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“Soundbite silliness” – London Cycling Campaign on taxi boss bike lane jibe; Top XR Chiswick church trolling on pop-up bike lane; Mo Salah tweets bike pic, helmet row ensues; Cyclist vs driver road rage; GB Olympic champs launch coffee brand + more

Jack Sexty in charge of your live blog as we start a new week, with Simon MacMichael taking over for the evening update
18 May 2020, 20:04
Some top trolling by Extinction Rebellion in West London

As we reported earlier today, campaigners from Extinction Rebellion were out in towns and cities across the UK to create their own pop-up bike lanes.

We're not sure whether this one that we stumbled across in Chiswick, West London, was deliberately sited because of the building it's located next to, but if so, chapeau!

The red brick building on the left is the Roman Catholic Church of Our Lady of Grace & St Edward, and you may recall that the parish priest initially opposed plans for Cycleway 9, which will run along Chiswick High Road (the road at the T-junction in the photo).

XR Chiswick

It looks like those of us in West London are going to get a pop-up bike lane along there sometime soon pending construction of the full route, but we like the Extinction Rebellion route on the side road, too.

18 May 2020, 19:50
"Soundbite silliness" - London Cycling Campaign responds to taxi representative's "Class war" comment

Simon Munk, infrastructure campaigner at London Cycling Campaign, has described Licensed Taxi Drivers' Association general secretary's Steve McNamara's claim today (see below) that allocating safe space for cycling as the capital emerges from lockdown is nothing more than "soundbite silliness."

Munk told us: "In short, this is the usual soundbite silliness from McNamara. Not really fitting, particularly in a global pandemic which appears to be exacerbated by pollution."

He added: "He used to say every scheme was the wrong scheme, wrong time, wrong place, until I pointed that out.

"Now he appears to have become obsessed with lattes. Really, this says far more about him & the LTDA than about cycling or anything else."

18 May 2020, 16:14
Push for cycling infrastructure is "a class war", according to the General Secretary of the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association

Steve McNamara - the General Secretary of the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association - made the comments on Talk Radio over the weekend, saying that increased cycling infrastructure is a "class war". Amongst other things McNamara said: 

They (cyclists) can afford to live very central and they want to cycle half a mile to work in the morning because it suits them.

What they’re doing is redesigning these cities in their own image to work for them. They want to be able to sit in the middle of Manchester Piccadilly, in the middle of Oxford Circus, drinking their drinking their eco-caramel coconut lattes or whatever the trendy drink of choice is, without giving any thought to how the constituent parts get there.”

This is at odds with comments MacNamara made in 2016, when he met representatives from the London Cycling Campaign to support Greenpeace's Clean Air proposal for London. At the time MacNamara said: "Black cabs are committed to cleaning up London’s air and will be emissions free in new vehicles from 2018. We stand together with the London Cycling Campaign and Greenpeace in calling on the next Mayor to implement a Clear Air Zone to ensure that other vehicles operating in the capital clean up their act.”

Why the backpedalling from Mr MacNamara? We've asked London Cycling Campaign if they support his latest comments. 

18 May 2020, 15:23
The real-life Bicycle Thief: man rides 1,800km home across India on 'stolen' bicycle after having his own stolen

The plot of this tale closely mirrors that of the classic Italian film Bicycle Thieves (featured in our best cycling films guide) to begin with... except for Prasant Nayak - a plumber who was working in Goa, actually managed to get away on a bike he was forced to steal after having his original bike stolen. 

Nayak was left stranded in Goa with no work and 1,800km from home, so had no option but to cycle back to his village in Odisha. During the trip his own bike was stolen, so he took another one that was left nearby to continue the journey. Nayak didn't accept that he had committed a crime, because it's likely the 'thief' had probably took his bicycle and left theirs by mistake. 

When he finally reach his village, Nayak received a hero's welcome before being placed into quarantine. 

18 May 2020, 14:41
Mo Salah's bike revealed
vitus razor disc sora 2020.PNG

We're now 99.9% sure that the bike (that you'll see was caught up in a good old 'helmet row' over on Twitter) is a stock £799.99 Vitus Razor VR Disc Road model. The tan wall tyres and shape of the fork give it away, although the brake levers on the pic above are set up quite a bit nicer than Mo's.

If you're liking Salah's cycle of choice and fancy it for yourself, you better be quick because there are only a limited number of size small frames left on both Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles

18 May 2020, 13:43
Police forces remind drivers of their responsibilities as more traffic returns to the roads
Traffic jam Okehampton - wikimedia commons

With higher levels of traffic reported since England's lockdown rule changes last week, drivers are being warned to slow down and watch out for cyclists and pedestrians, as many key workers have turned to active travel while Britain has seen an increase in recreational cycling during the pandemic. 

Inspector Kirsty Clough of Warwickshire Police said: “This is particularly important at the moment as vehicles are now sharing the roads with more people who have turned to cycling, running or walking for their exercise during the current pandemic.  As more people return to work, our roads will become busier not only with traffic but with some people also choosing to walk, run or cycle to work.

“Driving safely within speed limits helps to keep all road users safe and to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.  We also want to support new road users, in particular pedal cyclists to keep them safe on the roads.”

