B&B Hotels-Vital Concept’s Kévin Reza on stage 8 of the 2020 Tour de France In the peloton, everybody looks straight ahead: next corner, next climb, next kilometre. The tunnel vision continues beyond the finish line: next race, next flight, next contract. In a profession predicated on perpetual motion, few take the time to look left or right – far less to stop.
When Kévin Reza was racially abused by Michael Albasini on the 2014 Tour de France, and again by Gianni Moscon on the Tour de Romandie three years later, a small number of teammates and colleagues registered their disgust in public, but for the majority of the peloton, each incident seemed to exist only as a blur in their peripheral vision, like a crash that didn’t involve them. They kept looking straight ahead and soon forgot all about it.
There was scarcely more solidarity expressed in private, while the hesitant response of the UCI hardly inspired confidence in cycling’s willingness to tackle racism. The governing body decreed that Team Sky’s decision to withhold Moscon from racing for six weeks warranted sufficient punishment. Three years earlier, Albasini had denied making racist remarks and received no sanction.
"Was there solidarity? Not really. My close friends in the peloton came to see me to tell me that they supported me, and that they were affected by what had happened. But in a general way, no, I didn’t really feel a wider solidarity in the peloton to call attention to what happened," Reza told Cyclingnews […]