Seven days in cycling: Your weekly catch up service of the week's big news stories on road.cc

This week's slice of cycling life features close passing drivers - one with a rather good excuse and one whose career ended in a bad tempered instant - plus 5am rouleurs, horrific crashes and more...

by Sarah Barth   March 16, 2014  

Chile Velodrome crash YouTube still

Video plays a big part in this week's top stories - we've got another close passing driver, this time with a novel excuse, plus there were consequences for the driver involved in that close passing caravan delivery driver from last week, there was also starting gate track drama from Chile. Luckily it wasn't all anger, crashing and weirdness we also got to to enjoy the 5am roulers of Regent's Park and some Taipe Cycle show randomness, although some of that was pretty weird too.

Click on any headline to read the story in full and join in our reader debates in the comments section.

 

Cool and just plain strange stuff from the big Taipei bike show

We made a pilgrimage to Taipei bike show just for you, and while we didn’t see as many disc-brake equipped road bikes as you might have expected at Taipei Cycle, maybe that has something to do with the start-stop nature of things over the past few months with various recalls after major launches.

Perhaps the bike manufacturers are waiting for the brake suppliers to iron out the initial problems and for the direction of the market to become clear before committing.

Still, we saw lots of lovely steel, carbon and aluminium that you’ll want to cast your eyes over, and if you’re after something different, check out the link above for a recumbent with a canopy that features solar panels. No, we’re not sure why either.

 

Caravan firm sacks driver who was filmed overtaking cyclist with inches to spare

Last week’s News Roundup featured a caravan company’s driver who was caught on camera overtaking a cyclist in Lancashire with just inches to spare in what some cyclists viewing the video interpreted as a “punishment pass.” The latest on Monday was that he’d been sacked.

Forest of Dean Caravans confirmed to the website Caravan Times that it had terminated the employment of the driver following the incident on the A59 at Samlesbury in Lancashire last Wednesday morning.

The company’s transport manager, Mark Turley, told the website: "The driver is no longer an employee of ours after talking to him. It was a stupid piece of driving and we've been let down by one of our employees.

"We're unhappy with what happened and shocked with what [the driver] did,” he said.
Should he have had a second chance? Have your say in the comments by clicking the link above.

 

Video: Driver gives best excuse ever for close pass

 

On the subject of close passes, everyone's had one and  perhaps taken the chance to remonstrate with them at the next lights. YouTube helmet cammer matthew6476 asked a driver for a bit more room next time and got the best response ever from an apologetic but understandably preoccupied driver. 

Sadly Matthew's video attracted some moronic abuse on Youtube so he decided to make it private, but if you missed it here's how it goes. The driver passes him without leaving much room. Matthew catches him at the next lights and taps on his window.

The driver rolls it down and Matthew asks: "Can you just give us a bit more room next time please?"

The driver opens the top of his coat to reveal a brightly-coloured bird as you can see in this still.

"I'm sorry," the driver replies, "but I've got a parrot dying on me."

 

Planning your ride just got easier with plotaroute.com

On Wednesday we brought you news that the GPS mapping tool plotaroute.com have added an auto-map feature to their route planning service. The tool creates ten custom rides on local cycle-friendly roads based on user-defined parameters.

The new feature utlises map data from both Google Maps and OpenCycleMap - an online cycling map based on the open-source mapping project OpenStreetMap - to create tailor made cycling routes.

The feature, which is listed as 'make me a route' under the 'Plot' menu on the tool's interface, creates a tailor made cycle route around local and national cycle paths, avoiding highways and main roads.

Once selected, the 'make me a route' tool allows users drop a pin on a location of their choosing and select a distance they'd like to travel. The tool then provides a list of ten suitable local rides, of the chosen distance, from that point.

It’s very cool and we recommend you try it out.

 

Video: 5.45 Rouleur - riding in London as you seldom see it

On Thursday you loved this short film of Central London as you seldom see it – not a car in sight as club cyclists take part in a group ride. The clue lies in the title, 5.45 Rouleur – the time each day when Regent’s Park Rouleurs meet up for their weekday morning ride.

The film, voiced over by a monologue of one of the rider’s thoughts, lasts just four minutes and has been submitted to the Sundance London short film competition.

Check it out here:

 

Video: Horrific crash as cyclist hits velodrome starting gate that officials failed to remove


Gut-wrenching news on Friday with the emergence of this video showing a Chilean cyclist racing for a women’s team sprint bronze medal at the South American Games in the country’s capital, Santiago, sustaining a fractured kneecap after crashing into a starting gate that officials had neglected to remove from the track.

 

It seems as though the starting gate was left in position due to a false start to the race, in which Chile, cheered on by a home crowd, were up against Brazil.

As the video shows, with an official waving a red flag, Estefania Ñúñez, riding man one, swung up the track to avoid it.

But Irene Aravena, riding in her slipstream with her view blocked, failed to see the starting gate until it was too late, the collision sending her somersaulting over it, the impact snapping her bike in two:

 

Derby closed road cycle track scrapped due to legal row over nature reserve (+ video)

 

Saturday brought news that Derby City Council has scrapped plans to build a controversial cycle track on a nature reserve close to the city’s Park Pride stadium with a lengthy legal battle with environmental campaigners meaning it is no longer financially viable.

Opponents of the 1.5km, closed road circuit have hailed the news as "good news for wildlife, both locally and nationally." But the councillor in charge of the project says it is a setback to the city’s cycling ambition, while Sustrans says it is a “big missed opportunity.”

You’ve been vocal about the plans in the past, with opinion firmly divided between readers as to whether the city needs a cycle track or a nature reserve more. Have your say by clicking the link above.