Tour – Enforce the Rules or Not

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Man, how about that Tour stage.  Pretty crazy.  Richie Port plowing into the back of a camera motorcycle then Chris Froome completely going insane and decides to leave his bike (broken I assume) and start running up the Ventoux.

I have no idea if there is a chance they can make a fair decision here.  I am pretty sure that you have to be with your bicycle at all times in all bike racing.  It is a pretty well known rule.  I’ve known that rule nearly since birth.  I’m sure Chris Froome knows it when he’s not out of his mind in panic.

CVV, Bob, Phil and Paul seem to think that there needs to be an exception for this situation.  I don’t see how that would be fair to anyone.

I agree is is total bullshit, but what time do you give to TJ or Adam Yates, or the other guys held up by the crash too.  Does everyone get the same time?

What if it was another rider instead of the camera motorcycle that Ritchie ran into.  It would be just business as usual.   Riders run into spectators at the Tour de France.  And obviously now, motorcycles get held up by spectators too.  It isn’t like the riders are already pissed off about the danger.

If the rules are enforced, then Froome will be disqualified from the race.  That would be a shame and completely unfair.  But being fair in this situation isn’t a possibility.  No one is going to be happy whatever happens.  But, it is bike racing and shit happens.  It will be really interesting now the race deals with this fiasco.

Chris Froome decided to abandon his bicycle, placing against the motorcycle and then takes off running.

Chris Froome decided to abandon his bicycle, placing against the motorcycle and then loses his mind and takes off running.

You don't see this very often? Or ever. Pretty crazy.

You don’t see this very often? Or ever. Pretty crazy.


67 thoughts on “Tour – Enforce the Rules or Not

  1. Carl Sundquist

    If the race jury takes the gc time from the location of the incident, shouldn’t that omit what happened later (Froome advancing without a bike)?

  2. Wildcat

    Woah! Total spoiler there indeed Steve. Not everyone gets to sit at home at 10am on a Thursday and watch the live stream.

  3. michael nyberg

    he didn’t advance himself so whats the big deal about running? If Yates got ST for a 1k banner falling then Froome needs to get ST at 1km due to organizers not keeping the course safe.

    DQ Him? That would be complete BS. Sky will pull out of the race (and maybe cycling).

  4. Sean YD

    The clip of Porte hitting the moto and Froome running will be all over the national news before you get off work. Again, this is 2016. If you don’t want to know, don’t get online.

  5. Carl Sundquist

    This is a cycling based website, published during the Tour. You should not expect otherwise.

  6. hubcap diamondstar

    whining about spoilers? you’re on the internet and just clicked on a link with the word ‘tour’ clearly in it.

  7. Krakatoa East of Java

    No way can you DQ the Yellow Jersey for this. If I were sitting in 2nd place overall (and I ended up winning due to this), I would not accept the GC win under those conditions. NO WAY. Uh uh.

    The most appropriate solution is a time penalty. Bump him down to 2nd position and force him to fight his way back into yellow. I can’t believe (in this age of earbud radios and live TV feeds in the cars) his DS didn’t tell him to get the fuck back to his bike… STAT!

  8. Carl Sundquist

    If stage results remain as they happened live, he did advance himself by reducing his time loss via moving closer to the finish line without his bike rather than staying at the scene and waiting for a new bike (or continuing to run with his damaged bike). Not that I feel that is a reasonable way to handle the situation, but if going strictly by the rules there he would incur a penalty.

    P.S. I think the UCI should return Froome’s 200 Swiss franc penalty for smacking the spectator last week.

  9. Krakatoa East of Java

    Once we calm down, we need to have another serious discussion about carbon fiber. What the FUCK? These bikes break all the fucking time. So often, that the moto photographers deliberately choose not to aim the camera at the broken bikes.

    But I get it… Once you’ve got your manufacturing process dialed-in (and mastered), carbon is a cash cow. They can crank these frames out much faster than hand-welding metal, but they still get to position them as “bleeding-edge tech” and charge >$10,000 per bike. The profit margins on carbon bikes are WAY higher than they ever were in the past. Why do we (the market) let it happen?

  10. Carl Sundquist

    There was a brief clip showing him running with his bike rolling alongside him and then he dropped it against one of the barricades and kept running. Who knows of the wheels were rolling freely or damaged and rubbing.

  11. numbnuts

    carbon’s sht, fatigue limit can suck on it in comparison to Ti… ride Ti, its true.

  12. numbnuts

    Why do we (the market) let it happen?

