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Perfect karma as raging driver trying to intimidate cyclist blows out tyre hitting the kerb; Another powerful photo from Ukraine; Kyiv cyclists still uploading to Strava; Tube strike solution; Gazprom-RusVelo sponsors drop out + more on the live blog

It's Wednesday and Dan Alexander is here to take you through the middle of the week on the live blog...
02 March 2022, 17:07
Alex Dowsett weighs in on TT bike debate

First it was fellow Brit Tom Pidcock, then teammate Chris Froome, closely followed by another teammate Michael Woods who all said TT bikes were too dangerous/ called for them to be banned or removed from racing. So when Alex Dowsett came to make his video on the topic he probably knew he'd be relatively on his own in making the case for the defence.

> Chris Froome calls for time trial bike ban in professional cycling

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the six-time national time trial champion does not think the bikes should be banned, but instead suggested the UCI opts for a rule change on how high your bars can be in relation to the arm pads. Instead of banning the bikes completely, Dowsett reckons this would be a better way of allowing riders to look ahead while staying aerodynamic.

"A lot of triathletes, Floyd Landis before, and in the UK time trial scene where the UCI rules are not present is you have [a lot of riders] with much steeper hands [positioning], so much lower pads and higher extensions," Dowsett said.

"A major part of aerodyamics is closing the gap between your hands and head. At the moment, because of this UCI rule, we have to bring our head to our hands. [Doing that]...and then to look up becomes massively difficult."

If you're lost, watch the video, he does plenty of demonstrations which make the point a bit clearer than when it's words on a screen...

02 March 2022, 16:39
"What goes up must come down": More Mathieu van der Poel mega miles
Mathieu van der Poel Strava

"Finally some good legs," Mathieu van der Poel wrote as the ominous description to this particular activity...

Mathieu van der Poel Strava

If these are his good legs, I'd hate to think of how fast he goes with bad legs...probably quicker than our best ever days...

Mathieu van der Poel Strava

With almost one month exactly until the Tour of Flanders, is the Alpecin-Fenix phenom going to peak just in time to take a second Ronde crown?

In the final miles Van der Poel unleashed some of his famous thermonuclear power, nabbing KOMs all the way up the final climb of the day, including 'Just keep pushing', a 1.3km climb averaging 7.5 per cent. I mean, you're just not going to beat him on that, are you?

He climbed the full ascent (3.1km) in 6:35 at an average speed of 28.3km/h, putting out 469w. On the steepest 1.3km, that figure was 485w, peaking at 575w for 1:05 up a 14 per cent ramp...

*Horror movie trailer voice* "He's getting stronger..."

02 March 2022, 16:33
More riders enjoy Snake Pass in all its empty glory

Glorious, empty roads...

> Snake Pass now “belongs to cyclists” as Peak District climb closed to motorists for at least a month 

02 March 2022, 15:23
Kyiv cyclist: the extended edition...

"Yeah, f*** that, back we go..."

02 March 2022, 15:15
Reader email: "The music it was generating is fortunately not audible on the video – let’s be generous and say it’s an acquired taste (and hell will freeze over before etc), but they were having a good time and the weather was nice"

The notorious party bikes have landed in London...

Time for a reader email:

"Back on my bike again as the office is opening up. No NMOTD as yet, although Tooting remains a delight. The wands on CS7 that appeared during the pandemic —  I think they keep the traffic a bit further away, but they are a hazard in their own right, being built to the left of the magic white line. No idea why they were not installed on the line.

"Anyway, the traffic going over Tower Bridge was very slow on Friday night, because of this party bike. The music it was generating is fortunately not audible on the video — let’s be generous and say it’s an acquired taste (and hell will freeze over before etc), but they were having a good time and the weather was nice. The motorists were happy sitting in their cars, unaware of why they were going so slowly. Nothing wrong with a bit of Schadenfreude – it brightens up a commute..."

02 March 2022, 14:31
When Everesting is too easy...Brit aiming for 50,000m of one ride
Nima Javaheri (press release)

Brit Nima Javaheri is taking on "one of cycling's toughest challenges" this weekend, aiming to ascend (and descend) La Croisette over 50 times to set a new world record. Aiming for at least four Everestings, Nima will become the fourth if he completes 35,396 metres of ascent, but is aiming for 50,000m (equivalent to nine and a bit Everestings...)

> Suffolk cyclist completes Everesting challenge – by riding 1,104 laps of a car park

Nima will be undertaking this world record attempt in aid of Blood Cancer UK, inspired by his friend and former colleague David Rogers who has been living with Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia (CML) since 2013.

