So seeing a neutral car following Hincapie in today's TT got me thinking about team cars. I've always wondered how many cars each team has. Obviously not enough for each team member in the TTs, when the cars are out on course for over an hour.
Who drives the other cars? If a team has someone in a breakaway, but has a main contender still in the peloton, does the team manager stay back with the peloton and send an alternate car foward?
this stage has a finish next to the start, so the cars can go out multiple times for several team members.
I believe it's 4 miles from start to finish today. The next TT has a start and finish in different towns. The cars can go out multiple times, but there must be multiple team cars and I'm wondering how many each team has and how that works in a normal, road race stage.
Taking a tip from Siu Blue Wind, I too am typing a lengthy passage of text down here to demonstrate the enormous amount of space available should one wish to use it-- in sharp contrast to the avatar text above this part.
In 2006 Discovery had around 6 decaled cars at their disposal and another 4 'unmarked' rental cars which they could use in a pinch. I don't think they're allowed more than 2 cars in the race caravan, but I'm sure many support vehicles are racing along parallel roads in case there's a problem.
They'll send one up to a breakaway and keep the other with the peleton, if a GC or stage contender falls off the back of the peleton the car will drop back (because all or part of the team will drop back in support.)
They do rely on the neutral support guys as well (like the Mavic cars).