Ronde van Vlaanderen: October 18th, 2020

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The only thing I'm contrary with is the notion that WvA should have given the motorbike a wider berth, for the first reason on your list (as I too have stressed). That error to me trumps all the rest. The riders have priority, not the motorbikes, and when it comes to chosing the best line it is their prerogative. In this case the motorbike was on the right where that best line was, not to mention he should have been way further ahead/away and above all not there in that moment. Plus it caused Alaphilippe to "have to look out for something", he shouldn't have had to do.
The rider already explained what happened, it's on cyclingnews front page.

They had gainned more then 20 seconds to the peloton, so the motos had to let the riders pass. He went to the right and slowed down so they could do that.

IMO they had plenty of space to go around the motorbike in safety and they are not morons. They know and understand when a bike is letting them pass. They still chose to be very close to it. Unfortunately Alaphillipe was not paying attention.

It was just an unfortunate incident.
 
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The rider already explained what happened, it's on cyclingnews front page.

They had gainned more then 20 seconds to the peloton, so the motos had to let the riders pass. He went to the right and slowed down so they could do that.

IMO they had plenty of space to go around the motorbike in safety and they are not morons. They know and understand when a bike is letting them pass. They still chose to be very close to it. Unfortunately Alaphillipe was not paying attention.

It was just an unfortunate incident.
I think it's fair to say what the rider explained doesn't make what the motorbike did any less errant. And I'm aware of what's on the cyclingnews front page. The driver/s should have handled things completely differently, as in first speeding away and then slowing on the left, to give the whole trio ample time and space to have his/their direct position and pass without incident. Only WvA was on it, MvdP just caught on in the nick of time, whereas Alaphilippe didn't see it coming at all (should he have or not is moot, since the motorbike was in the wrong place). It really isn't so difficult to grasp.
 
If I'm driving down the road and a car in front of me slows down to stop, if I don't pay attention to what is going on in front of me I will crash into it. Guess what, it's my fault. No different with riders on bikes whether in competition or social cycling.
And you also have to stop for a red light, stay in the bikelane, give priority etc. Now guess what, bikeraces are held on a closed circuit where the riders are supposed to get the road to themselves and not have to worry about anything like that and it is the motor's job to always get out of the way.

The president of the cycling association already acknowledged the bike should not have been there.
 
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How can you say that was a rubbish race? :rolleyes:

If they would have waited until the last time Kwaremont/Paterberg everyone would have complained because of the boring predictability. Not to mention the fact that if they had waited, they'd be chasing at least one DQS rider who would have jumped sooner.
It's not their fault Ala crashed.

If you ask me two big champions went all in. Beautiful race.
They both deserved to win.
I am not taking anything away from anyone in terms of deserving the win, it's not really possible to win RVV without deserving it.

I do stand by the race being a bit rubbish. We had some small skirmishes but minimal real action which left a much bigger group than might have been anticipated hanging on for a long time. Then in one moment the race was decided because nobody is getting back MVDP and WVA (with or without Alaphillipe) and sadly we lost the wildcard element along the way that might have made for some more interesting racing in the lead group rather than two guys who knew they'd never drop each other so were happy leaving it to a sprint.

The only thing I'm contrary with is the notion that WvA should have given the motorbike a wider berth, for the first reason on your list (as I too have stressed). That error to me trumps all the rest. The riders have priority, not the motorbikes, and when it comes to chosing the best line it is their prerogative. In this case the motorbike was on the right where that best line was, not to mention he should have been way further ahead/away and above all not there in that moment. Plus it caused Alaphilippe to "have to look out for something", he shouldn't have had to do.
Completely agree that the riders need to have priority and that the bike should have been further clear but we do need to see bikes there to support groups (one of them at least was a service vehicle) and that does necessitate them being overtaken at points. It was a really unfortunate incident but along with getting more separation from the motos, riders do need to play their part with some kind of gentleman's agreement to not constantly try abuse the positioning of bikes as was the case here. For as long as riders try catch a draft from bikes they make them part of racing in a bigger way.
 
WVA pulled a fast one by waiting till the last second before swerving to the left to avoid the motor-bike. MVDP just managed to avoid a wreck, and poor ol' JA had no idea what was coming. Wout is, in my opinion, a bit of a jack-ass. He whines when things don't go the way he wants, but that's really here nor there.
The guy leading the trio knew the moto in front was basically at a standstill. He waited till the last second before swerving, no doubt wondering if the riders behind were paying attention.
Sorry for saying that, but I have the same feeling. That why I earlier said it reminded me of the Stybar accident in P-R in 2013. That time I suspected Cancellara was purposely driving the way that Styby could not avoid the crash.
 
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Completely agree that the riders need to have priority and that the bike should have been further clear but we do need to see bikes there to support groups (one of them at least was a service vehicle) and that does necessitate them being overtaken at points. It was a really unfortunate incident but along with getting more separation from the motos, riders do need to play their part with some kind of gentleman's agreement to not constantly try abuse the positioning of bikes as was the case here. For as long as riders try catch a draft from bikes they make them part of racing in a bigger way.
I don't think a "gentelman's agreement" is what's at stake here. You can't expect any rider in the final of Flanders racing in the lead for the win, to take the least optimal line simply because it's occupied by a motorbike who just happens to offer a slipstream as well.
 
