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Is this the start of the end?

AshbeckAshbeck Posts: 235
edited May 2015 in Pro race
The UCI are planning to start at the Giro it's extreme weather protocols. So what I'm interested in is how people see this? Is it the start of the end of the real hard men of cycling, who would happily cycle in blizzards, boiling heat, dusty air with spare tyres strapped around them, no service cars and only a packet of roll-ups to keep them going.
Are current riders becoming wimps? Is this the start of cycling being watered down so even the [mod edit] wimpy riders can win the Tour?
Or is it a good safety protocol? What's 'extreme weather' classified as?
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  • supermurph09supermurph09 Posts: 2,471
    Ashbeck wrote:
    The UCI are planning to start at the Giro it's extreme weather protocols. So what I'm interested in is how people see this? Is it the start of the end of the real hard men of cycling, who would happily cycle in blizzards, boiling heat, dusty air with spare tyres strapped around them, no service cars and only a packet of roll-ups to keep them going.
    Are current riders becoming wimps? Is this the start of cycling being watered down so even the Gok Wans can win the Tour?
    Or is it a good safety protocol? What's 'extreme weather' classified as?

    I'd think the protocols might come into play when the weather is affecting the ability to broadcast a tv signal. After all the riders are essentially mobile billboards, I'd think sponsors would be keen to delay or alter a stage so that the race can be broadcast in full, instead of no coverage, incessant Kirby wiffle waffle and then seeing someone coming around the final corner!
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    It comes down to the age old battle:

    The safety and human rights of strangers Vs your own personal gratification.

    And as we live in modern consummerist western society, the latter tends to win out. So screw 'em. I demand they race in all conditions, no matter how treacherous, so that I can have something to read on twitter at work and maybe watch five minutes of highlights of in the ad break of my other TV programs.
    And if they don't like it, there's always someone more desperate who will take their place.

    [Warning: This post may contain irony]
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • mr_pollmr_poll Posts: 1,547
    Ashbeck wrote:
    ... even the [mod edit] can win the Tour?

    What does this mean?



    Personally I dont want to see riders get hypothermia for my viewing pleasure, nor do I want a rider to chase down a mountain in the snow lose it on a hairpin and plunge 30ft down a ravine.

    Currently we have had patrons (Cancellara and Wiggo being good examples) neutralising the racing when it should be the organisers. Debate still happens around Quintana's actions at last years Giro. This should make it fairer and more transparent (if implemented fairly), time will tell.
  • The_BoyThe_Boy Posts: 3,099
    MOD EDIT Comments Removed
    Team My Man 2018: David gaudu, Pierre Latour, Romain Bardet, Thibaut pinot, Alexandre Geniez, Florian Senechal, Warren Barguil, Benoit Cosnefroy
  • milton50milton50 Posts: 3,856
    As with most things in life there is no optimal solution. Clearly riders should not be expected to cycle in searing heat for hours. Similarly if the descents are like ice rinks then the stage should be postponed/cancelled.

    The problem comes with the conditions in between. I don't really see how race conditions can be judged as either 'safe' or 'not safe,' as in reality any threshold is subjective and presumably flexible. A case in point is this year's Gent Wevelgem. The weather conditions were 'extreme' so would that be classified as 'not safe' and cancelled/postponed?

    I would argue that conditions were safe enough to ride in, but if you were the final arbiter of whether cyclists should be subjected to the potential risks, would you be able to declare it 'safe'?
  • thomthomthomthom Posts: 3,574
    I trust the decision makers as long as Fabian 'Zoolander' Cancellara isn't one of them.

    That is all.
  • salsiccia1salsiccia1 Posts: 3,715
    ThomThom wrote:
    I trust the decision makers as long as Fabian 'Zoolander' Cancellara isn't one of them.

    That is all.

    +1
    It's only a bit of sport, Mun. Relax and enjoy the racing.
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    mr_poll wrote:
    Agree but think it is right that the race commisaires make that call, or calls to neutralise parts of the race as required. At GW I know Sky tried to neutralise a part near the start and Ettix ignored the call and hammered it and ended up on the floor (think it was Eisel that called this karma).
    Point is where you have riders calling things then everything is open to interpretation, the UCI have rightly put some parameters around this so rules are clear for all and the commisaires will call it - for me this should lead to more transparency, IF the commisaires make the right calls at the right times.
    Yeah, it's like cricket with bad light. The conditions for suspending play and the protocols for it are clearly laid out and administered by the umpires. A batsman can't just decide he doesn't fancy it today.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    My view is that the race should always go ahead... if there is snow, then they will be allowed and advised to use cyclocross bikes with appropriate studded tyres... if the cars can't go up, then they won't go up and the public will wait in the mist to see the riders appearing one by one.

