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Unofficial cycling event attracts thousands

The controversial Critical Mass cycling event on May 1 attracted about 2,000 cyclists, a lot more than the concurrent and officially sanctioned Riga Cycling Festival that attracted just about 300.

The unofficial Critical Mass event sees cyclists set off from an arranged location and go wherever they please in a swarm of activity annoying to the police and drivers but very fun to everyone in the crowd.

Within the officially-sanctioned Riga Cycling Festival people went from the Arena Riga to Lucavsala accompanied by police vehicles and ambulance cars. Their event started at 12.30 p.m. 

While at around 1 p.m. about 2,000 Critical Mass cyclists followed from the Dailes Theater. They went through the major streets of Riga with a major stop at the scenic Dzegužkalns across the River Daugava.

LETA noted that most of the cyclists at the Critical Mass event broke traffic laws, however some at least tried stopping at red lights.

The police did interfere at several crossings, making the column stop so that drivers and pedestrians could pass.

No one was injured in the events.

Organizers said the goal of the Critical Mass event is celebrating life and spring as well as reminding politicians of the need for safe cycling infrastructure. 

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