    — that’s my question as well, fools we are for promoting some of the sht that is out there now a days… there’s lots of crap out there now a days…

  13. Krakatoa East of Java

    Awesome homage to when Alexi willfully chose to dismount and carry his bike (over his head) in victory at Morgul-Bismark just a few years prior at Coors Classic. People thought he was a prick for that move, but it was the first time he’d ever truly kicked all their asses. I thought it was great.

  14. CurtloDude

    a moving motorcycle slammed into Froome’s bike. A super thin-walled aluminum bike would have broke too, no? Good gravy. Carbon is for lightness. Not protection from a motorcycle hitting it.

  15. Steve Tilford Post author

    michael – Froome did “advance himself” because he was running without a bicycle. Pretty much a no-no in all disciplines of the sport. The difference between this and what Adam Yates had happen was this was a mountain top finish, so all riders get the same time as when they cross the line. There is no 3 km rule here.

  16. numbnuts

    I was out mtbing last day on some technical stuff, just a quick one hour loop. Brought my buddy along who rides a carbon bike with carbon wheels for his XC mtb, he’s also a top 10 DH mtber. I said, man… you’re gonna bust that stuff on these trails as they were pretty technical. Sure enough, he busted up his wheel and his arm.. I don’t ride carbon anymore, broke enough carbon stuff…

  17. Charlie

    And yet you have the time to troll another person’s blog? If you don’t want to know what happened, stay away from the places where you know you will find out.

  18. Krakatoa East of Java

    Aluminium is shit too! Titanium or steel would have been fine. At the very least, he could have grabbed his bike and (even though slightly bent) at least made some forward progress. The bike would not have broken the way that a carbon one would / did.

  19. mech9

    “What if it was another rider instead of the camera motorcycle that Ritchie ran into. It would be just business as usual. ”

    It wasn’t another rider though. It was the yellow jersey. Their decision is based on the Jersey not froome.

    The person who got really screwed here was Porte. He was the only one that looked comfy climbing and matching and even flying with froome. Porte was destine to make up his time loss from his flat tire in like stage 2. Instead they just kind of stick his time in no mans land.

    Solution: Giant Truck with a snowplow just hauls up the mountain in front of the leaders just snowplowing everyone out of the way. Way to keep the race safe ASO. So far we have banners falling on people, idiots in the way as usual, and crappy crowd control. You see the french police not even trying to get people away from froome and the situation. They were just standing their with their thumbs us their azz.

    Motorcyles are needed if you want all this fancy camera footage we get to watch.. Otherwise all your tv shots will be from the helicopter. The motorcycle had to stop in this case.

    Great job above turning this into a Ti is better than Al which is better than carbon debate knuckle heads. Did you not see the 2nd motorcycle run over froomes bike? That could have been made of steel, Ti, Al and still probably been f’d.

  20. Randy

    Froome said a motorcycle hit it. Would not have made any difference what the frame material was.

  21. Fausto

    The TdF facebook post this morning before the race was about spectators interfering with the race, jinx. Peter Stetina (i think it was) said it best about people just wanting to get on TV with no regard or idea of how quickly the race is moving. Look at the fool with the sign once they got started going again, he was basically running backwards into the BMC rider trying to move forward. After the moto crash you can see fans getting closer into the road to watch what is going on with no idea that the race is still coming up behind them. You spend days camping out to watch it pass by and you are too drunk and stupid to know how to behave. Giro and Vuelta are smaller races and fans seem more respectful, maybe I’m wrong. Giro often has side by side uniformed guys on the top of climbs to control the crowds before the barriers.
    1.Big story is Nairo not being able to follow Porte and Foome on the attack. 2. Also, was it fair play when Froome took a nature break after his teammates crashed on the descent? Valverde seemed upset, but you have to look at Froome as the patron. 3. Run Forest Run! Froome actually looked smoother running in cleats than when he rides head down, elbows out. 4. When he finished he should have thrown his bike on the commissars car and taken his second $200 Swiss fine.

  22. James

    Got to give Froome a break…he carried the bike for a bit but obviously he was overcome by the weight. That’s a lot to ask from those arms

  23. jpete

    Hey, just wondering WTF happened to all that hyper-fast, almost as if driven by motor, attacking cadence Froome used to have, like, just before they started checking for motors? Just me?

  24. Jason L

    Love the looks as Porte rides by Foome running after the Moto crash. What the F#?! are you doing mate, looks like your bike is f’d! and you won’t catch me with those cleats on. #wordsbetweengoodfriends

  25. Zac

    If you’re worried about spoilers, stay off the internet (or at least any cycling-oriented website and all social media).

