The French state railway company SNCF has called for police action against cyclists in the Paris-Roubaix spring classic who crossed tracks with a safety barrier down, seconds before a high speed train arrived.
The incident happened at a crossing in northern France during Sunday’s race.
The SNCF has issued a statement calling for “several riders” to be prosecuted for acting “against all safety rules”.
Race organisers have said the riders could not stop in time.
“Millions of television viewers saw live this extremely serious and irresponsible action which could have been tragic,” said SNCF.
“A few seconds later, a TGV ran on this line and could have hit the peloton.”
A police motorcycle had stopped more riders in the 151-mile race from going through.
One rider from the Belgian Lotto team was clipped by a barrier which came down as the peloton was passing.
Race organisers said on Sunday they would not punish the riders.
“It wasn’t possible for the leading riders to stop sufficiently safely,” said Guy Dobbelaere, president of the jury of race commissioners.
“The peloton was 10 metres away when the barrier started to close.”
Sir Bradley Wiggins finished 18th in what was his final race for Team Sky, 31 seconds behind