BBC Breakfast presenter Kate Silverton last week turned down the offer of a chauffeur-driven car to take her to a book launch – because she preferred to get there under her own steam using pedal power.
Speaking to The Mirror’s Dean Piper as she packed her rucksack to ride home from the launch of Katie Nicholl’s book William and Harry, Silverton explained: "I've cycled for miles today and do a load of cycling each week. I got a call this evening saying do you want a car to the event? But I turned it down. I'm fine on my bike."
Silverton first revealed herself to be a keen cyclist when she was interviewed for a ‘My Perfect Weekend’ feature published last August in the Daily Telegraph, in which she said that on Sundays, she and her fiancé “often cycle to Richmond Park and meet up with a group of friends for a picnic."
She continued: "I'm a huge cycling enthusiast and ideally I'd like to own three bikes. I have this fantasy about having an old Pashley – the sit up and beg type – and peddling [sic] to my home in the country with my whippet in the basket.”
Whether it’s down to the fact that they have to get up at an ungodly hour to get to the studio, or the need to get out and exercise after spending the working day sitting on a sofa, the BBC Breakfast show does seem to attract more than its fair share of cyclists.
Former presenter Dermot Murnaghan, now with Sky, is a self-confessed cycling nut, and last year, regularly commuting by bicycle more than 30 miles a day from his home in North London to the Sky TV studios, and last year “did a Tebbit” by getting on his bike to ride around the West Country to report on the effects of the recession. He also took part in former England rugby captain Lawrence Dallaglio’s Cycle Slam earlier this year.
Meanwhile, in 2007, BBC Breakfast's sports reporter Chris Hollins and weather presenter Carol Kirkwood undertook a tandem ride from Edinburgh to Glasgow to raise money for Children in Need.
And Mike Bushell, who in the weekend sports slot gets to try out a new sport each week, has tried his hand at cyclocross, roller racing courtesy of Rollapaluza, and last year even tackled Mont Ventoux, as shown in the linked video.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.