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I have searched the Internet and found that pushing the bicycle in a race is allowed in two scenarios. If there is some mechanical fault developed in the bicycle, or if there is some technical difficulty in some portion of track where it is not possible to pass without getting off the bicycle.

"Climbing difficult hills is a challenging aspect of bicycle racing, and riders are expected to use their cycling skills and physical abilities to navigate these sections without getting off the bike. Getting off and pushing the bike can provide an advantage by allowing a rider to use their body weight to their advantage and potentially make faster progress uphill compared to someone who remains on the bike."

Do we have any official rules mentioning whether pushing is allowed or not during race?

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    Related: Are you required to cross the finish line on a bike? That is not a dupe, though - that question is limited to crossing the finish line. Aug 31, 2023 at 10:37
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    @Criggie The problem was that he did not have his bike with him. The question here seems about pushing the bike. Aug 31, 2023 at 11:31
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    Define "race". Are you specifically referring to UCI-sanctioned road races? Because in some MTB and cyclo-cross races carrying (or pushing) is normal
    – Chris H
    Aug 31, 2023 at 11:42
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    @Criggie That was quite specific, his bike was damaged by the motorcycle of the race organizers. Otherwise the rule that I quote is in effect in general, it is a general UCI rule. "Rider undertaking part of the raceroute on foot, or crossing the finishline on foot, without his or her bicycle -- CHF 500 fine and elimination or disqualification However, the table is valid since 1.1.19, I do not know the state before that date. Aug 31, 2023 at 12:25
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    @VladimirFГероямслава that's worthy of a separate answer by itself, specific to UCI events.
    – Criggie
    Aug 31, 2023 at 23:21

1 Answer 1

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There are many bicycle racing disciplines.

In cyclocross you often carry the bicycle in steep slopes. There are even obstacles like stairs designed to make riding impossible. And planks that can be bunny-jumped, but many riders rather dismount instead of the jumping.

In cross-country MTB you can also be forced to dismount, if you cannot ride some hard part, but it will cost you time, the courses are designed such that continuous riding is the fastest.

In a road race, the road also sometimes becomes unrideable. You have no choice but to dismount. Else you would have to wait for the road to get dry, that would be ridiculous.

Here are some pictures from the famous Koppenberg (Ronde van Vlaanderen, but also Koppenbergcross)

from https://www.bicycling.com/rides/a22747882/i-walked-the-koppenberg-and-i-refuse-to-be-ashamed/ enter image description here

from https://pezcyclingnews.com/latestnews/a-closer-look-at-the-koppenberg/ enter image description here

Sometimes it happens that the first few riders are able to ride the hill, but then one slips and everyone else has to walk. It is often not possible to mount the bicycle again in such a slope.


I know that you asked for official rules, but I repeat that there are many bicycle racing disciplines with individual sets of rules.

The road racing rule about irregular behaviour 7.5 penalizes "Rider undertaking part of the race route on foot, or crossing the finish line on foot, without his or her bicycle" I did not find, and I do not think there is, any rule that prohibits undertaking part of the race route on foot if the rider carries or pushes their bicycle.

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    Obligatory throw back to 2016 TdF: youtube.com/watch?v=gQH3EPY03Tg&t=15s
    – Paul H
    Aug 31, 2023 at 18:44
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    They're doing well to run up those cobbles in road shoes. Their cleats would slip all over the place
    – Chris H
    Sep 1, 2023 at 11:04
  • @ChrisH I'd be tempted to put on MTB cleats just for this reason. The shoes look like hard road shoes, but they might have 2 bolt mounts as well as 3, mine do. However the pedals I can see all do look like Look Keo or SPD-SL
    – Criggie
    Sep 1, 2023 at 11:33
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    @Criggie my only 3-bolt shoes also take 2-bolt cleats, but when I was looking for those I only found cheap ones - ideal for me but not for the pros. Normally I use MTB/touring shoes
    – Chris H
    Sep 1, 2023 at 11:47
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    @ChrisH oh sorry. I thought we were talking about the video of Chris Froome 🤦🏼‍♂️
    – Paul H
    Sep 1, 2023 at 17:35

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