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Homemade sign warns cyclists to “slow down for NHS sake” through village – “not racetrack”; “Concentrate on your cycling!” Police officer scolds ‘rubbernecking’ cyclist, while attending beached car; Jumbo-Visma Vuelta civil war? + more on the live blog

It’s Wednesday, it’s Angliru day at the Vuelta, and Ryan Mallon is here, popcorn at the ready, to keep you updated on the live blog


13 September 2023, 08:07
Sign in Exton Village warning cyclists to 'slow down for NHS sake' (Tom Jones, Twitter)
“My head can only read this with Alan Partridge’s voice”: Homemade sign warns cyclists to “slow down for NHS sake” through village – “not racetrack”

Right, get your Alan Partridge and Hot Fuzz memes at the ready, because some anti-cycling villagers have been at it again.

And this time, I’m sure you’ll agree, they’ve surpassed themselves.

The homemade sign, spotted in the village of Exton, Rutland, by Conservative councillor Tom Jones (no, not that one) is a true classic of its admittedly niche genre.

“Cyclists.” it begins (note the abundant use of punctuation already), “Exton Village. NOT Racetrack. For NHS sake Slow down!”

“Words fail me,” councillor Jones, who noted that the sign was placed on a “50 metre stretch of cycle path between two 90 degree bends”, wrote on the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

“This sign has it all. The NIMBY demand, the replacement of God by Are NHS: the ultimate reminder that it’s so over.”

It turns that it wasn’t just Jones who was baffled by the sign’s grammatically questionable appeal.

“My head can only read this with Alan Partridge’s voice,” wrote Thomas, while Chris asked: “Do they know how fast anaesthetists, ED docs and orthopaedic surgeons cycle?”

Others, meanwhile, reckon the villagers’ desire to protect the NHS by targeting racetrack-day dreaming cyclists is somewhat misplaced.

“For the NHS’s sake, keep cycling surely!” noted Mark.

“Clap for the NHS while we cut cyclists up in our Land Rovers,” added Adam, rather pointedly.

Some, however, defended the sign makers, with Dan arguing that “asking cyclists to respect the speed limit” is a “perfectly reasonable request”, while Mrs Doodle claimed that “I used to live near this location and the Lyra louts on bikes made it a living hell for residents”. Okay.

> Sign in Cambridgeshire accuses cyclists of "panting viruses" through village

Of course, this isn’t the first time that residents have invoked the NHS in order to prevent cyclists from ‘racing’ through their village.

Back during the first Covid-19 lockdown in April 2020, a sign appeared in the Cambridgeshire village of Coveney, telling cyclists to “stop panting viruses through our village. Stay away”.

That year’s lockdown appeared to start a trend of anti-cyclist messages, as later that day we were sent another picture of a homemade sign asking: “Cyclists. Are you 30 minutes from your home? Protect the NHS.”

And in 2021, reader Matthew sent us this rather polite reminder to one cyclist, apparently, to “please ride quietly through our village”.

Oxfordshire ride quietly sign

Though Matthew did note that it was strange considering the sign makers did not seem overly concerned about the number of speeding cars cutting through the village… just those pesky cyclists with their small talk, speeding, and heavy panting…

13 September 2023, 16:00
Poetry Corner: A reader’s response to Exton village’s ‘For NHS sake’ anti-cycling sign reader Car Delenda Est has, rather movingly, penned this car-based tribute to Exton village’s somewhat controversial sign warning cyclists to ‘slow down, it’s not a racetrack you lycra-clad git, think of the NHS!’ (Okay, I might have paraphrased a bit).

Anyway, here’s Car Delenda Est’s effort:

Land Rovers.

Exton Village.

NOT Falklands Conflict.

For NHS sake

stop being a tw@!

Beautiful. Somebody, please turn that into a sign immediately.

Meanwhile, SimoninSplading wrote: “I have ridden a few sportives in that area of Rutland and there does seem to be a general antipathy towards cyclists from the locals.

“My impression having cycled and driven around there for a number of years is that the main road safety issue would be overly large SUVs which their drivers seem incapable of slowing down to less than 40mph regardless of road conditions/speed limits etc.”

Get that sign up right away!

