Running

So an F1 driver’s car breaks down and he runs to the finish.?Would he be given the position? Novel idea. It seems that running is now allowed on the Tour de France bicycle race. I guess it is environmentally-friendly… but did he complete the race on a bike?

108 thoughts on “Running

    1. All resolved he regains the yellow shirt.
      Pathetic how these idiots are lining the road even closer and making it hard for the motorcyclists carving a gap for the cyclists.
      There are fans and there are complete pillock who make things difficult. It’s time the Tour put a stop to the idiots running in stupid costumes drunk in Borat Mankinis and creating havoc.
      Yes they are part of the essence of the Tour but now it’s getting too close for the riders.
      Something has to be done .

  1. They should have given him the same time as Bauke Mollema, and then a 5 minute time penalty for running up that hill.

  2. He can run, as long as he brings a bike with him over the line…. Carrying, dragging, pushing. It’s not the first time…

    1. Yes indeed…Fausto Coppi back in the Forties/Fifties carried his bike over
      the line twice….but he had about seven minutes on his nearest rival, so
      time to stop, have a beer, quick shower…trot across the line !

  3. News flash: they froze the results at -1K which seems appropriate since it was the fault of the organizers in not containing the crowd. It is a bit like your reporting about the gunfire in the forest. We have live TV resources while the French are asleep so from a (large) distance we find out what is going on

  4. They’ve taken the result from the point at which the organisers motorbike interfered with the race. (Just imagine what would happen in F1 if the safety car caused a crash by suddenly slowing)

    I think they’ve done the fair thing. And I think the entire cycling establishment and all fan organisations ought to shame the spectators that make such things happen on most of the mountain tops on Le Tour … shocking behaviour. One day there’s going to be a serious accident because of this crowding of the road. (has there been one already, I don’t know?)

    1. It nearly happened last weekend when Hamilton nearly hit the safety car

      I thought the TdeF bikes had transponders to measure their times, did Froome take his transponder when he ran to the finish line?

      1. Given they have spare bikes they can swap on and off, one would imagine the transponder might be attached to the rider not the bike. Bearing in mind that big amateur running events have RFID tags half the size of a credit card, that shouldn’t be challenging.

        1. RFID tags are passive though. Your time is taken running over that cable at the finish line at a running race. You’d need similar lines every 10m or so to achieve your aim.

          Dimension Data actually provide a GPS beacon for each bike. So, in theory, the exact position of each bike could be measured at the point of the incident. As I’m sure you’re aware, GPS is imperfect– especially when under trees (as per the stage yesterday). The beacons are still a bit ‘beta’, and apparently had gone a little screwy yesterday.

          Hopefully technology, the rules, and the spectators will catch up. Seeing a cycling race up close is an amazing experience. I’d hate to see it sanitised to the levels of the Formula E race I watched last year.

      2. Tony G, I’m aware that drivers in the leading race car can sometimes get close to the safety car, but I’m not aware of the safety car ever stopping and CAUSING the crash.

  5. Well, Nigel tried to push his Lotus across the finish line in Dallas way back in ’84… But it does leave the question: what happens in F1 when either a driver or a car crosses the line without the other?

      1. Yes it was Jack. Pushed over the line to 4th place at Sebring 1959 to clinch the World Drivers Championship.

      2. It’s an interesting comparison actually, that might seem to demonstrate a difference (one of many clearly!) between the two sports.

        In the Tour, the rider is #1. The impression is that the rider cannot win unless they cross the finish line
        In F1, the car is #1. The impression is that the drive cannot win unless their car crosses the finish line

    1. Yes, when (for example) Prost did it was called guts…before the Health & Safety brigade stepped in and got their paws into everything. SImilar thing when Senna got a lift from Mansell at Silverstone). There’d be the other teams throwing their toys out and protesting too.

      Acts like that gave the sport character but it’s all gone now; motor racing is dangerous… can’t have that now, can we.

      1. + 1 BenM. Which is why it was great that Hammy did a spot of crowd surfing at Silverstone, it is interaction that F1 needs to have with fans….although given the strict rules on after race activities ( i believe that hugging team members is frowned on ), it is a surprise that some team or official didn’t protest Lewis for exiting the parking area!

        1. i tbink that carlos sainz dad tried to push his dead rally car over the finishing line once. I dont think he made ir but kudos to him for trying

      2. Completely agree – how about when Senna parked his McLaren after seeing Eric Comas was in dire straights and went to turn off the Frenchman’s car’s engine – saving the life of Comas in the process.

