We’ve shared some weird and wonderful videos with you on road.cc this year and as we near the end of 2014, here’s our round-up of 10 of the most watched, and most talked about.
There’s everything from a very wacky race to some astonishing near misses and – in top spot – some top-notch riding that you shouldn’t attempt at home (or, more to the point, on your local dual carriageway).
Here’s the countdown in reverse order. Enjoy.
10 – NZ twins, 4, impress MacAskill with bike handling skills
When Danny MacAskill endorses a pair of riders for their skills on their bikes, it’s worth taking notice – all the more so when those cyclists are just four years old.
The Scot described Jake and Theo Riddle’s bike handling as “amazing” – and we have to agree with his opinion as they run through their tricks in this video, shot by their father Sam.
9 – Cyclist in Poland gets a soaking
One unfortunate bike rider in Poland gave a masterclass in August in exactly why you shouldn’t ride through a puddle unless you know what lies in wait underneath.
In this case, we’re guessing it was a particularly big pothole that brought him to a sudden stop followed by a soaking as he went over the handlebars.
8 – Sussex cyclists stumble on illegal rave
A pair of cyclists out for a Sunday morning ride in Sussex got a surprise when they stumbled across an illegal rave on the Devil’s Dyke – as though the 1990s never ended.
The experience was described as “just plain surreal” by Tim Fry, who posted the footage to YouTube, while his riding companion described it in rather blunter terms on the video.
7 – World's luckiest unlucky cyclist
The first of two videos from Brazil making Top 10 list, and no matter how many times we watch it, we’re still scratching our heads in disbelief. As a truck passes a cyclist, part of its load falls and strikes him from behind.
As luck would have it, the item in question is a mattress, and the cyclist happily lands safely on top of it. He’s pipped to the title of the year’s luckiest cyclist, however, by the lad in the next one …
6 – Astonishing near miss caught on CCTV
An inch or two either way, and this incident – in which, incredibly, no-one was hurt, apparently – would have had a very different outcome.
A cyclist is riding slowly across a zebra crossing on a crossroads when a truck, the driver seemingly ignoring a give way sign, ploughs into a car – both vehicles somehow missing the bike rider.
5 – Thomas Voeckler returns abuse to Dutch fans
Europcar’s Thomas Voeckler had a pretty torrid time going through Dutch Corner in the Tour de France the day he lost the race leader’s yellow jersey in 2011 with just two more stages to go.
This year’s Tour saw the gurning grimpeur get more stick from his friends from le Pays-Bas – what they probably didn’t expect was he would get off his bike and dish it back. Formidable.
4 – Cyclist and police in panto chat about pedestrian zone
With panto season in full swing, here’s a topical one from Reading, posted to YouTube at the end of last month and swiftly establishing itself as a crowd favourite among road.cc’s audience.
A police officer stops a cyclist for riding, quite legally in this case, through a pedestrian zone – cue some unscripted “Oh no you can’t,” “Oh yes I can” style dialogue from the pair.
3 – Lance Armstrong, bike mechanic
Despite his fall from grace more than two years ago now, Lance Armstrong is seldom out of the headlines, and he featured in one of more bizarre videos this year, turning bike mechanic to show us how to replace an inner tube.
The clip, filmed for Outdoor magazine, proves the Texan still has drawing power – ironically Lance's vid isn't compatible with any of the other here (no really) so you'll have to click the link to see it. Ably filling the slot here is the response to it from Greg LeMond, now reinstalled as the winningnest American in Tour de France history.
2 – Marymoor Crawl
We stumbled across this video of the bizarre Marymoor Crawl track race from the United States, and decided it needed sharing with a wider audience – among them, FACE Partnership, who organise the Revolution Series, and have included the race in this winter’s programme.
The rules are simple – while waiting for the start, riders cannot put a foot on down, grab a handrail, or ouch another rider. Then, when the race starts, it’s hell for leather for one lap of the track. Delightfully bonkers.
1 – Brazilian cyclist drafts lorry at 124kph
By a long way the most popular video story we posted during 2014 was this one from Brazil. Evandro Portelo attached a Go Pro camera to the back of a truck, as you do. While it was moving.
He then drafted it at 124 kilometres an hour, evidently having a whale of a time while doing so, before retrieving the camera. While it was moving rather more quickly than before. Quite simply awesome.
So those were the maddest, quirkiest, and craziest videos of the year and here's one that's arguably the best – if people doing improbable things with bikes is your thing, and we're guessing it probably is.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.