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"Who the f*** flagged me?": Tadej Pogačar uploads Giro-destroying ride to Strava... gets flagged (and swiftly reinstated); Viral internet confessor claims to have taken Team Sky Pinarello home after TdF crash; Weekend round-up + more on the live blog

It's a rest day at the Giro, but definitely not for the live blog... Dan Alexander has sore legs after a long spin in the sun yesterday (that's where the Giro similarities end) and has all your news, reaction and more as we start a new week...
20 May 2024, 07:56
"Who the f*** flagged me?": Tadej Pogačar uploads Giro-destroying ride to Strava... gets flagged (and swiftly reinstated)

It's important to lose with dignity, avoid being a sore loser who throws their toys out the pram kicking and screaming whenever anyone betters them... unless of course we're talking about Strava, and the person who flagged Tadej Pogačar's Giro d'Italia 'queen stage' destruction after the Slovenian uploaded it to the ride-sharing app. A quite incredible display of tantruming.

Tadej Pogačar 2024 Giro d'Italia Strava upload

Fortunately for Pog it was reinstated soon after, his Passo di Foscagno KOM and numerous other best times back atop the leaderboards. Either way, it gave us an amusing thought trying to picture some perturbed (but very talented) amateur getting an Uh oh! email from Strava yesterday afternoon.

'So I'm meant to believe some guy called Tadej Pogačar has just ridden 221km at 35km/h across the high mountains and had enough energy to obliterate my KOM at the end? Yeah, right... that's getting flagged...'

Tadej Pogačar 2024 Giro d'Italia (Zac Williams/

It's not the first time Pogačar has been reported to the Strava police, his epic Tour of Flanders-winning activity also getting the flag treatment last year before, again, being promptly reinstated, his quite ridiculous 3:47 up the Oude Kwaremont the pick of the KOMs, 12 seconds faster than any other rider on Strava.

20 May 2024, 15:53
Best cycling computers 2024 — track rides in real-time, analyse data, navigate and more with a quality bike GPS unit
20 May 2024, 15:12
Transport Secretary says he will work with bereaved husband of woman killed in collision involving cyclist "so we have sensible penalties in place"
Mark Harper meets Matthew Briggs (Mark Harper/Twitter)


Transport Secretary Mark Harper (or probably more accurately, a member of his staff) posted this picture on social media along with the caption: "Today I met with Matt Briggs, an inspiring campaigner against dangerous cycling, in memory of his late wife, Kim. Thanks to Matt for tirelessly highlighting this issue. I will continue to work with him and Iain Duncan Smith so we have sensible penalties in place."

> Government agrees to introduce tougher laws for "dangerous cyclists" who kill or injure, as Transport Secretary says "it's only right tiny minority who recklessly disregard others face full weight of the law"

Mr Briggs is the widower of Kim Briggs, the woman killed in a collision with fixed-wheel rider Charlie Alliston back in 2016. Alliston was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment in a young offenders institution having hit Mrs Briggs as she crossed London's Old Street. Mr Briggs has since campaigned for stricter laws for dangerous cycling.

Oxfordshire County Council councillor Damian Haywood replied to the Transport Secretary's tweet with a graphic claiming to display annual fatalities:

Richard S also replied, saying: "There are penalties in place for drivers, yet time and again they escape punishment. Wouldn't your time be better spent addressing the real problem on the roads?"

A third reply simply shared a news story published today by KentOnline:

20 May 2024, 13:46
Record-breaking turnout at Manchester Kidical Mass
Kidical Mass Manchester 19 May 2024 (Image credit: Walk Ride GM)

Yesterday saw an apparently UK record-breaking turnout for Kidical Mass, as around 600 people took part in a two-wheeled family-friendly protest asking for safer streets and more cycling infrastructure in Manchester. The good people at Walk Ride Greater Manchester were on hand to provide the photos from a busy day in the city centre.

"Walk Ride GMs demands to city leaders are these: fund and build safe cycling infrastructure, move faster on civilising the school run by introducing more school streets and reallocate road space away from motor vehicles to sustainable transport modes," the group said.

20 May 2024, 12:57
Kona Bicycles bought back by founders, month after mass job cuts as former parent company abandoned struggling bike industry
20 May 2024, 12:45
More football x cycling content...

Now there's a manager Dave B would surely approve of for the United gig. Bin off Eric ten bar Bag and get a team with Gar-patch-o, Aaron Wan-Bicycle-a and Bruno (Col de la Croix de) Fer-nandes... truly some of my worst live blog punning ever, and that's saying something. I think I need to take five to consider my behaviour, in the meantime...

