Friday night racing at Marymoor velodrome tonight. There was a little incident after the finish of the Cat 3 scratch race- my teammate apparently chopped a Starbucks rider in turn 2 after the finish. I was slightly up track and behind them. I heard the Starbucks rider yelling profanities between turn 1 and 2, and then hit my teammates wheel shortly after turn 2, causing himself to crash. He had plenty of room to move inside to the apron. All the while screaming profanities. My teammate was disqualified for the night for chopping a rider in the sprinters lane. The Starbucks rider was allowed to continue racing. I may be wrong but from my position it looked distinctly like the Starbucks rider had intentionally hit my teammates wheel in a fit of rage. Not cool.
Its not the first time I've seen grown men behave this way. Ballard Criterium 2 years ago, a crashed out rider is laying unconscious on the ground and all I hear around me is complaining about the race being stopped (to be restarted after the fallen rider was moved off the course). I was mainly hoping the rider was alive and not seriously injured. In the Woodland Park cyclocross race last year, two riders tangle handlebars in the start sprint and crash. One of the riders hucks his bike off the course while bellowing profanities. Its a cat 3 cyclocross race- these are supposed to be fun! Nobody's career and no money is on the line.
Sometimes I wonder why I bother with bike racing- a lot of racers are narcissistic douchebags. In bike races it is almost never clear who is at fault in a crash. They happen too fast and there are too many split second decisions. I have been chopped plenty of times in bike races. I'm sure I have unintentionally chopped other riders on occasion. It happens. It is acceptable to say something, like "stay" or "stick" or even "hold your line, pencil dick" ( I heard that in a race once). But throwing a tantrum like a 3 year old or throwing your bike or hitting another rider intentionally is not good- if you do that, you are a douchebag, and if you're in an amateur bike race you need to stop and think about why you race.
In life and in bike racing- do your best- but keep it lighthearted!