“Yeah. Cyclists. And their thousands of deaths, hundred thousands of injured, plus the many many illnesses from their pollution, their noise... oh wait...” noted marmotte27, while cyclisto pondered: “What if these ‘quiet please’ signs are placed by Shimano fanboys, dreaming of putting an end on Campy freehubs?”

Ah, now that makes sense! Then again, maybe not…

13 September 2023, 08:59
Car beached in Richmond Park (Louise Vardeman)
“Concentrate on your cycling!” Police officer scolds ‘rubbernecking’ cyclist… while attending beached car

As a reader, I think it’s fair to say that you probably spend quite a bit of time concentrating on cycling, thinking about cycling, daydreaming about cycling… So you’d probably agree that ‘concentrate on your cycling’ is pretty decent life advice that, if more people adhered to it, could end up making the world a better place.

It’s not, however, the kind of advice you’d normally want to hear shouted at you by a police officer, especially one attending to a motorist who appears to have made a pig’s ear out of parking their vehicle.

But that’s what happened to cyclist Louise Vardeman, who was sternly told by a police officer to “concentrate on your cycling” as she filmed a precariously parked car – and by that, I mean maybe one or two of the wheels were parked on the ground – in Richmond Park yesterday.

Vardeman, who has represented Great Britain at the Gran Fondo world championships, as well as setting team LEJOG records and riding the route of the 2019 Tour de France to push ASO to finally create a proper women’s Tour, posted the video on social media yesterday with the caption: “Me getting shouted at by a police officer as I cycled slowly and carefully past a motorist that had beached himself in Richmond Park. I don’t think I’m the issue here?”

Let’s just say that Cycling Twitter wasn’t too impressed with the officer’s advice.

“Wonder if they told the driver to concentrate on their driving,” Awesome Wells asked, while Sam pondered: “How does a driver capable of doing that manage to actually pass a test to get them a license in the first place?”

Others, meanwhile, reckoned the officer was simply offering up some encouragement.

“I think he was urging you to put in a good Strava segment,” noted Gareth, while Stu said: “Maybe he was reminding you to shout the obligatory ‘Can’t park there mate!’”

> Cyclists blast proposals to introduce 10mph speed limit on Richmond Park hill

Some, however, believed the words of advice were appropriate, and accused Vardeman of ‘rubbernecking’.

“At that moment in time you are because you’re ‘rubber necking’ – either not looking where you’re going or holding a camera in one hand which would impede your ability to brake. You also have no idea what caused the accident, may have been a medical emergency,” wrote Bill.

Brendan added: “Maybe the officer saw you getting closer to the middle of the road just as the cyclist coming the opposite way on the wrong side of the road got nearer. Whatever it was, you filming the scene, though perfectly legal, wasn’t helping the situation” – a response that, Louise replied, “makes perfect sense”.

What do you reckon? Was the officer right to call out the cyclist on their ‘rubbernecking’? Or should they be more concerned about the seemingly endemic poor driving on display in Richmond Park?

13 September 2023, 15:17
Jumbo-Visma rip apart the Vuelta (again) and create controversy with their tactics (again), as Sepp Kuss just holds onto red jersey by eight seconds at the top of the foggy Angliru

For a few minutes, through the dense fog near the top of the iconic Alto de l’Angliru, it looked like that was all she wrote for Sepp Kuss’s red jersey challenge at the Vuelta a España.

By that point, with just under two savage kilometres to go to the finish, Jumbo-Visma’s three robotic race destroyers, Jonas Vingegaard, Primož Roglič, and Kuss, the top three on GC and top three on the road, were once again in the process of systematically, and nonchalantly, dismantling the Vuelta.

Behind those three at the front, thanks to the impetus of a rampant Bahrain-Victorious, teeing up Mikel Landa for much of the climb, their rivals were strewn across the mountain.

Enric Mas? Dropped. Cian Uijtdebroeks? Gone. Juan Ayuso? Completely popped and suffering, a victim of his own UAE Team Emirates squad’s questionable tactics earlier in the day. Landa himself? Dropped.

But with an anti-climactic procession on the cards, the one rider of the robotic leading trio who most resembles a real boy, Kuss, lost the wheel.

The American communicated the gap through the radio to his teammates, but Roglič, it seemed, only responded by accelerating (after the stage, the Slovenian said he just continued to “ride at my own pace”).

