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Live blog: Team Sky increasingly likely to become Team Ineos; CUK calls for tighter controls on new drivers, Reaction to Campag's (very pricey) new EPS groupset; Sunderland Nissan to get improved cycle access, Challenge warns on Enve SES wheels +more

All the cycling news from this site and beyond…
14 March 2019, 16:58
Team Sky increasingly likely to become Team Ineos

Still not officially confirmed, but…

We reported that this was on the cards a couple of weeks ago.

Ineos is the chemicals giant founded and run by Britain’s richest man, Sir Jim Ratcliffe.

14 March 2019, 16:52
14 March 2019, 16:51
Mobike in Manchester (Sian Dibben)
Dockless bike-sharing business model "a joke" says urban transport expert
14 March 2019, 15:47
British Cycling pays tribute to Keith Butler

"Everybody at British Cycling was deeply saddened by the news of Keith Butler’s passing on the morning of Wednesday 13 March.

"As the first man to win both the amateur and professional national road race titles, team manager for the Great Britain Cycling Team at the 1986 UCI Road World Championships in Colorado and latterly as a member of the Board, Keith will forever sit among the pantheon of greats who pioneered the sport on these shores and laid the foundations for those who followed.

"He was also a longstanding member of the Road Commission and South East Regional Board, and one of the inaugural inductees in the British Cycling Hall of Fame in recognition of his lasting contribution to our sport.

"We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to Keith for the tireless and unfailing contribution he made throughout his life, and his legacy lives on through the racing scene in Surrey and all of those who have been inspired and supported to ride through his endeavours.

"The thoughts of everybody, both at British Cycling and in the wider cycling community, are with Keith’s family and friends at this difficult time."

Full story here.

14 March 2019, 15:40
Young driver (licensed CC BY 2.0 by State Farm on Flickr).jpg
Cycling UK calls for tighter controls on all new drivers

Cycling UK has expressed its support for ‘Graduated Driver Licensing’ (GDL) – a system where conditions are imposed on novice drivers.

Young drivers are over-represented in reported collision and casualty statistics and the charity says that this is influenced by the current training and testing system’s strong focus on vehicle handling (which is not too much of a challenge for most young people); insufficient focus on hazard perception; and a failure to put enough emphasis on social responsibility and emotional control.

Cycling UK would like to see:

  • A minimum learning period of at least 12 months
  • An intermediate/probationary stage, which would prohibit driving at night and on motorways amongst other things
  • More widespread use of black boxes

Analysis carried out by IAM RoadSmart in partnership with the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) last year found that young drivers quickly picked up skills needed to avoid single-vehicle crashes, but took longer to acquire those needed to avoid vulnerable road users.

The road safety charity said this was possibly because of poor hazard perception skills.

Chief Executive Officer, Sarah Sillars, said the results showed, “that in the formative years of driving, there is clearly a need for post-test training to continue, to build experience that can reduce the number of needless tragedies on our roads.”

14 March 2019, 14:45
Great Dover Street (via StreetView)
Police use close pass footage to prosecute cyclist for riding on shared-use path

“It highlights how clueless police are about cycling and to me seems to be an attack on cyclists.”

Full story here.

14 March 2019, 14:32
Paris-Roubaix cobbles could do with a good clean and polish

There's not been a muddy edition of Paris-Roubaix in over a decade but if they held it today, could this year be any different? If the cobbles stay as muddy as they are right now we could be in for a surprise.

14 March 2019, 14:19
Ti-Raleigh Team replica challenge tyres
Challenge advises against using its tyres with Enve SES wheels

Following yesterday’s shock announcement that the ISO 5775 and ETRTO guidelines governing rim and tyre dimensions are due to be updated this year after lengthy industry discussions, finally bringing about one universal tubeless standard, Challenge Tires has issued a safety bulletin advising against using its tyres with Enve SES carbon rims.

We don’t yet know the exact details of the new standards but Challenge reveals the update to the guidelines stipulates a minimum 0.7mm rounded radius on all hooked rims.

Challenge claims that Enve SES carbon rims do not comply with this updated standard, having “two sharp 0.2mm radii in their hooks that leave parallel cuts above the bead”. For this reason, Challenge does not recommend using its tyres on Enve rims.


Here’s the important bit from the press release:

Challenge has noted failures of its clincher tires, communicated by consumers and athletes, caused by the sharp edges on the ENVE SES hooks. This international design standard violation has been communicated back to the affected consumers, shops, endorsed teams, ENVE and their parent company, as Challenge has been made aware of problems. ENVE, however, continues to produce and promote usage of the said SES models, as part of their line.
Challenge has consequently been forced to list the specific ENVE SES rims as not compatible with any Challenge clincher tire models, on the website. Challenge asks that consumers do not mount ENVE SES wheels with any model of Challenge clincher tire whatsoever.
Failure to follow this warning could cause the ENVE SES wheel to cut Challenge’s quality casings resulting in explosive air loss from the tire and/or inner tube, potentially causing a crash and injury to the rider.