The brave climber said: "During my training when things have been tough, the thought of David facing his daily chemo is what has kept me going and I know the difference this fundraising will make to others battling with blood cancer is what will keep me pushing during the record attempt itself."

02 March 2022, 14:11
Hindsight reaches Kickstarter £10,000 target on launch day
Hindsight glasses

Hindsight has updated its rear-view cycling glasses with the original patented rear-view technology now appearing in new modern-looking frames  there’s now the circle-based Morpheus and the square-based Artemis.

Hindsight glasses

The updated models were launched on Kickstarter today and have impressively already reached the £10,000 crowdfunding goal, mainly thanks to two backers pledging £4,500 for the wholesale package which includes 50 sunnies. 

The glasses incorporate a mirror into the outer edge of each lens and aim to allow riders to stay informed without having to look over their shoulder to see traffic approaching from behind.

Hindsight glasses

"Cyclists need to be aware of what is happening around them. Looking back 'classically', i.e. over the shoulder, creates a dangerous area of what we call negative awareness," says Hindsight. 

"Every second you spend glancing back while travelling at 25kmph means you travel 7 meters without any ability to identify changes on the road ahead of you - that is 7 meters of space into which a pedestrian can step or a car door can open in front of you."

Hindsight glasses

We reviewed the first iteration, but found they were a long way off being a viable alternative to a good old shoulder check, with Stu concluding "they can work well, if the planets are aligned and the wind is blowing in the right direction…". Unwanted reflection on sunny days and a very narrow viewing angle were amongst the cons.

Has the new model improved on this? We’ll have to wait to see when we can test the updated model, but the new collection has certainly improved the looks, aiming to match the functionality with style. Both of the new models come with black, tortoiseshell and clear frames and different colour lens options.

By pledging £100 or more, you can get 50% off either the Morpheus or Artemis model. Estimated delivery is expected to be April 2023. 

All the usual Kickstarter rules and regulations apply which can be found here. 

02 March 2022, 12:52
Thames Valley Police incorrectly appeal for witnesses to cyclist "collision with a cyclist" which actually involved lorry driver now arrested
TVP tweet

We'll have a story on the arrest shortly... but this incident involved a cyclist, a woman in her 30s, being killed in a collision with a lorry being driven by a man who has since been arrested at a notoriously dangerous Oxford junction. Not another cyclist...

More to follow shortly...

02 March 2022, 12:44
Drone Hopper-Androni Giocattoli wear Ukraine kit in support of teammate Andrii Ponomar

Gianni Savio's team is sending its support to Ukranian teammate Andrii Ponomar and the people of his country, sporting this kit at Trofeo Laigueglia today...

Trek-Segafredo sports director Yaroslav Popovych, who won a stage of the 2006 Tour de France and finished on the podium at the Giro d'Italia in 2003, has suggested he could return home to fight the Russian invasion.

Speaking on Instagram, an emotional Popovych said: "Our soldiers defend not only Ukraine but also Europe."

Then, in an interview with L'Equipe, he said: "All I think about is going to my country and taking up arms. I hesitated a lot in 2014, when I was still a rider. I told my wife Friday night and she is very upset. 

"Yet I feel it inside of me, I can't do nothing. Yeah, I'm scared of course, but in 2014 people were under bombs every day, even though a lot less people were talking about it, and I didn't go there. Today, I don't want to hide anymore"

02 March 2022, 12:29
Dundee Council announces plans to grit key cycle routes in the city
oxon travel cycle lane picture 2 - via twitter.PNG

Gritted cycle lanes? That would be nice, wouldn't it?

Dundee council is doing just that, with council bosses announcing plans to invest £40,000 a year in gritting ten miles of the city's cycle network. The Courier reports several riders had serious incidents during the winter 2020-21, leading to renewed calls for the routes to be gritted.

Back then the council claimed it couldn't find the funding required but has now promised to grit National Cycle Network Route 1 and 77 from next winter onwards

Dundee Cycle Forum chairman Russell Pepper described the plans as "exciting" and "great stuff".

02 March 2022, 12:03
Nothing like increased traffic during a tube strike to show the merits of cycling
02 March 2022, 11:40
Gazprom-RusVelo lose bike and wheel sponsors over Russian invasion of Ukraine

Yesterday's statement, above, from LOOK, announcing it would be backing out of providing "technical support and partnership" was matched by Gazprom-RusVelo's wheel sponsor Corima.

