CYCLISTS have hit back at a petition to get time triallists off the A50, saying all that is needed is a little more 'respect and patience' from motorists.
Uttoxeter resident Amanda Brooks, of Drovers Close, is currently lobbying the Department of Transport in a bid to stop cyclists using the A50 for competition races.
But Cycling Time Trials, the governing body for time trial cyclists, has said the time trials are legal and drivers should be made more aware of the races.
Sue Bowler, chairman of the Central District Cycling Time Trials, said: "Cycling on the A50 is a perfectly legal activity. I know the accident that the petition is referring to and it was a complete accident. Accidents happen. The best way forward would be to make drivers more aware of other road users and introducing better signage."
Corrinna Wade, keen cyclist and regular visitor to Alton Towers, said: "I feel really strongly that unless cycling on the A50 is illegal, cyclists should not be criminalised for doing something great; helping the environment and the health service.
"All too often cyclists are the target of criticism when in my opinion usually when there is an accident, the driver is at fault for doing something like texting while driving.
"My son is a keen cyclist and I feel that he should not be criminalised for being an equal road user to a car driver.
"We need better infrastructure to make the roads safer for cyclists certainly, it would be great to have a proper network of cycle paths.
"Secondly, drivers need to respect other road users, the highway code says if there is a bike on the road drivers should slow down and move out.
"Cyclists are doing a fantastic thing for their health and for the environment and yet the attitude of some drivers is impatient and disrespectful."
Campaign leader Ms Brooks said: "I'm pleased the campaign is raising such awareness and it's making people think about the risks and discuss solutions."
Olda Novak of the Uttoxeter Cycling Club said: "I believe careful driving could solve the A50 problems."