BMC Racing sporting director quits after Tour flop

Mon Jul 22, 2013 9:19am BST

BMC Racing Team rider Cadel Evans (L) of Australia speaks next to rider Philippe Gilbert of Belgium and sports director John Lelangue (R) during the cycling team's official presentation in Nazareth, near Ghent January 11, 2013. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

BMC Racing Team rider Cadel Evans (L) of Australia speaks next to rider Philippe Gilbert of Belgium and sports director John Lelangue (R) during the cycling team's official presentation in Nazareth, near Ghent January 11, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Francois Lenoir

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(Reuters) - BMC Racing sporting director John Lelangue has quit his post after more than six years at the helm in the wake of the team's dismal showing at the Tour de France that concluded in Paris on Sunday.

"John Lelangue is leaving the BMC Racing Team for personal reasons - effective immediately," the team said in a statement on Monday.

Australian Cadel Evans, the 2011 Tour champion, finished 39th behind British winner Chris Froome, while his American team mate Tejay van Garderen was six places further back just a year after claiming the best young rider's jersey.

Although BMC finished 12th out of the 22 teams that took part in the 21-stage race, the performance of Evans, with his worst finish in nine attempts, and Van Garderen, who took fifth place overall on the Tour last year, surprised many.

"We respect John Lelangue's decision," team president Jim Ochowicz said of the Belgian. "He will be pursuing other opportunities and challenges.

"We thank him for his contributions to the development of our team and wish him the best in the future."

(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; Editing by John O'Brien)

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