No Vandenbroucke at Omloop Het Volk - Mitsubishi appealed against UCI wildcard decision

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29.02.2008/Belgian rider Frank Vandenbroucke (VDB) won't start at tomorrows Omloop Het Volk. Vandenbroucke got sick during last weeks Tour of Algarve. The UCI did not give his team Mitsubishi - Jartazi a wildcard status because the Estonian team signed VDB, the team appealed against the decision. Belgian fans of Vandenbroucke are planning actions during tomorrows Omloop Het Volk.

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Will Frank Vandenbroucke start at the Tour of Flanders? ( Cyclingheroes)

Belgian rider Frank Vandenbroucke will not start at tomorrows Belgian opener "Omloop Het Volk". Vandenbroucke is feeling sick, he has a cold which is probebly caused due to bad weather at last weeks Tour of Algarve. During that Tour Vandenbroucke's form curve was rising and he was looking forward to ride "Omloop Het Volk". Yesterday Vandenbroucke trained at the route of "Omloop Het Volk" but after that he went to a doctor who told him it would be better not to start. 

In a press release the Mitsubishi - Jartazi team said: "The fact that the UCI threathens to exclude the whole team for Pro - Tour races because Frank [Vandenbroucke, editor] is part of the team is a slap in the face for the rider and person Vandenbroucke. Frank rode the Etoille de Besseges and the Tour of Algarve and shows that despite of all sorrows, he is hungry." After the UCI rejected a wildcard for Mitsubishi - Jartazi, the Estonian team appealed against the decision. In the interest of Frank and the rest of the team, the team management now hopes there soon will be a definite decision about the wildcard issue. According to the press release: "The team answers all questions asked by the team fast and accurate and gives all information as good as possible."

The Mitsubishi - Jartazi statement continued by saying that its "strange that the UCI asks our team to position themselves about things that happened years ago, especially the license incident." Vandenbroucke raced under a different name at an Italian Cyclo Sportif race in 2006. The statement continues with: "The UCI gave Frank a license last year and did not make problems against his former team at that time. That this incident suddenly is the main reason to refuse a wilcard to Mitsubishi - Jartazi is hard to understand for us..."

Belgian fans of Frank Vandenbroucke will protest against the refusal to give Mitsubishi - Jartazi a wildcard at tomorrows "Omloop Het Volk". The VDB fans demand that Vandenbroucke will be allowed to race the Tour of Flanders.

Team manager Patrick Stallaert hopes the team will receive a definite decision by the UCI about the wildcard status of the team this week.

Frank Vandenboucke will be replaced by Dutch rider Jens Mouris at tomorrows "Omloop Het Volk".

Mitsubishi - Jartazi for Omloop Het Volk: Criquielion, Mikhaylov, Nevens, Van Dijk, Van Mingeroet, Mouris and Verheyen.

If Vandebroucke's recovery is going well, he might start at Sundays Kuurne - Brussels Kuurne. If that would be the case its unknown which rider he will replace.

Mitsubishi - Jartazi for Kuurne - Brussels - Kuurne: Habeaux, Mikhaylov, Omloop, Van Dijk, Van Mingeroet, Van Landschoot, Vantomme and Abakoumov.

Mitsubishi for GP Samyn: Criquielion, Dressler, Habeaux, Kriit, Vandenbroucke, Striska and Verheyen. 

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