Lars Boom has been handed a one-month ban by the UCI following an altercation at the Tour of Norway in May, his LottoNL-Jumbo team have confirmed. The ban was issued with immediate effect and rules him out of racing until August 2.
Boom was expelled from the Tour of Norway on stage 2 after he was caught punching Sport Vlaanderen’s Preben Van Hecke. Boom was initially defiant, saying: "He was on my wheel and I almost crashed, so I got a little hot-headed. I don't want to crash, especially when an idiot does something like that.”
However, he later apologised to fans and the organisers for his action, while LottoNL-Jumbo said that they would deal with the issue internally. Boom remained in Norway and went on to ride the Tour des Fjords and the Hammer Stavanger races and he recently competed at the Criterium du Dauphine and the Dutch national championships.
Boom had been named as a reserve rider for LottoNL-Jumbo at the Tour de France but he has now been removed from that list. Boom is also set to miss the GP Cerami and the Prudential RideLondon.
Boom is not the first to be banned following a physical altercation during a race. Last season, Andrey Grivko was handed a 45-day suspension after he punched Marcel Kittel during a stage of the Dubai Tour. In 2014, Gianluca Brambilla and Ivan Rovny were thrown out of the Vuelta a Espana for fighting, though both riders escaped further punishment for their actions.
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