Team Sky's Gianni Moscon attended an 11-hour UCI disciplinary commission hearing in Geneva on Monday but officials opted to adjourn the case without issuing a final verdict, as they continue to investigate allegations of "dangerous behaviour" at the Tre Valli Varesine race last year.
Groupama-FDJ rider Sébastien Reichenbach suffered a fractured elbow and hip in a mid-race crash during the Italian race and claimed that Moscon "intentionally put me on the ground". Reichenbach maintains that Moscon deliberately caused the crash as retribution for his part in highlighting how the Team Sky rider had racially abused his then teammate Kevin Reza during the Tour de Romandie in April.
UCI rules allow for a ban from one to six months for incidents between riders involving 'behaving in a violent manner' if a guilty verdict is reached.
Moscon has denied any wrongdoing but is under intense scrutiny after the Tour de Romandie incident and his disqualification from the UCI Road World Championships for taking a tow from the Italian team car.
"The accusations are very serious and they've got to explain and justify them," Moscon said last October as the accusations emerged. "My name has been damaged by what they wrote. I've got no intention to let anything go this time."
Reichenbach confirmed in late December that the UCI had taken his testimony and the statements of other riders who witnessed the crash.
"It was intentional. Several riders saw the action and are ready to provide testimony on my behalf," Reichenbach told Swiss newspaper Le Nouvelliste. "He deliberately threw himself against me. On a descent, the accident could have had even more serious consequences. My team, FDJ, has encouraged me to file a complaint. They will support me."
According to a report in La Gazzetta dello Sport, confirmed to Cyclingnews via another source, Moscon travelled to Geneva on Sunday evening after finishing 41st at Paris-Roubaix, and spent the day in a conference room near Geneva airport.
He was reportedly accompanied by Team Sky staff and lawyers, plus a consultant who had studied the details of the incident. It seems that French rider Kenny Elissonde, who raced for FDJ for six years before joining Team Sky in 2017, also testified.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport Italian riders Nicola Gaffurini and Marco Zamparella were also questioned after being called as witnesses by Moscon. Reichenbach also attended at least part of the hearing. He made a delayed start to his 2018 season due to his injuries but recently rode the Volta a Catalunya and could be part of the Groupama-FDJ team that supports Thibaut Pinot at the Giro d'Italia.
Soon after his crash, Reichenbach made an appeal for other witnesses and possible video footage of the incident but it is unclear if any were found.
He headed home after the hearing and will now take a break from racing after an intense spring Classics campaign that failed to live up to expectations after his fifth place at last year's Paris-Roubaix. His best result was eighth at E3 Harelbeke but he struggled to be competitive in the bigger Classics, finishing 21st at the Tour of Flanders and 41st at at Paris-Roubaix.
Moscon was due to ride La Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège but will now enjoy time off the bike before building up for the second half of the season and perhaps a debut at the Tour de France.
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month*
Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Thank you for signing up to Cycling News. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.