But the judges disqualified Nibali for being towed by the car.
The cycler said that the punishment was too severe. “For what happened, I apologize to all those who are ashamed and upset for me. What happened in the Vuelta happens in every race. This does not mean that it is not wrong and that I shouldn’t go unpunished. Just that the punishment is too severe,” Nibali posted on his Facebook page.
Alexander Vinokurov, the General Manager of Kazakhstan's Astana Pro Team commented on the incident. He admitted that the Kazakhstani team violated the rules at the Vuelta. He apologized the organizers, fans and sponsors. Meanwhile, Vinokurov agreed with Nibali that the punishment was too severe.
“Disqualification of one of the race favorites prepared to compete for the red jersey does not only deprive Vuelta of its entertainment value, but also appears very harsh towards the winner of all three Grand Tours,” Vinokurov said.
Esteban Chaves of Orica-GreenEdge won the second stage of Vuelta in 3hrs 57mins 25secs. One second later Tom Dumoulin of Team Giant-Alpecin crossed the finish line. Nicolas Roche of Team Sky arrived third 9 seconds after the winner.
By Gyuzel Kamalova