Tried tuning in for the final kilometres? Well there's an episode of Minder and live ATP Tennis instead

Cycling fans were left rightly frustrated on Saturday, as they missed the whole Women’s Tour de Yorkshire and almost the entirety of the men’s race.

Problems with the plane, which transmits images of the race to an outside broadcasting truck at the finish, meant that it had to be landed during the women’s race, with the issues unresolved before the men’s race got under way.

It meant that no-one saw Kirsten Wild’s sprint victory into Doncaster, nor Lizzie Armitstead’s attack earlier in the day as she realised after the race.

“Technical problems with the French TV coverage of the Tour de Yorkshire has meant that the Women’s race is no longer being shown on ITV4,” was the message from ITV.

But what’s more, those issues also reportedly mean that there are no highlights of the race, except for those that can be pieced together from the finish.

A back-up plane in France was despatched as quickly as possible, and managed to get over despite striking air traffic control workers.

Live pictures did eventually begin on both ITV and Eurosport for the men’s race, although that didn’t seem to last long, as anyone tuning in for the final 10km would have found an episode of Minder or live ATP tennis in it’s place.

There were some helicopter shots and some images from the finish on Eurosport Player, showing Danny Van Poppel’s (Team Sky) victory, but it’s not been a great day for organisers ASO.

It’s an unusual incident for the French race organisers, who almost faultlessly broadcast Paris-Roubaix in it’s entirety a few weeks ago, but it’ll be difficult to appease some fans who would have hoping to catch the action from not only the increasingly popular men’s race, but the new flagship women’s race which was given so much build-up.

  • m100s2

    An aIrcraft (single engined Socata TB-20 Trinidad) with registration F-GVLD spent many hours yesterday at just under 12,000ft circling the mens race, taking off from Leeds Bradford and eventually landing at Doncaster (google that registration and flightradar24 to find details of the flight) It was also circling and following the race route on Friday.

    There was also another aircraft, at around 5000ft that was performing similar tracks, but only displayed with a partial registration ‘B2NP’ That suddenly departed back to Leeds Bradford at around the time the footage of the mens race was lost on entry to Pontefract. Presumably this was the one with the problem.

    There is an online article “How the Tour de France is Broadcast To the World” that alludes to two fixed wing aircraft operation for the TdF, one for the motorbike coverage the other for the low level helicopters possibly because of the terrain.

    Be interested if anyone knows what that other aircraft was doing on the TdY, at 12,000ft it was often above cloud and way out of range of obtaining direct video coverage itself. .Maybe just voice communications?

  • Alex

    What a joke. The RAF wouldn’t have mucked up and probably would have stepped in to save the day.

  • BrownTrousers

    Disappointing about the TV coverage.

    It didn’t stop my enjoyment of the event. It seems every Donny village had its own village fair/Galla day and street party combined. I’m sure all the local pubs, cafes and restaurants did very well. Hundreds of folk turned out in Sprotbrough.

    I’m not a cycling enthusiast but the TDY is a great thing for the region. There aren’t too many opportunities for the county to express its enthusiasm for sport. No wonder we’ve embraced it.

    Hopefully they’ll sort the telly out for the final day and hopefully they can bring it back this way next time to make up for the dissapointment.

  • Rob Dickens

    Weccy, perhaps YTV should have put some skin in the game then to broadcast the TDY? Tough your day was ruined for a bike race on the telly.

  • Adam Beevers

    Well at least there was no gender discrimination today!

  • Howmanyjackos

    ASO is an abbreviation. The uk’s premier cycling event scuppered .sure the piss up in a brewery theme means nothing given whats been lost today

  • James Cooper

    No TV tomorrow and M. Prudhomme might be needing the services of Terry McCann.
    I wonder if Arthur Daley provided the broadcasting equipment?

  • Chumply Chummunderson

    I pity those who tuned into tennis, luckily I got Minder.

  • Brendan Power

    There can be no excuse for this; no back up, totally unprofessional. Presumably ASO will reimburse those towns and villages that spent money to show the world what they had to offer. .

  • Phil Brookes

    Bl***y annoying, came home after nice 85 miler all set for beer and Le Tour to find sod all. Fix it please for tomorrow!!

  • Leodis75

    I blame the French.. :-p

  • Weccy

    An absolute debacle. M. Christophe Prudhomme needs to sort this out before tomorrow & definitely for next year. So many people invested time, effort, money & love into this all for nothing, zero, zilch at the end of the day. Was my home town stage & I can’t begin to articulate the level of my frustration & disappointment. Gary Verity must be pulling his hair out. The company in charge of production should be sued for ruining our day & the opportunity to broadcast our beautiful county to the world

  • hailpantani

    Fred Karno springs to mind ……………………..

  • Rupert the Super Bear

    What a disaster.