At that moment, the red jersey appeared to be slipping off Kuss’s shoulders, thanks to the efforts of two teammates who continued to ride hard, despite only Mikel Landa – a distant, distant threat on GC – being anywhere near the stratosphere of the turbo charged Jumbo trio.

Up ahead, Roglič won a thrilling (note the sarcasm) uncontested sprint against Vingegaard, while a flailing, floundering Kuss battled hard to sprint past Landa, a move which ensured that the American kept hold of the GC lead, just, by eight seconds.

For a team that secured their second 1-2-3 on a crucial mountain stage in a week, and who cemented their grip on the entire podium, today’s stage only underlined the chaos swirling around Jumbo-Visma at this Vuelta.

In the GCN studio, a clearly baffled, and somewhat irate, Sean Kelly railed against the team’s decision – for no apparent reason – to not wait for Kuss when he began to suffer, contrasting it with the years of dedication and loyalty the American has offered Roglič and Vingegaard during his career.

Dan Lloyd, meanwhile, argued – like Tom Danielson earlier today – that a Vuelta win for Kuss would mean so much more to the American than his two more illustrious teammates, while buying a few more years of devoted service in the process.

Kelly and Lloyd’s perplexed reactions were echoed throughout social media, which appears to firmly be in Camp Kuss, when it comes to the great, unnecessary Jumbo-Visma civil war.

Meanwhile, the messaging from inside the Jumbo-Visma camp was just as confused.

“I want my shot, but I’m happy to work for them when called on,” Kuss admitted after the stage, without a single hint that he recognised the contradiction evident in that single sentence.

Roglič and Vingegaard, meanwhile, claimed that they “want” Kuss to win the Vuelta, though the Slovenian appeared to limit his support to simply encouraging his American teammate to “keep fighting and believing that he can make it”.

“I’m here to race and to do my best, and in the end the best will win,” Roglič concluded.

The best may well win on Sunday in Madrid. However, it seems as if Jumbo-Visma – arguably one of the most ominously dominant teams cycling has seen in years, capable of bending races, including this one, to their will – are letting an easy PR victory slip through their grasp.

13 September 2023, 14:37
Pavel Sivakov powers away from Richard Carapaz to take impressive solo win at the Giro della Toscana

Well, at least someone in an Ineos jersey is doing something in a bike race, right?

Pavel Sivakov – who is leaving the British squad for UAE Team Emirates in 2024 – took his first win in over a year this afternoon at the Giro della Toscana, powering clear of fellow escapee Richard Carapaz to go one better than the second place he secured behind Adam Yates at the GP Montréal last week.

Sivakov’s performance will no doubt impress his future team leader Tadej Pogačar, who finished fourth behind his teammate Felix Großschartner, as the Slovenian made his return to racing for the first since the world championships, in preparation for next month’s Il Lombardia, where he will be aiming to secure his third straight win at the Race of the Falling Leaves.

13 September 2023, 14:10
Commuters (CC licensed image by kube414_Flickr).jpg
Expanding the UK bike industry could deliver up to 130,000 new jobs by 2030, new Bicycle Association report claims

A new report published by the Bicycle Association has detailed the potential for cycling and the bike industry to deliver up to 130,000 new jobs before the end of the decade.

That figure would represent 6.5 percent of the British government’s goal of creating two million new green jobs by 2030, set out in the Green Jobs Taskforce.

The BA’s new report, titled ‘The UK cycle industry: current economic and employment benefits and decarbonisation-driven growth potential’, also argues that cycling can play a key role in the government’s aim to reduce carbon emissions by 68 percent during the same period, by replacing shorter car journeys.

According to the BA, by backing cycling and the cycle industry – which currently contributes an estimated £7.5 billion in economic value a year – 130,000 new jobs can be created (almost double the number currently employed by the sector), while other business benefits would include improved high street performance, an increase in retail spend and employment, an increase in local property values, and agglomeration benefits.

“Our industry is currently lacking the consistent policy framework and structural support needed to innovate and grow at the pace and direction that decarbonisation demands,” Steve Garidis, executive director of the BA, said.

“It is time for the Government to recognise the value, opportunities, and needs of the cycle industry, as well as the role we can play in ensuring the UK meets its net zero and economic growth ambitions.

