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The rant to end all anti-cycling rants? Wiggins in bankruptcy hearing; "If cycling is so good for you, why did Boris Johnson catch Covid?", asks Nick Ferrari; Richmond Park restrictions lifted; Garmin "obtained decryption key" + more on the live blog

Welcome to Tuesday's live blog, with Jack Sexty at the controls and Simon MacMichael taking over later this evening. ...
28 July 2020, 13:50
Talkradio host Mike Graham claims you can't cycle to work in Leeds, and says cycling community is "an absolute eyesore on the entire country”

After Nick Ferrari’s comments on LBC this morning, anti-cycling tirades on national radio have been turned up to 11 after Archibald Michael Graham – a former editor of the Scottish Daily Mirror – delivered a three minute tour de force of myths, anger and an unhealthy obsession with Lycra on Talkradio today.

Graham was discussing the £2 billion active travel fund earmarked for cycling and walking improvements in England, taking issue with this because cyclists are “are not in the majority in this country.”

He then claims the £2 billion will be given to the cycling community and Halfords, and that Halfords “does not deserve to be given free money by the government to fix somebody’s bike.”

He then claims cycling does not increase fitness, saying: “All that cycling will do is make you more objectionable.

“If you get on a bike and put Lycra on, as if you’re taking part in the Tour de France, all that will happen is you will become an interfering busybody that doesn’t obey the traffic laws.”

At 1:30 into the clip, Graham then says: “What we don’t need in this country is more cyclists. What we do need is more space for cars.

“Gas-guzzling Range Rovers are far safer than cycling. Cycling is dangerous.”

After some stuff about cyclists jumping red lights and causing “all sorts of damage”, Graham then claims that the cycling community is “nothing less than an absolute eyesore on the entire country”, before turning the screw for a huge, fact-barren finish:

"These people (cyclists) are not interested in anything. And it’s a very London-centric thing as well, because outside of London, everyone goes to work by train or by car.

“You can’t cycle to work in Leeds. You can’t cycle to work in Manchester. You can’t cycle to work in Newcastle. You can cycle to work in London, because the people in London are the centre of the cycling world. The Lycra-clad, ya know, new tech start-up types who can go to work and not look like idiots, because they’re dressed in Lycra. This is the problem with this country.

“And the idea that the Prime Minister thinks it’s a good plan to give £2 billion of hard-earned taxpayer’s money to these bozos, is quite frankly an insult to the rest of us.

“Boris Johnson needs to get real. He needs to sort out the economy, he needs to sort out immigration, he needs to sort out the police, and he needs to sort out what is wrong with this country.

“What he doesn’t need to do is give yet more money to the bleeding cyclists. Do you get me?

“Thank you Boris. Please, don’t use my money wrongly. Because if you do, there will be a problem and I’ll be coming to see you.”

Mr Graham might want to check out CityConnect's vision for a Cycling Superhighway in Leeds, read over the details of Manchester's hugely ambitious Bee Network plan and then go for a nice, relaxing bike ride to mull it all over... 

28 July 2020, 15:02
A fridge by bike? No problem for Pedal Me, despite Prime Minister's comments

This is the latest example of the huge load-carrying ability that the London-based cargo bike courier and taxi service have at their disposal, in response to the Prime Minister's foreword in the Gear Change document published by the government today. 

In it, Boris Johnson says: "Of course you can't deliver a fridge-freezer on a cargo bike – but you can deliver plenty of other goods that currently come in diesel vans. I want bicycles to be part of an effusion of green transport, of electric cars, buses and trains, because clean air will be to the 21st century what clean water was to the 19th."

On his first point, the video evidence above very much proves otherwise... 

28 July 2020, 13:17
Slovenian ultra cyclist Marko Baloh claims to have broken the 1,000km time trial world record

The 53-year-old claims to have bagged the record for the fastest 1,000km of all time, completing the distance in 28hrs, 50mins and 14secs with an average speed of 34.67km/h. His bike sponsor Spiegel Bikes claim that he set a number of other records, and that the World Ultra Cycling Association will approve his achievements "in the next few days." STA also reports that Baloh failed to get the 24 hour record during the attempt, with his 865.3 km falling short of Christoph Strasser's 896.2km set in 2015. 