    They were racing in the snow when they were wearing wool, don't see why they can't do it now that they have all the latest equipment.

    If they are idiots and don't want to wear/use the appropriate equipment, then too bad for them. They'll end up in a ditch and be found frozen 48 hours later...

    Quintana was riding in a snow blizzard with no gloves at the Tirreno-Adriatico... if he's happy, good for him, had he been moaning about the cold, then the organisers could have given him a free pair of sealskinz and told him to wear them

    There is no bad weather, as they say
  • sherersherer Posts: 2,450
    it's better to have it in the hands of the UCI \ race organises. At the moment the riders have their own agenda on whether to race on or not.
  • DeVlaeminckDeVlaeminck Posts: 7,300
    My thoughts are along the lines of Ugo's except maybe not quite to the extreme. Put it this way - there are no circumstances in which races have gone ahead where I think they should have been cancelled but I don't want to see the peloton forced over the Galibier if it's actually sheet ice or a foot of snow - well actually I do want to see that but I'm willing to forego that pleasure for their safety ;)

    Part of cycling has always been about enduring the conditions - yes there have to be limits but those limits are what they are - I'm against them being drawn ever tighter and presumably a new set of protocols means that the UCI think the old way of deciding them was insufficient.
    [Castle Donington Ladies FC - going up in '22]
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    Put it this way... last year they cancelled 2 secteurs of cobbles at the TdF... under stricter rules they could have cancelled them all and we would have lost one of the best races of the modern era.

    Bad weather makes a race epic, it is a fundamental ingredient that sets cycling apart from the other sports.

    The Gent-Wevelgem was epic, the rest of the spring classics were boring... yet the G-W has potentially the most boring course
  • TaliusTalius Posts: 282
    Put it this way... last year they cancelled 2 secteurs of cobbles at the TdF... under stricter rules they could have cancelled them all and we would have lost one of the best races of the modern era.

    Bad weather makes a race epic, it is a fundamental ingredient that sets cycling apart from the other sports.

    The Gent-Wevelgem was epic, the rest of the spring classics were boring... yet the G-W has potentially the most boring course


    Last year's cobbles at TdF are a v good example of where this comes from - serious injury knocking out one of the favourites. Will have led to sponsors, teams, demanding greater care etc.

    But re other posts above, I wouldn't kid myself they give a damn about rider safety - other actions by sponsors and teams suggest not, what they care about is that they lose money/chance to win etc because bad weather introduces uncertainty and danger and the big teams stand to lose financially from that.

    Personally I think it's short sighted. It's the uncertainty, the fact that every race is so different due to weather and conditions etc, that makes us love it so much. Sanitise cycling and no one will watch it anymore.
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  • LeePatonLeePaton Posts: 353
    Talius wrote:


    Last year's cobbles at TdF are a v good example of where this comes from - serious injury knocking out one of the favourites. Will have led to sponsors, teams, demanding greater care etc.

    Froome fell before the cobbles, never even made it and Contador was just censored on them. Not on efavourite was affected by the weather.

    As for weather affecting results... Thats racing, you race the parcours in front of you, hills, puddles, sunshine whatever. Best to handle it all wins.
    It's not so much about winning, I just hate losing.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,441
    LeePaton wrote:

    As for weather affecting results... Thats racing, you race the parcours in front of you, hills, puddles, sunshine whatever. Best to handle it all wins.

    Exactly, but the power meter aficionados don't get it.. they think that the one with that churns the biggest numbers should be the winner
  • TaliusTalius Posts: 282
    LeePaton wrote:
    Talius wrote:


    Last year's cobbles at TdF are a v good example of where this comes from - serious injury knocking out one of the favourites. Will have led to sponsors, teams, demanding greater care etc.

    Froome fell before the cobbles, never even made it and Contador was just censored on them. Not on efavourite was affected by the weather.

    As for weather affecting results... Thats racing, you race the parcours in front of you, hills, puddles, sunshine whatever. Best to handle it all wins.

    That was my point, though perhaps I didn't make it clear - sponsors and big teams don't like risks, and bad weather gives risks, and even if there are risks anyway in cycling and in fact that is partly why we love it so much, every example of bad things happening on a day where people were questioning whether the race should go ahead gives more grist to the mill of those who want to protect their own interests.
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  • LeePatonLeePaton Posts: 353
    Talius wrote:

    That was my point, though perhaps I didn't make it clear - sponsors and big teams don't like risks, and bad weather gives risks, and even if there are risks anyway in cycling and in fact that is partly why we love it so much, every example of bad things happening on a day where people were questioning whether the race should go ahead gives more grist to the mill of those who want to protect their own interests.

