Sport Cycling: Trek-Segafredo suspend Simmons after controversial tweet

12:06  01 october  2020
12:06  01 october  2020 Source:   reuters.com

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Simmons ’ response set off a firestorm on social media, further dragging a brand, Trek, that has already been in hot water with some over its decision to continue selling bikes to American police. Trek - Segafredo immediately responded on Twitter, denouncing Simmons ’ comments.

Trek - Segafredo announced on Monday that they have suspended Colombian Jarlinson Pantano after the 30-year-old was informed of an adverse analytical finding for the blood boosting drug Erythropoietin (EPO) in an out-of-competition doping control carried out on February 26 by the Cycling Anti-Doping

(Reuters) - Trek-Segafredo have suspended junior world champion Quinn Simmons after he made "divisive, incendiary, and detrimental" statements online, the WorldTour team said.

a close up of a bicycle: FILE PHOTO: Tour de France - Trek-Segafredo Training © Reuters/CHRISTIAN HARTMANN FILE PHOTO: Tour de France - Trek-Segafredo Training

The 19-year-old American's response to a tweet about U.S. President Donald Trump triggered backlash on social media, with people calling for a boycott of the bike brand.

In a post on Twitter, cycling journalist Jose Been said: "My dear American friends, I hope this horrible presidency ends for you. And for us as (former?) allies too.

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Trek - Segafredo . 629,009 likes · 9,056 talking about this. A global team, racing together to share cycling with the world. We are invested in the future Trek - Segafredo is a UCI men's and women’s road cycling team with a roster of 27 men and 14 women rid

Trek – Segafredo (UCI team code: TFS) is a professional road bicycle racing team at UCI WorldTeam level licensed in the United States. Formerly RadioShack–Nissan, in 2014

"If you follow me and support Trump, you can go. There is zero excuse to follow or vote for the vile, horrible man," Been added, to which Simmons replied with a hand-waving emoji with a Black skin tone.

Trek-Segafredo condemned Simmons' comments, saying they valued inclusivity and diversity.

"While we support the right to free speech, we will hold people accountable for their words and actions," the team said in a statement.

"Regrettably, Simmons made statements online that we feel are divisive, incendiary, and detrimental to the team, professional cycling, its fans, and the positive future we hope to help create for the sport."

"In response, he will not be racing for Trek-Segafredo until further notice."

Simmons joined the World Tour team this year after winning the 2019 junior road world championship.

(Reporting by Arvind Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

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