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Daddy day care, pro cyclist edition – Rigoberto Urán straps eight-month-old daughter in for training; Reverse Hour Record: how low can you go?; Cav back on (Ghent's) track; Stolen Italian bikes returned; FA Cup helmet; NFT + more on the live blog

It's Wednesday and Dan Alexander is here for his final live blog before he disappears for some holiday...that should brighten up your morning!...
17 November 2021, 17:03
Cav on the boards

You're not going to take the reverse Hour Record riding like that... 

17 November 2021, 15:58
Daddy day care: Rigoberto Urán straps eight-month-old daughter in for training ride

No mistake from Rigoberto here. We're not talking about the baby, just the fact he's on a team-issue Cannondale...ask Sergio Higuita about that one. 

Urán shared this clip of him taking his eight-month old daughter Carlota for a training babies have to wear team-issue kit? Let's see if Jonathan Vaughters kicks up a fuss about the lack of POCs on display...

Unsurprisingly, not all of Urán's Twitter followers were entirely comfortable with the Colombian rider's daycare set-up here. I don't get the problem. We'd love to be harnessed to a WorldTour pro for a spin, although, thinking about it... the extra weight might cancel out their superhuman power...

Urán's something of a live blog favourite. Remember that time he was drafted by a backpack-wearing local at 45km/h? Only in Colombia...

17 November 2021, 15:09
"When there's a whole Instagram page dedicated to the failures of your components....yeah, there's a design flaw": Reader reaction to Shimano denying design problem with Hollowtech cranks

There's more than bit of reaction to Shimano denying dodgy design causing cracks to their lot had your say in the hundreds of replies we got to yesterday's story. 

The component giant says its engineers are trying to find out if there is a specific cause of crank failures, but that there isn't a design problem...

Several people sent in the photographic evidence of their own snapped Shimano stuff. Matthew Schieferstein pointed out "there's a whole Instagram page dedicated to the failures of your components....yeah, there's a design flaw."

> Shimano denies design problem with Hollowtech cranks despite reports of cracked arms

Mickey Boulton commented: "My 70kg wife did this to a pair of Ultegra cranks... she was so proud of herself... BEAST!" Others suggested the problem has been around for years...

Alan Dwyer wondered, "Maybe not design but maybe manufacturing-related?"

To which Grahame Baker, a principal lecturer in mechanical engineering at University of Greenwich, replied: "I would argue that is still a design issue — either the product hasn't been designed for the process available, or the process has been designed to be incapable of manufacturing the product. Splitting hairs, I know. But important in my world as a manufacturing engineer."

We're actually sending Grahame a broken crank for an inspection...we'll report back his thoughts...

17 November 2021, 14:44
Cav ready for "Tour de France of track cycling" at Ghent Six Day
2021 Tour de France Cavendish - 1

Mark Cavendish will take to the boards in Ghent this evening for the second day of the city's famous Six Day. Cav won the event in 2016 alongside Sir Bradley Wiggins, and will partner with Deceuninck-Quick-Step teammate Iljo Keisse for this year's edition.

Playing down his chances against prolific Danish pair Michael Mørkøv and Lasse Norman Hansen, the Tour de France stage wins joint record holder says he has nothing to prove this week...but...he told Het Nieuwsblad: "The history of the Kuipke is so special. The Ghent Six is the Tour de France of track cycling, it’s unlike any other race. As a rider in Belgium you feel that people understand the race. Anyone who comes to watch also understands what’s happening.

"I've only been on the track for two days in the last eight months. Then there is no comparison with a duo like Mørkøv and Hansen, who have just become world champions and who have had track preparation. For me there’s no ego. I'm in the comfortable position where I don't have to show how good I am anymore. This is one of the last Six Days we can ride together. It would be nice if we could also enjoy it a bit."

17 November 2021, 14:17
Safety patrols introduced after spate of bike thefts from Peterborough school
Queen Katherine Academy Peterborough (Google Maps)

Queen Katherine Academy in Peterborough has introduced further safety measures after a number of bike thefts from the school. A parent told Peterborough Matters that five bikes have been taken within the last four days.

"We are not even able to claim any assistance in replacing the bikes. [It] appears that anyone can now walk on to the site and just help themselves," they said. "Thefts have been reported to the police but there hasn’t been a positive response from their end yet."

Another said: "My son is worried to take his bike to school. Over five bikes and e-scooters have been stolen. My son told me last week he saw a man coming into the area where bikes were locked up. He told him he was collecting his child’s bike but my son said it did not look right and stayed away from approaching the man further."

Cambridgeshire Police confirmed they had visited the school and would investigate the thefts. The principal Lynn Mayes addressed the spate of thefts: "As soon as the matter was brought to our attention, we began working closely with Cambridgeshire Police and, as part of the investigation, have positioned police officers and members of staff to patrol areas where bike thefts have occurred."

17 November 2021, 13:41
Italian national track cycling team's €400k worth of stolen bikes returned from Romania
Romanian police recover stolen Italy track team bikes (Image: Politia Romana)

The 22 Italian team bikes stolen by a gang during the UCI Track World Championships in Roubaix have been collected by the team's mechanics. Romanian police found the bikes during a raid on premises connected to a criminal organisation. Filippo Ganna's gold Pinarello and the rest of the World Championship-winning team pursuit bikes, complete with £8,500 titanium 3D-printed handlebars, were among the haul of stolen bikes found during the search.

Italian Federation president Cordiano Dagnoni told La Gazzetta dello Sport, "They [the team mechanics] loaded the bikes on Monday and left Romania straight away. Now the bikes are back in Italy, in the Montichiari velodrome. They’re all there, only a few wheels are missing."

