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"What a shame" – Sharp criticism of organizer after death at Ironman

2023-06-05T06:43:07.160Z

Highlights: A 70-year-old motorcyclist died at the Ironman in Hamburg, but the race continued. On social media, the continuation of the race caused fierce criticism. Observers initially assumed that the commentators had not been informed about the accident. After some time, the comment function under the live broadcast on YouTube was apparently blocked and all critical contributions received up to that point were deleted. The best-placed German, former Olympic champion Jan Frodeno, said the route was not ideal.



The finish zone of the Hamburg Ironman in June last year (archive image). © Hanno Bode / IMAGO

A fatal accident occurred at the Ironman in Hamburg, but the race and live coverage continued. This has been the subject of fierce criticism on social media.

Hamburg – A death occurred on Sunday morning at a triathlon in Hamburg as part of the international "Ironman" series. According to the initial findings of the police, a camera companion motorcycle collided with a participating cyclist. The 70-year-old motorcyclist died, but the race continued. The commentators in the YouTube livestream probably unsuspectingly praised the "wonderful day", talked about the road conditions as well as technical details and made jokes. On social media, the continuation of the race caused fierce criticism.

Commentators cluelessly continue chatting in the Ironman livestream on YouTube

The accident apparently occurred because the escort motorcycle collided head-on with a 26-year-old athlete for reasons that are still unclear. According to information from the German Press Agency, competitors and motorcycles should actually meet on separate lanes on this part of the route. After the collision with fatal consequences, the organizers closed the race track in the area of the accident site, the 26-year-old athlete involved was taken to hospital with serious injuries. Meanwhile, the race itself continued after a short break.

In the coverage of the event, the accident was initially not mentioned at all. "The commentators in the official 'Ironman' livestream speak of a 'beautiful day' and delete all comments on the death of the motorcyclist. What a shame!" criticized the SPD politician Malte Oppermann on Twitter. Observers initially assumed that the commentators had not been informed about the accident. After some time, however, the comment function under the live broadcast on YouTube was apparently blocked and all critical contributions received up to that point were deleted.

Death at Ironman: criticism on social media for the continuation of the race

"Probably the last race in Hamburg in the near future. Disgusting," one commenter wrote under a post from the official Ironman Twitter profile. "When are they going to stop the race?" another user asked. "I don't understand how the race can go on?" another is also stunned. "One dead person at the Ironman in Hamburg and the organizer continues to broadcast on YouTube, every five minutes there is advertising to make even more money," the accusation was made in another Twitter post.

This opinion seemed to be shared by many posts in the comment columns: "Someone dies at the Ironman in Hamburg and the organizer continues as if nothing had happened. How irreverent can you be?" At least the ARD had canceled the transmission at the point, praises this user.

The organizers of the race were apparently bound by instructions, the decision on a cancellation was therefore incumbent on the organizers World Triathlon Corporation in the USA, based in Florida. There it was about three o'clock at night at the time of the collision. But even on Sunday afternoon (local time), the organization had not yet made an official statement. "Not even an explanation. Disgusting," someone commented on Twitter.

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Participants were not adequately informed during races - criticism from the best-placed German

In the video of the accident you can see how the participants partially drive around debris and continue the course undeterred. The athletes themselves were apparently not sufficiently informed.

The accident happened just a few meters behind Jan Frodeno, the best-placed German. After the end of the competition, the former Olympic champion was put in the picture and was visibly moved in an interview with NDR: "I just heard that the motorcyclist has died. Everything else is secondary, third or fifth. My sincere condolences to those who remained." For the trained eye, it was apparently recognizable from the beginning that the route was not ideal: The former Ironman winner and current ARD commentator Sebastian Kienle had already mentioned before the accident during the ARD broadcast that he considered the route to be "too narrow" in some places. In addition, there are too many motorcycles on the road, the expert continues. Excerpts from the race show the tight route:

Frodeno also criticized this: "From a purely sporting point of view, it wasn't fair because the bikes were just too close," he said. "I know that this always has to be accompanied by the media, but athlete safety has to come first," said the fourth-place finisher of the race of the newspaper Hamburger Morgenpost.

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2023-06-05

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