Paris, July 15 (IANS) The Tour de France resumed its 13th stage under tightened security on Friday despite the terror attack in Nice which left at least 84 people dead and many dozens injured.
The start of the 13th stage was, however, delayed after the organisers held an emergency meeting to decide whether the race should be called off.
“We had a crisis meeting with the prefect of the Ardeche department and the gendarmerie. The stage is on,” race Director Christian Prudhomme was quoted as saying by eurosport.co.uk.
“We want this day to be a day of dignity as a tribute to the victims. We asked ourselves (whether the stage should be cancelled) but we think, after agreeing with authorities, that the race must continue.”
The prefecture of the Ardeche department said security was being reinforced along the route of the stage.
The 13th stage of the Tour de France is a 37.5km time trial from Bourg-saint-Andeol to Vallon Pont-d’Arc in the Ardeche region some three hours’ drive northwest of Nice.
The city of Nice, on France’s Mediterrenean coast, sufferred the latest terrorist attack to hit the country when a gunman driving a truck struck a crowd celebrating Bastille Day on Thursday evening.
Riders observed a minute’s silence in tribute to the victims before the start of the race. An additional tribute is scheduled to be held at the finish with the classification leaders.