Etape Caledonia vandalised

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Si
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Si » 18 May 2009, 11:46am

This included temporary stopping the race mid course while the roads were made as safe as possible. Once we were satisfied with the safety of the course the event was resumed.


So basically, those who put the tacs down because, allegedly, they were annoyed at the roads being closed actually caused the roads to be closed longer than originally planned. :roll:

(not to mention the cost to the council to clear the roads, and the threat to wild life and other non-etape road users after the even).

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jan19
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby jan19 » 18 May 2009, 3:54pm

People seem to get very wound up when it comes to road closures. When the Tour De France came through Kent in 2007 there was a fair bit of griping in the local press about the roads. The fact that it was a one-off and was very well advertised beforehand didn't make the slightest difference - some people are not prepared to be put out in any way. Fortunately nobody resorted to tacks.

In the end, the sheer number of people who turned out to watch the race (ourselves included) rather shut the doubters up. Kent is in the main a pretty county, and as on that particular day the sun was shining it looked at its very best. The Kent Tourist Board must have been laughing all the way to the bank.

Jan :D

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Beakyboy
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Beakyboy » 18 May 2009, 10:28pm

I was there yesterday, flew over from Ireland especially. Its a great day and well organised. I spoke to the local hoteliers and restaurant people who were gob-smaked at the sabotage as they said they now revenue a lot more at a time of year as they would ordinarily have done in the past. After all 3500 hungry and thirsty cyclists have to eat, sleep and drink somewhere. Apparently its a small minority group that are opposed to the road closure. They are only closed for four hours, a small inconvenience i think for the amount of money brought to the area from this event and a worth while charity to boot.

The tacks were spread over a ten mile mountain route that was very steep in places, i only suffered two punctures on that stretch but others suffered four of five and one fella seven! Most riders managed to stay on but a few were thrown luckily, without too much damage. Even one of the safety motor bikes got problems. The tacks are going to be hard to completely clear up and may well end up in the local's own tyres or some unsuspecting tourist cyclist who if only carries one or two inner tubes and without the help of support vehicles that we had, may have a very long walk home!! Mobile phone signals are a bit sketchy round there.

It was potentially a life threatening act and I hope it will be treated as such when they find the culprits!

Otherwise as I said a great event and mighty crack!
May the wind always be at your rear!

garybaldy
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby garybaldy » 18 May 2009, 10:47pm

I'm not sure where exactly this incident occured but I think it might be on part of my planned route on my up and coming LEJOG. I had intended to stay in Crieff then take the A822/A826 through to the A9 via Aberfeldy, Tummel Bridge and Trinafour. I might now go further east and join the A9 just north of Perth. Unless, of course you know better!!

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby iamanidiot » 19 May 2009, 12:06am

Here's an interesting response from a car forum I frequent :D

<mod: section of post with inappropriate language removed - suggest that you put in a link to it with warnings about it's content rather than copy it here>
There are 10 types of people. Those who can read binary, and those who can't.

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby etape » 19 May 2009, 2:25pm

Etape Caledonia: Organisers Defiant in the Face of Adversity

IMG, organisers of the Macmillan Cancer Support Etape Caledonia, are today defiant in the wake of a deliberate attempt by mindless vandals to endanger cyclists’ lives and wreak havoc with the event. Buoyed by an influx of messages from local residents, businesses, politicians and business organisations, IMG are determined to implement their plan to open entries immediately for the 2010 Etape Caledonia.

IMG have already taken steps to meet with Tayside Police and Perth & Kinross Council leaders to ensure that there will be no repeat of yesterday’s incident next year.

Jon Hazan, event director, said, “This is an important event for IMG and we are committed to ensuring it is a success, not only for our participants but for the local community.”

“We’ve been overwhelmed with messages from individuals and businesses who are, quite simply, appalled at what has happened on their doorstep, expressing their direct support for the event and encouraging us to return to the area in 2010. I can confirm that the actions of whoever is responsible will do nothing to deter us from returning to Highland Perthshire and strengthens our resolve to make the event a continuing success in 2010.”

Entries are now available for the 2010 Macmillan Cancer Support Etape Caledonia event at www.etapecaledonia.co.uk


The organisers were alerted to a major safety incident early on Sunday morning on a section of the closed road cycle challenge, requiring the event to be halted for 1 hour and 25 minutes. It was discovered that a large number of carpet tacks had been thrown along significant sections of the course and as a result of safety concerns the organisers, in co-ordination with the local police and council, implemented immediate safety contingencies. Once the organisers were satisfied with the safety of the course, the event was resumed.

Expressing his view on the unwelcome incident, Tayside Joint Police Board Convener Ian Mackintosh said today: ‘‘The actions that led to the disruption and considerable inconvenience during the event are nothing short of contemptible.”

He continued, ‘‘Whilst I am appalled that anyone would act in such an irresponsible fashion and run the real risk of injuring large numbers of people, I was greatly heartened by the outcry that followed and the widespread condemnation directed at this dreadful behaviour.”

‘‘The Etape Caledonia is a true highlight on the sporting calendar that attracts thousands of competitors, as well as their friends and family, to one of the UK’s most stunning landscapes. The event and the many people that it draws to Perthshire are warmly received by the overwhelming majority of the local community.”

He concluded, ‘‘I would ask anyone with information that could assist enquiries to come forward and having spoken with the Deputy Chief Constable today I am confident that Tayside Police will work swiftly to identify those responsible and hold them to account. Furthermore, I would hope when those responsible are put in front of the court that a very strong line is taken.’’

