Scientists urge WADA to ban spinach due to steroid-like effects; Coast To Coast In A Day sportive tomorrow (and 2020 entries open Monday); Dutch gov’t tells cyclists to leave phone in pocket as ban comes in + more

All today's news from the site and beyond in the Live Blog...
28 June 2019, 17:44
The eighth Coast To Coast In A Day sportive is tomorrow - and entries for 2020 open on Monday

With midsummer upon us, we’re coming into the height of the sportive season and tomorrow sees the eighth edition of one that combines one of the country’s bucket list cycle routes with some of its toughest climbs – the Coast To Coast In A Day.


1,000 riders will enjoy what is forecast to be glorious weather as they ride 150 miles from Seascale on the Cumbrian coast across to Whitby on the North Sea with 4,500 metres of climbing in between, including the Hardknott and Wrynose Passes before tackling the North Yorkshire Moors.

Organised by Open Cycling, the event sells out each year – the 2020 edition takes place on 20th June and if you want to get ride it, entries open next Monday 1 July. Find out more on Open Cycling’s Facebook page.

28 June 2019, 17:15
Geraint Thomas Cardiff homecoming 2018 (picture copyright) Charlie Forgham-Bailey, SWpix.com_
Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal to jointly lead Team Ineos at Tour de France

Team Ineos will go into the Tour de france, which starts in Brussels a week tomorrow, with Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal as joint leaders - and they have a very strong supporting cast to back them up. Find out all about it here.

28 June 2019, 16:54
Scientists call for spinach ban for athletes due to steroid-like effects

Scientists have called for spinach to be banned for athletes after discovering steroid-like effects.

Vice reports that researchers at the Freie Universität Berlin have recommended that a chemical called ecdysterone that is found in spinach should be added to WADA’s prohibited list due to potentially steroid-like effects.

They said: “Our hypothesis was that we would see an increase in performance, but we didn't expect it to be that big. We recommended to WADA in our report that the substance be added to the doping list. We think that if it increases performance, then that unfair advantage should be eliminated.”

You’d have to be eating Popeye-esque quantities of the green stuff to feel the benefits, though – 4 kilograms a day, in fact, or 40 of the 100 gram bags it often comes in at the supermarket.


28 June 2019, 15:18
Froome is fed up...

...and dreaming of getting back on the bike again. Let's hope the doctor's predictions were correct. 

28 June 2019, 14:06
First Look: Cannondale SuperSix Evo 2020

Cannondale has totally redesigned its flagship carbon road race bike with an all-new frame that is more aerodynamic, stiffer and comfortable than the bike first introduced in 2011 and last updated in 2015, with wider tyre clearance and revised geometry with choice of rim or disc brakes.

Read the full story here

cannondale supersix evo riding shots6
28 June 2019, 12:40
28 June 2019, 12:38
Four-year doping bans for Denifl and Preidler

Professional cyclists Stefan Denifl and Georg Preidler have both been banned for four years for blood doping.

The two riders were provisionally suspended by the UCI in March after admitting being part of the Operation Aderlass blood doping investigation in their native Austria.

Denifl has been stripped of results including a stage win at the 2017 Vuelta.

28 June 2019, 12:24
Dutch government tells cyclists to leave their phone in their pocket as ban comes in

The Dutch government has launched a publicity campaign urging cyclists to “Leave your phone in your pocket and save yourself a €95 fine” ahead of a new law banning people from using a mobile phone while riding a bike coming into force on Monday, reports

 The country’s transport minister, Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, said: ‘In the traffic, an accident is just around the corner and this is why it’s important for all road users – including cyclists – to keep their eyes and minds on the road and not on their telephone screen.

“We often think that we can multi-task in traffic, but we really can’t, so please drive in ‘mono’ mode. I have a clear message for all cyclists: keep your phone, and your €95 in your pocket.”

28 June 2019, 11:44


28 June 2019, 10:58
Bloody cyclists, holding up traffic, rescuing ducks...

Rescued some ducklings this morning. First time I’ve been cheered for holding up traffic on me bike. from r/bicycling

This Redditer described his heroic act as the "first time I’ve been cheered for holding up traffic on me bike".

*We've been told on certain browsers Reddit vids don't appear to work, so here's the link JIC

28 June 2019, 09:47
Oregon cyclist sues city after workman places cable across cycle path

A cyclist is suing the city a Portland, Oregon, after a workman stretched a metal cable across a cycle path while it was closed for repairs.

James Thorne says the city was negligent in connection with the May 2018 incident, which happened in Kelley Point Park.

His lawsuit alleges that the cable was not clearly visible to riders, and that the city had failed to notify park users that the path was closed,

He sustained injuries to his back, neck and elbows and also had to undergo surgery on his left shoulder and right wrist.

Thorne is seeking $1 million in noneconomic damages for “pain, discomfort and interference with ordinary activities,” plus $86,000 in medical expenses, almost $85,000 in lost wages and $12,000 for damage to his bike.

28 June 2019, 09:27
Dowsett's new moniker recognised by the UCI...

The new self-proclaimed 'Alex van der Dowsaerttpoel' (we presume the name is in tribute to a certain very talented Dutchman) has pretty much been knighted with the esteemed title... 

28 June 2019, 09:00
Alex Dowsett wins national time trial championship for the sixth time

Alex Dowsett, who has been named in Katusha team for the Tour de France, will be riding the time trial stages in the colours of British national champion after winning the event for the sixth time in Norfolk yesterday.

Afterwards he said: “There were a few years where getting this jersey came quite easy and I guess I took it for granted. I think I will enjoy wearing it this time more than the other times I’ve had them. Today was a fight.

“I think I was down after one-third of the distance and this was a bit of a worry because I’d given a lot in this part of the course.

"Then at two-thirds it was touch and go, but then I brought it home well. We have some real fast guys in the Uk and the calibre of riders coming through is huge, so I don’t know when the last time in the national stripes will be so I’m going to enjoy every moment of this.”


Simon has been news editor at 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.

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