Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Paris-Roubaix Incident

Have you ever found yourself moments away from accidentally causing an international incident during a televised sporting event? Well, that's just what (almost) happened when we went to watch the Paris-Roubaix cycling race. Here's a hint: it involves a dog, a baby, and seats so close to the course that they would be considered a VIP seating at any other venue.

Where the events unfolded


 
We could see the helicopter with the TV cameras a few miles away, so we knew that the front of the pack was bearing down on our position and the excitement began to build.

And that's when then the baby woke up and started crying. Too cold? Too hungry? Who knows. But the dog didn't like it, so he chewed through his leash. Remember, we are now moments away from being mere feet away from the internationally televised bike race and our dog is running rampant across the course. This is not good.

For starters, a dog in the road puts the cyclists in a very dangerous position because they either hit the dog (and crash), swerve and possibly hit another cyclist (and either rider might crash), or they hit the brakes and get hit by a rider behind them (and crash).

Appealing to the dog's primal instincts, Greg threw a stick far out into a field so that the dog would clear the area where the bikes were about to come through. The spectators were starting to stand up and move closer to the road, so the clock's counting down.

The dog brought the stick back to Greg just before the first cyclist passed by, so Greg was able to hold its collar while the bikes whooshed by. These are the pictures Kacey took, because Greg was keeping the dog behind the thin crowd of people.


As you can see, there's no room to avoid a dog sprinting across the road full of cyclists. And there's nowhere near enough space for them to brake before the next riders reach that spot.
As you can see, there's no room to avoid a dog sprinting across the road full of cyclists. And there's nowhere near enough space for them to brake before the next riders reach that spot. So, thankfully, we didn't end up on the evening news and the race continued to completion.

But there's always next time...
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