This bulletin also aims at providing the technical clarification, that only a precisely defined 622.0mm+-0.5mm bead seat diameter, specifically defined wall height and center channel, as described in the new above standards, will safely and easily allow proper tire and rim fit and function. Challenge has regularly been attending standards meetings and being involved for the past three years in confronting the market’s accelerated changes, such as the implementation of progressively wider rims, carbon fiber clinchers rims and tubeless and tubeless ready tire technologies. Challenge has invested time, knowledge and energy together with other elite bicycle industry companies to address and update tire & wheel fit issues with the ETRTO and ISO.

Challenge handmade tires have been produced for close to 20 years using the same handmade processes that have been proven over the past 50 years at the highest levels of racing without significant failures - if the rims and wheels comply with internationally accepted design standards. And this applies for both aluminum and carbon fiber rims.

Regarding carbon fiber rims, there had also been other periodic problems in the past with some carbon rims that had cut our (and other tire manufacturers’) tire casings just above the beads. These tire cuts were however normally caused by less than optimal QC at the factory, resulting in quality issues of improper finishing at the tire hook during production. Normally roughness at the hook was due to failure to completely remove resin flashings created while molding the rim. Proper finishing leaves the required 0.7mm min. radiused rim hook smooth, without roughness, thus eliminating a potential tire failure.

In the above cases, Challenge has routinely and successfully worked with the wheel suppliers (including ENVE) to fix the problems or replace these wheels to the consumer. However, specifically with ENVE’s SES model wheels, it is the first time that Challenge has known of a rim hook design that does not meet the above recognized design criteria, reason for which Challenge feels compelled to follow up with the release of this informative bulletin to protect its customers

14 March 2019, 13:18
David Plowie and Spready Salted ready for action

Reckon we can do any better? We're going with Lil Plough Wow and Gritney Spears to start you off... 

14 March 2019, 13:13
How much? etc etc


Screen Shot 2019-03-14 at 13.10.11

Campagnolo have now flipped the switch on their Super Record 12 speed groupset, with the launch of the EPS version. The prices have raised a few eyebrows already, as have the looks, as have the inevitable comparisons with other component brands. Jimmy Walnuts says itr far better than us... (you can read all about the new gruppo here)

14 March 2019, 12:46
Keith Butler, former national champion and founder of the Surrey League, dies aged 80

More here.

14 March 2019, 11:31
I think you'll find it's vehicle excise duty

We understand this happened on a Sundae. The fine was hundreds and thousands, and the area has been coned off for the time being...   

14 March 2019, 11:25
Well at least Strava's safe...
14 March 2019, 10:12
Movistar TT weapons ready to go for Paris-Nice

Dressed in Campagnolo's finest. Check back for more Campag info later today, we may have a surprise for you!

14 March 2019, 09:58
Cyclist previewing time trial course killed after driver makes U-turn

19-year-old Team California rider Tate Meintjes was killed on Tuesday while recceing the Redlands Classic time trial course.

The race reports that a car made a U-turn in front of him while he was riding with team-mates.

In a statement, California Highway Patrol said Meintjes was riding west on Sand Canyon Road, behind a Honda Accord, just east of Crafton Avenue. “The Honda made a U-turn directly into the path of the cyclist and the cyclist crashed into the Honda.”

The president of the Redlands Bicycle Classic, Marc Shaw, said: “We are absolutely heartbroken by the tragic collision that occurred Tuesday. The cycling community is a very tight knit one, the loss of such a talented, young cyclist is being felt across all cycling disciplines.

“The race committee is working closely with our entire field of talented athletes and support staff to ensure they are receiving the assistance they need during this difficult time.”

14 March 2019, 08:57
Sunderland Nissan plant (via StreetView)
Sunderland Nissan plant to get improved cycle access as part of £10m Government funding package

Chancellor Philip Hammond's Spring Statement featured £10m of funding for improvements to cycleways and bus routes across the North East.

More than half the funding is for cycling, with new route connections to areas such as South Tyneside’s International Advanced Manufacturing Park and Sunderland’s Nissan plant.

Our old friend Transport Secretary Chris Grayling commented: "Great public transport is key to unlocking the huge economic potential of the Northern Powerhouse. These proposals will help ensure the towns and cities of the North East have the transport systems they need to deliver a prosperous future for residents and businesses."

(Via the Sunderland Echo.)

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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