“We are a strategic British industry, with infinite potential to deliver economic, social, and environmental benefits as demonstrated through this report, and we hope that these promising findings encourage Government to work with us to boost cycling business and broaden cycling uptake.

“Without an increase in cycling it will be much more difficult to hit our net-zero targets and it is high time that the Government put in place long term consistent funding and policies to stimulate demand, in particular for electric cycles, which have the potential to be game changing for the environment, health, and the UK economy.”

13 September 2023, 13:36
Anyone order a Soler Special at the Vuelta?

I take it back, UAE Team Emirates. After criticising the team for appearing to be devoid of ambition – at least when it comes to the battle for red – during yesterday’s stage, they’ve thrown the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons on today’s first climb, the Alto de la Colladiella.

And by that, I mean they’ve thrown everyone’s favourite purveyor of chaos, Marc Soler, up the road.

The mercurial Spaniard, sitting in sixth place overall, 3.28 down on Sepp Kuss, and just under two minutes off Primož Roglič’s final podium spot, absolutely flew up the Colladiella – but it doesn’t seem like the Robert Gesink-led Jumbo-Visma train are panicking just yet.

Oh, and who’s that at the front of the race? None other than Remco Evenepoel, of course, who bridged up to Soudal-Quick Step teammate Mattia Cattaneo after the typically frenetic start to the stage.

I’m not sure Remco will be too pleased with UAE’s tactics – and the effect they’ll have on his buffer to the bunch – by the time Soler bridges across, however…

13 September 2023, 13:05
London cycle lane (Image: Transport for London press release)
Only one in ten Londoners feel totally confident that the city’s cycle lanes are safe, new study claims

Back to the streets and cycleways of London, where a new survey has claimed that only 14 percent of residents feel “totally confident” riding on the city’s bike lanes and paths.

The study, conducted by Dutch software company CycloMedia, surveyed 7,500 respondents across 25 European cities, with London faring pretty poorly when it comes to cycle safety compared to its continental counterparts, apparently.

The results also claim that 83 percent of Londoners feel safer driving than cycling, a figure that drops – rather inevitably – to 16 percent when people from Amsterdam were asked the same question.

Meanwhile, almost half of respondents said they would not recommend living in the city if you’re concerned about dangerous traffic. In Warsaw, Vienna, and Oslo, around 70 percent of respondents said they would recommend their city based on its transport.

41 percent of Londoners surveyed also believe that better separation between road users would improve safety, with 31 percent saying that reduced speed limits would also help. 41 percent also said a lack of street light cover impacts their confidence to cycle, while 28 percent said improved traffic signs and cycle lanes would improve safety. Only 14 percent, however, reckon that cars should be banned from the city centre.

13 September 2023, 12:24
It’s Vine time…

Jeremy – and his poor Brompton – are back in the headlines this lunchtime. And, for someone who churns out clips of his obstacle-laden commute almost every day, this one’s pretty shocking, even by his standards…

Jeremy Vine video 13/09/2023 (Twitter)

> Jeremy Vine’s lucky escape as bike run over by reversing driver who turned onto cycle lane 

13 September 2023, 12:08
“I am so happy to be alive!” Cofidis rider Wesley Kreder recovering and hoping to get back on bike soon after heart attack

32-year-old Dutch pro Wesley Kreder is recovering at home, and hopes to be back on his bike in the next week or two, after suffering a heart attack at the end of August, his Cofidis team announced in a statement today.

Kreder, who joined the French team from Intermarché-Wanty this year, experienced myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle, on the night of 28 August. His wife and in-law provided first aid before taking him to a hospital in Eindhoven, where he remained under observation for several days.

Since returning home, the 32-year-old has continued to be monitored by a cardiologist and Cofidis doctors, with a decision on his future within the sport delayed until he is fully recovered.

“I went to bed normally on August 28 and the next day I woke up in the hospital,” the ZLM Tour stage winner said in a statement. “It was really strange to find myself there, wondering what had happened and why I had come to this. I stayed in the hospital for several days to undergo a battery of tests and recover well before returning home.

“Now I feel good, it’s hard to think that I had a heart attack two weeks ago. I started walking outside, I continue to rest, to take care of my two children.

