Chris Froome of Great Britain and Team Sky shakes hands with five times Tour winner Bernard Hinault (R) after retaining the race leaders yellow jersey on the podium following the 146km stage nineteen of Le Tour de France from Albertville to Saint-Gervais
Team Sky have hit out at Bernard Hinault after the five-time Tour de France winner called for riders to strike if defending champion Chris Froome, who is under investigation over an adverse doping test, takes part in this year's race.
Froome tested positive for excessive levels of the asthma drug Salbutamol following a urine sample at last year's Vuelta a Espana but denies any wrongdoing.
Hinault has previously said that Froome should not have been allowed to compete at the Giro d'Italia, which he won to complete a Grand Tour grand slam.
Team Sky have now released a statement addressing Hinault’s comments, calling them 'uneducated'.
“It is disappointing that Bernard Hinault has, once again, repeated factually incorrect comments about a case he clearly does not understand," Team Sky said in a press release.
“His comments are irresponsible and ill-informed. Chris has not had a positive test, rather an adverse analytical finding for a prescribed asthma medication. As an ex-rider himself, Bernard will appreciate the need for fairness for each and every athlete. And at the current time, Chris is entitled to race.
“This process would normally be confidential to protect the athlete and establish the facts. Unfortunately, it was leaked. However, both Chris and the team are following the process that has been put in place by the UCI.
“It is clearly a difficult situation which no one wants resolved more quickly than Chris and the team.
Chris and Team Sky are fully-focused on the upcoming Tour de France and won’t let these uneducated comments affect our preparation for the greatest race in the world.