    2. Mansell (Dallas 84) and Prost (Germany 86) both tried to push their cars over the line. Both failed but picked up points as they were sufficiently far ahead of other cars. In Mansell’s case he fainted due to exhaustion before he made the finish line.

  6. Various drivers, Mansell etc, have tried to push their cars over the line. Same thing in principle.

    If you knew you were so short on fuel that you would not leave enough for a sample, could you push your car round the slowing down lap? A bit of a challenge at Spa!

      1. Sometimes, when the raceleaders are driving around backmarkers there is a slow down lap at Spa.

  7. What it boils down to is that there’s just plain too much folk cheering and ultimately obstructing the commercial activity erhm sport. So who is to blame? This will clearly change cycling.

    1. No, it won’t. Everybody involved is already shrugging it off, The cause has been attributed to “unique” circumstances. The commissar’s decision has been acknowledged to be satisfactory. More or less everybody is more or less happy enough. Nothing’s going to change.

  8. This incident made me realise that compared with cycling, Formula 1 is superbly organised.

    Besides what we saw today, cycling has so many other flaws. Rider injuries/deaths, Cheating (doping, engines), Big teams just stopping (Tinkof), virtually no payout of tv money to the teams.

  9. Only if the camera car stops in the middle of the track and 3 drivers crash into it. In the end, the staged was considered complete at the time of the extraordinary incident so technically Froome never was off his bike. 😮

  10. It’s a shame the decision was taken to leave out most of the surrounding detail of the incident (like Froome’s bike being destroyed by a camera bike) to allow the increasingly traditional shot at the Tour de France’s environmental impact. If the criticism had been aimed at the officialdom for the chaos at the end of the stage, fair enough.

  11. One of my hobby-horses this.

    So many people are apt to forget that this is (in the words of William Boddy) not driver racing but mortor racing!

  12. To be fair to him, how often do F1 drivers get forced to stop because the crowd have invaded the track?

  13. Didn’t Mansell push his car to the line at the US Grand Prix in Texas ? He didn’t run but it seems to be the same idea: passing the line somehow. The problem with F1 is that cars are heavy!

      1. And continuing on the sporting reportage, there is the “Palio di Sienna”, a horse race in the Italian town, with jockeys, harking back to medieval times, where the winner is the horse. And with a stipulation. The horse most cross the line with it’s locality´s banner (worn just above the nose) in tact, with or without rider. There exists a tactic where the jockey purposely falls off at some point during the (short) race, and if another jockey can subsequently remove the banner from the riderless horse, it won’t win.

        As my wife, a lawyer, would say- “It’s all about the contract you signed.”

        The Tour de France does have an issue with fans invading the track, and its consequences. That should be looked at. As such, is it the bike or the rider who wins? What does the contract say…

        (By the way- after the “Palio”, the winner’s locality celebrates into the night, while the losers must go straight home to bed, lights out. Municipal ordinance. And the 2nd place finisher is described as the first loser.)

  14. The source of the problem was due to outside interference – spectators causing a couple of motorcycles to pull an emergency stop. It would be akin to the pace car in a race coming to an abrupt halt or a car pitting hitting an official vehicle (like a fire tender, camera bogey one of the FIA Mercedes). Highly unlikely but quite feasible. Closest thing I’ve seen to it in F1 was most probably the tyre farce at Indianapolis a few years back or the Spa track breaking up in 85.

    1. Or the crazy Irish dude wandering along the Silverstone track. I guess what happens in the TdF yesterday was the F1 equivalent of finishing under safety car conditions.

  15. How does the number of support vehicles in the TdF compare with F1’s 350?
    Presumably they are a lot smaller, but the race has a reputation for being the most polluting sports event due to it’s large number of camp followers. But do they add up to 350 artics?

    1. I’d imagine that the answer is that the F1 circus pollutes far more per year than the TdF, but the fact that the latter is technically one event means it takes the “single event” crown.

  16. If the lead pack was run off the road by the sudden emergence and then stoppage of the Safety Car, causing damage to the competitors cars…yeah, yeah I’d give them the place.Although F1 manages to have a bit more security and control over the race course, so obviously it would never happen.

  17. Ha Ha! I think you have to admire Froome’s competitive nature, instinctively running up the hill. In the end, the times were taken at the time of the incident, similar to a motor race being stopped and the times and positions reverting to the previous lap. Common sense from the organisers. Formula One can only dream of the numbers of spectators and TV interest the TDF achieves as I’m sure you know!

