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'Cycle lane parking puts lives at risk': Cyclist's sticker justice for bike lane van driver; Will you be paying Strava's increased price? (POLL); Another short cycle lane classic; Bizarre Argentinian mountain stage; New bike day + more on the live blog

Happy Wednesday everyone (yep, it definitely is Wednesday this time)… Dan Alexander is on live blog duty for the rest of the week, bringing you all the must-read news from the cycling world (plus some less must-read news, of course!)...
25 January 2023, 16:55
'Cycle lane parking puts lives at risk': Cyclist's sticker justice for bike lane van driver

Parked in a bike lane? Might get one of these...

Or one of these...

We've seen plenty of similar public-spirited responses over the years, like these homemade parking tickets which... well, didn't go down very well with those who feel entitled to stop wherever works for them...

Homemade parking tickets

 > Cyclist leaves homemade parking tickets on cars in the bike lane...gets told to f*&! off

Or how about the slightly more extreme approach of that self-professed vigilante over in France...

"Live to annoy the annoyers"

Vigilante cyclist's graffiti attacks on cars blocking bike lanes (@50_euros)

> Vigilante cyclist's graffiti attacks on cars blocking bike lanes

Or perhaps the inspiration was the now-famous YPLAC stickers? Yep, that's 'you park like a ... ' and yes, the 'c' is exactly what you're expecting...

Bike lane driver YPLAC (Lollercake/Twitter)

> Bike lane van driver gets 'you park like a c***' sticker

25 January 2023, 09:56
Cyclist catches 12 drivers using phones behind the wheel in an hour

Nothing like the return of an old favourite...

As Deacon alludes to above, Police Scotland last year announced funding for a new National Dashcam Safety Portal, but the yet to be rolled-out scheme has since been under review and could be axed, prompting a campaign from Cycling UK to save it.

Submissions from Scotland presently should go through the time-consuming Police Scotland Online Reporting Form, full details of how to report can be found in our handy feature...

> Here's what to do if you capture a near miss, close pass or collision on camera while cycling

On the topic of riders catching phone-using motorists, yesterday we shared the story of a reader who was assaulted and knocked off his bike on Christmas Eve 2021 after challenging a driver for their phone use...

> Driver assaulted cyclist for questioning mobile phone use 

Akil James was sentenced at Westminster Magistrate's Court in November and received five penalty points on his driving licence, a £2,000 fine, £620 costs to the Crown Prosecution Service, £200 victim surcharge and £500 compensation to the cyclist (still unreceived).

25 January 2023, 17:35
Poll results: 70% WON'T pay new Strava subscription price

In another of our, as always, accurate and representative polls (how big do you want your pinch of salt?) 70 per cent of you said you wouldn't be paying the new price for a Strava subscription...

2021 Strava app

With that we'll leave it there. Same place, same time tomorrow...

25 January 2023, 16:29
The BIG question from Quintana's press conference

Any questions?

"Sí, ¿Sabe Rishi Sunak que has estado asaltando su guardarropa?

(Feel free to correct that in the comments)

Full image uncropped...

Quintana press conference


25 January 2023, 16:06
Tom Simpson to have Doncaster housing estate named after him
Tom Simpson (cropped, source Panini).PNG

Simpson Park in Harworth near Doncaster has been named to pay tribute to the British cycling legend Tom Simpson. The rider who paved the way for so many greats of the sport from our little island, Simpson wore the rainbow bands of World Champion in 1966 having won the title in San Sebastián a year earlier.

He also won three Monuments during his career (Tour of Flanders 1961, Milan-San Remo 1964, Il Lombardia 1965) but tragically died on the upper slopes of Mont Ventoux during a stage of the 1967 Tour de France.

The Doncaster Free Press today writes that Simpson's name will be given to the new development of 132 two to five bedroom "stylish, spacious homes".

25 January 2023, 15:53
Presidential pedal parking
25 January 2023, 15:33
Nairo r̶e̶t̶i̶r̶e̶s̶ ain't going anywhere

Well, that was a fun press conference. The announcement widely expected to be Nairo walking away from cycling for good turned into a remake of Leo as Jordan Belfort and that famous Wolf of Wall Street scene...

"Today I want to tell you that I am in very good shape to continue (...) I do not give up and I continue forward"...

Quintana thanked the domestic teams for their interest but stressed he wants to continue at the top level. Let's see if there's anyone keen with the budget and space for a diminutive enigmatic Colombian climber... 

25 January 2023, 14:05
Cardiff velodrome where Geraint Thomas first trained is now closer to demolition
Maindy Cycle Track - picture credit Seth Whales via Wikimedia Commons

The BBC reports Maindy Park Velodrome, where Geraint Thomas first started cycling, is a step closer to demolition after an independent committee ruled a land swap can go ahead.

