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Amstel - The Most Dangerous Race?

Gazzetta67Gazzetta67 Posts: 1,890
edited April 2010 in Pro race
Sitting watching the Amstel yesterday got me thinking of how the early editions of the Tour of Britain were quite scary with parked cars, road furniture and how the continental pro`s would not be back. Well if i were a Pro the Amstel would NOT be on my "must race" calendar. - did anyone else think the course was just an accident waiting to happen....I am glad Graham Jones pointed out the faults as he`s now the T.O.B race director. is this the most Dangerous race on the calendar or is it still riding to work in most inner cities :D answer`s on a postcard.

Posts

  • Tom ButcherTom Butcher Posts: 3,830
    It's well known for it.

    it's a hard life if you don't weaken.
  • KléberKléber Posts: 6,842
    It is a mental race, the only difference is that there's no chance risking a broken bone for the Tour of Britain whereas the Amstel is a proper classic.

    Plus whilst the street furniture is insane, most of it has police and marshals waving flags and whistling, the rolling roadblock style of the Tour of Britain doesn't manage this.
  • FJSFJS Posts: 4,820
    I disagree with the most dangerous race qualification.
    Yes, there is an enormous amount of street furniture, and much of the route uses very narrow winding roads. But because there are traffic islands all the time, and because more or less all roads in te finale are narrow, riders are concentrated all the time, and the peloton in strung out in the finale. Much more dangerous is a route with nice wide roads, and sudden street furniture, or a surprise bend/narrow road to be take by a full half asleep peloton. Twists and turns, and short steep hills, is what the Amstel Gold Race is about. It's unexpected objects that make a route dangerous. There aren't actually more crashes in the Amstel Gold Race than normal
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 56,775 Lives Here
    FJS wrote:
    I disagree with the most dangerous race qualification.
    Yes, there is an enormous amount of street furniture, and much of the route uses very narrow winding roads. But because there are traffic islands all the time, and because more or less all roads in te finale are narrow, riders are concentrated all the time, and the peloton in strung out in the finale. Much more dangerous is a route with nice wide roads, and sudden street furniture, or a surprise bend/narrow road to be take by a full half asleep peloton. Twists and turns, and short steep hills, is what the Amstel Gold Race is about. It's unexpected objects that make a route dangerous. There aren't actually more crashes in the Amstel Gold Race than normal

    Sean Kelly has in the past claimed it to be more dangerous than Roubaix.

    Either way, Dutch commisars are famously unsympathetic to any rider in their race, which hardly helps the riders' psychology.
  • BernardusBernardus Posts: 136
    No, it's not the most dangerous race. In races like Roubaix and Flanders most of the "final" starts earlier, probably 50/60 km from the finish (and it's over at 20 km from the finish) , so the last hour of the race only the lead group with the specialists is shown. Every rider behind that leading group has his own story of crashes, near crashes and mechanical failures. The "final" of the Ardennes classics only starts at about 20/25 km, a lot more riders are in that leading group. So if a guy like Mandri crashes during that final, it is live on tv. If riders like him crash in Roubaix, there's a small chance you'd hear about it.

    Also: once again Frank Schleck crashed, a rider with his bike handling skills wouldn't even think about starting in Compiegne.
  • mididoctorsmididoctors Posts: 10,274
    Bernardus wrote:
    No, it's not the most dangerous race. In races like Roubaix and Flanders most of the "final" starts earlier, probably 50/60 km from the finish (and it's over at 20 km from the finish) , so the last hour of the race only the lead group with the specialists is shown. Every rider behind that leading group has his own story of crashes, near crashes and mechanical failures. The "final" of the Ardennes classics only starts at about 20/25 km, a lot more riders are in that leading group. So if a guy like Mandri crashes during that final, it is live on tv. If riders like him crash in Roubaix, there's a small chance you'd hear about it.

    Also: once again Frank Schleck crashed, a rider with his bike handling skills wouldn't even think about starting in Compiegne.

    my take is all the field is very big going into the back end of this race... last 35km to go everybody is still there... trying to craminto those small lanes



    of note.. the crashes this year didn't happen in the final so much but more at the point when the break is being finally shut down and a controlling tempo is attempted by several teams which changes the pace in the bunch

    But roubaix has more crashes

    roubaix the crashes often happenwhen riders start going into the red trying to hold wheels , hence they become very race significant..

    thor last year...


    thinking about the classics some have late selections but few have late selections and narrow lanes full of traffic furniture and parked cars

    the parked cars are a random variable that can catch you out even if you know the road

    MSR has wide roads and the field is broken up on the cipressa enough...

