Kashechkin Struck by Fan Waving Promotional Items from Publicity Caravan

A video clip showing a spectator striking rider Andrey Kashechkin on the nose was shown on OLN about 22 minutes into the live broadcast of Stage 16. I watched this video clip about 15 times, taking full advantage of my TiVo.

The group of spectators who were involved in the incident were three young women and a man who were standing on the left shoulder of the road. At least two of the young women were waving inflated noise makers that were distributed by the Caravane Publicitaire, a group of vehicles representing the sponsors of the Tour de France. The women appeared to be waving the noisemakers at the riders who were passing a foot or two in front of them at the time.

One of the young women clearly struck Kashechkin in the face. She may have made contact with him with the noisemaker, her hand, or both. In any case, she dropped the noisemaker immediately after making contact with Kashechkin's face.

It wasn't clear whether the young man who was with the women was waving his noisemakers at the riders or clapping them together, because he wasn't visible to the camera until after the incident. When he was seen on camera, he was clapping the noisemakers together.

I couldn't tell whether the spectators intended to strike Kashechkin or not, but it was clear to me that the situation was quite different from the moment in 2003 when Lance Armstrong fell off of his bike after his handle bars became tangled in the loops of a spectator's bag. In that case, the spectator holding the bag was a young child who was not paying attention to the passing race. In this case, the spectators were intensely focused on the passing riders.

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