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  • Berne Shaw

    “The road to hell is paved with good intentions” “if one does not want to see the solution, then one is effectively blind to the real solution”

    Sorry but they are attempting to appease monied powerful entities and in doing so they will not solve this horrid lethal grace problem. One
    Simply cannot mix numerous powerful heavy motorcycles and cars into a giant peloton of cyclists with increasing road furniture and increased
    Competition by teams to be at the front not just sprinters no matter how strict the so called rules.

    Look it the UCI must stand up to the monied interests and get rid of them. Lives matter. No team cars. No separate medical and neutral support cars. No more than a few motorcycles at the back and front but never among the racers never

    Have UCI cars with medical repair and spare bikes only and trained. Equipe those cars with outside advanced stabilized telephoto remote controlled gimbal videos and photos. Equipe all racers with miniature video to equalize weight. Use race radio only as a safety and repair channel not strategy. Racers then warned of upcoming dangers crashes weather alerts etc.

    Urgent stop the old thinking. Use these modern methods. They are safe and better. Wake up! As a former national class racer race director and promoter I know what it takes. But if they are appeasing the status quo the carnage will continue

    • hnow

      ‘Lives matter. No team cars. No separate medical and neutral support cars.’

      how many lives have been lost or depreciated even indirectly by team or medical or neutral support cars? compared to overall bike racing injuries?

      okay. lets not knee jerk now

      • Berne Shaw

        Missing my point entirely. The reason is not they all cause accidents it is to switch to a method that gets few vehicles and none in among the racers. This is well reasoned solution comprehensive addresses both the multiple causes and integrated solution. That is the opposite of a knee jerk. Did you actually read what I proposed? They are replaced by combination UCI multipurpose vehicles.

    • Dave

      Making it too expensive to hold races under the UCI banner would be a sure fire way of making sure nobody can get hurt at one. Pity it won’t be any use for the breakaway league which would immediately form to continue road racing without these unworkable demands.

      As a former national class race director and promoter you should know that every race organiser does not have a magic money tree in the backyard waiting to spend millions of dollars on a bespoke fleet of all-singing-all-dancing wonder cars equipped to provide every imaginable service necessary to the bike races of the 22nd century.

      Stricter rules around the number of vehicles and how they are to circulate, now there’s a workable idea. Perhaps combine it with getting UCI bureaucrats out from behind their desks at Aigle and connecting with the actual operations of the sport.

      • jules

        I participate in club races and have even once been in an official car at a UCI road race. I have experienced 1 collision between a rider and vehicle – and it was 100% the rider’s fault. what I have noticed is that drivers at races I’ve attended are more cautious than what I see at World Tour races – where motorbikes seem to be flying around and past bunches at high speed.

        why can’t they get it right at the pro level? there may be genuine reasons why it’s different, but at face value it appears to me as a lack of caution by drivers/riders in pro races.

        • Dave

          I would suggest it is the much higher number of motos present in the big European races. Even if the skill level is also higher, you’re playing with the law of averages by increasing the number of interactions.

          Cutting the size of teams in major races from nine riders to eight would help in a number of ways, most notably in making the difference between needing one team car or two to support them. Replacing the ~22 second team cars with an additional 4-5 neutral service cars would be realistic, and having a commissaire in the front passenger seat of the neutral service cars would allow a bunch of commissaire motos to be replaced, which is important for hilly stages where the race splits up into many smaller groups.

          Team cars are generally not a problem, they will usually rather put themselves into a wall or a ditch than hit riders. This can be exploited, by organising a rotating roster of teams to supply the crew for the neutral service cars instead of independent crews from the likes of Shimano. This will also likely result in a better quality service for the riders!

          The photographers are the real issue. No new rules are going to help there, the point to start will be the enforcement of the current rules.

          There’s no need to change the TV coverage arrangements, as the riders are in near complete agreement that the TV motos are rarely a problem. Deal with the lower hanging fruit first.

          • jules

            I’m sure there was a push a couple of years ago to rationalise the race photographers – replace them with a smaller number of official photographers. I recall race photographers being outraged – as you’d expect.

          • hornk

            TV motos are frequently problematic in high speed areas with tight corners. They want footage from the front but cannot corner as fast as the riders.

            • gregg boyer

              That’s why motos race like motos, they’re completely different beasts . One can corner on rails, the other can go 200 in 12 seconds . Mixing the 2 doesn’t work .
              Dumolin posted to social media, the ” motos must stop their little race ” . How much of that goes on ? Interesting to say the least . Since these two motos, were flying into a closing door, and fell off .