The land swap between Maindy Park and Caedelyn Park, Rhiwbina, would see the velodrome demolished to make way for an expansion to Cathays High School, and now just needs to be approved by the Charity Commission.

Once approved the velodrome will be relocated to Cardiff Bay's International Sports Village. Speaking at the meeting Ian Vincent, on behalf of the Cardiff Civic Society, opposed the move.

"Caedelyn Park, the proposed substitute, is already a public recreation area and the proposed land swap offers no gains whatsoever for residents," he argued.

25 January 2023, 13:34
"We need individuals, as well as the wider system, to stop victim blaming. Instead, let’s relentlessly target the cause of road harm, while supporting crash victims"

You might have seen Ryan's story by now. DCS Andy Cox had this to say...

Full story here: Cyclist hit by truck driver has compensation cut after judge says lack of helmet contributed to injuries 

25 January 2023, 12:01
Another short cycle lane classic
Short cycle lane


25 January 2023, 10:32
Quinn wins

A little update from the racing over in Argentina yesterday...

Trek-Segafredo's Quinn Simmons getting his first win of the year, holding off a surging bunch led home by Max Richeze and Sam Bennett. Today, things tilt upwards, the peloton taking on a bizarre stage, climbing to 2,221m up a fairly easy climb for the pros, topping out with 112km of descent and gentle uphill to the finish...

25 January 2023, 09:24
Your thoughts...

Plenty of comments on Strava to round up. A real mixed bag, many pointing to the annual price rise being equivalent to 58p per month, but for others this seems to be the straw-va that broke the camel's back...

OnYerBike: " I'd happily apply Hanlon's razor in this case. Strava have always had a complicated relationship with subscriptions. I think the fundamental issue is that the success of Strava is built on the fact the 'everyone is on it' which relies on a good, free option. And yet they rely on people paying for the premium option to bring in revenue.

"Take away the free option, or take away too many features, and you lose that 'community'. But the better the free option is, the less motivation people have to upgrade to premium. 

"And of course there is constant competition and innovation. A particular limitation of Strava is it only captures 'workouts', where as more and more people have devices on 24/7 recording things like heart rate and steps, and want that information to be integrated too (as done by e.g. Garmin Connect)."

Off the back: "Its fair to say that most people who subscribe to Strava ride regularly and probably spend a fortune on all manner of bike related things. The cost of £2 a month more is less than I pay for a coffee on a longish ride of which I probably do more than 3-4 times a in that time frame. I doubt many will notice that much of a change for what you get. 

"I still maintain that Strava needs to streamline a lot of its service. Its database must be enormous now and that's probably costing them more to maintain and keep running. They could do a lot to keep costs down ie remove all rides from over five years (or so) keeping KOM records only. Get rid of the pointless local legend. it serves zero purpose. They could also do more to improve the AI on dodgy KOMs removal and flagging any obviously done in vehicles or on e-bikes. If Strava is anything, its a leaderboard for egos. If that single USP data isn't reliable in that area than what is Strava for?"

S13SFC: "I've concluded that I don't really need premium as all the data I really need is on Garmin Connect anyway. I really only used it for route planning and RWGPS does that just as well for free."

On Facebook, of 32 comments, more than a few said they'd cancelled their subscription or would be soon. However, there were almost as many comments to the same effect as Gary Bradbury's... "When we put percentages on it, it can sound like a huge rise. My annual subscription hasn't changed since about 2014. It's now going up from £48 to £55. It's hardly worth getting your knickers in a twist about. It's gone up £7. Many of us happily pay £2.70-£3.50 for a cup of coffee, or £6-£7 for a pint of beer. My subscription has gone up from 92p to £1.05 per week. For me, it’s still quite a cheap product that I like using."

25 January 2023, 08:57
Will you be paying Strava's increased price? (POLL)
2021 Strava app

Strava, Strava, Strava...

The app which conquered the cycling world faced something of a backlash to start 2023 after fairly substantial subscriber price hikes were communicated to users, not by the company directly but through media reports, something Strava apologised for yesterday...

> "Our intention was not to hide these changes": Strava apologises for price hike controversy

But with the price now £8.99 per month for a monthly subscription or £54.99 annually (plus the sickener of not being told) we thought we'd ask you lot if you'll be keeping your subscription...

Poll Creator

25 January 2023, 09:14
TOP 5 ebikes | The Electric Bike Awards Show 2023

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.

Add new comment


Rik Mayals unde... | 1 year ago

I cancelled my Strava subscription a couple of weeks ago. Not because of the price rise, but because they posted an offer over the Christmas period which would give new subscribers 25% discount. At the bottom it said not applicable to existing subscribers. They shot themselves in the foot by posting it to everyone on the platform, including all the subscribers. Now, the one thing that I hate with a passion is when loyalty means nothing, and companies don't give a fuck once they've got you, and are only interested in getting more signed up.

