Jumbo-Visma’s Wout van Aert seemed on the employment tribunal court docket in Mechelen, close to Antwerp, Belgium, on Tuesday, as his former Veranda’s Willems-Crelan group supervisor Nick Nuyens is asking for €1,110,000 in damages after Van Aert terminated his contract with the group.
Van Aert was once below contract with Sniper Biking – the Nuyens-owned retaining corporate at the back of Veranda’s Willems-Crelan – for the 2019 season, however he unilaterally terminated that deal in September 2018 whilst the squad was once negotiating its merger with Dutch group Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij.
Van Aert claimed that he knew not anything in regards to the proposed merger, which did cross forward with out Van Aert, forming the Roompot-Charles group for 2019. The Belgian was once already reduced in size to enroll in Dutch WorldTour group Jumbo-Visma in 2020, however was once ready to begin using for them a yr early after terminating his Sniper Biking contract.
Again in August 2018, Van Aert had defined how he had handiest discovered in regards to the merger after the deal have been accomplished.
“Nowadays, there was once the clicking liberate announcing that we would merged with the Roompot group,” Van Aert stated final yr. “I used to be handiest informed about that [the merger] about 5 mins ahead of the professional communiqué was once despatched out.
“Sufficient is sufficient. It is exhausting to imagine that an worker will also be handled like this within the 21st century,” he stated.
On Tuesday, in step with Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad‘s site nieuwsblad.be, Van Aert referred to as the €1,110,000 damages declare “a fully skewed quantity”.
“I’d to find it very bizarre if I used to be made to pay that, however we’re going to need to watch for the decision,” stated Van Aert, who received a level at his debut Excursion de France this yr, however then crashed out within the particular person time trial on level 13, and remains to be convalescing from his accidents.
“It wasn’t anything else to do with cash; my occupation at all times got here first. When I did not reply to their contract proposal, I stopped up in a scenario by which I did not need to to find myself,” he endured. “I used to be [going to be] positioned in a fully new group, which I had by no means selected.
“I did not like that in any respect, however I used to be by no means listened to. The way it all went resulted in an enormous breach of agree with. So there was once no different possibility for us, as speaking about it and bobbing up with a conceivable amicable answer was once not an possibility,” stated Van Aert.
The pass judgement on within the case will resolve whether or not the 25-year-old’s causes for terminating his contract have been justified, with a verdict anticipated to be delivered on November 26.