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Female cyclist says male e-bike wheelsucker "exponentially creepier"; Laura Kenny shuns op on broken shoulder to ride Track Worlds; Gossip special; Anti-cycling London councillor in talking bollocks shocker + more on the live blog

Tuesday's live blog is brought to you courtesy of Jack Sexty, with Simon MacMichael making some contributions later this evening...
18 February 2020, 17:57
"Exponentially creepier": Female cyclist says 'wheelsucker' who upped assist to catch up is "inappropriate, rude and creepy"

It's generally accepted that 'wheelsucking' (sitting on someone's wheel to save energy and block out the wind) is poor form unless you know the person or have asked them if it's a-ok... and author Molly Hurford claims the incident she described above was particularly uncalled for, being as the 'middle aged dude' was riding an e-bike and cranked up the assist to catch up with her. 

Do you think all forms of anonymous wheelsucking are rather impolite, or was Ms Hurford right to call out this particular gentleman more so than others? Maybe you don't see a problem with the practice at all? Let us know your thoughts as always...

18 February 2020, 21:03
Laura Kenny forgoes op on broken shoulder to ride Track World Championships

Laura Kenny has turned down surgery on a broken shoulder to ride next week’s UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Berlin as part of her preparation for the Tokyo Olympic later this year.

Already Great Britain’s most successful female Olympian with four gold medals – two apiece in the team pursuit and omnium at London 2012 and in Rio four years ago – the 27 year old

She sustained the injury when she crashed during the Track World Cup at Milton in Canada last month.

BBC Sport reports that a surgeon told Kenny that aiming for the Olympics was "pretty much off the cards" since she would need an operation.

"I told him, 'An operation's not for me, thanks'," she said. "Did I want an operation to get it fixed, but with a two-week delay in me getting back on the bike, or did I want to just see how it goes?

"I decided to see how it goes and the next day I got back on my bike."

Kenny aims to defend her Olympic titles this year as well as riding the Madison which has been added to the programme, but will only ride the omnium and scratch race in Berlin.

"I wanted to put my hand up for all three events in Berlin but I can't physically do the Madison and I can't do a standing start in the team pursuit," she explained.

18 February 2020, 17:35
Aus Cycling's performance director reveals fierce new Argon18 track bikes

Paolo Menaspa gave us a teaser of the mean-looking bars on the bikes that will be used by the Australian track team this year - what do you reckon compared to the crazy Hope/Lotus track bike

18 February 2020, 17:26
"The future": Gary Lineker tweets support for Paris Mayor's 100% bike-friendly city plan

Anne Hildago recently revealed plans that would make Paris '100% bike-friendly' by 2024, transforming streets by building a vast cycling network... and it appears Britain's foremost football presenter/self-confessed crisp salesman is fully on board. Let's just hope they don't resort to VAR to okay any of the decisions, else we'll be waiting until the end of time... 

18 February 2020, 17:14
Former track Vicky Williamson says she's going for bobsleigh gold
Victoria Williamson - pic by Alex Broadway, SWPix for Britishcycling.org_.uk_.JPG

Williamson suffered a broken back, neck and pelvis in a horror crash before Rio 2016, and after back pain resurfaced which forced her out of this year's summer Olympics, she announced her switch to bobsleigh in December last year - the next winter Olympics will be in 2022, giving her just under another two years to prepare. 

In an interview with Sky News, the 26-year-old said: "I'm not here to finish 10th. I'm not just one of those athletes to say I'm here because I represent GB.

"I'm here because I want to be in that top percentage and be the best at what I want to do - it's definitely going to be a difficult task but I reckon I can do it, I reckon this will be the Olympics where we can definitely the medals back.

"I want to let the performance do the talking we've got two years to slicken up and get the team running really well."


18 February 2020, 15:21
Victor Campenaerts donates winnings from race in Namibia to charity

The Hour Record holder Campenaerts took part in the 100km road race the Nedbank Cycle Challenge, crusing to victory by a margin of eight minutes after breaking away from the pack early on. 

He donated his winnings of 12,000 Namibian Dollars to the PAY (Physically Active Youth) charity, which helps to get kids cycling after school, and along with his new team NTT Cycling a total of 52,000 was donated (approximately £2666). 

18 February 2020, 14:49
Cyclist love life gossip, part 2: Tiffany Cromwell now dating F1's Valtteri Bottas

In the second instalment of this series, on what was once the live blog and has today turned into a gossip column, is the news that Finnish Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas has confirmed he is in a relationship with Australian pro cyclist Tiffany Cromwell. 

Bottas recently announced his divorce from Olympic swimmer Emilia Pikkarainen, and judging by the hashtags in his Instagram post above, has faced some criticism regarding how fast he has moved on. Cromwell has rode for Canyon-SRAM since the team's launch in late 2015, and used to date fellow Aussie pro cyclist Richie Porte. 



🚲 solid day of 2000m+ of climbing ⛰ • #VB77 #cotedazur #coldebraus 📷 @tiffanycromwell

A post shared by Valtteri Bottas (@valtteribottas) on

It appears Cromwell has converted her new partner quickly, with Bottas posting the above pic from a bike ride two days ago; although cycling to keep fit amongst F1 riders is already fairly commonplace, with Mark Weber and Jenson Button both known to be very handy on the bike. 