Like I said when they were on the Koppenberg, Van Aert didn't have a super day.

He starts his sprint a bit too late, because he wasn't confident enough and was on the limit.
yeah they both were. VDP said he had lactic acid everywhere in that sprint. I think Van Aert wasn't confident enough either to launch from further away. The risk is dying yourself..
 
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Sorry for saying that, but I have the same feeling. That why I earlier said it reminded me of the Stybar accident in P-R in 2013. That time I suspected Cancellara was purposely driving the way that Styby could not avoid the crash.
That's harsh. For one, I don't think anyone in the peleton would try to set up a rival like that on purpose.
And another thing, even if you planned it our perfectly, there's no way he could have known that alafpolak would crash into the bike.
 
700W is nothing for a pro level rider. I can do 700W when fresh.
Yeah, that's not exactly an impressive number, they were both dead. 56km/h is also not a lot, I can reach mid 50ies in a solo sprint on my MTB (fully), but a 2 men sprint is always more about tactics and you acceleration. It's about controlling your opponent and your speed before starting the sprint, starting the sprint at the right time and picking the right gear that allows you to accelerate fast and reach a decent speed.
 
And you also have to stop for a red light, stay in the bikelane, give priority etc. Now guess what, bikeraces are held on a closed circuit where the riders are supposed to get the road to themselves and not have to worry about anything like that and it is the motor's job to always get out of the way.

The president of the cycling association already acknowledged the bike should not have been there.
But I doesn't excuse the riders from not paying attention. If it was a piece of road furniture he crashed into who would the blame lie with? I agree the moto should not have been there but the poor chap cannot take the whole blame.
 
But I doesn't excuse the riders from not paying attention. If it was a piece of road furniture he crashed into who would the blame lie with? I agree the moto should not have been there but the poor chap cannot take the whole blame.
In some cases; the organisers, for not properly marking it. Remember that incident with the poles (no capital 'p') in the middle of the road during Catalunya a few years ago?
 
Iknow
That's harsh. For one, I don't think anyone in the peleton would try to set up a rival like that on purpose.
And another thing, even if you planned it our perfectly, there's no way he could have known that alafpolak would crash into the bike.
You are right. I should not use the word purposely. WVA looks like a nice guy and Cance as well.
 
Just for the info, this footage provides a much better view on the Alaphilippe crash as it begins just some seconds earlier than everything we've seen thus far.

Remember they had 20 seconds, and WvA was clearly committed to widen that gap. The road goes 2-3% uphill there and it's a bit twisty with wide curves left and right.
The crash is at the beginning of the clip (Sporza posted it as a clip to show all footage of the MvdP/WvA breakaway from the moto, starting just before Alaphilippe's crash):

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7zKHmSP4Zk&feature=youtu.be&t=1
 
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Just for the info, this footage provides a much better view on the Alaphilippe crash as it begins just some seconds earlier than everything we've seen thus far.

Remember they had 20 seconds, and WvA was clearly committed to widen that gap. The road goes 2-3% uphill there and it's a bit twisty with wide curves left and right.
The crash is at the beginning of the clip (Sporza posted it as a clip to show all footage of the MvdP/WvA breakaway from the moto, starting just before Alaphilippe's crash):

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7zKHmSP4Zk
Better view, thanks;)

Definitely too many motos there, 4, plus one more, taking this video... Was the jury moto guilty or not? Strictly speaking not 100% but supposedly, from what I read he ordered the Shimano neutral moto to let the bikers get ahead of them, Shimano started to slow down, the jury moto, too, without realizing that WVA jumped on his wheel... And Alaf, not paying attention, paid for it...

For me it comes down to that jury moto should have told the neutral Shimano bike to slow down on a straight part of the road, not in a curve where it couldn't see the fast action behind... Plus, the motos need to get away from riders when they make these types of maneuvers... But unfortunately, they all make split second decisions:(
 
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Iknow

You are right. I should not use the word purposely. WVA looks like a nice guy and Cance as well.
Not sure if Sarcasm or actually agreeing with me... :openmouth:

Even if sarcasm, there's a hug gap between 'not being a nice guy' and purposely setting someone up to crash.
 
After seeing that footage i'm even more convinced the motos were at fault. You can see how much the moto slows down and on the inside of the bend. I'm a bit irked by the sobstory on national tv.
I'm more inclined to say "general clusterfudge on the part of all involved." The jury Moto is on the left of the road, telling the Shimano and Race official Moto on the right to slow down. The Shimano moto slows down where they were told to, so the race official moto behind also slows down.

WvA was in the slipstream of the moto on the left, and then aims right for the air-pocket in behind the Moto on the right, and then veers out of that pocket at the last split second. vdP reacts in time, but Alaf, who picked the wrong moment to have a chat, ploughs into the other moto.

There were too many motos on the road. The race official who tried to clear the motos out of the road, was in the way of where the motos should have gone to get out of the way, so their only possible reaction was to slow down. The racer at the front of the group skirted very close to the motos as he was overtaking, and the rider at the back of the group wasn't looking far enough ahead.
 

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