Team Sky’s Luke Rowe has said he is “gutted” at his disqualification from the Tour of Flanders today when he rode on along a bike path with around 56 kilometres remaining of the race, saying he was forced to do so to avoid crashing.
The Welsh rider, who returned to racing last month after breaking his leg in more than 20 places in August, was ordered out of today’s race by commissaires after taking to the cycle path where he had to weave through spectators before rejoining the road.
The Tour of Flanders confirmed on Twitter that he Rowe had been told to depart the race, with Team Sky saying on the same social network that it “looked like he got caught out by spectators while trying to move up ahead of the Kwaremont.”
Rowe posted a statement to Twitter following the race, which was won by Niki Terpstra of Quick Step Floors.
— Luke Rowe (@LukeRowe1990) 1 April 2018
With the race jury having warned riders beforehand to stay off roadside bike paths, some had little sympathy for him, however.
Do not agree, this shows that you had plenty of room and time to make another decision - at the cost of positions, the rules are interpreted fine on this. The rules are harsh and not followed through equally, but this is a valid DQ. pic.twitter.com/VQLtxBbgEA
— René (@RenAigu) April 1, 2018
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.