Cyclist Miguel Angel Lopez slaps fan who knocked him off his bike during Giro d’Italia
A Colombian cyclist slapped a fan during a race Saturday after the two collided on the course.
Miguel Angel Lopez was nearing the end of the penultimate stage of the 2019 Giro d'Italia when a spectator, who was running along the edge of the road, collided with another fan and fell onto Lopez, according to the Associated Press.
Video of the incident shows Lopez striking the spectator, who is on sitting the ground, and then slapping a hat off the spectator's head. One of Lopez's teammates on Team Astana then helped him back onto his bike.
Lopez went on to finish 18th, nearly 2 minutes behind the stage's winner.
"I'm sorry for what happened. I was full of pure adrenaline," Lopez said, according to the Associated Press. "But there needs to be more respect for the cyclists."
Miguel Angel Lopez was knocked off by a fan in the Giro. He responded pic.twitter.com/rrhMnlgFkD
Giuseppe Martinelli, the sports director for Team Astana, was less apologetic.
"I’m only sorry that he didn’t give the spectator some more punishment," Martinelli said, according to multiple news outlets. "He deserved it for what he did."
Cycling Weekly reported that Lopez will not be punished for the incident by Union Cycliste Internationale because the governing body deemed it a "human reaction."
Pello Bilbao of Spain went on to win Saturday's stage, which began in Feltre, Italy, while Richard Carapaz of Ecuador holds a 1-minute, 54-second lead in the event overall. The final race is Sunday in Verona, Italy.
Contributing: The Associated Press
Contact Tom Schad at [email protected] or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.
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