18 May 2020, 13:39
A definitive answer to our 'Why don't cyclists use cycle lanes?' feature

We could just replace all the words with this photo really. 

18 May 2020, 13:23
Have you seen Wiggo's new look yet?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Groundhog Day #lockdown

A post shared by Sir Wiggo (@bradwiggins) on

Sir Bradders delighted Rangers supporters while revealing his new bearded, shaven-headed look over the weekend. His followers were almost unanimous in their appreciation of the new look while, understandably, they were split over his choice of vintage football shirt. Yesterday he followed up with a slightly more neutral piece of 90's sportswear... 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

No eyes on me 👀 #evening #lockdown

A post shared by Sir Wiggo (@bradwiggins) on

18 May 2020, 15:01
A round-up of the action (or inaction in the case of the cancelled Bristol event) that took place over the weekend
18 May 2020, 11:33
Gordon Ramsay takes a swipe at Cornish locals who took issue with him riding too far from his (second) home
gordon ramsay 20th april 2020 - via Gordon Ramsay on Instagram.PNG

A UK tabloid claimed last month that Ramsay was "risking further wrath" from neighbours by riding outside during the lockdown (perfectly acceptable of course), and now the TV chef has took a potshot back in an Instagram Story. 

Sharing a video of his Zwift set-up while competing in a virtual race, Ramsay told his neighbours "not to get their knickers in a twist" just in case they thought it was real... and if you thought there's no way that could happen, well Chris Hoy was accused of "making an unnecessary journey" three weeks ago when he told Twitter that he had just been passed by Geraint Thomas; of course Sir Chris was talking about G's avatar, and responded to the accusation: "I’m pretty sure you can’t catch the Coronavirus on Zwift". 

18 May 2020, 09:12
Mo Salah's cycling snap turns into helmet row
Helmet Row (picture copyright Simon MacMichael)

Mo Salah's innocent photo of himself riding a handsome road bike (that we're yet to identify) and uploaded to Twitter and Instagram has prompted a number of responses that questioned his lack of helmet...

Of course in the United Kingdom cycling helmets are not compulsory and Salah isn't doing anything wrong, although one reply makes a case that we can perhaps agree deserves some consideration... 

18 May 2020, 10:08
Olympic champs launch 'values-driven' coffee brand
5 rings coffee pr shot 2 2020

5 Rings Coffee is described as "a sustainable and ethical 'third wave' coffee brand", and is the brainchild of Rio 2016 gold medallists Callum Skinner, Owain Doull and Philip Hindes. Here they are with their medals just so ya know... 

5 rings coffee pr shot 2020

Hindes comments: "The journey for 5 Rings began way back in 2012 when, as we developed a lasting friendship through our international travels in professional cycling, we would, without fail, go on the hunt for great coffee. In our cycling careers, we were fortunate to have reached the pinnacle of any athlete's profession by becoming Olympic champions. We've also been fortunate to share many memories and stories which, we believe, coffee is all about. Coffee is so much more than a drink - it brings people together to socialise and discuss the good, the bad and the ugly of life.
 
"By launching our company today, we are aiming to contribute to the greater good of the coffee community, bringing world class and sustainably-sourced coffee to the UK and international market. We are looking forward to starting this journey."

5 Rings say that due to coronavirus they are currently unable to sell ground coffee, so launch with two whole bean varieties priced at £7.99 and £8.49 - the website is here

Skinner appears to be a particularly busy chap at the moment, having launched the Rear View cycling glasses on Kickstarter last week and continuing in his position as a BOA athlete rep for Global Athlete. Hopefully a few Skinner Lattes will help him to stay alert through his busy working days... 

18 May 2020, 09:15
A little something for those who say cyclists should have number plates

This resourceful gentleman just needs to pay his road tax, don some high-viz and he's good to go...

18 May 2020, 08:11
Cyclist and driver filmed engaging in comedy fisticuffs in Devon

In the clip, a woman can be heard shouting "don't do it guys", as the cyclist in the black corner -  wearing cycling shoes and what looks to be a TT helmet - trades blows with with a heavily-built man in the white corner. She then can be heard saying "I'm not strong enough to intervene, don't intervene", before another man can be heard telling the pair to calm down.

According to the admin who uploaded the footage, the owner of the pickup we see three seconds into the clip was not involved. 

It was brought to our attention by a road.cc reader who used to live in Crediton, and still follows the 'Spotted: Crediton and surrounding areas' group on Facebook. He told us: "It’s worth noting that cycling shoes should always be removed before getting into it with a car driver."

It's unclear who shot the footage or what caused the furious punch-up, and as far as we know nothing has been reported to the authorities.

18 May 2020, 08:03
What's Mo Salah riding?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

🚲

A post shared by Mohamed Salah (@mosalah) on

The Liverpool striker uploaded this pic last night, and appears to have taken to two wheels for some lockdown exercise (and for impromptu photo shoots) while the Premier League is still on hold - but what we really wanna know is... what's he riding? We think we have an idea, perhaps we can confirm or deny with the bike brand later today!

18 May 2020, 10:26

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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 road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc 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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