Jens Verbrugghe was unable to ride his usual bike during the junior time trial at the World Cycling Championships. The Belgian, who arrived at the start with speeds that did not comply with the regulations, finished 26th almost 3 minutes from the winner with a spare bike.
Frederik Broché, technical director of the Belgian federation, explained this misadventure. “During the International Cycling Union (UCI) check two to three hours before the race, the bike was homologated. But not at the last check just before the start. Jens had to change mounts and take one of our spare bikes. Our mechanics didn’t notice anything, neither did Jens. It was a very unfortunate human error, especially for Jens.”.
Verbrugghe, penultimate to start, had assets to put forward, he who had won silver at the last Euro. “His bike then went for service and a 53t chainring was fitted, instead of a 52t chainring, which is allowed in juniors but increasingly rare on the market. Maybe the dealer installed a standard chainring and no one saw it afterwards”said Paperback.
Indeed, neither the rider nor the Belgian Cycling mechanics noticed it. “It obviously doesn’t have to happen but more than 120 bikes pass through the hands of our mechanics. They haven’t seen it and we haven’t checked it, you can’t do it with so many riders. It doesn’t happen. does not act as any mechanical cheat”insisted the technical director. “It’s simply human error. Nobody noticed it, not even the UCI during the control three hours before the race. It’s a tragedy for Jens and a shadow point to our good start to the World Cup. ”