    LBL tends to thin the field down through out the day as does the fleche and they have taken out the descent of the k-berg from GW

    lombardy the same

    paris tours wide roads

    flanders has a few crashes but tends to start selecting earlier than amstrel but street furniture at flanders has caught a few people out...


    I must say for a classic race Amstrel looks fairly amateur hour with all those parked cars

    I have a personnel phobia of car doors opening on me... the "door prize" as we used to call it
    "If I was a 38 year old man, I definitely wouldn't be riding a bright yellow bike with Hello Kitty disc wheels, put it that way. What we're witnessing here is the world's most high profile mid-life crisis" Afx237vi Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 pm
  • BernardusBernardus Posts: 136
    LBL tends to thin the field down through out the day as does the fleche and they have taken out the descent of the k-berg from GW

    The field at the Fleche Wallonne is never really thinned down during the day (they've changed the route a bit, so the group that sprints for victory tomorrow will probably be smaller). And just like the Amstel, LBL is often a waiting game untill the final 30 kilometers.
    I must say for a classic race Amstrel looks fairly amateur hour with all those parked cars

    I have a personnel phobia of car doors opening on me... the "door prize" as we used to call it

    That's the thing I hate most about the Amstel, how hard can it be to park your car on another street for just a few days.
  • cspcsp Posts: 777
    It may not have been Amstel Gold, but I remember a brutal crash, when a Tinkoff rider rode straight into an unattended traffic island. Anybody remember when and where this happened?
  • BernardusBernardus Posts: 136
    csp wrote:
    It may not have been Amstel Gold, but I remember a brutal crash, when a Tinkoff rider rode straight into an unattended traffic island. Anybody remember when and where this happened?

    This is probably the one you're looking for, Angel Gomez Gomez crashed into a (poorly) attended traffic island in Flanders.

    http://www.garagetv.be/video-galerij/djvensterke/Val_Angel_Gomez_Gomez_Ronde_van_Vlaanderen.aspx
  • cspcsp Posts: 777
    Bernardus wrote:
    csp wrote:
    It may not have been Amstel Gold, but I remember a brutal crash, when a Tinkoff rider rode straight into an unattended traffic island. Anybody remember when and where this happened?

    This is probably the one you're looking for, Angel Gomez Gomez crashed into a (poorly) attended traffic island in Flanders.

    http://www.garagetv.be/video-galerij/djvensterke/Val_Angel_Gomez_Gomez_Ronde_van_Vlaanderen.aspx

    That's the one, thanks.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 56,775 Lives Here
    Bernardus wrote:

    That's the thing I hate most about the Amstel, how hard can it be to park your car on another street for just a few days.

    Holland's a pretty small place. The roads are too narrow to park your car in front of your house, so you get car slots at the end of each road.

    There's literally nowhere else they can be parked.

    Also, like I've said, commissars are very unsympathetic in Holland. They'd quite happily tell a rider to sod off and not race if anyone complained.

    Amstel Gold also shows what a farce the go slow in last year's Giro stage in Milan was.
  • BernardusBernardus Posts: 136
    Bernardus wrote:

    That's the thing I hate most about the Amstel, how hard can it be to park your car on another street for just a few days.

    Holland's a pretty small place. The roads are too narrow to park your car in front of your house, so you get car slots at the end of each road.

    There's literally nowhere else they can be parked.

    I live in Holland and I've been to the hills of Limburg several times. Trust me, most people can find perfect alternatives to park the car.

    The cars that are parked in the worst spots are often owned by the people who live next to the route. Some of them use it as a form of "protesting", because they think there are too many races in the region. The region does host a lot of races*, but since the mines closed its economy is partially based on tourism. And a race like the AGR generates a lot of tourism

    * AGR, Hel v/h Mergelland, Olympia's Tour, Ster Elektrotoer, Eneco Tour, National Championships (most of the time) and a lot of amateur events.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 56,775 Lives Here
    Bernardus wrote:
    Bernardus wrote:

    That's the thing I hate most about the Amstel, how hard can it be to park your car on another street for just a few days.

    Holland's a pretty small place. The roads are too narrow to park your car in front of your house, so you get car slots at the end of each road.

    There's literally nowhere else they can be parked.

    I live in Holland and I've been to the hills of Limburg several times. Trust me, most people can find perfect alternatives to park the car.

    The cars that are parked in the worst spots are often owned by the people who live next to the route. Some of them use it as a form of "protesting", because they think there are too many races in the region. The region does host a lot of races*, but since the mines closed its economy is partially based on tourism. And a race like the AGR generates a lot of tourism

    * AGR, Hel v/h Mergelland, Olympia's Tour, Ster Elektrotoer, Eneco Tour, National Championships (most of the time) and a lot of amateur events.

    Fair enough.

    I've only ever lived in the Hague.
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