Quinn Simmons into negative numbers in the Tour’s sprint and KOM competitions

The Tour de France debutant was in hot water for a brief visit to some roadside grass.

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After three stages of the 2022 Tour de France, Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) leads the race for the green jersey, as well as the race overall. With 107 points, he’s just ahead of stage 2 winner Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) and looks to be on track for his goal of winning green in Paris.

There’s something interesting happening at the other end of the points classification tally though, too. Beneath the 41 riders who have scored at least one point in the Tour so far (and below the 134 other riders who are yet to score any points) lies America’s Quinn Simmons (Trek-Segafredo), on -40 points.

A chart showing the points classification after stage 3, courtesy of bikechart.cc.

It’s a similar story in the KOM classification. After three stages, just one rider has accumulated points in the battle for polka dots: Denmark’s Magnus Cort who was first across all six Cat 4 climbs in the Tour so far, earning himself six points and the polka jersey as the race leaves his homeland and heads to France.

The only other rider on the leaderboard so far is Simmons, on -1 point.

Graphic: bikechart.cc

So what’s going on here? Well, it’s all down to the following incident which happened at just under 20 km to go on stage 3. Watch as Simmons rides up the grass on the left-hand side of the peloton to improve his position:

As a result of his little excursion, Simmons was cited in the race jury’s post-stage report for breaking Article 2.12.007 of the UCI rules: “Use of sidewalks, paths or bike lanes”. The Tour debutant was fined 500 Swiss Francs, docked 25 points in the UCI classification, and given penalties of 20 seconds on GC, 40 points in the points classification, and one point in the KOM classification.

None of it will really matter – the former junior world champ isn’t targeting the GC or the points classification. And while he might be interested in challenging for the KOM jersey – he’s won that competition at Tirreno-Adriatico and the Tour de Suisse this season – one point is very unlikely to make a difference. One point is the equivalent of winning a single Cat 4 climb in a Tour that has a stack of much bigger climbs still to come.

Still, you’ve got to think Simmons won’t be trying to pull a move like that again any time soon, as innocuous as it might have been.

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