The two shared identical messages, saying: "We join the multitudes of athletes on their call for peace. That being said, in light of the recent shocking and unforgivable news, we have decided to stop our technical support and partnership with the Gazprom-RusVelo Cycling Team."

LOOK had initially said it would continue to support the Swiss-registered team sponsored by Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom.

Gazprom-RusVelo have a place at Trofeo Laigueglia today and WorldTour stage race Tirreno-Adriatico next week. However, it is unclear if the team will continue to race following the sponsor dropouts.

Last week, one of the team's Czech riders, Mathias Vacek, won a stage of UAE Tour from the breakaway.

02 March 2022, 11:33
This new stowable jacket is MAAP’s lightest yet
2022 MAAP Draft Team Jacket

MAAP has added sleeves to its lightweight vest with the new £130 Draft Team Jacket now available - the brand says this stowable jacket is its lightest yet.  

Crafted with mechanical stretch for comfort this is paired with durable water repellent and windproof fabrics for added protection.

Laser cut perforations are said to provide additional airflow in high-sweat areas while 360 degree reflective print graphics should help with visibility in low light. 

2022 MAAP Draft Team Jacket

"Fully stowable, the Draft Team Jacket packs away into its own internal pocket to always take protection with you, no matter the weather," MAAP says. 

02 March 2022, 11:28
Because it's not quite summer yet — new wet weather gear from Showers Pass
Showers Pass Century CC Jacket

Showers Pass has added the waterproof and windproof Century CC Jacket to its Clean Colour collection that consists of garments made with eco-friendly dyes to keep harmful chemicals out of the manufacturing process. 

Showers Pass Century CC Jacket

Built using 44% recycled materials with the fully seam-taped Artex 2.5-layer fabric, the jacket has a cycling-specific fit and includes 360 degrees of 3M reflective trim, on-the-bike accessible pockets, longer sleeves and a dropped tail to suit riding needs. 

Available in men’s and women’s specific cuts in Leaf Green, this new jacket costs £119. 

02 March 2022, 11:16
Some REAL Kyiv Strava activities

The internet's a weird place...

Turns out there's someone willing to fake a Strava activity in a warzone for some online wonder the activity got flagged!

That's the last of that particular 'athlete's' profile on this live blog...instead here's some genuine Kyiv cyclists still getting out on the bike...

Сергей Пономаренко, first up, as we shared on Monday's live blog, has racked up more than 200 kudos and plenty of well-wishes from admiring athletes around the world...

"Greetings and best wishes from New Zealand, please keep safe."

"Kudos from Ireland. Stay safe."

"Kudos from Gloucestershire in the Uk. Stay safe 😘"

"Kudos from Houston, Texas. I love that you’re still riding."

Volodymyr Dehtyarov too got out on the bike on Monday, crossing the city in a 17km ride, before returning for the homeward leg later that day.

Kyiv cyclist Strava


02 March 2022, 09:35
A very powerful photo from Ukraine

On Monday, we shared the photo of the Kyiv cyclist out training while military vehicles sat guard in the road ahead...

> Kyiv cyclist spotted training "surrounded by tanks" 

Here's another powerful photo, this time from Bucha, around 20 miles west of the capital.

Last night the UCI decided to ban Russian and Belarusian national teams in response to the invasion. Events in both countries were also banned but riders from those countries with teams registered elsewhere, such as Ineos Grenadiers' Pavel Sivakov who denounced the conflict over the weekend, can keep racing.

02 March 2022, 08:50
Perfect karma as raging driver trying to intimidate cyclist blows out tyre hitting the kerb

(noun) pleasure derived by someone from another person's misfortune.
"a business that thrives on schadenfreude"

Tony promised us a "super juicy helping" of enjoyable karma and boy did the video deliver...

Portland's answer to CyclingMikey went all Gandalf on this driver trying to take a short cut through this cycles only route, a cheerful whistle, "awesome, fantastic!" and the impatient motorist was off on the 'long' way around...

> CyclingMikey ends up on car bonnet during confrontation with angry motorist

 Very entertaining, but our story with this particular driver isn't done yet...

"So he came back around," Tony continues. "Funny thing is that when he was far off he put on his left turn signal like he was just gonna head to Burnside. But then he saw me still there and jammed on the gas and went for the intimidation move and blew out his front right tire!" 

Got it on video, Tony? Of course you do...

*chef's kiss*

 Presumably the main gripe was being 'held up' by the pesky cyclist enforcing road laws. (Obviously he wasn't in such a rush that he couldn't come back to blow out his tyre, but whatever...). In the replies, Christopher did some digging...

Regardless, a nice dose of karma for your Wednesday morning...

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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