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Councillor under fire over anti-cyclist “w*nking off the Dutch” tweet considering his position; Best ever cycling save? Vuelta "part of the process of getting back", says Froome; Trek join 'How it started. How it's going' bandwagon + more on the live blog

Your midweek live blog will mostly be compiled by Jack Sexty, with some contributions from Simon MacMichael later this evening
21 October 2020, 15:25
Councillor Liam Walker considering position after row over anti-cyclist tweet "mentally takes its toll"
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Cllr Walker was heavily criticised for appearing to endorse the tweet above that says cyclists "are constantly w*nking off the Dutch", and suggests such people should move to the Netherlands. He is now being investigated by Oxfordshire County Council following a number of complaints about his conduct. 

After first issuing a statement apologising for any offence caused, Walker has now took to Twitter to say that he is "taking a break" from social media in the wake of the row. He said: 

"I’m going to take some time off Twitter. It’s been a crazy few days after my inappropriate tweet about cyclists which has resulted in several complaints to the council. My apologies again to anyone who was offended this was not my intention.

"I’ve always been one to speak my mind forgetting that as elected officials we have a responsibility to ensure we balance personal and professional opinions. I’m acutely aware my tweets are monitored by many in the hope I trip up. It’s right our monitoring officer now investigates the complaints fully and fairly.

"In the meantime I guess I need to decide if having the huge responsibility of highways in Oxfordshire and being a councillor is really right for me. I love the role and the incredible team at OCC but sometimes all this mentally takes its toll and personal life should always come first."

21 October 2020, 15:53
Marc Soler wins Vuelta stage 2

An impressive solo win by Soler. With Richard Carapaz, Dan Martin and Primoz Roglic all finishing 19 seconds behind, Roglic will keep hold of the red jersey.  

21 October 2020, 15:07
Ben O'Connor wins Giro stage 17

All the more impressive after getting narrowly beaten in a head-to-head with Jan Tratnik on stage 16, the Australian got his revenge today with a sweet solo victory on the slopes of Madonna di Campiglio. 

Meanwhile at the Vuelta, there's just over 20km to go and Richard Carapaz was pushing the pace. The move was reeled back, and a small pack has now formed at the front. 

21 October 2020, 14:58
Trek join the 'How it started. How it's going' bandwagon

Yep, they definitely walked straight into that one. 

21 October 2020, 14:30
Do you cycle on fast dual carriageways?
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Our latest reader opinion piece is itself generating plenty of opinions... what do you think? 

21 October 2020, 13:17
Merlier came third for his efforts

That impressive save earned the 27-year-old a podium spot at Three Days of De Panne. It also appears we've been out-punned by ProCycling's editor Ed Pickering... 

21 October 2020, 13:58
The debate is more complex than ‘close pass equals condemnation’,” says reader Phil
21 October 2020, 12:42
What a save: Belgian pro Tim Merlier manages to stay on his bike, sat on his top tube with both feet unclipped

What with all the bike racing going on today, we didn't anticipate the relatively obscure Three Days of De Panne piquing our interest more than the two Grand Tours going on at once... but here we are, and above you'll see a pretty epic save from Alpecin–Fenix  rider Tim Merlier. 

A big gust of wind appears to rip through the peloton, and Merlier ends up with both feet unclipped after being knocked by one of the riders. How did he stay upright? Our resident racing snake and Taylor Swift fan Liam Cahill explains:

“It looks like the group was hit by a big gust of wind, and the effects of it will have got worse as it rippled through.  

“By the time it hit the back, the affect was greater and Merlier was likely clipped by another rider, which was almost enough to throw him off his bike… instead Merlier wisely sat on his top tube to regain full balance, then clipped back in.”

Well, it all panned out pretty well for him in the end… has something like this ever happened to you, and did you manage to stay on your bike? Do share your tale of woe or glory in the comments as always.

21 October 2020, 13:30
One job

An Auckland Transport spokesman said the possum got painted over because it was "missed on a dark country road", apparently. 

