Hushovd says race radios are needed for safety reasons

World Champion Thor Hushovd said that radios should be allowed in races for safety reasons, criticising the 'old men' at the UCI who have decided to introduce the ban.

“I think we should be allowed to use radio communications for safety reasons," Hushovd told "The UCI's ruling comes from “some old men who sit and discuss their way to do things. I don't know why, but it's probably because of age.”

Hushovd cited a recent example where the radio would have been useful. “There was an ambulance coming in the opposite direction during Strade Bianche last weekend. We need to be told about things like that. It may also be useful to get information on roadworks and dark tunnels. There are things that can be a bit scary at the time, although it can be okay if we know about it."

Fellow Norwegian Lars Petter Nordhaug of Team Sky echoed Hushovd's sentiments. “The radio plays a key role in safety and for punctures. There will be a lot more control (without them). I would say that (banning them) causes more trouble than improving the racing."

Hushovd rejected the suggestion that one-way communications should be allowed. “It is just stupid. Should one say to the Formula 1 drivers that they should stop using radio communications too? This is 2011."

Nordhaug criticised the UCI's understanding of racing. “I think they put too much emphasis on how much the radio is used in relation to the control of the race. It's not like we're robots and do exactly the sporting director says," he concluded.

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