After the raid, the head of the Italian delegation Roberto Amdio told the same newspaper that they believed the theft was a professional operation undertaken by a gang who knew which van to break into, despite security at the hotel.

17 November 2021, 12:08
Our sort of Hour Record...shortest distance in 60 minutes record broken by Davide Formolo and Maria Vittoria Sperotto

We were certain we could set an unbeatable distance for the shortest Hour Record...then we were reminded you actually have to ride your bike for 60 minutes and can't just sit on the start line...

UAE Team Emirates climber Davide Formolo and Maria Vittoria Sperotto are the new record holders after they unbelievably covered the exact same distance, 918m, during a simultaneous record attempt at the Rino Mercante Velodrome in Bassano del Grappa.

The event actually happened a couple of weeks ago, but was brought into the mainstream this morning as the video did the rounds on social media. It was livestreamed by La Repubblica delle Biciclette and the full hour of stalling is on their Facebook us, it's more entertaining than the actual Hour Record.

The pair took the title from Bruno Zanoni, the maglia nera (last placed rider) at the 1979 Giro d'Italia, who had set a best distance of 1,070m in 2019. It seems the reverse Hour Record has a habit for close finishes and high drama...Zanoni himself took the crown from two-time Giro winner Gilberto Simoni by one metre...

Put the aero bars away...the reverse Hour Record is the new challenge we want to see pro riders targeting...

17 November 2021, 12:42
Any takers?

If Wout van Aert can get a few quid for his biggest wins as digital assets then surely someone will give Simon Warren a Freddo Frog for his... 

We've got more surreal NFT news coming up this space.

17 November 2021, 10:50
Add a splash of to your steed with Flandria's Name Decals
Name Decals Screenshot_2021-11-16_at_2.47.33_pm

Flandria has moved over its name decals over to its new dedicated site called, you guessed it... Name Decals. You now can design your decals with a real-time preview and there’s plenty of customisation available: change the font, font colour, outline colour, background colour and more. 

You can choose your flag, with options including ‘Star Wars Jedi’, ‘Type 1 Diabetic’, ‘Vegan’, and there’s even a ‘’ option, as well as the usual countries. 

A pack of two (for either side of your top tube) will cost ya £5.99 and if you need 40 for your 20 strong bike collection (of course), that’ll be £25.99. There are options in-between that too, don’t worry. 

It's topical considering yesterday's news that G's named frame was one of the reasons French police knew the 15-year-old riding a sparkly Pinarello F in Menton probably obtained it by nefarious means...

Get yours over here...

17 November 2021, 10:21
It's all happening in Hertfordshire this morning...Stevenage FC mark FA Cup success with bike helmet celebration

It's the Stevenage live blog this morning... this time courtesy of the League Two strugglers' creative goal celebration on the club's Twitter account. Luke Norris' 120th minute penalty knocked League One MK Dons out of the FA Cup, prompting this bizarre celebration...

17 November 2021, 10:15
It's.......Photoshopped (and eight years old)
Cyclists you are about to ride into a pole (No Context Brits/Twitter)

We've done some more digging and found the original story on the bike lane message...turns out all of you saying it's Photoshopped were right. What's more, it was actually mocked up by Stevenage Cycle Touring Club to highlight the danger of the obstructed cycle lane.

The BBC story from 2013 includes quotes from the club, saying the lane was "hardly encouragement" for cyclists and undermined the council's claim to support active travel.

"It perhaps shows the true priorities for the county council. [It's] dangerous and a waste of money when we are told that budgets are tight. The money would have been better spent fixing the many potholes that are dangerous for cyclists and motorists," Jim Brown of the club said at the time.

17 November 2021, 10:06
E-bike-optimised lube incoming from Silca
Silca Synerg-E lube

Designed to be the “ultimate wear-reducing lubricant for e-bikes”, Synerg-E uses Silca’s patent-pending Tungsten Tribofilm technology and blends it into a higher viscosity lube optimised for the higher torque experienced in e-bike drivetrains.

Silca says that e-bike chains experience more than two times the internal pressures of traditional bike chains and are capable of wearing out expensive drivetrain components like chains, chainrings, and cassettes at more than twice the rate of standard bikes.

"By increasing viscosity and adding Calcium Sulfonate to the mix, Synerg-E gives up roughly one watt of pure efficiency to [our] Synergetic [lube], while nearly doubling the oil film strength to ensure the lowest rates of chain and drivetrain wear of any lubricant currently available," claims Silca.

Synerg-E uses only environmentally friendly pure synthetic base oils with additives approved as safe by the EPA and Bureau of Land Management, containing NO PFAS or other Fluorinated chemicals.

17 November 2021, 08:50
Photoshopped or legit? 'Cyclists you are about to ride into a pole' sign

This one has been doing the rounds on Twitter and went semi-viral thanks to a push from 'No Context Brits' half a million followers. The account dedicated to "a mordant celebration of British mediocrity" shared a picture of some classic British infra...

The bumpy shared-use path split down the middle by a wobbly white line is a classic of the UK infra genre. We all know one. But the star attraction here is that traffic information display slapped bang in the centre of the lane, giving cyclists a dark-coloured pole to aim for...on said display, the message: "Cyclists: please note, you are about to ride into a pole." Clever.

But can it be real. We have to admit it all looks a little bit too 'clean'. Some have said it's got to be Photoshopped. Regardless, it got people sending in their other worst bike lane signs...

And who could forget...

Dan joined in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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