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Old 07-10-04, 03:08 PM   #1
SamDaBikinMan
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Stage 3, should Mayo have been attacked while down?

OK, so this so called unwritten rule about not attacking a favourite for GC has now been dumped into the trash pile.

Over the years that followed the 2001 crash of JU it has been a topic of discussion about waiting for a GC or the yellow jersey. Yet when Mayo was unfortunately involved in a crash it became ATTACK! time. Every single fan and director sportif knew Mayo had the credentials to be a contender for GC this year. Yet at the first opportunity to take advantage of bad luck the commands are given to put the pedals to the metal and leave his @$$ in the ditch. In other words, "hey! Mayo is down! **** him! Keep on hammering!"

Is this little bit of Tour courtesy/protocol only selectively applied?

It seems to me that if LA is to fall again like last year then it it will be time to leave him in a crumpled pile and attack. Especially if your name is Iban Mayo.
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Old 07-10-04, 03:18 PM   #2
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As far as I can remember, the general rule of etiquette is that the peloton does not attack the yellow jersey on a crash. I think Lance extended this courtesy to Jan Ullrich a few years back, as was his prerogative as the current Yellow jersey holder, but it is not a hard fast rule.
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Old 07-10-04, 03:25 PM   #3
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It's not just about attacking the yellow jersey. It's about attacking any rider, especially one who's got a legitimate podium possibility.

After Lance crashed on 15 last year imagine if Hamilton or Mayo's DS had radioed to them "go go!" Armstrong's down!" Can you imagine the **** that would have come down then?

Here's the outrage:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/tour.php?...l09tourletters
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Old 07-10-04, 03:26 PM   #4
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After a careful review of the films...it has been determined that there were 2 riders up the road at the time Mayo crashed. They would have really liked it if the pack had slowed down and waited since that would have enhanced their chances of finishing 1-2 on the stage. Unfortunately, the pack was not cooperating and chose to chase them, which was doubly unfortunate for Mayo, Mercado, Rodgers, Zubeldia and a few others with high hopes of a high GC placing.

In addition, Mayo crashed before the cobbles. This is where the pace gets quite intense because all the riders are trying to get to the front to avoid crashes. USPS was only doing what any good pro team would do by going to the front and riding hard to try to get onto the cobbles first. Mayo was in fact near the front when the crash happened, but unfortunately, he was on the wrong side of the road. Scott Sunderland, who was on the right side of the road, said in his diary that the pace was ~70km/hr before the first cobbles, where Mayo crashed. He was right there on the opposite side of the road from Mayo. The pace also picked up like this again before the 2nd stretch of cobbles.

Keep in mind that at one point, Mayo's group had closed to within 1'30" of the lead group. After the pace picked up for the 2nd set of cobbles though, they were done.

There was really no breech of protocol here. Just a collision so to speak of different circumstances that combined to make Mayo's crash cataclysmic.

edited to add: Armstrong's crash in 2003 was caused by a fan. I think waiting was an impromptu decision that the riders around him took. When Ullrich rode off the road and armstrong waited, that was driver error, and Armstrong's decision to wait was in my mind completely arbitrary/voluntary, not a matter of protocol.

Last edited by don d.; 07-10-04 at 05:07 PM.
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Old 07-10-04, 03:38 PM   #5
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what about the fact that this was stage 3? fairly early in the tour.
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Old 07-10-04, 04:21 PM   #6
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Seriously though, reverse the situation. Lance on the ground and Mayo attacking. Imagine the uproar.
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Old 07-10-04, 04:33 PM   #7
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Imagine the ROAR of the spectators. I would have liked to have been there when that happened.
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Old 07-10-04, 04:55 PM   #8
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I still don't see how "Mayo was attacked". The peloton drove the pace before he crashed, and kept that pace after he crashed. The field split, so of course they want to keep the pressure on, whether or not Mayo was in the rear group.
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Old 07-10-04, 04:59 PM   #9
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I agree with don d. on this one.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:08 PM   #10
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It was reported that as soon as Mayo went down, Postal was told what happened and told to attack.

Don has some good points also. Phil and Paul essentially feel the same way.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laggard
It was reported that as soon as Mayo went down, Postal was told what happened and told to attack.