  18. It is a similar ruling to the red flag in a motor race, where the result is taken back to the last full lap completed.
    In cycling if a crash occurs within the last km, the result is based on the times when the rider or riders got to the last km marker called appropriately the Flan Rouge.
    The also have a similar system to the present full course yellow where the race is neutralised by a Gentlemans agreement if a crash occurs during the Stage to allow the fallen riders to catch back up.
    More sporting than one realises from the outside.

    1. They don’t have that rule on mountain stages which is why this was exceptional circumstances.

      There are also other rules such as if a breakaway is stopped by a level crossing and the bunch catches up, they’re allowed to establish the same lead they had before they were stopped. If they get across and the bunch is held up, then tough on the bunch, they should have been in the breakaway 🙂

      Oh and btw it’s Flamme Rouge, but close!

  19. Froome retaining his Yellow jersey is not so shocking as BoJo being appointed Foreign Secretary… now that is something to provoke comment…

    1. Probably not – theoretically you might be able to run the whole thing, but you’d never finish a stage within the required minimum time, or even before the next stage started.

  20. Hysterical, Joe!
    I am glad to hear that they froze the results at the accident point. This year’s tour is chaotic at times.

  21. You obviously didn’t even watch it, let alone report from the scene as you require F1 writers to do, so why on earth would you write about it on a F1 blog? You clearly not only know nothing about bike racing, you didn’t even see what happened!!

    1. Have you finished? I’m not criticising the TdF. I’m just noting what happened. Radical bike people need to lie down.

      1. Well…lets just imagine F1 with two large beer tents right alonside the chequered flag position and only standard crowd barriers between the
        the drunkards and the F1 track as the race finishes. Utter madness
        of course. Would never happen today. But it used to be regarded as
        perfectly normal practice…that is …..more than fifty years ago !

        And though the Tour participants are only only travelling at a fraction
        of F1 vehicles, the fact remains that these are athletes at the very top
        of their profession, the worlds very best, and their bikes are of stratospheric
        technical standard. The Tour operators will be forced now to close off
        the final kilometers of any race day to any raving alcoholic lunatics.

        ….and that is a very sad necessity.

  22. On other novel ideas, how about we watch the “world best drivers” not start behind safety cars because the track has some standing water and you know, they have, errr, wet tyres. Or perhaps on reflection Joe, Lewis should only be awarded 1/2 points for having the opening stint handed to him along with the inherent advantage upon restart? Whilst he technically won the race, did he actually “win” in the true the spirit of a race?

    1. Given how dominant he was all weekend, it seems foolish to assume that he wouldn’t have won from a standing start. I don’t particularly disagree with the idea that a standing start should be preferred in all cases.

  23. Black Jack pushed his car over the line at Sebring in 1959 to finish fourth and win the World Championship.

  24. When running without a bike is ok, it is technically also ok to drive a part with a car. But I already completely lost interest in cycling several years ago. I simply cannot trust or like any pro cyclist anymore after being lied to again and again and again. And the team politics are even worse than F1.

    But that whole Tour de France thing is isignificant to another recent tragedy in France and where that leaves innocent people in this world…. 😐

  25. The crowds on the mountain stages of the TdF seem to have the same mental capacity as the Portuguese spectators during the GpB rally era.

    Moving the finish back 6km, without adequate barrier protection seems to be the root of the problem.

    Calculating the result as they have is the accepted way of resolving these issues.

    Sadly France, once more has much bigger problems to concern themselves with this morning.

  26. The Tour benefits greatly from free spectator access in the high mountains where uniquely the riders can be observed in ‘slow-mo’ whilst under extreme stress. I think the Tour faithful (riders, organisers and fans) need to appeal to responsible spectators to somehow self-police the bad behavior – ie highlight the unique access privileges Tour spectators enjoy – make it socially-unacceptable to impede any part of the Tour – otherwise everyone loses if they extend the barriers … crowds-up-close-to-the-action is an important and valuable part of the Tour spectacle.
    The Motorbike Riders need to take some responsibility too – there where 3-4 press/camera bikes ‘nose to tail’ with no vision/space /time to take avoiding action or to give the following riders space and time to react/stop – hence ~Richie Porte immediately crashed into the trailing Camera Motorbike.
    Unfortunately there is a significant increase in the number of spectators (in many sports) who are more interested in progressing their own fame where ever there is a camera – which is a just a sign of times within the current BigBrother/FaceTube era – I blame Andy ‘famous for 15 minutes’ Warhol for starting it all – he should have kept his big mouth shut and not given plebs the big idea that they can ‘be somebody’. 😉

  27. Needless to say the Dutch cycling journalists are highly critical. They basicly call the jury decisicion a farce.

    Of course we remember Johnny Hoogerland being pushed off the road and into a barbe wire fence by a car of the ASO organisation, while he was in the lead group. Hoogerland didn’t get time compensation. In fact the question of responsibility and financial compensation (Hoogerland was hurt quite badly) is still being fought in courts.

