Here’s one of the more bizarre videos we’ve seen recently. Not for its content, which is a reasonable attempt at showing you how to change a tube, but because it features Lance Armstrong.
You’d think after being stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and other race wins, Armstrong woud be keeping his head down. He’s still the subject of several lawsuits and his testimony from one of them recently became public and implicated several prominent figures as being involved or aware of his doping.
But no, here’s Armstrong in bike mechanic mode, showing the world how to change a tube, courtesy of Outside magazine. We’d award Outside this week’s 'What Were They Thinking?' prize if US Airways hadn’t already hit it out of the ballpark for all time.
It's obvious what they were thinking, anyway: ‘Let’s get some publicity by doing a video with the man everyone loves to hate’. And here we are falling for it, so there’s that.
Twitter reactions to the video have been darkly funny.
Blogger the Broom Wagon @broomwagonblog said: “Surely Lance is fixing punctured tubes now, not simply throwing in a new one every time. Every $ counts.”
ESPN writer Bonnie D. Ford @Bonnie_D_Ford said: "Next installment: How to fix the last 20 years."
CBS Sports producer Charlie @charolyn_ said: “Good heavens... more hot air? Guess barista job is out. #beans"
John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.
He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.
Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for CyclingNews.com. Along with road.cc founder Tony Farelly, John was on the launch team for BikeRadar.com and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.
John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of TotalWomensCycling.com before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.
He joined road.cc in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.