Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) was forced to abandon the French championship road race on Sunday in Vesoul due to a wounded hand. The Frenchman was involved in an altercation at the hotel the night before the race, which resulted in four stitches to his hand, according to a team press release.
"The night before the race, Nacer Bouhanni and his brother [Rayane] had suffered incessant noise at night from individuals present in the adjoining hotel room," read the Cofidis press release.
"Nacer asked them to stop the nuisance and was then assaulted by these alcoholic people. He was wounded in his hand and was taken to the [hospital] emergency room for four stitches. No fractures were reported."
L'Equipe reported that the altercation broke out at 4 a.m. at the hotel Ecole Valentin near Besançon, where the Cofidis team was staying ahead of the championships road race. It started with several hotel guests in a nearby room making noise. Bouhanni reportedly asked them to quiet down before a fight ensued.
According to the report, Bouhanni injured his hand after he punched one of the three in the face and broke their tooth. The sprinter was taken to Besançon Hospital where he received four stitches.
In the team press release, Cofidis went on to explain that a sleep-deprived and injured Bouhanni started the championships road race but pulled out after only three laps (40km).
Cofidis confirmed that Bouhanni's hand injury will not affect his participation in the Tour de France, set to kick off on July 2 in Mont-Saint-Michel.
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