Belgian cycling team bans riders from growing ‘unhygenic’ beards –

A professional cycling team has banned its riders from growing beards and told them to find new employers if they won’t shave.

Belgium’s Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise has imposed the crackdown on facial hair to protect “the elegance of cycling”.

The Flemish team’s sporting director is Walter Planckaert, a former champion of the Tour of Flanders.

He used a regular column in newspaper Het Niewsblad to blast beards as “unhygienic”.

“We are a cycling team, with riders, not motocross riders or rugby players,” Mr Planckaert wrote. “The snot and the leftover food in the beard of a rider in the middle of the race is dirty.”


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