  26. conrad

    Have to agree with Steve. It’s a bike race, not a triathlon. The rules are clear. Any self respecting ,’crosser would have known what to do. (Shoulder the bike and run like hell). That being said, the chaos of all the motors on the road is out of hand on these toad races. They should reintroduce some self sufficiency for road races. There are always crits and track races for the pure speedsters.

  27. Alex Chilton

    The other riders pretty much agreed to give him the jersey and the time. Like Bobby Roll said it was the failure of the race organizers to control the crowd, not a failure of the riders. Hell he may have been running for his life with that drunk and unruly crowd!

  28. Randy Legeai

    So I was surprised that I could not find the UCI equivalent of the USAC rule “1N10. Competitors may make no progress unaccompanied by a bicycle.” Instead, I find only “1.2.109 The rider may cross the finish line on foot, provided that has his bicycle with him.” Perhaps I missed it – the UCI rules are kind of all over the place. It looks like the officials, citing “exceptional circumstances” decided to ignore the hill-top finish rule (” 2.6.029 Articles 2.6.027 and 2.6.028 shall not apply where the finish is at the top of a hill-climb, except if the incident occurs before the climb” and gave the Froome group the same time as Mollema who, although he was slightly delayed, was the first of the group to finish. Likewise, they did the same with the chase group, giving them all the same time as Yates. As an official I would have loved to have been in the room for that discussion!

  29. mickeymcmook

    UCI Rule is 12.12.14 “attempt to be placed without having covered the entire course by bicycle”. Yes, Steve is right that Froome should have been DQ’ed as soon as he dropped his bike. But that was not gonna happen as ASO screwed the pooch with the lack of barriers and horrible management of the front of the race.

  30. jpete

    I agree, but that is a slippery slope too. What was the response when there were tacks on the road a few years back. As I recall, that cost Cadel Evans considerably. Some of this is just Shit Happens.

  31. Chris Froome

    HI THERE Tour De France Fans and Mr. Tilford Chris Froome, Alpine Orienteer Jogger here! I don’t know if you noticed everyone in the audience booing me after I was awarded a victory today on the Tour De France podium, but I think most of the viewing audience at home who speak English agree I was right to have been given the victory by the jury. A couple of things they took under consideration- first I cannot run shouldering my bicycle because it is pretty heavy and I’ve not prepared for that. Next year I’m going to have the International Minister for Sport provide me with a power meter thing for that and then I will carry it in the event of this happening again. I understand that if Naira Quintana or the minor stars crashed then nothing at all would have happened, but I want to assure you this has everything to do with Team Sky, Money, Anglophiles, Raphaphiles and Sir Davey Wavey and nothing to do with Brexit, racism or elitism.

  32. Andy W.

    One of the things that bothers me about this is the lack of personal responsibility by the trio of RP, BM, and CF. Why were they riding so close to a moto, aka drafting, that they couldn’t manoeuvre around it when it stopped suddenly? Riders move around team cars, motos, debris, and idiot fans all the time why not these three? The Quintana gruppeto coming up the road after them seemed to be able to get around the even bigger mess.
    A question for rule legal eagles. Does the race jury have the authority to nullify any rule(s) it deems necessary?

  33. SkiTownTeacher

    I’m conflicted on this one. I just read this quote from Mollema:

    “Yeah, it’s special, because normally this isn’t the rule, but they made an exception, and now I’m wondering what they will do the next time that someone else crashes, or what they would have done if I was the only one who fell? I’m curious if they would have done the same?”

    It seems like the Tour organizers continue to put themselves in bad situations by not addressing known problems until they reach the point of having caused a crisis. A situation like this has been in the offing for over a decade with increasingly excitable and rabid fans overpopulating the courses in sometimes unsafe ways.
    1. Did anyone notice the idiot with the sign who continued to run through the chaos…so determined to participate in the event that he ran through the carnage without seeming to notice the historic proportions of what was going on around him?

    2. How much were the conditions on this particular day impacted by a compression of the same number of fans onto a shortened course?

    It’s all madness…which is why we watch, and love, the Tour.

  34. KrakatoaEastofJava

    Good point. And they were going uphill. They should have been able to stop. Certainly it was on them to keep some distance between them and a moto.

  35. Wildcat

    What?? I was actually reading today’s post about liking Chris Froome. And then all the sudden the site updated. I was reading today’s post! How often does Tilly post more than once a day?? Very, very seldom.

  36. Wildcat

    No troll here. Solid Tilford blog reader. I don’t troll. Honest spoiler feeling here.

