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Should yesterday's ToC stage have been cancelled?
Last Post 05/16/2013 12:15 PM by Orange Crush. 14 Replies.
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Orange Crush


05/14/2013 12:38 PM
Hi Steve, does that polling feature work and how would one activate it? Op-Ed here:


05/14/2013 01:52 PM
No, it's all about attrition. If anything the ToC should have started in the North as in the past and work their way on down the state while getting acclimatized.


05/14/2013 02:01 PM
Not cancelled, but they could have certainly taken the heat into account in some way. Football uses the wetbulb (temp, humidty)and black bulb (temp, solar radiation gain) thermometers to determine if the heat and humidity,or solar radiation is dangerous. Workouts are shortened or cancelled if a formula using those goes beyond a certain limit.

They could have done something like said once the first 10 cross the line, the rest get the same time and can go back down the hill. No need to risk them all with medical issues if they aren't even in contention. That one belgian guy was in classic heat exhaustion shock. That was literally a near death experience.

Very telling that those in the pack lost 10, 19, 30+ min in only 6 kilometers.



05/14/2013 03:56 PM
Was it last year or the year before that was snowed out in Tahoe?

I got heat stroke in a race in eastern Oregon once. When that hammer comes, you are done. Glad they didn't lose anyone. 100F+ is not bike racing weather.


05/14/2013 03:58 PM
I just read Joe Lindsey. He's right, the decision to cancel should be pre-determined by rule by the UCI and not up to the organizer who is not likely to act in the interest of the riders.
Orange Crush


05/14/2013 04:00 PM
Chinook, yeah, that is why I posed the question; from the articlec linked above...

"Pieter Serry lay on the ground, in hollow bewilderment, his skinny white chest streaked with melting water, his eyes flickering from side to side.

I helped lay his soaked head to the concrete, nothing but a wet towel for a pillow. An oxygen mask was placed over his mouth, and the bag faintly fluttered. People scrambled to put ice packs in his armpits, his groin.

Minutes before, his director, the imposing Wilfried Peeters, pulled up to the steps near the press conference in the Omega Pharma-Quick Step team car, shouting for an ambulance. Serry sat in the backseat, heaving into a trash bag, the effects of a day so hot it softened blacktop. Serry apparently abandoned 500 meters from the finish but paid the highest price on a searing ride into Palm Springs."...


05/14/2013 04:19 PM
+1 ChinookPass


05/15/2013 12:10 AM
No. Go easier if its too hot. The riders have full control of the speed. Same with danger courses, slow down and don't crash.


05/15/2013 06:29 AM
Yeah, cancel it. Only race between temps of say 65-88 degrees. Don't race in the rain either. You don't want to get wet and you could crash. Too windy for the skinny climbers? Sorry no stage today. In fact ban all climbs greater than 7% grade. No cobbles either.

Racing is about beating the elements, course and competitors. It is about preparing yourself to push to the limit. You can abandon anytime you want if it is too hard. If it is too hot, ride slower. Too steep, you drop off the back. The Columbian who won look pretty good at the finish and he rode the fastest up the final climb.

Rock on.
Patched Tube


05/15/2013 10:10 AM
But it was a dry heat....

My view is the weather is the weather: some racers can take the heat, some can take the cold. That is the way the cookie crumbles.

I once did a TT when the temp at start was 102 (I don't even want to think about the temp on the black top). I regularly trained in temps in the 90's (with dripping humidity as a bonus) and kept a spare chilled bottle in the car to dump over my head after I was done. Of course I could have decided it wasn't worth it and stayed home - that was my call. If a rider decides that the heat is a real problem he can coast to the side of the road and get in the car. Really it is that simple.

About the only time I can see cancelling a stage is in two to three circumstances: 1) ice and snow on the course simply make it impossible to ride, 2) The immediate threat of severe lightning and 3) some sort major gale, super cell, or hurricane like weather event with very high wind speeds.

Other than that... you play the hand nature deals.
-- that which cannot be proven as true must be regarded as false or not affirmed as true


05/15/2013 11:48 AM
I have had heat stroke more than once in races. 39C and high humidity means sweat does nothing to cool you and you sweat way faster than you can re hydrate. Cancel? No. Riders need to adjust to manage. Drink more and let the other guys fall over from the heat.


05/15/2013 11:48 AM
Actually we should just let the riders race when they want to and download the results on Strava.


05/16/2013 12:35 AM
At that temp, it becomes a health issue. That being said, weather is part of the deal. I see that being something to discuss if extreme conditions are present.



05/16/2013 01:23 AM
I have listened to hours of discussion about the choice of the race committee to start the Double Handed Farallons sailboat race from San Francisco Bay around a pile of rocks 25 miles offshore and back on a day when the weather deteriorated to gale conditions (from light winds) an hour after the start. (1982) Two boats did not return and a third was wrecked on rocks. I sailed that race. We all were supposed to have seaworthy boats and we were all responsible for making sound choices. The first was to sail a race on the ocean where in bad weather, all ports are hazardous to come into.

Compared to that, where we were all outside the Golden Gate when the wind changed direction and strength very quickly, this bike race was child's play. Every rider had the option at any time to stop, unclip, put his foot down and get off his bike. Those who chose not to did exactly that, chose to continue in the face of adversary.

So, sorry, no feeling here that the race should have been shortened or stopped.

Orange Crush


05/16/2013 12:15 PM
I'm certainly no fan of cancelling races for extreme conditions but this one was certainly straying the edge. Certainly it looks like a lot of riders dialed it back and now we're looking at one of the most boring ToC's in recent memory.

Looks like the Giro may be looking at cancellation of the Galibier stage if you saw some pictures from the state of the pass last weekend. Lots of snow awaiting the peleton in final week.
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