    Apparantly it’s a rule you cannot continue the race without a bike. So however unfortunate the incident was, Froome should have been awarded some kind of penalty. This is not the first time at all that a cycling race has been influenced by riders hitting cars, bikes, pets or spectators, but there was never a jury verdict like this one.

    1. Well, that’s a particularly strict interpretation of the rules (which are sufficiently vague to allow the UCI commisaires to — hopefully — do the right thing after any particular incident).

      And we shouldn’t let bad decisions in the past define potentially bad decisions in the present.

      The end result after the Ventoux stage is probably the best compromise. Frankly the Dutch shouldn’t get too uppity. What happened to the sporting gentleman’s agreement to not attack the yellow jersey if they suffer from an outside influence?

      1. Wasn’t Argentine rider Sepulveda excluded on this vague rule last year?
        He broke his chain, his team manager saw him too late and stopped 100 meters down the road. Sepulveda stumbled on his bike shoes, panicked and rode the 100 meters in the back of the car of a competing team manager, who was kind enough to offer him a lift. Now, no rider or manager saw any harm in that, still he was thrown from the Tour.

        Also Mollema didn’t attack, he continued (probably expecting Froome and Porte to do likewise). Froome got Mollema’s finishing time, so he can only be very happy the Dutchmen did as he did. Froome can however ask team mate Henao why he passed him and didn’t offer his bike.

    1. That’s a seriously heavy bike.

      FYI, the UCI (FIA equivalent in cycling) stipulate a minimum mass of 6.8kg. Much like in F1, the bikes tend to be under the limit and have ballast attached.

  28. Do the regs allow him to ‘phone his team for directions if he gets lost?
    (I remember, I think, Motoring News giving Allen McNish’s reason for retirement at the Hockenheim F3000 race in ’90 or ’91 as ‘Lost in woods’ as he left the car at the far end of the old circuit and took an age to get back to the pits.)

  29. Who was the last driver to push a car over a line? De Cesaris in Mexico 91, or was he just the last (and first) to get interviewed as he did it?

    I think I’m right in saying that in the Tour you can swap bikes with your team/exchange, so it’s all about the rider and not the vehicle’s time.

  30. it appears that the rule says that the rider must cross the line with a bike to be included in the results…nothing about no running at any stage

    there is however a rule that the rider cannot be pushed….ever notice that every time any rider has to change his bike the team gives him a push to get back into motion ?

    1. Careful reading of the rules suggests that:
      1. A rider has to have a bike with him when he crosses the finish line, and
      2. A rider has to complete the course under his own power

      Which means that running bikeless up the course for a bit is OK. The commissaires got rather cross with Fabio Aru for getting an excessive amount of “adjustment” from a car-borne mechanic after a bike change, but apparently missed Nairo Quintana hanging onto the back of the Mavic neutral service motorbike during yesterday’s chaos.

  31. I watched the end of that stage and Frome was mounted over the finish line. An equally important question concerns the inability of the event organizers to control the spectators incursion into the course which caused the whole thing. The FIA would be licking their lips at the size of the fine they could impose!

  32. lest we forget… the SECOND motorbike piled into froome with enough strength to break his frame! IMHO that is why they had to compensate him from that exact point. So the running that occurred afterwards is inconsequential.

    The F1 equivalent it’s like the safety car and ambulance piling into the front and rear of an F1 car and breaking the engine away from the tub.

  33. He crossed the finishing line on a spare bike that had been given to him earlier down the line, therefore the result is legitimate. Or rather, the result was overturned and the places they were in before the crash took place being taken as the final result. A piece of quick and descisive action for which the powers that be have to be applauded for.

  34. The solution to crowds is easy. Hire Pastor Maldonado as lead ‘safety’ car driver in a Mustang. Ain’t no crowding anymore!!

  35. just get people to behave better and realise there is a race on and there a fine line between being a passionate fan and an idiot.

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