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Women's cycling race forced to pause after lead rider catches men's race

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Women's cycling race forced to pause after lead rider catches men's race

Old 03-03-19, 11:24 PM
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wgscott
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Women's cycling race forced to pause after lead rider catches men's race

WTF? There is something really wrong with this.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/20...ole-hanselmann





I don't know a thing about racing, but this strikes me as inherently unfair, and it sounds like it likely cost her the race.
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Old 03-03-19, 11:31 PM
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Breakaways pretty much never win, but it's still bullcrap. Absolute tempo-killer. Invalidates the entire race, AFAIC.
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Old 03-04-19, 12:39 AM
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Old 03-04-19, 02:18 AM
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Yeah, race strategy makes it difficult to say what could have happened, but that was the wrong way to handle it.
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Old 03-04-19, 03:00 AM
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Yeah, they should just stop the Men's race instead since they were going so slow, and let the women pass through.
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Old 03-04-19, 03:35 AM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Yeah, race strategy makes it difficult to say what could have happened, but that was the wrong way to handle it.
I think once they were in that position, the organisers had to handle it that way. It would have been dangerous to have the lead women getting mixed up with the support cars and backmarkers of the race ahead.

What they should have done is start the women's race with a greater gap. Maybe 20-30mins?

Lessons learned and mistakes not to be repeated?
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Old 03-04-19, 03:53 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
What they should have done is start the women's race with a greater gap. Maybe 20-30mins?
Was this a pro race or an amateur race? Several racing categories?

Yes, they should be able to estimate speeds, and start with an adequate gap.

However, make the gap too long and the audience will get restless. Sufficient racing hours during the day?

Assuming Nicole Hanselmann hadn't made it close to the Peloton yet, they could have forced the support vehicles, and perhaps all straggling riders to pull over and to let the women's race pass. NO DRAFTING???
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Old 03-04-19, 04:30 AM
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Maybe a later start, but the first race of the season is going to have potential complications anyway -- shorter days, worse weather.

Do the classics offer primes or incentives for breakaways? She should at least get some credit for that. Anyway, Hanselmann seemed to take it with some humor, even smiling in some photos during the delay. Bernard Hinault would have been looking for someone to punch or a crowd to leap into.
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Old 03-04-19, 06:30 AM
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**** happens. I've seen the Paris-Roubaix field get split when a train forced the main peloton to stop while a breakaway was up ahead, and affected the outcome of the race. Happened at least twice, the most recent was 2015:


Last edited by cb400bill; 03-04-19 at 06:14 PM. Reason: Please do not change the spelling of words to bypass the forum censor.
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Old 03-04-19, 06:34 AM
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
WTF? There is something really wrong with this.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/20...ole-hanselmann





I don't know a thing about racing, but this strikes me as inherently unfair, and it sounds like it likely cost her the race.
are the men racers turning into women racers...et her ride if she wins it would be the kick in the but the "men" need to step it up a notch

Last edited by robnol; 03-04-19 at 06:41 AM.
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Old 03-04-19, 06:39 AM
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Old 03-04-19, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
I think once they were in that position, the organisers had to handle it that way. It would have been dangerous to have the lead women getting mixed up with the support cars and backmarkers of the race ahead.

What they should have done is start the women's race with a greater gap. Maybe 20-30mins?

Lessons learned and mistakes not to be repeated?
Agree. It was a difficult situation that should have been anticipated. Stopping the women's race (and I am assuming that when restarted the time gap was restored) probably had no significant affect on the outcome. Allowing Ms. Hanselmann to continue and mix with the men's race would certainly have had a bigger impact on the outcome.
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Old 03-04-19, 08:22 AM
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I wonder if part of the problem was not that she was necessarily passing that many men, but rather the men got so spread out. So, even in the best case without any stragglers, it would be 5 minutes between the lead rider and the last support vehicle.

Thus the 10 minute gap was suddenly only a 5 minute gap. A flat tire, wreck, or something, and that gets further reduced.

I bet Nicole Hanselmann started riding much harder when she realized that she could catch some of the men. What a goal to see their entourage in the distance.!!! Even if she was struggling to catch them, it would provide extraordinary pacing.

Perhaps her whole sprint and break-away was specifically to catch the men.
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Old 03-04-19, 08:29 AM
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They should have treated it how the local annual race treats lapped traffic on loop routes-- if you're back marking and get caught by the group, you pull off the course when you next cross the start/finish. Hanselmann should have DNF'd the whole men's group.

I think her expression sums up how she feels about the whole situation anyway.

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Old 03-04-19, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Yeah, they should just stop the Men's race instead since they were going so slow, and let the women pass through.
The women's race is secondary to the men's race of course. It's the men's race that attracts the crowds and pays the bills. They could have had their own event on a different day or in a different place, or maybe they couldn't have for lack of interest. Anyway, the fact is they joined the men's event under the condition or at least assumption they don't disturb it, the men can start as slowly as they want. Very practical because women's cycling can't always carry it's own weight on public roads getting closed off, the volunteers and the costs. Of course the organization should have done better and made sure there was a bigger gap if possible, but let's not pretend both races are equal.
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Old 03-04-19, 08:46 AM
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Just to clarify so that the folks that didn't read the article. She didn't pass any of the men. She had started to catch up to the tail end of the team cars and press vehicles.

