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Trek-Segafredo's Koen de Kort has fingers amputated after off-road vehicle crash; Should robots be allowed in cycle lanes?; Police say driver behaviour is why people don't cycle; Team GB get active campaign sponsored by Toyota + more on the live blog

With the weekend now in sight Will Bolton will be on the live blog this Thursday...
24 June 2021, 18:39
Trek-Segafredo rider Koen de Kort has three fingers amputated following off-road vehicle crash
koen de kort - via twitter.PNG

The 38-year-old Dutchman was "the victim of an accident" involving an off-road vehicle he was driving according to Trek-Segafredo, which resulted in three of his fingers being amputated. Here is the statement in full: 

We are sad to inform that early Thursday afternoon Koen de Kort was a victim of an accident while driving a vehicle off-road that resulted in the amputation of his third, fourth, and fifth fingers of his right hand.

Our expert road captain has been a resident of Andorra for some years and unfortunately was involved in an accident in the Pyreenes area and suffered serious damage to his right hand. The gravity of his injury required an emergency transfer by helicopter to hospital Parc Tauli in Sabadell, in the province of Barcelona.

After assessing the severity of the situation, the decision was made for immediate surgical intervention. In spite of the doctors' effort in a procedure that lasted over three hours, it was necessary to amputate three fingers.

"Unfortunately, Koen has lost the third, fourth, and fifth finger of his right hand. The amputation has been total removal," explained Trek-Segafredo physician Dr. Manuel Rodrìguez Alonso, who has been in close contact with the medical staff at the Catalan hospital.

"Dr. Jorge Serrano, who operated on him and to whom we must thank for his work, told me that from the first findings the functionality of the hand will be maintained thanks to the thumb and index finger. The latter also suffered a considerable damage but, thanks to the efforts of the doctors, was saved from amputation.

"Because of considerable dirt around the wounds, the risk of infection has not been ruled out, but the most appropriate antibiotic therapy is being administered. Obviously, Koen will remain in the hospital for the next few days."

Dr. Rodríguez Alonso was able to speak with the Trek-Segafredo rider before and after the surgery, and reports that Koen is in good condition physically and mentally.

No further details will be provided at the moment.

The veteran is still a key part of the Trek-Segafredo team, having raced in the Giro d'Italia and the Tour of Flanders this season. 

24 June 2021, 15:42
When it's time to start cycling with other people


This giving anyone else flashbacks?

24 June 2021, 14:01
Geraint Thomas admits he watches cycling

The Tour de France is just days away and that means that Geraint Thomas (not that one) is back fending off questions from cycling fans who mistakenly follow him on Twitter. 

This Geraint works as a lecturer in visual effects at USW Film School Wales and he 'rose to fame' in 2018 after the Ineos Grenadiers (then Sky) rider stormed to victory at the Tour.

24 June 2021, 13:20
Surrey police say main reason people don't cycle is 'drivers' actions'

Following on from yesterday's story about Surrey Police sliding into an angry driver's DM's when they moaned about cyclists riding in the middle of the road, the force has now explained to other angry commentators why they need to educate motorists. 

One person wrote under the initial post: "Cyclists are a law unto themselves. @SurreyRoadCops shame on you for promoting this."

In response, the force replied: Our job is to educate and encourage and enforce road safety matters - we can do that by stopping offenders out on the road, or via Social Media…which is why we have a Twitter account.

The full reply read: "Cycling is a great enabler of transport and better health - it’s under promoted and under used. Surveys constantly show the primary reason people don’t cycle is because they feel unsafe due to motorists actions.

A motorist can (and regularly does) cause significant harm to others, our job is to enforce that. Because there are more motorists on the road we naturally deal with significantly higher number of offenders by motorists than any other form of transport."

24 June 2021, 12:55
Bidirectional bike lanes - what are they good for?

Following a near miss for our news editor, Simon, earlier today, we thought we would see what people thought about bidirectional cycle lanes.

Bidirectional cycle lanes do take up less space while also allowing room for people to overtake, but they can be dangerous if they cross busy side-roads.

People leaving the side-roads are looking in the direction of conventional traffic, and can forget to check the other direction for people on bikes.

24 June 2021, 12:27
Nothing worse than when a cyclist rides on the pavement...

Cyclist Lee Walker captured the extremely wide pass while out riding, but as someone commented on Twitter, there really is nothing worse than a person cycling on a footpath...

24 June 2021, 11:37
Team GB launch 'I am Team GB' get active campaign... sponsored by McVitie's and Toyota

Team GB has launched it's undoubtedly well intentioned 'I am Team GB' Olympic linked campaign to get more people active.

However, as journalist Peter Walker wrote on Twitter, could it be that 'activity campaigns based on sport are a long-standing mistake'? readers made similarly insightful points about the report into the impact the UCI World Championships had on cycling in Harrogate, which we posted about earlier today. 

Walker also said that some of the sponsors of the GB campaign might not actually be that supportive of schemes promoting walking and cycling.

He added: "For activity to stick, it has to be embedded into people's lives, not least active travel like walking/cycling.

"But who is the lead sponsor of I Am Team GB? It's Toyota. Another "partner" is McVities. Neither company would sign up to a campaign that actually changed things."

Walker, political correspondent for the Guardian, continued: "Actually tackling inactivity takes big and politically scary changes, which ministers don't want to think about...

"In the meantime, Toyota can carry on selling two-tonne SUVs, and McVitie's can carry on selling biscuits which are 25% sugar, and put a page in their annual reports about corporate social responsibility."