Footballers who cycle

> Footballers who cycle XI — the Premier League stars who love life on two wheels

20 May 2024, 11:36
2024 hot releases — NEW bikes, game-changing cycling tech + road & gravel bike kit

20 May 2024, 11:16
"Working off some of that United stress": Dave Brailsford returns to Zwift

 Getting some value out of that subscription now the price has gone up? One commenter reckons it's just "working off some of that United stress", Ryan also questioning whether it's a novel approach to picking a team for next weekend's FA Cup final... first one up the Volcano is in...

20 May 2024, 10:16
Thoughts and prayers for Geraint Thomas' Giro d'Italia roommate after Ineos leader almost pulls a Dumoulin on stage 15


Geraint Thomas 2024 Giro d'Italia (Zac Williams/

The spirit of Tom Dumoulin's Giro nature break was almost reborn during yesterday's stage of the Giro d'Italia, Geraint Thomas not getting on too well with the monumental mountain of gels required to master some monumental mountains.

"A lot of fuelling, my guts weren't great I'll be honest," he explained on his Watts Occurring podcast. "I was thinking 'am I going to have to stop for a number two?' You're just fuelling so much, a load of gels and this and that... it wasn't that bad that I actually had to stop or anything, but just so much gas... I got to my hotel room... you don't want to go in there..."

He's probably got a room to himself, given Ineos' budget. Either that or G's poor roommate might be spending his rest day sleeping elsewhere.

Also on the agenda:

20 May 2024, 08:21
Viral internet confessor claims to have taken Team Sky Pinarello home after Tour de France crash

Fesshole, if you aren't already familiar, is an extremely popular Twitter account posting anonymous confessions from followers, cycling last night being thrust into the spotlight by one confessor's claim about their souvenir from a day of Tour de France spectating.

Obviously it's caused much discussion, the case for the defence: 

"All those saying this could never have happened, haven't seen how crazy the end of TdF races can be — a team can struggle to keep track of all the riders let alone random bits or equipment."

The case for the prosecution is a bit more in depth, starting with a certain Michael Tarling, father of Ineos Grenadiers' time-trialling powerhouse Josh:

Others added: 

"There's no way a pro team would leave a bike behind….. utter nonsense."

"I was watching Formula One when one of the top teams dunno which one, crashed near me, I took the billion pound car home, put it in my glove box of my Honda Civic, thank you non-specific top Formula One team."

"Anyone with a basic knowledge of cycling can spot this as lie and Team Sky would have been chosen because that's the only team the author will have ever heard of."

It's looking tough for the defence team, which way will the live blog jury decide?


20 May 2024, 08:34
Weekend round-up: "It's just got to stop," says Chris Boardman of "hate speech" anti-cycling articles; A glow in the dark bicycle?; Vollering victorious again + more

Away from the Giro d'Italia and there was plenty happening in the world of cycling this weekend. Chris Boardman continued the reaction to the Telegraph's "52mph" cyclist story on Friday, which if you missed...

Telegraph front page/ cyclists in Richmond Park (Simon MacMichael/Telegraph)

> Telegraph journalists told "check your research" after front page claims cyclists hit 52mph chasing London Strava segments... despite that being faster than Olympic track cyclists

Active Travel Commissioner Boardman called the story "bonkers" and made the point that "if this was directed at a gender, race or religion it would be rightly called out as the hate speech it is". It also transpired one of the reporters who worked on the piece was... a former BBC fact-checker... no, really.

Tech of the Week featured Eddy Merckx Bikes' updated steel range, a "one-of-a-kind" glow in the dark e-bike and plenty more good stuff...


> Who needs bike lights* when your whole bike glows in the dark? Plus the Strava updates you've been waiting for and loads more tech news from MAAP, Quoc, POC + more

Over in France, Sam Bennett won four stages of the 4 Jours de Dunkerque to return to racing victory in sensational style, taking the GC in the process, while at Vuelta a Burgos Feminas, Demi Vollering doubled up her Vuelta success with another dominant display at the Women's WorldTour event, taking the final stage by 51 seconds to secure a comfortable overall success too.

And finally, on Saturday, Jack reported the strange situation at Wimbledon Magistrates' Court where there is now a ban on visitors parking — or even bringing — bikes of any kind to the court. A defence lawyer who works there regularly told us no explanation had been given for the change...