Don has some good points also. Phil and Paul essentially feel the same way.
And your new avatar is going to be...?
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Old 07-10-04, 05:13 PM   #12
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I think attack may be a relative term when you are flying towards cobbles at 40mph. its not like they had another choice, slow down and they would not be the first onto the cobbles, because no one else was going to wait.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by don d.
And your new avatar is going to be...?
He's planning on stealing my awesome Molteni jersey avatar.

Mayo doesn't exactly have a whole lot of friends in the peloton, it seems. Especially the top guys in the Tour (Lance and Jan). Anyone remember stage 15 last year? Mayo tried to attack after the crash that he and Lance had. And on the very same stage, he and Zubeldia made Jan do all the pacemaking, and Mayo jumped around him for second place (and the time bonus, which would have helped Jan).

What goes around comes around.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:40 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Devil
Mayo doesn't exactly have a whole lot of friends in the peloton, it seems. Especially the top guys in the Tour (Lance and Jan). Anyone remember stage 15 last year? Mayo tried to attack after the crash that he and Lance had. And on the very same stage, he and Zubeldia made Jan do all the pacemaking, and Mayo jumped around him for second place (and the time bonus, which would have helped Jan).

What goes around comes around.
I really think this is somewhat overblown. Unless you're Robbie McEwen, these guys just don't keep track of stuff like that. Here is a photo of Lance telling Mayo what direction he should point his bike when they get to the cobbles: http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...auphine-may-21

And here is a photo of Mayo asking Lance, " So Noval's going to put his hand on my bars like this and push me down on Stage 3 of the TDF?" http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...auphine-may-20

Really though, I haven't seen anything more than fan speculation that Mayo is somehow unpopular in the peloton.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamDaBikinMan
Yet when Mayo was unfortunately involved in a crash it became ATTACK! time.
Will you guys get over this! MAYO WAS NOT ATTACKED!! I suggest you go back and look at the tape to see the race just before the crash. It resembled the last 5km of a flat stage with everyone lining up for a sprint.

The situation was no different than yesterday when a crash happened at the last kilometer mark and Lance went down. Do you hear anyone complaining about the race not stopping!?!? Granted, no one lost time, but do you honestly think anyone would stop racing if the crash had happened 500 meters earlier and the time lost counted on GC?

Everyone was going all out to be first to the cobbles, it just happened that USPS was on the front because they executed their game plan perfectly. After they got through the cobbles, Ecky and George inspired riding created a gap on at least two GC riders (Levi & Haras). I'm sure your strategy at that point would be to hold up and throw away a great opportunity!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Laggard
Seriously though, reverse the situation. Lance on the ground and Mayo attacking. Imagine the uproar.
First, Lance wouldn't have been forced to ride alone to catch up for some distance as Mayo was.

Second, Lance has a much stronger team than Mayo and I have no doubt USPS would have bridged the gap. Did you notice that all but a couple EE riders gave up the chase in the end? That's the team I want around me when ***** happens

Talk about 99ers, these comments make me think people here haven't watched more than a couple bike races

-murray
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Old 07-10-04, 05:44 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by don d.
I really think this is somewhat overblown. Unless you're Robbie McEwen, these guys just don't keep track of stuff like that. Here is a photo of Lance telling Mayo what direction he should point his bike when they get to the cobbles: http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...auphine-may-21

And here is a photo of Mayo asking Lance, " So Noval's going to put his hand on my bars like this and push me down on Stage 3 of the TDF?" http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...auphine-may-20

Really though, I haven't seen anything more than fan speculation that Mayo is somehow unpopular in the peloton.
I've seen those pictures before. Maybe I exaggerated a little bit, but I'm willing to bet that things aren't as friendly as they seem.

And it's too bad not everybody can be McEwen, because what's a good bike race without threats/actions of violence?
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Old 07-10-04, 05:54 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by don d.
And your new avatar is going to be...?
After seeing Devil's, I had avatar envy.