She was riding at an unsustainable pace and would have been caught anyway. But she did her job, got lots of free press for her sponsors.
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Old 03-04-19, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Stadjer View Post
The women's race is secondary to the men's race of course. It's the men's race that attracts the crowds and pays the bills. They could have had their own event on a different day or in a different place, or maybe they couldn't have for lack of interest. Anyway, the fact is they joined the men's event under the condition or at least assumption they don't disturb it, the men can start as slowly as they want. Very practical because women's cycling can't always carry it's own weight on public roads getting closed off, the volunteers and the costs. Of course the organization should have done better and made sure there was a bigger gap if possible, but let's not pretend both races are equal.
As @brianmcg123 mentioned, she got close to support vehicles (which could have yielded). Although the next thing might be to catch some stragglers.

Many races have a maximum time allotted to be on the course, whether it is being lapped on a short course with several laps, or in the TDF, the stragglers have an allotted time to finish behind the leaders.

If this was a single day event, then those riders that had fallen say 5 or 10 minutes behind the Peloton were already largely irrelevant.

It may well give the races a new level of competition to say give the men a 10 minute head-start, and let the women be "chasers". Give them "points" for every man they pass, and make any passed men sit aside until at least a couple of minutes after the Peloton passes.

Catch the Peloton, or any male break-aways... and mega bonus points!!!
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Old 03-04-19, 09:26 AM
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Maybe they should move the race venue to Saudi Arabia.
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Old 03-04-19, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
As @brianmcg123 mentioned, she got close to support vehicles (which could have yielded). Although the next thing might be to catch some stragglers.

Many races have a maximum time allotted to be on the course, whether it is being lapped on a short course with several laps, or in the TDF, the stragglers have an allotted time to finish behind the leaders.

If this was a single day event, then those riders that had fallen say 5 or 10 minutes behind the Peloton were already largely irrelevant.

It may well give the races a new level of competition to say give the men a 10 minute head-start, and let the women be "chasers". Give them "points" for every man they pass, and make any passed men sit aside until at least a couple of minutes after the Peloton passes.

Catch the Peloton, or any male break-aways... and mega bonus points!!!
It's a 200km single day race that has been organized since 1945 and the women have their own race in the event for about 13 years. The women's race was stopped after about 30km, which means that some of the women have really stepped on it on the flat from the go while the men have been taking it easy before the first climbs. That happens in races, and it was not very likely this start was a serious attempt by Hanselmann to win the race allthoug their race was 80km shorter, but probably an attempt to catch the men to make a statement and for publicity.

I don't see a good reason why the women's race should interfere with the men's race, and the organization made sure it didn't. It's complicated and dangerous enough with the support vehicles of one race, if it's not good enough for the women this way, they should organize their own event.
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Old 03-04-19, 10:33 AM
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122km vs 200km, and presumably different climbs.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omloop_Het_Nieuwsblad

A pretty convoluted looking path, and it appears as if the route crosses back on itself in a few places (good places to cut out a loop).

Timing two simultaneous events on the route sharing parts, but not the whole course must be complicated.

I agree, catching the men was likely a personal challenge, or publicity stunt by Nicole Hanselmann. Since the race uses a generally regular route, and there is likely prior race data available, she could well have planned the pace to catch them before the race.

And, really her place in the race doesn't matter as long as she hit front page news by delaying the whole women's race.
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Old 03-04-19, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Maybe they should move the race venue to Saudi Arabia.
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Old 03-04-19, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Was this a pro race or an amateur race? Several racing categories?

Yes, they should be able to estimate speeds, and start with an adequate gap.

However, make the gap too long and the audience will get restless. Sufficient racing hours during the day?

Assuming Nicole Hanselmann hadn't made it close to the Peloton yet, they could have forced the support vehicles, and perhaps all straggling riders to pull over and to let the women's race pass. NO DRAFTING???
UCI Pro level.

As is usual...the women's race wasn't broadcast at all, and as is usual the men's race dicked around and was a parade and was broadcast for 100+km...and only raced because the organizers clearly yelled in the DS's ears in embarrassment.

Last edited by Marcus_Ti; 03-04-19 at 11:23 AM.
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Old 03-04-19, 11:20 AM
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Pedal like h%ll !
Don't be "That guy".
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Old 03-04-19, 11:44 AM
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In every road race I've ever done, the rule is that the group that gets caught is neutralized. That should have been done here, or before that step was necessary, the officials should have been on the radio to the team directors that their riders needed to start pedaling or get caught, neutralized, and embarrassed on TV.
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Old 03-04-19, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
In every road race I've ever done, the rule is that the group that gets caught is neutralized. That should have been done here, or before that step was necessary, the officials should have been on the radio to the team directors that their riders needed to start pedaling or get caught, neutralized, and embarrassed on TV.
At least on Eurosport UK, it happened pre-TV airing. Eurosport picked up coverage at 105km to go in the men's race....at which point it had already happened.
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