Yesterday’s women’s edition of the Belgian semi-classic, De Brabantse Pijl saw TV cameras capture the shocking moment a race moto swerved towards Team Sunweb rider Liane Lippert, almost causing her to crash.
The 21-year-old had just launched an attack on an uphill section around 20 kilometres into the 137.5-kilometre race when the moto veered across her path.
— Daniel Montes (@VanDerCycling) April 17, 2019
Visibly shocked, the German national road champion had to steer sharply to her right to avoid being hit.
TV pictures suggest that the moto rider himself took evasive action to avoid a flatbed truck parked on the left-hand side of the road – although why he turned so sharply and suddenly is unclear.
A number of incidents involving motorbikes forming part of the race caravan have happened in recent years, including the Lotto-Soudal rider Stig Broeckx ending up in a coma with a brain injury after he was struck by a moto during the 2016 Tour of Belgium.
The following year, Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas crashed out of the Giro d’Italia when he collided with a race moto that for some reason had stopped – on the wrong side of the road, according to UCI regulations on convoy traffic – just after a corner.
The most serious incident came in the 2016 edition of Gent-Wevelgem when the Wanty-Groupe Gobert rider Antoine Demoitié was run over by a motorbike after he and three other riders crashed, the 25-year-old Belgian dying in hospital from his injuries that evening.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.