• 'What do you reckon Fabz, do we exchange wheels for Richie and let this race play out like gentlemen?' (Getty Images/AFP)Source: Getty Images/AFP
Whether you're a firm believer in due process, or think Richie Porte has been hard done by, it would be highly unusually indeed for the Australian's two minute penalty for breaching rule 12.1.04 be overturned.

Because let's face it: the International Cycling Union is hopelessly inconsistent when it comes to making rulings, but very good at stubbornly upholding them after it does. In such a light, the chances of Porte's time penalty being rescinded, to me anyway, are close to naught.

That as my colleague Phil Gomes wrote, is a missed opportunity. Simon Clarke's gesture to Porte was widely praised in social media sphere as a selfless, and gentlemanly act, absolving somewhat the losses Porte was already facing from an ill-timed puncture. This could've been used (in fact it was) as something to promote a sport that still, in the mainstream, is fighting to claw back a tattered reputation.

Oh, how naive we were!

However, that doesn't have to stop a wrong from being righted. What is overwhelming in the response to Porte's penalty is a sentiment of empathy, and in some cases disgust, from the professional peloton. But actions speak much louder than words. If senior riders in the peloton are serious about making the best of this situation, if they feel that this is truly an injustice, there's a quick, easy solution.

Alberto Contador need only to pull out his wheel and swap it with Fabio Aru on the start line tomorrow, and the ledger will be squared. The race decided by efforts on the road, rather than punitive, arguably draconian measures from the race organisation. There's no obligation, of course, but it would be a striking PR move, an opportunity yet for the sport to capitalise on.