Wednesday 13 November 2019

Abuse towards Australian cyclist's family investigated

Kaarle McCulloch's (pictured) mother Karen and step-father Ken Bates reportedly faced a stream of insults. Photo: PA
Kaarle McCulloch's (pictured) mother Karen and step-father Ken Bates reportedly faced a stream of insults. Photo: PA

A spectator has been arrested after the family of an Australian cyclist was apparently subjected to a torrent of abuse at the Velodrome last night, Locog said.

Kaarle McCulloch's mother Karen and step-father Ken Bates reportedly faced a stream of insults during a dramatic evening which saw Team GB storm to gold at the Stratford track.

Three people were later banished from the cycling venue, one of whom was held by police, organisers confirmed.

A Locog spokesman said: "Three spectators were ejected - one of whom was arrested - for abusive behaviour at the Velodrome on Thursday evening.

"We won't tolerate abusive behaviour in our venues."

The group of fans were removed from the venue after three men and one woman apparently hurled a tirade of insults at McCulloch's relatives, who watched the 24-year-old and her partner, Anna Meares, contest the team sprint.

The couple drew mockery when the cycling duo - who claimed bronze - were beaten into third place by Britain and France, Australian newspaper The Age reported.

The arrest is the latest controversy to dog the cycling which saw five-times Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy ride to victory in the team sprint.

His team mate Philip Hindes sparked an outcry after falling from his bike in a qualifying round before apparently admitting the tumble had been deliberate - designed to prompt a rerun after a poor start.

French coach Florian Rousseau has called for a change to the rules to prevent similar antics in future competitions.

PA Media

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