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Ted King's DSQ, a rider protest maybe?
Last Post 07/05/2013 03:24 PM by Cosmic Kid. 42 Replies.
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79pmooney

Posts:796

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07/04/2013 03:39 PM
But, Elle, the Tour seems quite happy to ignore those rules if enough money is at stake. ("A serious sport has serious rules.")

Ben
ElleSeven

Posts:48

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07/04/2013 03:49 PM
I agree with you, Ben. The Tour has been far too casual with its rules in the past, to the point that for ten editions — possibly more to come — we don't even know who won the f***ing thing. This is not to equate rule-bending over, and outright abetting of, drug addiction with one-second time cuts. But Ted King is not doing Modern Dance or flower-arranging.
79pmooney

Posts:796

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07/04/2013 03:58 PM
Elle, I was thinking more of the re-instating of riders, esp big money sprinters, after missing the time cut. I believe Cavendish has been the beneficiary more than once. One in particular I recall. That directly files in the face of the jury head's statement that rules are rules. So there is already precedent.

Ben
Orange Crush

Posts:832

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07/04/2013 05:44 PM
There's precedent for exceptions but in this case the outcome is a logical consequence of the fact that King was dropped by his team inside the first km of the TTT. To me it seems there was never any intent for him to compete in this event as such and that the plan all along was for him to go at it alone. That was a logical choice from team's perspective but end of story for King even though he fought hard and almost made the cut. Cav did not make the cut along with 87 (!) other riders and was docked 20pnts in the green jersey competition instead.
ElleSeven

Posts:48

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07/04/2013 07:04 PM
Yes, I agree with everyone or anyone that a precedent exists for giving exemptions: namely, previous exemptions. At least part of my argument is precisely that the adjudication of the whole event has turned into winks here, nods there, while palms get greased and wallets padded. So is this Big Time Cycling or Big Time Wrestling? That said, I'm not against exemptions. What I'd be against is handing them out willy-nilly without very strong consideration of why it should happen and what the insidious consequences of such actions might me. We've got guys in this race right now who basically want exemptions for not being able to negotiate a twisty descent or a sharp turn in a run-in; who whine about bumpy pavement, narrow roads, hot weather, cold weather; who believe that the press shouldn't be permitted to ask them probing questions, and so on. And the new math seems to suggest that 25% is actually 26%.

Among the many things that make bike racing, at its best, at its toughest and most stringent, so fascinating is the way in which it is a paradigm of the larger world. We succeed sometimes; sometimes we fail. In both extremes a certain degree of heroism or bravery may be present. You guys may disagree, but I don't want to invalidate Ted King's suffering by submitting to the idea that he really didn't need to try that hard.
Master50

Posts:165

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07/04/2013 09:19 PM
What a curse officials must bear. Always being accused of favouritism and prejudice, being soft and strict, of being corruptible and too by the book. And the fans want to burn Contador for being almost indetectibly guilty of a trace of a drug and forgive a time cut for the hero's effort. Pretty tough but Ted was over the cut, he was a single rider on the day and now he is gone. By the book is defendable, back in the race while compassionate is not a particularly enforceable method. Making exceptions is fraught with trouble and often indefensible on review. The comms have a real responsibility to be strict where there is not much ambiguity and all the side issues are just not germane. He missed the cut and the comms need solid grounds to make an exception. Compassionate grounds yes, in the rules not much wiggle room in this circumstance. I often agree with Neil Rogers but not this time. Maybe he can author a rule that defines what compassionate measures the officials can make? A standard test or methodology to fairly apply compassion in these decisions and some limits to how and where the extra consideration may apply. Without this kind of methodology that every race jury can apply how can they be consistent? The officials made a correct call given the rulebook they have.
CarbonGecko

Posts:38

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07/04/2013 11:15 PM
Ted King is racing on a team that has no real chance for the general classification. They are going for the green jersey and for stage wins. They were never going to win the TTT. Given all of that if they had really wanted Ted in the race why didn't they leave one guy back with him. Their team time would have suffered slightly but with one other guy sharing the work Ted would have certainly made the time cut. The team made the decision they did. Maybe they made it hoping for a compassionate call from the judges. Whatever the thought process was he didn't make the cut. It seems like some people are arguing he should be given an exemption because he tried so hard... yeah he did but they all do. Some are arguing he should be given an exemption because he was so close... it is a race people win and lose by seconds, time cuts are time cuts. Some are arguing he should be given an exemption because he was hurt in a crash that was partly the organizers fault... a lot of crashes are partly the organizers fault. They pick entertaining stages with fast downhills, they pick stages with risky sprint finishes, they sometime put stages through bad roads, etc. When do you blame the organizers and give riders an exemption? If a crash is determined by popular opinion to be the organizers "fault" then how many days do riders injured in that crash get to be off the back? It is just way too subjective.

It is racing. It is a sport. Sports have rules. Rules should be enforced. Otherwise they aren't rules they are suggestions. Suggestions don't work because they are never adjudicated equally. I feel for the guy. I would have been happier if he was still in the race. But I think the right call was made. Hopefully if it comes up later in the race the same call will be made even if the rider in question brings in huge TV revenue. That is what is fair.
vtguy

Posts:174

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07/05/2013 05:26 AM
This thread is a fine example of the civil discourse that's been present on this site -- plus it was a good read. Well done, folks!
CB2

Posts:18

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07/05/2013 06:53 AM
Does this decision leave Ted in better or worse shape for kicking my buddy Old Horse Legs' butt for a third time @ the VT50?

 photo VT50pbn_4501_zps52e7a930.jpg
jacques_anquetil

Posts:185

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07/05/2013 09:24 AM
one question that hasn't been raised yet here: would it really have been in Ted's best interest to continue racing with his injuries such as they were? sure, he's doing his first Big Show and will give everything to stay in and realize a lifelong dream. but c'mon, can he realistically be expected to recover from a separated shoulder within a week to 10 days? likely not.
79pmooney

Posts:796

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07/05/2013 11:12 AM
Carbon Gecko makes the point that has changed my mind. That Cannondale had no real need to do well in the TTT and chose to just drop Ted King.

Here is another scenario Canondale could have done. Place King behind his designated tow should he be dropped. If he does get dropped he shouts "I'm gone!". Designated tow drops back also. Team continues with seven riders, King makes the cut.

Since Cannondale knew in advance this could well be the scenario, for them to have not taken such action, then complain to the officials about the time cut comes off as a little hollow. Ted King himself has a valid case. He rode his heart out. I still think having the other riders step up in his defense would have been cool, but I am having much less of a fuzzy feeling with the Cannondale DS' words and actions. (In fact, I think it would be fun to hear that King's shoulder is fully rideable next week and Sagan and crew are placed in a situation where King's input would be a real help. Karma.)

Thanks Gecko.

Ben
bobswire

Posts:289

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07/05/2013 11:33 AM
I thought it was the $4its and unfair seeing him disqualified while knowing the circumstances that led to his injury but like Ben, this thread has persuaded me otherwise. Well done guys.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:708

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07/05/2013 03:24 PM
My guess is that Cannondale did have such a plan, Ben....but not from 250m into the race. That early into it, you can't rich having 2 guys eliminated on time. So the team has no choice but to sacrifice King so that they keep everyone else in the race.

10k into the race it may well have been a different situation, but literally out ochre gate....no choice. You ride and leave King.

Again, this is probably the best thing for him, but how it was handled just sucked, IMO.
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
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