“I still need time for my convalescence to go well. But the doctors haven’t said I can't get back on a bike again and I hope to be able to ride one within a week or two.

“On the other hand, it is too early to already talk about the future. I would like to deeply thank my loved ones, especially my partner and my in-laws, who supported me through this ordeal and to the medical teams who treated me. Thank you also to the staff of the Cofidis team and to Cédric Vasseur who have always been by my side and supported me in these difficult times.

“Now is not the time to plan ahead but to recover well and enjoy, too. I am so happy to be alive!”

13 September 2023, 11:38
Are too many reports of road incidents falling through the cracks because officers are “drowning under cases”?

A cyclist in London has raised concerns about the way footage of incidents on the road can be reported, using his own case as an example of how reports can fall through the cracks as police forces “follow procedure” and are “drowning under cases”.

“A victim of a crime shouldn’t have to know the system,” the cyclist said. “If you think this is about cyclists vs motorists, it isn’t. It’s about the basic ability for laws and norms to be upheld.”

Cyclist bemoans police reporting system (Twitter/@Dylillama)

Read more: > Cyclist bemoans police reporting system as furious driver who shouted abuse and got out car to confront him “gets a talking to”

13 September 2023, 11:29
What’s this? Mark Cavendish’s new lead out train?

Get that rumour mill churning…

Well, I suppose it would be fitting for Chris Froome to bookend his career with spells as a sprinter’s domestique… What, too harsh?

13 September 2023, 10:56
“What do you want? Blood?” Time to get angry on the Angliru

And speaking of today’s stage…

Set your alarm, because at around 4pm this afternoon, the Vuelta peloton (or what’s left of it) will hit the foot of the notorious Alto de l’Angliru, that narrow slab of mythical Asturian brutality, a former goat track that has carved itself into cycling legend since it was first introduced at the Spanish grand tour back in 1999, striking fear into all but the spindliest, masochistic climbers.

It’s the climb that inspired Kelme boss Vicente Belda, in the midst of what was arguably the sport’s darkest doping period, to ask: “What do they want? Blood?”

It’s where, on a grim day in 2002, an EPO-fuelled David Millar channelled his inner Octave Lapize (expect this one actually happened), stopping just short of the finishing line in protest at the conditions and the severity of the climb, despite sitting in ninth place overall at the time.

2020 Vuelta - Hugh Carthy wins on the Angliru  (© ASO, PHOTOGOMEZSPORT2020)

Carthy tames the beast at the 2020 Vuelta (ASO/PhotoGomezSport)

It’s where Chris Froome first demonstrated his knack for turning around and shouting ‘Come on Brad, stick to my wheel’ (an art form he would perfect at the following year’s Tour); Where Alberto Contador bowed out with a typical flourish, on his penultimate day as a pro; Where Hugh Carthy scored a career-defining win, as the seemingly imperious Primož Roglič toiled on the savagely steep slopes.

The Angliru is, officially, 12.4km long and averages 9.8 percent, but those numbers only tell half the story (and this year, the climbs preceding it are pretty brutal too).

The last seven kilometres are impossibly steep, always in double digits and hitting slopes of 19, 20, 22, 24 percent in places.

Put all that tactical talk in the bin, the Angliru is all about who can ride to the top the fastest. And it could change the face of the Vuelta. We’re in for a treat.

Oh, and we’re also set to hear Carlton Kirby utter the terms ‘coping pace’ and ‘slow motion bicycle race’ more times than is humanly bearable. Well, the riders can’t be the only ones suffering, can they?

13 September 2023, 10:37
Juan Ayuso, stage eight, 2023 Vuelta a España (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency)
“I don’t really know what went on with the tactics”: Juan Ayuso also turns spotlight on UAE Team Emirates decisions in battle for podium

While all eyes are on the internal battle for red raging (or not) within the Jumbo-Visma bus, the Dutch team’s nearest challenger, fourth-placed Juan Ayuso, also hinted that all was not well within UAE Team Emirates, after some questionable tactical choices on yesterday’s final climb saw Jonas Vingegaard further reduce the 20-year-old’s chances of making the Vuelta podium for the second year running.