Wimbledon magistrates court - via Google Street View

> Magistrates Court says "no bikes are allowed on court premises", allegedly telling visitors to park bikes in town centre nearby

Dan is the news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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Owd Big 'Ead | 1 month ago

Is it just me, or are the close passes getting even closer since the cockwombles in government started their phoney war on motorists?
There's been some incredibly close calls today.
Luckily Harper and his stooges will sort everything out.

wtjs replied to Owd Big 'Ead | 1 month ago

Close passing, like MOT/ VED/ insurance evasion red light jumping and unbroken white line offences, has never gone away in Lancashire. I haven't detected any change.

HLaB replied to Owd Big 'Ead | 1 month ago
1 like

Could just be me too but I've saw more dodgy driving/ passes/ abuse in the last 5wk than I saw in the 5 years or more previously!

stonojnr replied to Owd Big 'Ead | 1 month ago

last week was the worst its been for me at least this year with close passes. If Id lived in Devon I might have said it was something in the water.

Mr Hoopdriver | 1 month ago

And when has Mark Harper spoken with any cycling representative to discuss and ensure that 'sensible penalties are in place'  to protect cyclists or spoken with any other road safety groups for that matter.

This is electioneering and legistlation by soundbite.  There has been no debate in Parliament for this, no public consultation apart from apparently one member of the public - Mr Briggs.

This government will go to any length to distract the public from their atrocious record on everything that really matters.

The whole thing stinks and the sooner they are history the better.

the little onion | 1 month ago

Every time Mr Briggs, and the late Mrs Briggs, are mentioned in the media, we should also mention the late Benjamin Pedley. He was killed as he cycled along, because a pedestrian stepped in front of him without looking.

No charges were brought against the pedestrian for manslaughter, or "causing death by dangerous walking".

ktache replied to the little onion | 1 month ago

But wasn't this the one where in an extremely nasty and inappropriate comment the sadly deceased's relatives were told that the cyclist would have been prosecuted, had they survived?
I've ridden the crossroads there a few times, my route to and from Wokingham, you have to be going at a fair lick, given the nature of the lights, the motorists are all traveling quickly and with great impatience.

squired | 1 month ago

Local to me.  A backwards step unfortunately.  It was badly implemented and the lanes riddled with parked cars, but sadly cyclists were seen as the enemy.  Bases were installed, but the posts removed by the Mayor.



chrisonabike replied to squired | 1 month ago

Apparently this is to be upgraded from paint + wands to ... just paint, do I read that right?

A range of issues are listed as being considered.  There are the serious - blue-light emergency services apparently said "it had become difficult to conduct blue light responses along that stretch of the road".  No further detail but this brings up several questions e.g. "why"?  I imagine the actual reason is "because cars in the way" - why's that different?  Also you'd think they could - in an emergency (which it would be...) carefully use the (now free from cars) cycle lane?

There are some reasonable observations such as "but the lanes fill with detritus and are hard to clean" (this seems to be as much "blocking drains" as it does "affecting cyclists").  This can happen with these designs but you'll get some debris build up with no cycle lanes also.

Of course this invites the question "so why not do this properly then, so you don't have the issue"?  The fix is "just make proper cycle path" or accept you need to pony up for a) suitable-sized cleaning vehicles / attachments and b) appropriate cleaning schedules.

I suspect the real clincher was the "prevented cars from having safe spaces to stop along the road" part!

stonojnr replied to chrisonabike | 1 month ago
1 like

when the safety wands were removed locally to me, at the behest of the local MP, I dont know that emergency services officially complained it impacted them, but lots of drivers complained on their behalf, because the drivers wanted to stop & pull over instantly the moment they noticed an emergency vehicle, and the wands confused them about how to do that.

as for cleaning the roads thing, well again lots of drivers complained on behalf of others about it, the reality is mechanical road sweepers are few and far between judging by the blocked drains full of leaf mulch in autumn and the glass and other rubbish left alongside most roads, and it of course is beyond the wit of councils to employ someone with a broom or leaf sucker/blower.

equally Im pretty sure the Dutch and even the USAians have solved that problem with narrow build road sweeping machines for bike lanes.


chrisonabike replied to stonojnr | 1 month ago

stonojnr wrote:

... lots of drivers complained on their behalf, because the drivers wanted to stop & pull over instantly the moment they noticed an emergency vehicle, and the wands confused them about how to do that.

That won't be a problem because drivers are trained Yeah, that's a thing.  Example the one (reported here IIRC) in Canonmills in Edinburgh (fortunately not a long delay).

