Controversial day at Le Tour so I'm asking the hard questions

1 - should they have waited for the team leaders to re group after the crash?
2 - once the leaders were in the pack should they have continued soft pedaling and neutralised the stage or should they have raced?

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Wait, yes. But I expected them to start racing again when the main guys had got back together.
Would Cancellara have called the go slow if the Schlecks hadn't gone down?
On second thought I probably would have done the same thing. The conditions were dangerous, the crashes seem to have not been rider error. Maybe better to right off the stage and survive to race another day.
tradition normally means they wait if there has been a major accident and I thought that Cancellara was doing a classy move to keep the pace slow to allow people to re join the group. But once they were back together I was surprised to see the racing not start again.
If it was just rain and the back of the field crashed they should have kept on going - BUT it was caused by a motorcycle that crashed and put oil all over the road right in front of the whole pack. Everyone fell down. It would have put oil on everyone's tyres.

BUT then again maybe its all about luck - those that were able to avoid the collision - get up quickest - clean their wheels off the quickest. And start quickest could have taken advantage of the situation. Cancellara was only slowing the group down because the Schleck brothers in his team were in trouble. When he started slowing everyone down it pretty much stopped everyone from competing. I wonder what would have happened if Cadel took off from the front of Cancellara's group?
The unwritten rules of the peleton would've not looked kindly on anyone who went against what the yellow jersey said. You could see Cancellara talking to people and motioning all the time to try and explain what it was he wanted, some were clearly displeased but none challenged.
If Cervelo, realising they were an intact team at the base of the Stockeu had TTT'd it to the finish they could have got Carlos across the line maybe 10 minutes ahead of everyone else. Who was going to chase? Most of the other teams had battered and broken riders. I guess Milram could have but they don't even have a GC rider.

The could have got Sastre into yellow, people would be crying foul play and there would be 2 1/2 weeks of retribution against the entire team.

It wasn't just Saxo with a vested interest; Radioshack, Garmin, Astana and BMC all had multiple riders and team leaders down, and many other teams had lieutenants or other riders down. Notwithstading that support cars/bikes etc were on the wrong side of the melee.

Saxo just did the right thing, everyone seems to be getting the timeline mixed up and think that neutralisation was agreed with the race referee around 20km, I think it was closer to 2km from the line.

As to whether they should have sprinted I think maybe they should have, but awarded the peloton one time. Maybe taking timings from the top of the Stockeau (in much the same way as happens on the Champs Elysee on wet days). That way Chavanel would have got his time, the majority would have been ok, and others who got dropped early would have still lost time.
*cough* Peloton *cough* [unless you are Sean Kelly, then it is Poulittin]
I like the old school traditions of the peloton (thanks Tinysaur) for me it's what sets the pro cyclists apart from other athletes. They have a sense of tradition in the way they wait for crashes and don't take advantage of another's misfortune.

Waiting as they did has happened before and no doubt will happen again. As professional athletes and without being there to know exactly what happened we can only hope they did what they thought was best for the peloton and the race overall.


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