I suspect there will be plenty more cancellations for the same reason.

NotNigel | 1 year ago

Road CC you need to understand your own poll results for the Strava subscription result....the question you posed was 'will you be cancelling your subscription?' which the result was 70% no....but the statement you've posted is that 70% won't be renewing their subscription.

unless I'm being really thick and missed something..?

AlsoSomniloquism replied to NotNigel | 1 year ago
1 like

Seems Dan just saw No (as in I wouldn't be cancelling) and but thought the question was wouldn't be paying the new price? Not you being thick NN.

Bigfoz | 1 year ago

I alwys put something on cars parked in cycle lanes. 

I often run out of spit before I get to work...

IanMSpencer | 1 year ago

The Stirchley cycle piccie inspired me to walk to the end of my road to picture the sign which mysteriously placed on our otherwise unsignposted not-a-cycle lane. I'd not really noticed it but checking Google its been there for a while.

The peculiar thing is that the road opposite has the same arrangement of cycle lane running through the roundabout and gets no sign (edit: GM shows it had one but is now removed for unknown reasons, probably the car that ploughed off the roundabout last year), and there is no other signage apart from white paint for the rest of the cycle path (there is an arrow on the road which the council apparently think is adequate to indicate a shared use path - I wish they'd tell the bin men, parkers and everyone else who is annoyed at cyclists daring to use the pavement).


eburtthebike | 1 year ago

Cyclist catches 12 drivers using phones behind the wheel in an hour

Surely if Police Scotland are not protecting the public, they are not doing their job?  I'm not familiar with the situation in Scotland, but do they have police and crime commissioners there?  If so, I would be battering their door down, demanding action.

the infamous grouse replied to eburtthebike | 1 year ago

police scotland now seem to prefer the farcical theatre of public social responsibility, instead of actual law enforcement. i think part of the cause is that they themselves probably do this sort of thing while off-duty, and consequently perceive no need for enforcement.

and probably wouldn't get in trouble even if caught.

wtjs replied to eburtthebike | 1 year ago
JustTryingToGet... | 1 year ago
1 like

Is that very short bike lane Stirchly, Birmingham? If it is where I think it is, a house on the otherside of the road used to have a pet sheep in the garden, that you could see from the top deck of the 47 bus. #benefitsofactivetravel

quiff replied to JustTryingToGetFromAtoB | 1 year ago

JustTryingToGetFromAtoB wrote:

Is that very short bike lane Stirchly, Birmingham? If it is where I think it is, a house on the otherside of the road used to have a pet sheep in the garden, that you could see from the top deck of the 47 bus. #benefitsofactivetravel

Is the top deck of the 47 bus active travel?!

JustTryingToGet... replied to quiff | 1 year ago
quiff wrote:

JustTryingToGetFromAtoB wrote:

Is that very short bike lane Stirchly, Birmingham? If it is where I think it is, a house on the otherside of the road used to have a pet sheep in the garden, that you could see from the top deck of the 47 bus. #benefitsofactivetravel

Is the top deck of the 47 bus active travel?!

Of course! They would do a surprise terminate at Cotteridge and you would have to walk the rest of the way home

chrisonabike replied to quiff | 1 year ago

If you're a council with a budget hole, or trying to fudge things so as not to scare the horses, yes.  (Buses might even be "environmentally clean transport" at a push).

To be fair public transport will have to pick up quite a bit of slack while people adjust their expectations (or not).  The promise of the private motor vehicle was "magic carpet".  I suspect latterly nothing less than "teleportation" will tempt people to change.  I can see much agonised opposition to "getting more than a few hundred metres under my own partial steam". Unless some technology makes all this irrelevant or we keep on driving until inundated / fuel runs out.

Browsie replied to quiff | 1 year ago

Of course it's active travel, you have to climb a flight of stairs to get there 🤓

ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago

12 phone drivers in an hour doesn't seem all that many to me, maybe it's much worse around here but I could probably catch 12 in a minute on a bad day.

I noticed one queueing at the top of the Redlands Road at the junction outside Reading Uni last week, seeing as I was stuck behind other badly positioned queueing drivers (travelling the opposite direction) I tapped on his window (in my thick winter cycling gloves)... He did the usual "just checking something... none of your business, etc" I responded that it is illegal and dangerous and he shouldn't be doing it. He then claimed he was checking sat nav, which I pointed out was actually in the middle of his dashboard, he then started making threats to me for touching his car, said he was going to pull over and sort me out. I asked whether he thought that was a sensible idea etc... he then pulled into the awkward side road, and lost his place in the queue while I filtered past the queue laughing down the hill enjoying my journey safely. Hope he learned a lesson about using a phone while driving and keeping his temper under control.  1

Rendel Harris replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago

ChrisB200SX wrote:

12 phone drivers in an hour doesn't seem all that many to me, maybe it's much worse around here but I could probably catch 12 in a minute on a bad day.

