Cycling News

Woman who threw hat at van der Poel offered deal to avoid prosecution

Why would any 'fan' do this to Mathieu van der Poel?

Mathieu van der Poel was cruising to an incredible win at Paris-Roubaix when something bizarre occurred: a spectator threw a hat toward his wheels. The incident occurred on the 10th cobblestone section of Merignies in Avelin. There were 42 km left when the woman on the side of the road threw the cap, and thankfully that was that. Such reckless conduct could have led to a potential accident. Or, at the very least, hindered his progress had the cap become tangled in his wheels. The woman involved, who has still not been named, was present in a VIP tent by the roadside, where multiple companies had extended invitations to guests.

Bizarre actions by a “fan”

It left cycling fans bewildered: why would anyone do this? What a strange thing to do?

Both the broadcast and smartphones captured the incident on video, clearly showing it was deliberate. According to her lawyer, she claimed she was cheering for Van der Poel and had no intention of causing him to crash.

The French cycling union UNCP was doubtful of her explanation and chose to file a complaint. As a result, the woman must face court charges for ‘intentional blows and injuries.’ However, two months later, according to a report in, the UNCP is willing to withdraw the complaint, provided she meets three conditions.

The conditions

First, the ‘cap thrower’ must admit her wrongdoing. Next, she must volunteer with the association ‘Friends of Paris-Roubaix.’ That is a group of cycling enthusiasts committed to organizing and managing the event. The final condition is meant to be informational. The French cyclists’ union wants the woman to participate in a safety campaign for the international cycling community, requiring her to give up anonymity. If she agrees to all the conditions, a trial will be avoided. And she will not be prosecuted. However, at this point, it is unclear if she will accept the proposals. “If this is not possible for her, then the court will still have to address this unfortunate matter,” said UNCP chairman Pascal Chartier.

The woman’s lawyer has said they are weighing their options. “We have received the cycling union’s proposal…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Canadian Cycling Magazine…