Race cyclist sentenced for bike motor fraud

Men bend over bicycle
Scrutineers check Cyril Fontayne's bike after he was stopped for cheating in a race

Amateur rider said site where he bought motor sells '20 to 30 a month'

An amateur cyclist who fitted an electric motor to his bike for a race has been ordered to do 60 hours of community service as well as being banned from racing for five years.

Dordogne racer Cyril Fontayne, 43, was stopped in a race at Saint-Michel-de-Double, north-west of Mussidan, after being spotted in an earlier race at Eyzies where he had ‘suddenly shown amazing speed on the climbs’.

In the Saint-Michel race he and another younger racer were well ahead before he stopped with a puncture. A motor was found in the frame of the bike and a battery in the water bottle.

The case was the first time a ‘mechanical cheat’ had faced court action and only the second time a rider has been caught – the other was in Belgium – but as Fontayne, a member of SA Mussidan, was only a third category amateur racer it raised doubts about other cheats in racing.

He claimed when caught that the site where he bought the motor sold “20 to 30 a month”.

After he was stopped during the race at Saint-Michel-de-Double last October Fontayne told France Bleu Périgord radio he “didn’t do it for money” and “didn’t want to be champion of Dordogne” it was to “feel the sensation again” after having a herniated lumbar disc earlier in 2017 and not being able to race.

Fontayne had won several bonuses while racing with the bike and was found guilty of fraud by the Périgueux court. He was ordered to pay a symbolic €1 to the Fédération Française de Cyclisme and €33 to a bike club in Créon, Gironde, where he had also raced.

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