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German coach issued warning in Olympics racism incident

Cycling at the Tokyo Olympics
Cycling at the Tokyo Olympics (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

German sports director Patrick Moster has been given a warning by the German Cycling Federation (BDR) after shouting a racist insult during the Tokyo Olympic Games individual time trial last week.

Moster was sent home by the BDR and suspended by the UCI after he could be heard shouting 'Hol die Kameltreiber' during the live broadcast, which translates as 'go catch the camel drivers', when encouraging his rider Nikias Arndt during the race. Arndt condemned the use of the racist phrase.

The UCI suspended the 54-year-old pending action from the UCI Disciplinary Commission or BDR on Friday.

According to Cyclingmagazine.de, the BDR interviewed Moster and reviewed the case of his "culturally discriminatory and completely unacceptable statements".

Moster has been taken off international duties until further notice and "will receive a qualified written warning, which will be included in the personnel file and, in the event of repetition, will lead to further legal consequences. These measures are associated with a corresponding reduction in the salary."

The federation also wants to invite two athletes from Eritrea and Algeria as well as representatives of their federations to Germany and, together with the country's top sports organisation (Deutscher Olympischer Sportbund) wants to review all of its training content and update it in light of the incident. "The 'Fit for Diversity' component, for example, should be mentioned as a positive example," the BDR said.

The BDR also further condemned Moster's actions. “The statements made by Patrick Moster are a massive violation of the values for which the BDR and sport as a whole stand: fairness, respect, tolerance and opposition to all forms of discrimination, xenophobia and racism."

"On the other hand, it had to be taken into account that in the 21 years that Patrick Moster has been employed at BDR, there has not been a single misconduct in this direction. Patrick Moster has also been involved in the integration of asylum seekers into the cycling league and through projects for the international development of aspiring cycling nations through regular joint training camps, for example with the Indian national track team in Brandenburg."

Azzedine Lagab, who represented Algeria in the time trial, confirmed on Friday that he had yet to receive an apology, telling Cyclingnews, "I was just there with no great ambitions – me, just a little amateur rider against the best in the world. I could have left the Olympics anonymously but proud of representing my country, but the German coach made me famous… and not the way I would want. "

Moster issued an apology for his statements in the press but was unable to personally apologise to the African athletes after the event because they had already departed the Olympic village.

"This personal apology has now been made electronically instead," says the BDR.