As for the sweeping does having cars up to the kerb blow / splash debris it out of the way?  Where though - it's got to go somewhere?

it is true that some cycle lane designs can trap more junk.  I think it's more of a factor when there are actually things like blocks, not just wands.  But I would bet either this happened before but "oh - cycle lanes and now the drains are blocked!"  And / or that maintenance was indifferent at best before, but since we added these we didn't do anything".

I'm guesing "cock up" and "left hand not knowing what the right's doing" on this one.  Perhaps they just didn't inform the cleaning crews?

Pretty sure the council will have vehicles that can get there.  They certainly exist in the UK, I think I've seem something like the one below in Edinburgh (they even managed to do a snow clear one year with a Bobact / mini tractor thing).  They may only have a few, or have restrictions on using them on roads?

Perhaps a bigger vehicle *could* do this from beside the lane (perhaps with another guy as a sweeper) but a) can't hold up the traffic while doing this! or b) 'elf and safety concerns by the cleaners (maybe fair...) or c) nothing in the budget for "cleaning the road twice" e.g. an extra lane.

Legin | 1 month ago

I inherited a pair of very good Mavic Crit wheels after a town centre stage of a National Tour; did my best to find the home that had lost them, but bearing in mind there were seven or eight major pro-teams in the event, I'm guessing they lost count of the number of spare wheels they carried. They never saw a crit again! On that experience alone, I can believe that a bike was misplaced.

Rendel Harris | 1 month ago

Probably a made up story about getting a free bike but I do remember from many years ago – early 2000s maybe? – a rider's bike slid into a ravine after a crash and was abandoned and some local  climbers went and recovered it then had the police after them for not returning it to the team. There was also a memorable incident in the Vuelta one year when a top rider did a bike change for a puncture and a helpful spectator held the original bike, but the team car drove off without remembering to put that one back on the roof, he was left at the roadside waving after them. Fortunately for the team he was an honest chap and, if I recall correctly, managed to stop the broom wagon and got them to take it to the finish. So it could happen, but odds rather against.

Gus T | 1 month ago

Just watched the Jeremy Vine segment on the new cycling laws, Nick Freeman was on promoting banning cyclists from driving if they get a conviction that would have resulted in a driving ban if it had been a motorist as he is all about road safety.

 rang up to ask him why he had made a career defending dangerous drivers if he's all about road safety but as it was a pro-cyclist comment it was not put to him.

Time for a complaint to Ofcom about bias I think.

chrisonabike replied to Gus T | 1 month ago

Harm minimization!

What we want is to NOT ban those illegal / careless / dangerous drivers from driving.  Because otherwise they might be tempted to cycle - which we all know we have too much of now!  (Plus of course it's an attack on their basic human rights / won't you think of the innocent children or old people they won't be able to care for / the tax lost / the threat to society if it makes everyone think they'll have to pay a bit more attention on the road?)

What we need is to ban those illegal / careless / dangerous cyclists from driving.  They've clearly shown they're not fit even to be in charge of a child's toy.  Just imagine the damage those antisocial, speeding lycra louts could do behind the wheel of a motor vehicle!  (But of course we should emphasise that people driving are generally in no way a threat to anyone because we have licencing, vehicle inspections, road infra to keep pedestrians safe etc.)

BalladOfStruth replied to Gus T | 1 month ago

Gus T wrote:

ask him why he had made a career defending dangerous drivers if he's all about road safety but as it was a pro-cyclist comment it was not put to him.

Is there some mechanism to work out if anyone he’s ever helped avoid a ban, has re-offended and killed or injured someone else within the period of the ban he got them off of? I’d actually be surprised if his wasn’t the case, seeing as he specialises in it.

How anyone who makes a living making sure known dangerous drivers stay on the road can have the fucking gall to describe themselves as “pro road safety” is actually sickening.

wycombewheeler replied to Gus T | 1 month ago

Gus T wrote:

promoting banning cyclists from driving if they get a conviction that would have resulted in a driving ban if it had been a motorist

are there any? it seems like keeping drivers on the roads at all costs is the current system

giff77 replied to Gus T | 1 month ago

Mr Freeman needs to brush up on the law. The courts can already ban individuals from driving under Section146. They also have provision under Sec147 if they've used a vehicle as a weapon.  These are up to the judge's discretion though  

I would assume that this would be up for consideration if a cyclist was being charged under the current careless/dangerous cycling on the books. It would also be used with the new death by charges being introduced. 

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