Giro d'Italia

Giro d’Italia: UCI jury boots BikeExchange director for hitting Pieter Serry with car

The UCI jury at the Giro d'Italia has expelled BikeExchange DS Gene Bates for striking rider Pieter Serry with a team car.

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The UCI jury at the Giro d’Italia expelled Team BikeExchange director Gene Bates from the race after Bates rammed Belgian rider Pieter Serry with the team car during Thursday’s rainy stage 6.

The incident happened with 12km remaining in Thursday’s stage. Overhead cameras caught sight of Serry drifting back from the diminished peloton at the base of the stage’s final climb to San Giacomo, and just as the Belgian rider drifted back, the BikeExchange car sped up and struck Sierry from behind, knocking him off of his bicycle.

Cameras caught sight of a BikeExchange team staffer rushing over to help Serry get separated from his bicycle. Serry then gestured angrily at the BikeExchange car. He was able to remount a new bicycle and finish the stage, finishing 14:37 behind winner Gino Mäder.

After the stage the UCI jury elected to eject Bates from the race — Bates was driving the BikeExchange car at the time of the impact. The jury also levied a 2,000 CHF fine on team director Matt White, and the BikeExchange team car was relegated to the last position in the convoy for Friday’s stage 7.

After the stage Serry and the BikeExchange team released short statements online. The squad said that Bates had verbally apologized to Serry and the Deceuninck-Quick-Step team.

Serry said he was OK after the crash and thanked BikeExchange for the apology.

The race continues on Friday with a hilly 181km stage from Notaresco to Termoli.