24 June 2021, 11:20
The Podcast is live on iTunes, Spotify and Amazon Music, bringing everything you like about your favourite cycling website to life in podcast form
24 June 2021, 10:54
2021 Tour Series Calendar announced

The 2021 Tour Series calendar has been announced revealing the three new host venues for the August event.

Guisborough, Sunderland and Castle Douglas will each host men’s and women’s races in a compact week-long Tour Series, with events taking place on Sunday 8, Tuesday 10, and Thursday 12 August.  Highlights of all three rounds will  be broadcast on ITV4.

Launched in 2009, the Tour Series is the UK’s leading televised cycle race series.

Mick Bennett, Tour Series Race Director, said: "Hopefully this news can contribute an increase in confidence for domestic racing, not just for the rest of the year but going into 2022 as well."

24 June 2021, 10:22
Protest to protect cycle lanes criticised by locals

Cyclists came out in force yesterday to protest against losing newly constructed cycle lanes in Edinburgh. 

Large numbers of people rode out to a stretch of Lanark Road, which has recently seen a number of new measures put in place under the Spaces for People scheme, Edinburgh Live reports

The dual carriageway was reduced to a single lane on each side with the speed limit reduced from 40mph to 30mph. Cycle lanes with bollards were also introduced.

The scheme was met with opposition at a consultation however and some of the comments on the local paper's article make for fairly depressing reading...

One man, Jon Clark, commented: "These protesters are doubtless a Spokes or "SusTrans “rent a crowd” brought in to make it looks like there’s a movement in favour of these dangerous and wasteful schemes."

Another, Scott Robertson, said: "It's quite amazing that people have 'turned up' when you could count on one hand the amount of bikes that actually use it."

And of course, one man, Alan Watt, waded in condemning some riders for not wearing helmets: "How stupid not wearing safety helmets on a main road such as Lanark Road, here's hoping that none of them have a trip to the ERI in the back of an ambulance because of their own stupidity and negligence."

24 June 2021, 09:46
Should food delivery robots be allowed in cycle lanes?

The introduction of pizza delivery robots in Central Austin in the USA has sparked a debate about whether the machines should be allowed to go in cycle lanes.

The Austin Monitor report that Michigan-based tech firm Refraction AI started operations in Austin last week with 10 semi-autonomous robots delivering pizza to the city. 

Jake Boone, vice chair of the city’s Bicycle Advisory Council, said: “My personal view is that I don’t believe these belong in the bike lane.

“I almost feel like we’re the test subject for this new technology, and that does bother me. 

“What if in two years we have several hundred of these on the road?”

Some cyclists also expressed concerns about exactly how a REV-1 would move out of a rider's way on a path next to cars and trucks going past at 30 miles per hour or more...

For now a person on an electric scooter follows each REV-1 while the machine’s artificial intelligence learns the city's streets.

Eventually, the robot will roll on its own at up to 15 miles per hour with a remote operator monitoring it over the internet.

“We’re huge bike advocates and big believers that they are an important part of city transportation,” Refraction AI CEO Luke Schneider said.

“The robots are required to yield the right of way to bicycles, to pedestrians, as well as to regular vehicular traffic.”

24 June 2021, 08:54
Alexander Vinokourov 'ousted' from Astana just days before start of Tour de France

L'Equipe report that Astana's general manager Alexander Vinokourov has been dismissed from the team for 'personal reasons'.

The French paper says that the undefined personal reasons given are 'refuted' by Vinokourov and his lawyers are apparently already trying to get him reinstated at the team.

Vinokourov retired as a rider after winning gold at the 2012 Olympic men's road race, and took over management duties with Astana–Premier Tech the following year.

The controversial Kazakh has made his fair share of headlines over the years and only last month former Sports Director at Astana, Dmitry Sedun, revealed Vinokourov was fired by Astana before being re-instated just one day later, after he complained about the sacking of two of his colleagues. 

More importantly however, this just gives us another excuse to watch that rap video...


24 June 2021, 08:30
Report finds people in Harrogate benefited from World Championships

The report into the social impact of the 2019 World Championships was carried out by The Sport Industry Research Centre (SIRC) at Sheffield Hallam University.

The results showed 57 per cent of those who were surveyed felt more proud of Yorkshire/UK and 52 per felt more positive about where they live because of the UCI.

A total of 45 per cent were inspired to take up cycling or cycle more, and 47 per cent were inspired to do more sport and active recreation generally.

In the immediate aftermath of the event in 2019 there was widespread frustration that, perhaps due to the heavy rain, the number of cycling fans was much lower than expected, and business forced to close for the races claimed they lost thousands of pounds in trade. 

> Harrogate says 'no thanks' to Tour de Yorkshire after Worlds experience

Even now, following the announcement of the report some local papers have criticised the 'astonishing claims' in the study and called the World Championships a 'niche event'.

Mads Pedersen surprised in the men's road race that year by becoming the first Danish world champion in the event after winning the sprint in a three-man breakaway.

In the women's race, Annemiek van Vleuten soloed to victory, after a lone breakaway of more than 100 km (62 mi).

24 June 2021, 08:00
Road sign warns drivers that 'cars kill kids and melt glaciers'

A road sign has seemingly been hijacked to alert drivers stuck in heavy traffic to the benefits of cycling while also giving the motorists a few handy reminders about their vehicles...

The sign includes helpful messages such as 'cars are death machines', ' cars kill kids', 'cars melt glaciers' and 'Use bus, subway or bike'.

The sign appeared in Brooklyn, New York, and as the original poster says, it makes some pretty good points...

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