      • Berne Shaw

        As another former race director organizer and promoter I say yes it must be affordable and doable. That is why the General multivariate integrated approach I am proposing. If you look under the hood the monies saved by reducing all the motors team cars personnel and duplication can be coordinated and shared by the teams and UCI. It should cost far less take far fewer salaried people and be a load off of the teams and race organizers. The UCI should run it with multiple funding streams.

        The riders will be safer the race less complex they will all have a safety channel and with no more use of radio for tactics the races more exciting.

        It is a first draft proposal. Give it a chance. An integrated new approach is required.

        • Dave

          Where do you think the UCI is going to get the cash to purchase and equip numerous fleets of these cars, then fly them around the world to different races? They are skint.

          The race organisers (i.e. the UCI’s bosses) won’t be interested in paying for it when they currently get their vehicles supplied for free by sponsors (e.g. Skoda for ASO races, Honda for RCS, Subaru in Australia etc) and neither will the race teams which also have vehicle sponsors. That’s all the pieces you need to say goodbye UCI, hello ASO-RCS Super Tour.

          • Berne Shaw

            Dave we are both realists. If there is no will there will be no way. You and I actually have little or no disagreements. I think there are ways to answer all your realistic concerns or I wouldn’t waste my breath on this. The money salaries and personnel saved by consolidating current team cars and motorcycles would be used to do this. Present team cars could be used for example and used. UCI would not run this simply govern and regulate it. If the riders teams sponsors and UCI are behind it there are ways.

            Of course we can just let racers continue to be killed permanently brain damaged and repeatedly run over. That is actually what some are saying. There can be practical solutions if there is the will to find them. But by ignoring the real multiple causes of this problem it’s just going to worsen it.

      • hornk

        I would think that you could probably improve safety without new rules. Simply require all UCI sanctioned races to but up a bond, maybe 100k euros would do. If there’s an avoidable safety incident at their race the bond is forfeit. That would include events like motos crashing into riders, un-barricaded posts in the finishing straights, uncontrolled traffic on the circuit.

        Those things are all avoidable with proper planning, and the forfeit of 100k euros would serve to focus race directors minds on doing that planning. Right now it seems that there are plenty of high level race organizers who don’t take that responsibility seriously.

        • Dave

          I believe that sort of thing is called ‘insurance.’

  • Ed Goss

    ‘…why we recently adopted clear new rules governing how vehicles must be driven in races..’ – can someone point me to them? Google doesn’t seem to bring up anything – just a demand to implement them and then a statement that they had been implemented.

    • Dave

      Indeed. Rules which cannot be accessed are impossible to follow!

  • gregg boyer

    Get rid of 1/2 the motos flying about the peloton . Remember the racers are wired, i.e. bugs in their ears , They may not hear the new hi_tech and silent moto baring down on them !!! Now they’re running into one another . The road crews, police need priority . Cut non essential motos, lottery for photographers, too bad folks set up at a corner or hill . They will adapt to drones or other hi tech methods . Keep motos out of the final run ins, 5, 10, 20 Ks, or what ever is predetermined safe at that venue . BMW boxers were the norm for ever . Limit the physical size of the beasts, the BMW GS currently is damn near the size of a Fiat . This based from my saddle time, 55 years on bicycles, 350,000 miles on motos . There are too many big motos to even hint of a safe environment . Sounds extreme for sure, nut inaction for several years has produced, the inevitable deaths and major injuries . I hope those involved a fast and full recovery .

  • jules

    ok there are rules now that prohibit race motorbikes hitting riders. case closed people! problem solved.

    • Dave


      There’s still one more step to getting the problem solved – have all moto drivers write 200 lines of ‘I must not hit the race riders.’

  • Chris

    The no brainer is to put all drivers through comprehensive training and issue them with a ‘UCI drivers licence’.

  • Berne Shaw

    Boonen raises an important point keep cars and motorcycles out of peloton completely by having enough of them in front and in back. That said more is needed in addition to this idea.

    1. No motorcycles in peloton ever. Use state of art stabilized gimbals telephoto lenses for photo video. Equip all racers with small video cams if helpful for broadcast.

    2. Race radio safety channel to alert racers of danger for repairs crashes etc. but NOT for strategy.

    3. If it helps to reduce road clutter and mixing with peloton ban team cars and replace neutral support with UCI certified combo medical repair and spare bikes and equip with front and rear telephoto cameras and video stabilized.


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