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Willie Smit says ProTeams treated as inferior by WorldTour pros

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Burgos-BH rider Willie Smit compares the treatment he receives in the peloton compared to when he was a WorldTour rider last year

Willie Smit has spoken out about the inferior treatment suffered by ProTeam riders, saying some members of the Vuelta a España peloton have judged him by his jersey, and not what he is capable of as a rider.

The South African is riding the Spanish Grand Tour for ProTeam Burgos-BH, the 27-year-old having previously spent two seasons riding for WorldTour outfit Katusha-Alpecin before the team folded at the end of 2019.

“So in the Vuelta I had a couple of experiences of riders telling us to move to the back because according to them we’re not high enough on the hierarchy/GC,” Smit wrote on Twitter, then going on to explain the hypocrisy as no-one minded him being at the front in last year’s Spanish Grand Tour when he was riding at WorldTour level with Katusha-Alpecin.

“I laughed and said ‘you have a problem with my shirt because when I was in Katusha I never experienced this’. Pathetic.”