Indeed, I was thinking that the good folk of Edinburgh must be exceptionally law-abiding; if I had a helmet camera I could easily catch a dozen any day in the kilometre between Chelsea and Albert bridges.

quiff replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago

ChrisB200SX wrote:

Hope he learned a lesson about using a phone while driving and keeping his temper under control.  1

Unlikely; unfortunately. He probably just thinks you delayed him and now has an irrational hatred of all cyclists. I have rarely had a positive outcome from window tapping, but still can't help myself...  

hawkinspeter | 1 year ago

National Highways are up to their old trick of destroying bridges again - this time it's Congham bridge in Norfolk:

wtjs | 1 year ago

That's 72 endorsement points and £2,400 of fines @PoliceScotland could issue

That's Deacon Thurston, hawkinspeter and me, to name but three obsessives who keep harping on about the same old thing- we support each other by our very existence. The same process occurs with police forces- they support each other in bad behaviour: we saw recently how Sussex police had copied Lancashire Constabulary's stupid misuse of the GDPR regulations to force people submitting offences to declare that they had 'some form of notification on their mode of transport' in order to legitimise them filming people committing offences against them. Of course, approximately 0% of them do display such a notification, and I have never seen one in North Lancashire. If it became useful to them, the police would have resorted to well, if your declaration that you had this notification on your bike was untrue, how can the rest of your statement be trusted? In a way, it's like the 'swearing cyclist' dodge. One force ignoring a complete category of offences and clearly getting away with it emboldens another to do likewise.

It's police forces which essentially make the law in this country, by simply ignoring the bits they don't like or only using it against people they don't like. So Police Scotland is really being more honest in refusing to allow video reports of offences which they would then ignore after applying a few dodges- it is obvious they would have done nothing about these 12 offences even if the labour of reporting them had been undertaken. Lancashire just ignored these, with exact GPS timings  YH66 UTP  KD10 WER

HoarseMann | 1 year ago

There are still far, far, too many drivers using their phones. Increasing the FPN to £200 plus 6 points and updating the law to make just the act of holding the phone illegal behind the wheel, has had very little effect, because it's still very difficult to get the police to take action.

Had one this morning, drifted out of their lane towards me when I was driving. I swerved out of their way and looked over, sure enough, staring down at their phone.

ChuckSneed | 1 year ago

Of course I'll pay for the extra Strava price increase, I'm not poor

AlsoSomniloquism replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago

ChuckSneed wrote:

Of course I'll pay for the extra Strava price increase, I'm not poor

You don't seem able to afford punctuation at the end of your sentences.

mark1a replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 1 year ago

Easily missed when typing with one hand. 

BalladOfStruth replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago

I'm lucky enough not to be either, but that doesn't stop me from deciding whether or not to cancel my subscription based on whether I think the app provides me with the value required to justify the price I pay. No one ever got rich by wasting money.

perce replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago

Well I don't even darn my old socks any more, I just go out and buy some new ones, either in packs of three or five. Although I do still have a denim shirt I bought in 1976. A bit tight under the arms, but I think it was when I bought it.

IanMSpencer replied to perce | 1 year ago

I was impressed my brother was wearing the jumper mum knitted 50 years ago the other weekend. I wore mine out, his was still in good nick. Mrs S has been having a bit of a purge on my "just got them comfortable" T shirts though  2 . Poverty is not a consideration, don't pay for what you don't need.

Wingguy | 1 year ago
1 like

112km of descent? Think you might have slightly misread the profile there  3

quiff replied to Wingguy | 1 year ago

I think they were saying 112km of descent and gentle uphill - making the point that the summit is bizzarrely early in the stage. But even including the 'gentle' uphill it's still not quite 112km...   

IanMSpencer replied to quiff | 1 year ago

Have a whoosh!  3

cyclisto | 1 year ago

Using a smartphone in a vehicle that doesn't move doesn't seem to me to pose any danger at all. Of course that changes if the drivers start moving.

If this guy with a camera. wants to report really dangerous stuff that happens way too often., he should take a speedometer and monitor speeds

Shake replied to cyclisto | 1 year ago

I disagree, you're not paying attention to your surroundings. 
If an emergency vehicle comes from behind will you notice it? Or if you do and you quickly move to side, did you notice the vehicle filtering down the side? These are just two examples


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