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Cofidis’ Tony Gallopin takes lead at Tour de l’Ain after Morabito relegated

There was controversy at the finish line Friday in the 164.5km third stage at the Tour de l’Ain

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There was controversy at the finish line Friday in the 164.5km third stage at the Tour de l’Ain in France when race judges relegated Steve Morabito (BMC) for going the wrong way in the closing kilometers.

Morabito and two others were relegated for riding on what race judges say was the wrong way around a traffic circle. Morabito had won the stage and was poised to take the race leader’s jersey until the jury overturned the result.

“I attacked to the left side, got a good gap and stayed away to the finish,” Morabito said in a team release. “After the race, they told me I was supposed to go to the right around the roundabout. The road was not closed to the left and even the motorbikes were going that way. I was feeling good today, but not now.”

Maxime Bouet (Ag2r), who crossed the line second, was awarded the victory. Tony Gallopin (Cofidis), who was awarded third in the stage, takes the leader’s jersey.

Gallopin leads Greg Van Avermaet (Omega-Lotto) by two second, with Bouet slotting into third at six seconds back. Prologue winner Haimar Zubeldia (RadioShack) is fourth at seven seconds adrift.

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