21 October 2020, 12:09
Let it snow at the Giro

Parts of stage 17 are a winter wonderland today

21 October 2020, 11:24
Driver arrested after killing 10-year-old boy who was riding bike
Police tape (CC licensed by freefotouk on Flickr)

Humberside police say the driver, in a blue BMW, hit two boys who were riding bikes when the incident happened at around 6pm on Monday evening. 

One of the boys died in hospital, and the other is still in a criticial condition. The 30-year-old driver has been arrested "on suspicion of driving offences in connection with the collision" according to police, and he remains in custody. 

Officers are appealing for witnesses, and anyone who saw either vehicle prior to the collision, or anyone with dashcam footage from the area at the time. Anyone with information is asked to called 101 quoting log 488 of 19 October. 


21 October 2020, 10:21
It's raining, it's pouring... so check out our relevant buyer's guides if your wet weather kit draw needs restoring
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What's your go-to bit of kit for crap weather? Do let us know what you swear by in the comments, and check out these buyer's guides for our top recommendations...  

29 of the best pieces of waterproof cycling clothing

26 of the best waterproof cycling jackets 2020

17 of the best mudguards

And don't forget to refresh yourself on our nine top survival tips for cycling in the rain of course. 

21 October 2020, 09:24
Froome says Vuelta is "part of the process of getting back"

Have the goalposts moved, or did the two-time Vuelta winner know he wasn't going to be in contention for the GC in the first place? Plenty of fans have chimed in to wish Froome the best, hoping that he'll be back to his unbeatable best one day. 

21 October 2020, 09:53
Mitchelton-Scott album drop coming soon

Or should that be GreenEdge? In any case, Liam has suggested that they should cover the dance-pop musical horror show that is 'Timber' by Ke$ha... everyone else on the team has suggested any other song in history. 

21 October 2020, 07:24
Oxfordshire councillor to be investigated after appearing to endorse tweet that accuses cyclists of "w*nking off the Dutch"
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Cllr Liam Walker, a Conservative who is Oxfordshire County Council's cabinet member for Highways Delivery and Operations believe it or not, has been forced to backtrack after replying to the tweet, which also suggests that cyclists should "f*ck off over" to the Netherlands. 

Cllr Walker has now deleted the reply, that originally appeared under a thread in which he appeared to criticise new cycle lanes installed during the pandemic. He claimed that cycling levels were going down as the weather turned and people return to work and the school run, while a number of people replied arguing that cycling levels are going down again because of increased danger on the roads due to more motor vehicle traffic. 

Cllr Walker has (sort of) apologised for his tweet, saying that he has deleted it because reading "all sort of expletives" about himself "takes its toll": 

“I am sorry if anyone was offended, it was just a tongue-in-cheek comment off the back of that article", Walker told the Oxford Mail

“Obviously I did not say it, I implied I agreed with the view.

“I hear a lot about what is going on in Holland but we are not the same as Holland. We are trying to do the best we can to improve infrastructure but with restricted funding.”

Oxfordshire County Council confirmed that they had received a number of complaints about Cllr Walker's conduct, with a spokesperson saying: “Oxfordshire County Council has received complaints about this matter, and they will be investigated by the monitoring officer.

“The council has a member code of conduct and has adopted a complaints procedure for assessing whether this has been breached. The monitoring officer will investigate this matter over the next few days in accordance with that procedure.”

21 October 2020, 07:23
"Froome and Pinot lost how much time?"

The thing Manchester mayor Andy Burnham was shocked about is admittedly a lot more important in the grand scheme of things... but even so, Froome 11 minutes down on the first stage of a Grand Tour! 

21 October 2020, 07:48
Why cyclists should* wear a helmet

*It's actually up to you, but that would ruin this dark tweet from contributor Jo Burt. 

21 October 2020, 06:44
Work hard, buy bikes
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Credit unknown... 

Arriving at in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.  

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