Last winter though, at a loose end (a very rare weekend occurrence for me!) I tuned into the UCI Youtube channel after a forum alerted me that there would be live bike racing coming up in the next ten minutes.
It was the Womens Cyclo-Cross worlds from the Czech Republic (if memory serves me well) and it was a really decent race.
There was loads of action and thrills from the moment the flag dropped. The technical ability of the riders to change bikes or dismount to run up a flight of stairs had me transfixed.
It would never replace a Tour de France stage to Mont Ventoux in my affections as the pinnacle of drop handle bar related sport, but it was nice to get a fix over the winter.
I had heard of the legend of Sven Nys (among others), but to see a detailed first hand transmission of these heroes of the sport in the mud and cold was enough to take my appreciation to a whole new level.
This winter shows no signs of being any less entertaining, and yesterday I was in front of my laptop for both the men’s and women’s rounds at Valkenburg.
I was gutted that Nikki Harris couldn’t hold the leaders wheel in the ladies event and marvelled at the dominance of Wout Van Aert in the mens.
So… I have already started looking at the second hand market for disc braking cross bikes and am thinking of how to get over the channel and amongst the sand dunes of Koksijde for their festive round of the UCI series!