  37. Mark Riordan

    Remember the 11th Commandment – Thou shall stay off the internet until after watching today’s stage

  38. Shano

    This Froome guy completely baffles me. Who here has ever had a mechanical in a race and just dumped their bike and thought “well I’ll just finish this one running!” Unbelievable!
    Starting to wonder if he’s some genetically engineered Nexus-1 that came from a test tube in Sky laboratory and they forgot to copy race memory onto his disk drive. I liked him up until this point, alas no more Pee Wee Froomtard

  39. Redzinger

    So was the Doughboy who went down with David Summers? As everyone knows the Tour is now a complete joke, France is dying because of ISIS and the world is about to blow-up in one big fireball of hatred and climate change. But at least David Summers beat Doughboy by carrying his bike across the line. Better days . . .

  40. france Larue

    I think you should have stayed with your bike, rules are rules, the outcome would still have been the same, now people will always debate if you should have been disqualified …

  41. Jim

    Are you slightly mad?
    Why is it the responsibility of the riders to assure the distance rather than the motorcycle to stay the hell clear of them? They are RACING. Their job is to go fast, not to slow down for a motorcycle. Uphill or downhill makes no difference, they are the “show. Not the motorcycles and not the idiots alongside the road (who, BTW, are the real reason this occurred in the first place).
    To blame the three riders is just stupid.
    Even more of a question for you. With all the crowd on both sides of them, where do you propose that they go in order to get around the motor?

  42. Mark

    Sounds like you have a lot of experience of leading the Tour de France and being subjected to the pressures of wearing the yellow jersey.

  43. Moonpie

    Well you don’t seem to be sure about the rule.
    While I don’t know if you can move without a bike, you certainly have to cross the finish line with one.
    But that’s a mute point.
    They took the places of all riders affected by the fan/motorcycle caused crash. Either at the crash point or 1k point is unclear.
    They did this earlier in the race with the inflatable arch incident and NO ONE had a problem with that. This is that same external interference. They did the fair thing and put everyone in their place when this happened. Only Froome detractors have this double standard that this should not have been done.
    In fact the Quintana group likely got a break. The Froome group was stomping them badly and likely would have finished even further ahead if not for this incident.

  44. Steve Tilford Post author

    I know the rule. It is here – 14. Wilful deviation from the course, attempt to be
    placed without having covered the ENTIRE COURSE
    by bicycle, resuming the race after having
    accepted a lift in a vehicle or on a motorbike.

    There is only one sanction, disqualification.

  45. Joe C

    From what I read, yes. ASO only says you have to finish with a bike; nothing about advancing with it. I’ve been wrong before, and the internet does lie.

  46. mike

    Slow down the attack to stay away from the motorcycle? Not going to happen. The problem was compounded by four motorcycles in front of them, not one.

  47. mike

    Ten feet up the road? Twenty feet? how far can you walk/run if your team car stops in front of you?

  48. Uncle Slammy

    I’m baffled at Tilford going for the strict interpretation of the rules here as he is ALWAYS in the grey area… If Froome got dq’d he’d most likely be posting about how this TDF outcome will be tarnished as they dq’d the presumptive leader/winner and how the situation was the fault of fans and motor bikes… Maybe a good start would be to look at the rulebook that applies to the TDF?
    I feel bad for little Nairo. He’s smaller than most women and was probably hanging on to the moto to prevent getting squashed like a bug. He was pedaling and didn’t appear to gain advantage. I’d like to think he self reported himself after the race but I’m not naïve.
    Finally, euro pro cycling has always been a circus. Watching Froome choosing to run without his bike has to be the biggest clown show move I’ve ever seen. Might as well sit back guys, enjoy the show…

  49. They call me Bernie

    After watching Froome running sans bike, I get it. Brailsford is Henry Higgins to Murdochs Alfred Doolittle, and Froome is singing “the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plane” as he stares at his Garmin.
    I’m thinking Froome thinks himself as clean, merely drinking the kool-aid and taking the “vitamins” Sir David gives him.
    If only someone at Sky would record and leak those team radio convos…

  50. mark

    Everybody knows that the ASO / race jury are granting exceptions from the rules here. Imagine the caos that would ensure if they kicked out the GC leader and defending champ. You think we have a spectator problem now? The crash into the moto was directly caused by the the tour organizers lack of moving the needed barriers down the slope to the new finish line, and the lead motos and tour vehicles could not contain the crowd. Because of that, the tour organizers will therefore ignore all of the craziness that insured after their screwup, ie Froome running.


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