Tom Boonen: 'Riders forget they are responsible for the safety of others'

Tom Boonen says there needs to be a change of mentality in the peloton to reduce selfishness among some of the riders

Tom Boonen training for the 2016 Tour of Flanders
(Image credit: Watson)

Tom Boonen (Etixx-Quick Step) was among the riders present at a meeting hosted by the Belgian Cycling Federation to look into rider safety during races.

The call to action came from the incident involving Lotto-Soudal rider Stig Broeckx at the Belgium Tour in May, which left the rider in an induced coma after being hit by a motorbike.

Four-time Paris-Roubaix winner Boonen says involving riders and team managers in the conversation process is an important step.

"Riders see a race very different from the organisation," he told Sporza, "so it's a good thing that we have exchanged ideas.

"There were useful things [discussed] in [the meeting], which cost no effort in the short term and very little money."

Stage three of the Belgium Tour was cancelled after the Broeckx incident. It is believed that a motorbike crashed into another bike and then collided with the peloton.

It was the second time the Lotto rider has been involved in a collision with a moto in racing this season, having broken his collarbone in an accident at Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne.

While much of the emphasis has been put on the race organisers to ensure that motorbike riders don't take risks when moving past the peloton, Boonen argues that the riders themselves have a role to play in improving safety.

"It is especially important that there is a change in mentality among cyclists. There is too much selfishness in the peloton, riders forget that they are responsible for the safety of others."

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