Instead of using their relatively healthy resources to limit their losses to Vingegaard on Bejes, UAE Team Emirates instead sent young Kiwi Finn Fisher-Black up the road in pursuit, for an encouraging if somewhat meaningless second place on the day. Meanwhile, Ayuso’s teammates Marc Soler and João Almeida – both currently in the lower echelons of the top ten – failed to do any work in the constantly stalling GC group.

And it appears Ayuso wasn’t too impressed with his team’s tactics.

“I have to discuss with the team because I don’t really know what went on with the tactics but I don’t want to say much,” the Spaniard told reporters after the stage.

“I felt quite well. It’s always a bit weird when you come from a rest day but I think generally it’s ok and I’m looking forward to tomorrow. I think it’s gonna be a special day. I think the GC guys are gonna go for the victory so I hope tomorrow can be my day and I can lift my hands.”

Oh, more drama… and that’s before we even get to the Angliru this afternoon!

13 September 2023, 09:57
Sepp Kuss 2023 Vuelta (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency© 2023/ASO)
Are Jumbo-Visma on the verge of civil war? Ex-pro Tom Danielson says Vuelta win would be “life changing” for Sepp Kuss and slams Vingegaard “attacking early on climbs”… as Primož Roglič’s wife ‘likes’ post criticising team tactics

Jumbo-Visma may be crushing the opposition at the Vuelta with all the benevolence of a medieval warlord, but is everything as rosy as it seems around the Dutch team’s dinner table?

As we head neck-achingly skywards to the summit of the fearsome and stupidly steep Alto de l’Angliru this afternoon, what threatened to be one of the most processional and suspenseless grand tours in recent memory (and could still well turn out that way, to be honest) could explode into life, thanks to the apparently emerging internecine conflict within the otherwise imperious Jumbo-Visma ranks.

As I noted on yesterday’s blog, the internal dichotomy of Jumbo-Visma’s current position at the Vuelta – a devastatingly dominant 1-2-3 on the GC that has seemingly reduced all of their rivals to meek surrender, but one that is beset by tactical confusion – was laid bare on the steep climb of Bejes yesterday afternoon.

Sepp Kuss, the current race leader, the people’s favourite, the loyal domestique behind Jumbo’s greatest triumphs in recent years, was forced to soft pedal his way up most of the finishing climb, as his own teammate Jonas Vingegaard took another minute out of his advantage in the red jersey.

Surely, with Kuss – regardless of the fact this is his third grand tour of the season, and that he’s unproven battling for the overall win – over two and a half minutes clear of the first non-Jumbo rider on the standings, UAE’s Juan Ayuso, the Dutch team should try to shepherd the American to a career-defining triumph, safe in the knowledge that, if or when he eventually cracks, Roglič and Vingegaard (both at least a minute clear of Aysuo) can easily step up and take control of the race?

That’s the question that was asked last night by Kuss’s fellow American, ex-US Postal and Garmin rider Tom Danielson, on Twitter.

“A Vuelta win would be a life changing experience for Sepp while the win is just another ‘grand tour victory’ for Jonas or Primoz,” Danielson wrote.

“I don’t understand the motive of his teammates who are second and third on GC attacking early on the climbs. Sepp’s hands are tied as he cannot go after them. Their rivals are not able to chase Jonas or Primoz (or drop Sepp for that matter). They can just as easily ride for the stage win by attacking in the last km on these stages and keep Sepp in the jersey.

“While I understand Jonas and Primoz have the biggest salaries and have the best palmares on the team, it seems like it’s worth the risk from a PR standpoint, a fan viewpoint, and from a team unity perspective after the race to try to win with Sepp.

“If you have worn the leader’s jersey for eight days into the final stages with a two plus minute gap to your first rival then having your teammates protect that is not asking for a gift. Instead, it is asking for respect and trust. Just as they have always trusted Sepp to be there when it counts, now they should trust him to finish the job when it counts.

“He earned the chance, now let him finish it.”

Jonas Vingegaard, Col du Tourmalet, 2023 Vuelta (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023)

Kuss looks on as Vingegaard attacks on the Tourmalet (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency)

And, as if things couldn’t get any spicier, Roglič’s wife also reportedly liked a post from an Instagram fan account which slammed Jumbo-Visma’s tactics as “unacceptable” and Vingegaard’s stage-winning move as a “clear attack on the leadership”.

