A Tour de France spectator wants to greet her grandparents with a sign – and triggers a mass fall, as a result of which some riders have to end the tour on the first day. Now the young woman has to answer in court.
The public prosecutor has demanded four months probation for the cause of a serious mass fall at the Tour de France last June. “Omi und Opi” had wanted to greet the spectator with a cardboard sign from the edge of the bike race – but when she held it up to the cameras, she caused a mass fall of around 50 Tour participants. The public prosecutor’s office accuses the 31-year-old of endangering others and of negligent bodily harm. The court in Brest plans to announce the verdict on December 9th.
The young woman saw the dangerousness of her behavior, said the prosecutor in the trial on Thursday. The defense attorney referred to the fragile personality of his client. “She’s going through hell,” he said.
In June, during the first stage of the Tour de France, the 31-year-old French woman stood with her back to the approaching Tour participants on the side of the road and held her cardboard sign saying “Allez Opi-Omi!” held in the way. She was sure that her grandparents were watching the tour on TV, she said. The German professional Tony Martin could no longer avoid it, collided with the shield and fell – and dozens of other tour participants as a result.
Tour-off for several drivers
Several athletes had to drop out of the tour due to serious injuries, among them the German Jasha Sütterlin and the Spaniard Marc Soler, who had to be treated for three fractures in his left arm. “The damage suffered by the riders is of a physical, moral and economic nature,” said the international cycling association Cyclistes Professionnels Associés (CPA).
She demands a symbolic compensation of one euro – and more respect. It is unacceptable that the months of preparation of an athlete for a bike race by the “pursuit of awareness” of spectators are undone.
While the pictures of the falling professional cyclists went around the world, the young woman could not be found at first. It was only after a call to witnesses was published that she finally turned herself in to the police four days later. The young woman described her act as “stupidity”. The tour operators had considered filing an advertisement, but decided against it.