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Why I'm done with road cycling


rudi-h
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I take part in any or every sporting event that I am capable of doing and truly enjoy every sport I do. The list is long, but includes MTB, road cycling, trail running, road running, adventure racing, triathlon, swimming, touchies and even (if you can call it a sport) golf. I won't call myself anything specific, like roadie, mtb'er, triathlete etc. therefore I would say that I'm entitled to an unbiased remark and opinion.

 

The past weekend I raced the Dome2Dome, where after I sadly decided it will be my last "smaller" road race ever!

 

My big problem with these races are:

 

1) Littering: I've seen 3 guys on D2D deliberately dropping gel sachets wherever they consume it. After commenting on that, I got snotty remarks from all three individuals (says something about the roadie culture I believe). In triathlon and some MTB events that I've done, the race rules are clear that littering gets you disqualified. In IM it's so strict that you can be disqualified for a few years if I'm not mistaking. Talk about this, I remember one litterer's race number being 1104 I think, if the organizers feel like doing something about it in future.

 

2) Road closures: The D2D didn't have much that I could see in terms of road closures. This is a HUGE problem, because as entered cyclists, we believe it's our right to use as much space as necessary for riding in bunches, but this is very dangerous and extremely selfish from a motorists' point of view. If road closures have been advertised for months in advance and alternative routes have been published (as with 94.7 and Argus) then It's a different story. The problem is that these races even further fuel the hate between motorists and road cyclists. Even as a cyclist I would have been seriously Pee'd off if I had to sit in a 15min traffic jam or to carefully negotiate my way past 1000 cyclists.

 

I'm not getting at the D2D organizers, because in so many ways they have put up a very enjoyable race, but I just don't think that races like these (without closures and probably not sweeping the entire route for gel sachets) have a place in our cities. I think that perhaps with littering penalties (as with IM) the littering issue cal be resolved, but I don't know the answer to the issue with road closures.

 

I've encountered the exact same thing at one of the races next to the vaal (as a motorist), think it started en ended at stone haven (if that's the right name)

 

So, to finish my rant, I think safe and responsible road cycling events IMO are limited to 97.4 and Cape Argus :(

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The litter should not be that hard to enforce, just a small game of telling-on one another.

 

As for road closures, i'm sure you're aware that it can be quite pricey, maybe if only as you said, 1000cyclists entered, (not sure, true or not, but i assume it is) then the D2D organizers might not have been able to afford to pay the traffic department.

Could have simply been out of their budget.

 

Saying that, I wasn't there and i don't know how bad it was.

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Litter pigs p*ss me off as well. They usually are the type of scum who will give you attitude when you point out what they are doing is wrong. I often wonder if they act the same way at home...

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the Ekurhuleni metro won't allow road closure for the races held there in the month of Feb (Emperor's, R4S and the Carnival), irrespective of what one certain organiser claims to get. They (the metro) will provide officials at major intersections to direct traffic, but at a hefty cost.

 

Therefore it's up to the organisers to provide marshals to ASSIST with directing the cyclists and not to direct traffic (it's against the law). One thing to consider when organising a race (in Gauteng, in particular) is to prevent cyclists from turning right across a busy intersection(s) - easier said than done. How many races have marshals at every single intersection (big or small)??? Very few, and the one's that do, have a relatively safe race.

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Good for you. Don't let the door hit you on the arse on the way out. Bye ;)

 

I'm sure I've read that somewhere before...

 

Let the guy have his say, unless you are the poor sod who picks the goo sachets off the road or mountain and don't mind the littering?? I pick up loads of energy this and energy that on my rides. I wish it would stop! As for attitude, I had a podium finisher spit in my face on one event. Sure, it was an accident but do you think he was bothered to apologize?? (He was well aware of what happened)... NOT!

 

I wish this country and the people in it took this sport seriously. Such potential.

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I have to agree the littering is disgusting.

 

As far as metro is concerned, donT we pay taxes for that sort of thing?

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Good for you. Don't let the door hit you on the arse on the way out. Bye ;)

 

 

With this attitude you must be one of the litter pigs yourself.

