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what is "neutral start"?

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what is "neutral start"?

Old 06-30-21, 05:03 PM
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HeyItsSara
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what is "neutral start"?

I hear that often when the cyclists line up for Le Tour de france. what does it mean - first come first served?

thanks
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Old 06-30-21, 05:09 PM
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It's essentially just to get them safely out of the host start city and let them warm up a little before things are allowed to get crazy.

I think there is some loosely chosen line up for the cyclist based on standings and fame, but it's pretty much a small ceremonial parade type thing.
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Old 06-30-21, 06:10 PM
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Just to add to the above, it also means the riders roll out at a controlled speed behind an official vehicle that they cannot pass, at a certain point the control car gets out of the way and the attacks/breakaways can start. Similar to when a pace car is out in autoracing.
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Old 06-30-21, 06:43 PM
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ah ok thanks all!
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Old 07-01-21, 05:01 AM
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The related depart fictif is one of my favorite arcane terms. Also sleeping policeman, though unrelated to the roll out. Unless G is racing.
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Old 07-09-21, 10:23 AM
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Stage 12 was a textbook example for how to screw up a neutral start.
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Old 07-09-21, 10:39 AM
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I remember watching a TdF controlled Neutral start from Bourg d'Oisans. Greg Lemond stayed behind in town signing autographs for like 5 minutes, the fans were just orgasmic. His teammates kept trying to get him onto the road and he was like, don't worry we'll catch them. They shot out of town like the Disney's Rockn Rollercoaster at Hollywood Studios.
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Old 07-09-21, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
It's essentially just to get them safely out of the host start city and let them warm up a little before things are allowed to get crazy.

I think there is some loosely chosen line up for the cyclist based on standings and fame, but it's pretty much a small ceremonial parade type thing.
That which I bolded up in the quote, I don't think warming up is intended at all even if that happens. It allows starting from a media and spectators attractive place in town, like some town square or memorabilia point of interest, but it can be a place totally unsuitable for any competitive riding.

The lineup order is supposed to be kept (I think even teams should keep to where they were placed initially) and it is kept more or less I think. Otherwise you would get some team trying to percolate through the field to the front behind the celebs in those tricots and that would almost certainly lead to accidents and bad blood among teams, so I think its not done.

I also believe (not having read the rules) there is a rule that bikes should keep behind the leading car's bumper or maybe up to its halfway point (?), since often they don't keep behind it, but likely there is a rule to keep to the rear bumper and they just don't make a big thing out of it when some ride pretty well alongside the car before the race is waved off.

Last edited by vane171; 07-09-21 at 05:57 PM.
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