Wout van Aert risks one-minute penalty after littering fine

SONDERBORG DENMARK JULY 03 Wout Van Aert of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma Yellow Leader Jersey competes during the 109th Tour de France 2022 Stage 3 a 182km stage from Vejle to Snderborg TDF2022 WorldTour on July 03 2022 in Sonderborg Denmark Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images
Wout van Aert on Stage 3 of the Tour de France in Denmark (Image credit: Getty images)

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) received a fine for littering on stage 3 of the Tour de France in Denmark, and the yellow jersey now risks a time penalty of one-minute in the event of a second offence.

Van Aert was fined 500 CHF for littering in a non-designated zone during the stage from Vejle to Sønderborg, where he finished second behind Dylan Groenewegen (BikeExchange-Jayco). 

While not a huge problem in terms of finances – Van Aert hauled in several times this amount from his performance on stage 3 alone – the penalty in the event of a second offence will be more significant.

Punitive action escalates with each repeat violation and a second such infraction would cost Van Aert 1,000 CHF but, perhaps more significantly, would result in a one minute time penalty being imposed.

A third offence can be punished with disqualification from the race.  

Van Aert is not targeting the overall classification at the race but he currently holds the race leader's yellow jersey, which he hopes to retain on behalf of his team leader Primož Roglič, one of the favourites to fight for the maillot jaune later in the competition.

Van Aert was not the only rider punished for littering on stage 3 - Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates), Lennard Kämna (Bora-Hansgrohe), Mikkel Honoré (QuickStep-AlphaVinyl) and Silvan Dillier (Alpecin-Fenix) also were also found guilty of the same infraction. All riders were fined 500 CHF and docked 25 UCI points.

Quinn Simmons (Trek-Segafredo), meanwhile, was penalised for riding off the the official race course on stage 3. As a well as a fine of 500 CHF and the deduction of 25 UCI points, Simmons was penalised 20 seconds in the overall standings, 40 points in the points competition and one point in the king of the mountains classification.

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Katy is a freelance writer and journalist. She has published interviews, features, and previews in Cycling News, Rouleur, Cyclist Magazine and the British Continental. She also writes opinion pieces on her own website writebikerepeat.com and is a frequent contributor to the Quicklink podcast. 

She is obsessed with the narrative element of bike racing, from the bigger picture to the individual stories. She is a cyclocross nut who is 5% Belgian and wonders if this entitles her to citizenship. Her favourite races are Ronde van Vlaanderen and La Vuelta.

In her spare time Katy is a published short fiction and non-fiction author.