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I think you have some valid points Rudi-h but by not participating I think you probably wont inconvenience anyone but yourself.

 

My personal opinion is, I dont really see it as my place to tell someone not to litter, it generally ends up in an argument and a lot of bad blood, I am too old for that c**p, I go out to enjoy my race / ride and I dont need to irritate myself playing policeman, so, rightly or wrongly I dont really worry what others do.

 

However I am with you on road closure.

 

I think maybe the older you get the more mortal you feel, and personally I get nervous in a bunch when a 36 wheeler flies by with inches to spare, or I watch with trepidation as a 36 wheeler barrels down towards the pack at 100kmph, or wondering is that car going to actually stop or will he try and squeeze past me here even though the Marshall is waving me through.....??

 

In the back of my mind, at 54 years old I know if I crash and break bones, it will take a lot longer to heal than the 25 year old who fell with me, if I ever really do, I dont need that kind of hassle in my life plus I have spinal fusions, breaking a fusion could put me in a wheel chair..... and yeah, yeah,I know one can crash on road closed races as well, but for me, the risks of an accident on a non road closure event are just so much higher I dont feel happy chancing it.

 

Dammit man.....growing old is not for woosies.!! :D

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can only say that i have been stuck behind a bunch doing a road race in the long tom pass...... That was #&?!;&& dangerous, the road has no shoulder in some places and motorist was barely missing the bunch!

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Good for you. Don't let the door hit you on the arse on the way out. Bye ;)

Cyclist like you give roadies a bad name.... You seem to be arrogant, self centered and full of it. Look at yourself and your actions and decide if you are making a contribution or not. There is enough people slipstreaming.......

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I have to agree the littering is disgusting.

 

As far as metro is concerned, donT we pay taxes for that sort of thing?

 

I guess in a perfect world :D but No, the municipalities always charge for officers on duty.

Usually its because officers on normal duty are preoccupied with other things, so most officers on point in races are doing overtime, for which the organiser pays.

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can only say that i have been stuck behind a bunch doing a road race in the long tom pass...... That was #&?!;&& dangerous, the road has no shoulder in some places and motorist was barely missing the bunch!

I rode in Bedfordview behind my son once when he was 16 or so, on a Sunday. It was so scary seeing how close vehicles pass and how unpredictable they are. Its very different when you're looking at someone else on a bike than when you've just got yourself to think about. I got shredded nerves and didnt look to do it again....nor did he! .

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I guess in a perfect world :D but No, the municipalities always charge for officers on duty.

Usually its because officers on normal duty are preoccupied with other things, so most officers on point in races are doing overtime, for which the organiser pays.

And pay a lot, the metro also dicatates the number of officers required then on the day often dont supply that number.

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Hey Grumpy Old Guy..:) funny how people respond to a reminder about keeping their actions in check.. that's usually the time all control breaks down completely and they launch into... not guilt for littering.. but rage coz you are right! Ha I could laugh. Their parents surely did not bring them up littering but it is too messy to put a used Gu in a pocket, much like you find slime tubes in bushes. "I'm not putting this in my bag! Swish." Off it goes, forgotten at the first pedal stroke...

 

The OP has such a good point and if some can sit up and realize that there are people riding behind them picking up the sh*t they toss, then there would not be a need for heated virtual debates about who is more right. TNT1 can take something from this. Again, another thread offered to gain interest in real issues, and the poster is waived goodbye, on the third response.. by who..? It does not matter really, all I know is he is not out there selling advertising space to keep the Hub as a viable GO TO PLACE for riding. People who can flippantly show others the door without the decency to allow them a voice, is not beneficial to the others who share in the opinion.

 

It's a joke I get it, but the topic is not. Sorry. Rant over.

:(

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If you do not stop littering this is what SA will look like soon. I have seen this myself, a wall one meter high on the highwater line. 20 million people in Lagos drink at least two liters of water per day (very much the same as energy satchets) and dumps them right there on the road. Those who are insensitive to taking action on littering may have to explain to their grandchildren why our beaches now looks like this!

post-24908-0-37858300-1315429939.jpg

Edited by eccentric1
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