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01-07-2024 | Frank Jansen

Winner Kirchmair disqualified in Dreiländergiro

Former world champion and reigning European champion gran fondo Stefan Kirchmair thought he had secured the win in the Dreiländergiro. However, he celebrated too soon, as the jury disqualified the Austrian.

Dreiländergiro event
© Drieländergiro

Braking for a police car

On Strava, Kirchmair explains what happened from his perspective. In his statement, he states there was sometimes heavy traffic on the route, which was ultimately the reason for his disqualification: "In Zernez, there was a traffic jam with cars, and just as things were getting back on track, there was a predicament with a police car that braked so hard right in front of me that I had no choice but to swerve to the left and drive past the car with my remaining speed while braking. The reason for the police braking was an e-scooter rider in the middle of the lane who was traveling at most 10 mph."

No medal but an interview with the jury

After an apology and a photo of his start number, Kirchmair was allowed to continue. However, at the finish, instead of the expected interview, he was summoned by the jury, leading to his disqualification. The Austrian expressed his dissatisfaction: "I hope now that there will be transparent communication that leaves no room for speculation."

German Robert Petzold capitalized on the situation and won the gran fondo. Among the women, fellow German Julia Schallau took the victory. Full results can be found here.

Kirchmair seeks sporting revenge

Kirchmair clearly disagreed with the jury's decision. After securing third place in Saturday's medio fondo in the GF Alé La Merckx (results here), he is eager for sporting revenge next Sunday in the Maratona dles Dolomites. The competition will be tough, with a very strong field of competitors at the start, including Frederic Glorieux, Pieter Frolichs (winner MF Fausto Coppi), Marmotte winner Giuseppe Orlando, Loïc Ruffaut, Patrick Hagenaars, and former winner Tomasso Electricco.

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