Watch fuming Tour de France riders HALT race and stage protest over safety concerns after horror crash sparked by fan
TOUR de France riders came to a halt midrace on Tuesday in protest against dangerous racing conditions following a flurry of crashes.
Having left the town of Redon to start Stage 4, the peloton rode at a moderate pace and all riders got off their bikes after about one kilometer.
They waited silently for about a minute before hitting the road again.
A video online shows German cyclist Andre Greipel ordering the rest of the peloton to come to a stop in demonstration.
After the crash-filled Stage 3, several riders criticised race organisers for setting up what they considered a dangerous finale to a Tour stage.
It came after Australian rider Calen Ewan broke his collar bone in a high speed crash with Peter Sagan as they battled for the finish line.
On Saturday, the Tour de France was thrown into chaos when a fan caused a massive crash that wiped out half of the peloton.
The spectator was holding a huge sign and rider Tony Martin smashed into it with the rest of the pack falling like dominos.
Two top contenders for the yellow jersey last year's runner-up, Primoz Roglic, and 2018 champion Geraint Thomas were involved in crashes on Monday, losing ground to their main rivals.
Former world champion Philippe Gilbert said that riders' representatives asked for the Stage 3 timings to end with five kilometres left.
He said: "We had analysed the route and saw that the finale was extremely dangerous.
"There was a big mistake from the people who approved this route.
"The UCI (cycling's governing body) commissaries did not accept the request, it was rejected in the morning at the start of the race."
That was just hours before Ewan's brutal crash with Sagan on that same sector.
Riders' union CPA said in a statement it has asked the UCI to set up discussions to adapt the so-called 3-kilometer rule during stage races. Under that regulation, riders who crash in the last three kilometers are awarded the time of the group they were riding with before they fell.
The union said: "This could avoid circumstances such as those which occurred in yesterday's stage.
"Riders and CPA are determined to pursue changes for the safety and physical integrity of athletes. These changes are more necessary than ever."
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