18 February 2020, 13:26
Julian Alaphilippe dating former pro cyclist-turned TV presenter Marion Rousse, who recently separated with husband Tony Gallopin
marion rousse and julian alaphillipe.PNG

Forgive us for not picking up on breaking news about the love lives of French professional cyclists straight away (the story came out last week in European media) but it's been confirmed that French ex-pro and now TV presenter Marion Rousse has separated from husband Tony Gallopin... and it's reported that she is now in a relationship with Julian Alaphilippe. 

Rousse and AG2R La Mondiale rider Gallopin were together for 12 years and married in 2014, however Rousse recently took to Instagram to announce they had separated a few months ago. Neither Rousse or Alaphilippe have announced their relationship on social media (the photo above was posted during the 2019 Tour de France) but Sporza report that the pair weren't attempting to hide their affection during the Tour of Colombia last week. 

18 February 2020, 10:59
Labour Councillor says "going Dutch may not be such a good idea" due to greater number of cycling deaths (he may have omitted some vital statistics)

Vincent Stops, who is a councillor in the Hackney Central Ward, claims that the 228 cycling deaths in the Netherlands in 2018 compared to Britain's 99 despite our much higher population means it "may not be such a good idea" to adopt Dutch cycling infrastructure; however as many have pointed out under his post, Mr Stops appears to have omitted stats regarding how many Dutch people actually ride compared to the UK; cycling made up just 1% of mileage of all vehicular traffic in 2018 here, while in the Netherlands cycling accounts for 27% of all trips. There is also 1.3 bicycles per person in the Netherlands and 84% of the Dutch own a bike, so it's far more likely people who die in traffic accidents will be on a bike. 

Mr Stops regularly shares articles warning against implementing Dutch cycling infrastructure, and also appears to be wholly against the sight of Jump dockless hire bikes in his Hackney locale... 

18 February 2020, 10:41
Newport's hero bike mechanic offering to repair flood-damaged bikes for free

The big-hearted mechanic who goes by the name PuffaJones picks up and restores bikes to be given out for free, and believes 'every child deserves a bike'. He's now helping out those affected by flooding, offering free repairs to fix flood-damaged bikes if he has the parts to get the bike up-and-running again. 

Mr Jones is regularly on the hunt for unwanted bikes that can be given out to those who need them - if you have anything suitable you can contact hm via the Twitter profile above. 

18 February 2020, 10:28
Could rubber pavements help keep cyclists safer?

The idea was first conceived to cushion the blow when people fall, but iNews reports that the rubberised paving made from old tyres could also be used on cycle lanes too. It's been trialled in the Swedish cities of Lund and Helsingborg, and if successful the developers hope it could become common throughout Europe in the next five years - full story to follow. ​

18 February 2020, 10:19
Breaking: Driver who killed cyclist in 2014 has appeal rejected against ten year driving ban
Justice (Lonpicman, Wikimedia Commons)

Andrzej Wojcicki was looking at pictures on his mobile phone when he caused the death of Owain Jones in July 2013 by crashing his minibus into him, and today a judge has rejected his application to have a ten year driving ban rejected - Wojcicki was also jailed for five years in August 2014. Full story to follow. 

18 February 2020, 09:48
Egan Bernal becomes first cyclist since a certain American to win a Laureus Sports Award
egan bernal ineos 2020

The 23-year-old Colombian won the Breakthrough Award at the prestigious ceremony yesterday, becoming the first cyclist to win a Laureus Award since... a certain Lance Armstrong, who won the Comeback Award in 2000 and the overall Sportsman of the Year gong in 2003 (both were rescinded after his doping confessions). Other nominees in Bernal's category were Andy Ruiz (boxing), Bianca Andreescu (tennis), Coco Gauff (tennis), the Japan men's rugby team and Regan Smith (swimming).

Lewis Hamilton and Lionel Messi shared the 2020 Sportsman of the Year Award, while gymnast Simon Biles won Sportswoman of the Year. 

18 February 2020, 09:16
Dealer jailed after being caught cycling through York with £2,000 worth of drugs

The t-shirt might not have helped his case (click through to see the slogan), as the York Press report that 29-year-old Joseph Mark Hambier was caught with almost £2,000 worth of drugs including ecstasy and cannabis while cycling through York city centre at 1.25am. 

Officers were searching for suspects on an unrelated matter when they stopped Hambier and another man on bikes and searched their bags, finding drugs and drug paraphernalia in his rucksack; 79 ecstasy tablets were found in total, and police also found messages related to drug dealind on his phone. 

Hambier pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply ecstasy and possession with intent to supply cannabis, and was jailed for 28 months. The judge took into account his "long-standing complex mental health problems" and mild depression; however a psychiatrist decided his mental health difficulties were unrelated to his drug dealing.

18 February 2020, 08:56
Australian ABC documentary tells remarkable story of how police caught a hit-and-run killer

'Closing in on a killer' tells the story of how the killer of Dr Martin Pearson was eventually brought to justice, after the police set out on an extraordinary complex mission to find the suspect. It was found that the killer was the same man who had been involved in a mysterious death almost six years to the day - a tough watch but a fascinating one. 

18 February 2020, 08:51
An egg holder on the handlebars to punish bad driving?

Heard worse ideas!

After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake. 

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