Charity partner Macmillan Cancer Support, who had over 1000 fundraisers riding in the event, also expressed their support for the future of the event. Eleanor Whitfield, challenge events co-ordinator from Macmillan commented “Thanks to the effort and determination of 3,500 cyclists, Sunday’s 81-mile Macmillan Cancer Support Etape Caledonia was a huge success raising a staggering £250,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support.”

She continued, “Macmillan would like to say very big thank you to all the participants for their patience and camaraderie - despite the incident on the course, the mood remained positive throughout and disruption to both the enjoyment and fundraising was minimal. Team Macmillan are very much looking forward to Etape Caledonia 2010 when we hope to raise even more money for Macmillan to help provide vital support to people affected by cancer.” She continued.

With police investigations still in progress, Tayside Police continue to follow a positive line of enquiry into what they describe as “reckless and irresponsible actions”. They are appealing to anyone who has any information that could assist the investigation to call Tayside Police on 0300 111 2222, or speak to any officer.

Councilor John Kellas, Perth & Kinross Council's Convener of Enterprise & Infrastructure, piled further condemnation on the incident in support of the event.

He said, "The entire Enterprise & Infrastructure Committee deplore this irresponsible and, frankly, dangerous behaviour. It is fortunate that no-one was injured as a result. We are all disgusted by this reckless act. We fully support Tayside Police in their efforts to track down whoever is responsible and encourage anyone with information to contact the Police.”

"I am pleased however that yesterday's incident did not prevent thousands of people from enjoying the Etape Caledonia, the community events that complemented it and what Highland Perthshire has to offer. Furthermore, it will not deter us, or the organisers, from our wider shared purpose - to deliver massive benefits to the local economy."

Mike Beale, President of Perthshire Chamber of Commerce, issued a statement on behalf of the many businesses in the area that have contacted them, also condemning the actions of the saboteurs. Mike commented:

“We have been contacted by many local businesses today expressing their dismay and anger that a single criminal act of such a mindless minority could take place in what is a most beautiful part of Scotland. I was fortunate to be at the event as a spectator and personally witnessed how mutually supportive the participants were of each other’s shared plight and their spirit in the face of adversity is much to be admired.”

“On behalf of the local business community I would urge the organisers not to be put off by the vandalism that this year’s event has experienced. They clearly have strong support from the local business community to continue growing an event that has a demonstrable and positive impact on Destination Perthshire.”

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby iamanidiot » 19 May 2009, 2:46pm

iamanidiot wrote:Here's an interesting response from a car forum I frequent :D

<mod: section of post with inappropriate language removed - suggest that you put in a link to it with warnings about it's content rather than copy it here>


- I would have linked this but it's in a section you have to log in for - I thought your swear filter did an adequate job? Whatever.
There are 10 types of people. Those who can read binary, and those who can't.

Ellieb
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Ellieb » 19 May 2009, 3:59pm

It is a bit early yet, as the perp has yet to be convicted. But should it not be possible for the CTC to handle a mass compensation claim from the entrants whose tyres, tubes and enjoyment of the day were ruined?

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Mick F » 19 May 2009, 4:03pm

Ellieb wrote:It is a bit early yet, as the perp has yet to be convicted.


Convicted?
Has he/she been caught?
Mick F. Cornwall


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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Mick F » 19 May 2009, 4:36pm

Ta!

Very interesting. I see from the report that some people object to the race. As I said further up the thread, that was the impression I got from some locals. It would appear that businesses do very well over the weekend, but tourists are put off because everything's booked up.

No doubt, if you live in the Pitlochry area, you don't own a business, and you aren't interested in cycling, you're bound to be inconvenienced and possibly upset.

No excuse for down right devilment and the possible GBH that could ensue. I hope the chap gets what's coming to him.
Mick F. Cornwall

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby eileithyia » 20 May 2009, 8:22am

As has been said elsewhere I do not think this is ultimately to do wih cyclists but closed roads.
We've just had some of Manchester closed off due to the 10k, in the past there have been a spate of letters in the local rag from people who did not know they would be trapped in all day; moan, complain, etc etc., could not go out in their car for the Sunday paper etc.
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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby McVouty » 20 May 2009, 12:35pm

"But should it not be possible for the CTC to handle a mass compensation claim from the entrants whose tyres, tubes and enjoyment of the day were ruined?"

Errr...No. Scots law doesn't allow class actions.

What is possible, as someone suggested on Stirling Tri Club's forum, is this; "At £30 to £40 for a tyre and tube this represents thousands of pounds of criminal damage. I think every single person affected in this way should make an official complaint to the police to emphasise just how serious this is."

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby EdinburghFixed » 20 May 2009, 12:40pm

Once a conviction is secured, I don't see any reason why each individual cyclist cannot make a separate civil claim for the cost of their tyre and tube. It would be hard to loose!

However while I deplore the sabotage (I'm going to enter the 2010 event, so here's hoping there's no repeat!) I don't understand why the Etape can't bend on some of the issues.

For example, why is it not possible to vary the route, ever? We spend a lot of time around Pitlochry and there are certainly other possibilities.

Why is the event on a Sunday morning, instead of a Saturday? That would address the religious concerns of blocking access to worship (although Tayside is not religious like the Highlands & Islands, if you are a keen churchgoer I can understand that problem).

Why is the event run in the tourist season instead of off-season? It's not like many cyclists would turn up their nose at a closed-roads event in October, for example.

I can imagine having your complaints ignored year-in, year-out must be galling, especially when there is more than a whiff of "rich southerners come up to close the only road to our house for their own amusement". The Etape could be the thin-end of the wedge as far as closed-roads cycling in the UK goes, and it would be great if this became more widely accepted :)

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Re: Etape Caledonia vandalised

Postby Mick F » 20 May 2009, 12:51pm

Well said EF.
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