On Air Mannin Line Andy Wint | Noon - 1:00pm

Cav Forced Out of Paris-Nice

Manx cycling star Mark Cavendish and team-mate Bradley Wiggins have been forced to pull out of next week's classic Paris to Nice, the first major professional stage race of the year in Europe.

It's all down to a dispute between the organisers and the sport's governing body. The International Cycling Union has threatened to ban anyone taking part in the "race to the sun" if the event goes ahead outside I.C.U. rules.

With bans of up to six months being talked about, the Team High Road pair had no option but to withdraw, especially with the World Track Championships taking place at the Manchester Velodrome at the end of the month.

The row could have major consequences later in the season. The Amaury Sports Organisation has withdrawn the Paris-Nice race from the international calendar in a row over entry criteria for this year's Tour de France, which it also organises along with several other major races.

A.S.O. is now running the Paris-Nice as a French Cycling Federation event which the I.C.U. says is strictly against the rules.

The governing body is threatening to take measures against the French Federation plus any teams and riders who participate in the Paris-Nice.

I.C.U. President Pat McQuaid has been reported as saying they are quite prepared to ban the full field of 150 riders.

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