    Well lets never race on cobbles again... They're dangerous, people crash on them.

    Or descents, seen people crash on them, even the world champ crashed on one at San Remo, can't have that need to protect him.

    Sprint finishes often see crashes, we shall bin them.

    Side winds knocked Gee off his bike last month races will have to binned during them he was a team leader!
    It's not so much about winning, I just hate losing.
  • LeePatonLeePaton Posts: 353
    LeePaton wrote:

    As for weather affecting results... Thats racing, you race the parcours in front of you, hills, puddles, sunshine whatever. Best to handle it all wins.

    Exactly, but the power meter aficionados don't get it.. they think that the one with that churns the biggest numbers should be the winner

    I shall now refer to them as the cycling equivalent of Netmums.
    It's not so much about winning, I just hate losing.
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    edited April 2015
    LeePaton wrote:

    As for weather affecting results... Thats racing, you race the parcours in front of you, hills, puddles, sunshine whatever. Best to handle it all wins.

    Exactly, but the power meter aficionados don't get it.. they think that the one with that churns the biggest numbers should be the winner
    No, it's called empathy. The sport is hard enough as it is. I don't want people risking their health unnecessarily for my enjoyment. Maybe you'd like free for all doping after all it's only banned on health grounds - and it would improve the show for you. And let's take away the helmets. Blood soaked skulls will be more titillating for you to look at than common road rash. You can tweet them with some horseshit comment about hard men and suffering - #epic

    How long have you been watching cycling? Because I was in 1995 and I saw something that I never want to see again: [Link to graphic image deleted]. I don't want to encourage it.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • LeePatonLeePaton Posts: 353
    RichN95 wrote:
    No, it's called empathy. The sport is hard enough as it is. I don't want people risking their health unnecessarily for my enjoyment. Maybe you'd like free for all doping after all it's only banned on health grounds - and it would improve the show for you. And let's take away the helmets. Blood soaked skulls will be more titillating for you to look at than common road rash. You can tweet them with some horseshit comment about hard men and suffering - #epic

    I would like to add I do agree with the bad weather gumff to a degree but already if it's dangerous it's cancelled... Like the 2013 Giro, bad snow stage cancelled but this really does open it up to abuse, Like the only good classic we had this year, Stage 5 of the Tour IMO the best stage of recent years.

    If riders will be put proper at risk on the whole then yeah lets do it, because it's really wet? cammmaaaan!!!!
    It's not so much about winning, I just hate losing.
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    LeePaton wrote:
    I would like to add I do agree with the bad weather gumff to a degree but already if it's dangerous it's cancelled... Like the 2013 Giro, bad snow stage cancelled but this really does open it up to abuse, Like the only good classic we had this year, Stage 5 of the Tour IMO the best stage of recent years.

    If riders will be put proper at risk on the whole then yeah lets do it, because it's really wet? cammmaaaan!!!!
    So in summary, you are actually in favour of the real proposals that have been put forward and not in favour of the imaginary proposals that you made up.

    Good.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,293 Lives Here
    GW was fine. Sure it was windy, but there weren't any more crashes than any normal GW, and certainly fewer than in Flèche Wallone this year.

    The lack of empathy partly comes because your average commuter does ride in conditions the pros complain about. In traffic. Not the same context sure - I don't need someone to explain why racing is more dangerous than just riding - but that's where it comes from.

    Also, so much of it is contextual that one rule isn't really appropriate.

    A one dayer for example doesn't need the same strict rules. Riders aren't forced or obliged to finish - if the race is cancelled it's the same result for them as just not finishing. As we saw with G-W, any riders who didn't fancy it found the bus fairly quickly and that was that. Those who are OK with riding the conditions will carry on and there is a natural selection process - which explains the lack of serious accidents.

    Stage races are a little different, as you'll have all riders attempting to finish regardless, rather than only those who are still OK with the conditions. Then you'll increase the chance that a rider takes unnecessary risks.

    And that's just one example.

    Stage finish uphill is different to downhill is different to flat etc etc.

    Riders deciding is a better decision. It's certainly bad enough if all the riders can agree it's not safe. If all the riders can't, it's probably not all that dangerous.
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    edited April 2015
    The lack of empathy partly comes because your average commuter does ride in conditions the pros complain about. In traffic. Not the same context sure - I don't need someone to explain why racing is more dangerous than just riding - but that's where it comes from.
    Are there many 12km 10% ice covered descents or 40 degree heatwaves in Putney?

