FRANCE, JUNE 28 – French police on Sunday were still looking for the spectator who sent cyclist Tony Martin and a large part of the Tour de France bicycle racers, crashing in the opening stage amid calls for fans to behave on the side of the road.
On Saturday, Martin was sent tumbling when he rode straight into a cardboard sign being held out by a fan looking the other way at a television camera, creating chaos with 47 kilometres left of the stage.
The woman was eager for the TV cameras to capture her holding a sign with the words “ALLEZ OPI-OMI,” a mixture of French and German that translates to “come on grandpa-grandma!”
“The Landerneau police are investigating and we haven’t heard back from them yet,” Tour deputy director Pierre-Yves Thouault told Reuters after organisers ASO filed a lawsuit against the unidentified spectator.
“We are going to repeat our calls for fans to behave time and again, through the police on the side of the road and our social network,” Thouault added.
Martin, one of dozens of riders to hit the ground on Saturday, urged the fans to be more respectful.
“This message is for the people who think that the Tour de France is a circus, for the people who risk everything for a selfie with a 50 kph fast peloton… please respect the riders and the Tour de France,” the German wrote on Instagram. (REUTERS)
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