Milan-San Remo winner denies tow claims

Arnaud Deacute;mare

Arnaud Démare is the first Frenchman since Laurent Jalabert in 1995 to win La Classicissima

Milan-San Remo winner Arnaud Demare has rejected accusations he was towed by his team car during Saturday’s race.

The French rider recovered from a crash 30km from the finish to beat Britain’s Ben Swift in a sprint to the line.

But two rival riders claim the 24-year-old was towed back up to the leading group as they climbed the Cipressa.

“There are judges in cycling. If I had done something forbidden, I would have been disqualified,” Demare told French newspaper L’Equipe.

“I have done nothing wrong.”

Astana’s Eros Capecchi and Tinkoff’s Matteo Tosatto said the FDJ rider took a tow, travelling “twice our speed”.

But Demare said he only “profited from the draft of the car”, with his team also denying the allegations.

“It’s part of cycling and always has been,” he added. “They block the wind. It is not forbidden.”

Race judge Herve Borcque decided, in the absence of video of photographic evidence, not to take any action against Demare.

Last year, Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali was disqualified from the Vuelta a Espana after he was pictured being towed by a support car when trying to regain ground after a crash.

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