    The conditions that commuters would cycle in would not merit a cancellation or neutralisation.
    Riders deciding is a better decision. It's certainly bad enough if all the riders can agree it's not safe. If all the riders can't, it's probably not all that dangerous.
    But different riders have different motivations. Would Cancellara have neutralised that Tour stage if Contador rather than Schleck had crashed heavily? It needs to be a decision made by someone without self-interest getting in the way.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,293 Lives Here
    RichN95 wrote:
    The lack of empathy partly comes because your average commuter does ride in conditions the pros complain about. In traffic. Not the same context sure - I don't need someone to explain why racing is more dangerous than just riding - but that's where it comes from.
    Are there many 12km 10% ice covered descents or 40 degree heatwaves in Putney?

    The conditions that commuters would cycle in would not merit a cancellation or neutralisation.

    I've ridden in the peaks below freezing (quite regularly when I was a student) and I did 4 cols in the Pyrenees in 36 degree heat, so yeah, I have done it. :|
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    RichN95 wrote:
    The lack of empathy partly comes because your average commuter does ride in conditions the pros complain about. In traffic. Not the same context sure - I don't need someone to explain why racing is more dangerous than just riding - but that's where it comes from.
    Are there many 12km 10% ice covered descents or 40 degree heatwaves in Putney?

    The conditions that commuters would cycle in would not merit a cancellation or neutralisation.

    I've ridden in the peaks below freezing (quite regularly when I was a student) and I did 4 cols in the Pyrenees in 36 degree heat, so yeah, I have done it. :|
    Not at race pace you haven't.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,293 Lives Here
    Look I cover it all in the longer post above.

    I even made it clear I get the difference in context, but that's why I reckon some fans have less empathy.

    I get that it's not the same. Take things in more context Rich. Taking stuff out of context to pick a point isn't particularly constructive.

    It's not binary, so don't turn it into a binary topic.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,293 Lives Here
    RichN95 wrote:
    But different riders have different motivations. Would Cancellara have neutralised that Tour stage if Contador rather than Schleck had crashed heavily? It needs to be a decision made by someone without self-interest getting in the way.

    Probably not. Plenty of riders were unhappy with it, but they didn't want to break ranks.

    That's part of cycling. The organisers were telling the riders to race and the riders collectively decided not to.

    What's wrong with that? Having rules about snow and 40 degree heat won't change riders not racing when they don't want to.

    The rules only prevent riders from racing when they shouldn't.
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    Look I cover it all in the longer post above.

    I even made it clear I get the difference in context, but that's why I reckon some fans have less empathy.

    I get that it's not the same. Take things in more context Rich. Taking stuff out of context to pick a point isn't particularly constructive.

    It's not binary, so don't turn it into a binary topic.
    But the whole point of this is cancellations or neutralisations would be very rare. Where there is clear danger to riders. So 40+ heat with no shade. High winds with falling branches and masonry. Unmanagable descents. Sandstorms.
    Is it really too much for you to forgo maybe a couple of days of watching cycling to minimise the chances of serious injury to participants. Do you think they deserve to be treated like every other employee in the western world with basic health and safety requirements? Or is your personal gratification of paramount importance?
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 25,479
    RichN95 wrote:
    But different riders have different motivations. Would Cancellara have neutralised that Tour stage if Contador rather than Schleck had crashed heavily? It needs to be a decision made by someone without self-interest getting in the way.

    Probably not. Plenty of riders were unhappy with it, but they didn't want to break ranks.

    That's part of cycling. The organisers were telling the riders to race and the riders collectively decided not to.

    What's wrong with that? Having rules about snow and 40 degree heat won't change riders not racing when they don't want to.

    The rules only prevent riders from racing when they shouldn't.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,293 Lives Here
    RichN95 wrote:
    Look I cover it all in the longer post above.

    I even made it clear I get the difference in context, but that's why I reckon some fans have less empathy.

    I get that it's not the same. Take things in more context Rich. Taking stuff out of context to pick a point isn't particularly constructive.

    It's not binary, so don't turn it into a binary topic.
    But the whole point of this is cancellations or neutralisations would be very rare. Where there is clear danger to riders. So 40+ heat with no shade. High winds with falling branches and masonry. Unmanagable descents. Sandstorms.
    Is it really too much for you to forgo maybe a couple of days of watching cycling to minimise the chances of serious injury to participants. Do you think they deserve to be treated like every other employee in the western world with basic health and safety requirements? Or is your personal gratification of paramount importance?

    When have I said that?

    Have a read of what I've written, understand it, and try again.

    The way it is at the moment races are cancelled or neutralised when weather is clearly dangerous - so what's the problem?
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