Ohhh… Better get the popcorn ready for the Angliru, where all those pesky team tactics need not apply anyway. Maybe we’ll see Jonas and Sepp doing an Alpe d’Huez 1986 and cross the line arm in arm?

Now, where’s Kathy LeMond when you need her?

13 September 2023, 09:39
When you really, really, really despise cycle hire schemes

It’s like the comments section under a Brighton Argus bike hire story come to life…

13 September 2023, 08:35
Nathan Van Hooydonck and Jonas Vingegaard, 2023 Tour de France (Zac Williams/
Jumbo-Visma confirm that Nathan Van Hooydonck’s “health situation not critical” following car crash

Some good news emerged from Belgium last night, as Jumbo-Visma confirmed that Nathan Van Hooydonck, who was taken to hospital yesterday morning after falling ill and crashing his car, is not in a critical condition and did not suffer any serious injuries in the incident.

Van Hooydonck was reportedly driving his pregnant wife to the hospital when he fell ill while stopped at a set of traffic lights, causing him to accelerate across the junction, colliding with five cars. A spokesperson for the Belgian police said that he had been resuscitated at the scene and taken to hospital. His wife, who was not injured in the collision, was also taken to hospital for a check-up, while three other people involved in the crash, including a child, suffered minor injuries.

While the Belgian pro’s condition was initially believed to have been life-threatening, with Jumbo-Visma DS Grischa Niermann telling reporters that he had been placed in an induced coma, it emerged following yesterday’s stage of the Vuelta – won in emotionally charged circumstances by Van Hooydonck’s teammate and friend Jonas Vingegaard – that the 27-year-old was awake and recovering better than expected from the crash.

That promising news was then confirmed last night in a short statement by Jumbo-Visma, which said that Van Hooydonck will be monitored in order to establish the reasons behind the worrying incident.

“Nathan Van Hooydonck is awake and doesn’t suffer injuries because of the traffic accident earlier today,” the team said.

“His health situation is not critical. Further medical examinations have to determine why Nathan became unwell, while driving his car. We want to thank everyone for the messages and the medical staff in the hospital for taking such good care of Nathan and his family.”

Ryan joined in December 2021 and since then has kept the site’s readers and listeners informed and enthralled (well at least occasionally) on news, the live blog, and the Podcast. After boarding a wrong bus at the world championships and ruining a good pair of jeans at the cyclocross, he now serves as’s senior news writer. Before his foray into cycling journalism, he wallowed in the equally pitiless world of academia, where he wrote a book about Victorian politics and droned on about cycling and bikes to classes of bored students (while taking every chance he could get to talk about cycling in print or on the radio). He can be found riding his bike very slowly around the narrow, scenic country lanes of Co. Down.

Add new comment


Velovoyeur | 7 months ago

Even the local graffiti artist spotted an opportunity to have a go at the local Tories who put up the ludicrous sign.

open_roads | 7 months ago

if the Met police are "drowning under cases" of video footage then Sadiq Khan can use some of his £1b / year ulez revenues to alleviate the issue.

As the Mayor of London and apparently committed to road safety for cyclists why wouldn't he do this?*

* Londoners already know the answer to this rhetorical question.

eburtthebike replied to open_roads | 7 months ago

Boldly said.

mattw | 7 months ago

So how did that 4x4 beach itself?

Was the twat trying to exit the car park not through the entrance, or was he asleep at the wheel and did not notice he had reached the edge of the car park?

Can the Royal Parks Police hand out careless driving tickets?

eburtthebike replied to mattw | 7 months ago
1 like

mattw wrote:

Can the Royal Parks Police hand out careless driving tickets?

No, for the simple reason that they weren't on a bicycle.

brooksby | 7 months ago
1 like


Expanding the UK bike industry could deliver up to 130,000 new jobs by 2030, new Bicycle Association report claims

Erm - but wouldn't expanding pretty much any industry deliver new jobs?

hawkinspeter replied to brooksby | 7 months ago

brooksby wrote:

Erm - but wouldn't expanding pretty much any industry deliver new jobs?