I'm feeling more secure now.
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Old 07-10-04, 05:57 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grampy™
the peloton does not attack the yellow jersey on a crash.
Unfortunately I missed most of that stage. However, the yellow jersey (Hushovd) was caught up in the crash as well. While he isn't a GC contender, the combination of not waiting for him and a major contender shows that the wait/no attack after crash "rule" is more down to who has crashed and who has not than a morally steadfast rule. I am quite sure that Mayo won't hesitate to attack/not wait for Armstrong, Ullrich or Hamilton should any of them crash. Perhaps it is his own opportunistic style that has made others more opportunistic against him than they would against other riders. And yes, had he been on a more powerful team this probably wouldn't be much of an issue..

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Old 07-10-04, 06:25 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laggard
It's not just about attacking the yellow jersey. It's about attacking any rider, especially one who's got a legitimate podium possibility.

After Lance crashed on 15 last year imagine if Hamilton or Mayo's DS had radioed to them "go go!" Armstrong's down!" Can you imagine the **** that would have come down then?

Here's the outrage:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/tour.php?...l09tourletters
Yeah, there are some really good points, such as:

"I could hear Bruyneel yelling in their earpiece, "Mayo's behind the split! Go! Go! Go!" "

How could he hear this all the way from Utah. It may have happened, but he must have better television reception than I do.

"The Tour should be decided in the mountains and in the time trials"

It usually is decided in the moutains and time trials, but to say it should be is ridiculous. Why do you think the main GC contenders are always near the front? You never know when something can happen to split the peloton (crash, wind). This happened today with the wind and who was up there trying to widen the gap?

I think this whole "controversy" is a fan issue. Those who think USPS, T-Mobile and Phonak were correct are probably their fans and those who aren't their fans think they did the wrong thing.
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Old 07-10-04, 06:27 PM   #20
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Mayo lost time because his team was not strong enough to pull him back, right? Why is that everyone else's fault?
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Old 07-10-04, 06:34 PM   #21
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I'm beginning to think that riders should not be allowed to attack anyone who is having difficulty - even in the mountains.

It just isn't fair.
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Old 07-10-04, 06:39 PM   #22
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After seeing Devil's, I had avatar envy.

I'm feeling more secure now.
That Ariostea jersey is easily one of the most Italian looking jerseys I've ever seen. If you like that, you'll like this. I would buy it myself, but I've put a moratorium on clothing purchases until my Jelly Belly kit is less description and more function.

Got to ebay and search on castelli in the stores:
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Old 07-10-04, 10:37 PM   #23
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You want Italian? Here's Italian..

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Old 07-11-04, 02:12 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murrays

Everyone was going all out to be first to the cobbles, it just happened that USPS was on the front because they executed their game plan perfectly. After they got through the cobbles, Ecky and George inspired riding created a gap on at least two GC riders (Levi & Haras). I'm sure your strategy at that point would be to hold up and throw away a great opportunity!

First, Lance wouldn't have been forced to ride alone to catch up for some distance as Mayo was.

Second, Lance has a much stronger team than Mayo and I have no doubt USPS would have bridged the gap. Did you notice that all but a couple EE riders gave up the chase in the end? That's the team I want around me when ***** happens

Notwithstanding any assumptions these points are pretty much what it seems to boil down to.

It does seem odd that DS of postal was said/claimed to be giving orders to push harder based on the crash which is what made it questionable in my opinion. In any event it is still a fact that there is an unwritten courtesy that does seem to be extended among only a few in the peloton.

Now it would certainly not be wise to throw out an advantage if it is come by legitimately.
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Old 07-11-04, 05:15 PM   #25
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Some more thoughts on the hypothetical "If Lance had fallen instead of Mayo...", which has gotten a lot of spanish press in recent days. The effort on the front would have far less enthusiastic with Postal storming from the rear, not necessarily because Lance is the "Grand Patron" of the race. Rather, because the folks up front would know they were working against a killer TT squad, and the work and organization to hold a gap would be enormous.

Cycling is a team sport, in the end, and Mayo places himself at GC risk in the early stages by hanging out with a bunch of climber/opportunists from a small region of spain. They're slow to help each other, and not particularly good at the either.

This begs the question - Mayo will get offers from top teams for the new season, and how will his allegiance to Euskatel remain after this year, knowing that he might have done much better with a stronger squad?
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