Not if it's a worker-replacing-robots industry

quiff replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
1 like

Someone needs to make the robots (at least, to begin with...)

hawkinspeter replied to quiff | 7 months ago

quiff wrote:

Someone needs to make the robots (at least, to begin with...)

Well, how about the people making robots to build robot factories, then?

chrisonabike replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
1 like

Or the management consultant industry - that often focusses on delivering fewer jobs?

hawkinspeter replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago

chrisonatrike wrote:

Or the management consultant industry - that often focusses on delivering fewer jobs?

I thought management consultants simply swap the low paid jobs for high paid jobs for them and their mates.

brooksby replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago

chrisonatrike wrote:

Or the management consultant industry - that often focusses on delivering fewer jobs?

I thought that they generally created more management consultant jobs?

chrisonabike replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
1 like

Correct - but AFAIK the idea is to swap a small number of management consultant jobs for a much larger number of other jobs.  The difference (money saved) being divided between the company that hired the consultants to fire everyone (directors all get a bonus) and the management consulting company.

HoarseMann | 7 months ago

Thought I'd just check the collision data for Exton, just to see how bad it really is (you guessed it, not a sausage)...,collisionsheatmap/#12.81/52...

chrisonabike replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago

Fallacy!  That's only because all the sausages have been scared off the roads by the rampaging herds of cyclists!

I'm wondering just how many times per month a group of cyclists passes.  Unless they've got a amazing success of a local club - or several - nearby I'd imagine this would be no more than a minibus' worth of people passing through the place within e.g. 1-3 minutes, once every ...?

Truly it's simply the rare which is startling - and in this case horrifying!

eburtthebike replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago

chrisonatrike wrote:

Fallacy!  That's only because all the sausages have been scared off the roads by the rampaging herds of cyclists!

Fresh road kill sausages are the best!

Backladder replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago
1 like

chrisonatrike wrote:

Fallacy!  That's only because all the sausages have been scared off the roads by the rampaging herds of cyclists!

But cyclists don't come in herds like cows, they come in bunches like bananas!

wycombewheeler replied to Backladder | 7 months ago

Backladder wrote:

But cyclists don't come in herds like cows, they come in bunches like bananas!


chrisonabike replied to Backladder | 7 months ago

Depends if they've swapped chamois butter for udder cream?

I was about refute the banana analogy but then I realised I have owned one of these - albeit without the front fairing and body sock.

However, I was never a part of a bunch while riding it.

chrisonabike replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago

If it's so bad there, maybe they should open a cafe and make the best of it?  If you can't slow 'em down with signs, do so with cake and coffee.

leaway2 replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago

The sign is working then.

eburtthebike replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago

Surely it's not beyond the wit of some cyclist to replace the sign with one reading:


for the NHS"

HoldingOn replied to eburtthebike | 7 months ago
1 like

eburtthebike wrote:


for the NHS"

"unless you are an Ambulance driver, First Responder or Community Nurse*"

*Although I have vague recollection of midwives on bicycles, though I can't think where from!

henryb | 7 months ago

The "Slow Down!" sign is inconsistent with the earlier sign “Cyclists. Are you 30 minutes from your home? Protect the NHS.” which is an encouragement to cyclists to cycle faster

Flâneur | 7 months ago

Ah, Chief Wiggum's pretendy Royal Parks Police. A bunch of clowns.

mitsky | 7 months ago

Maybe if...

the police concentrated on "policing"...

the courts concentrated on "courting"...

and judges concentrated on "judging"...

(and issuing proper sentences as a real deterent)

then drivers would actually concentrate on their "driving"...

SimoninSpalding | 7 months ago

I have ridden a few sportives in that area of Rutland and there does seem to be a general antipathy towards cyclists from the locals.

My impression having cycled and driven around there for a number of years is that the main road safety issue would be overly large SUVs which their drivers seem incapable of slowing down to less than 40mph regardless of road conditions/ speed limits etc.

chrisonabike | 7 months ago

RE: "Quiet cyclists" - it was probably this lot, giving everyone a bad name.

chrisonabike replied to chrisonabike | 7 months ago
1 like
Car Delenda Est | 7 months ago

Land Rovers.
Exton Village.
NOT Falklands Conflict.
For NHS sake
stop being a tw@!


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