Baloh isn't the first record-breaking ultra cyclist from Slovenia, with the late Jure Robič hailing from the town of Jesenice close to the Austrian border. Robič won the Race Across America five times, and was known for pushing himself so hard that he regularly suffered from severe hallucinations in races due to sleep deprivation. He sadly died in 2010 following a head-on collision with a car during a training ride. 

28 July 2020, 13:05
FairFuelUK accuse government of pushing "ingrained Lycra policies"

Bizarrely the Daily Express have based almost an entire article on the comments from the fringe organisation, who campaign for lower fuel duty and once claimed that 80% of drivers think cyclists should have compulsory insurance. This was based on a survey carried out by FairFuelUK themselves, which may or may not have led to some bias in the results. 

Are the government's plans for cycling perfect? Not entirely, but it's certainly a start, and certainly not ingrained in Lycra...

28 July 2020, 12:54
Fat Lad At The Back respond to 'cycling prescriptions' to combat obesity
fat lad at the back july 2020

The cycling apparel brand want to see the government "tear down the barriers" to get more people cycling. A survey conducted by Fat Lad At The Back found that roads/other road users, feeling as though you’re not good enough, not looking ‘the part’, clothes that don’t fit properly and a lack of cycling routes close by were the top five challenges faced by novice cyclists. 

FLATB's Co-founder and 'Boss Lady' Lynn Bye commented: “It’s about time that we started empowering people to take responsibility for their lifestyle and leading a healthier one, we just need to make sure that we support them through that journey.

"We’ve got the resources to empower people and provide them with comfortable, properly fitting cycle wear that helps them look the part and lasts ages. 

“investing in infrastructure for more cycle lanes, better roads to cycle on, and education for road users will help. Ultimately, what we need to see is a social shift to more positive attitudes to cyclists. That’s only going to come if the government start to educate people about road safety around cycling and provide the infrastructure for safer, more accessible cycling lanes.”

28 July 2020, 12:17
Garmin could have paid ransom via a third party to obtain decryption key, according to reports
Garmin Edge 130 Bundle with HRM

As Garmin services began to resume yesterday, and the GPS giants finally admitted they were victims of a "cyber attack", there is speculation they could have engaged with Russia-based hacking organisation Evil Corp to recover their data. 

Sky News report that a source with knowledge of the incident claimed the firm "did not make direct payment to the hackers", but they could have instructed a third party to pay the ransom. Evil Corp were sanctioned by the US treasury in December last year; and even if US-based Garmin didn't pay a ransom directly, they could still be in violation of the Treasury sanctions along with any company they instructed to pay it. US Treasury sanction rules state: "Foreign persons may be subject to secondary sanctions for knowingly facilitating a significant transaction or transactions with these designated persons."

When asked to respond to the source's claims, Garmin told Sky News that the company "does not comment on rumour and speculation".

28 July 2020, 11:35
Nick Ferrari's question on LBC: some reaction
ferrari comment 1.PNG

Not much love for the presenter on our social channels either. 

28 July 2020, 11:19
£50 Fix Your Bike vouchers: portal goes live at 23:45 tonight
The Bicycle Repair Shop, Acton (picture credit Simon MacMichael)

As outline in our updated full article, registrations for the first 50,000 vouchers will go live at 11:45pm tonight. 

28 July 2020, 11:15
A decent letter in The Times re Cycling Mikey

Nail on the head, and would you like to see this happen? 

28 July 2020, 10:15
Royal Parks lift all Richmond Park temporary cycling restrictions

After a lengthy period of closure and then partial closure that drew much criticism, London's Richmond Park will be fully open to cyclists again from 1st August. 

Back in late March, The Royal Parks banned all cyclists from Richmond Park except for key workers and children due to "congestion", and since 22nd June it's been open to cyclists all day apart from weekends; the full lifting of restrictions will see weekend cycling return to the park. 

28 July 2020, 09:53
"The lockdown showed us all that we need to change the way we move": Coventry's Bicycle Mayor Adam Tranter on BBC Radio 5 Live

Tranter spoke to Krishnan Guru-Murthy this morning on the merits of getting more people on bikes, and the need for better cycling and walking infrastructure. 

28 July 2020, 08:34
Bradley Wiggins subject of bankruptcy petition, after reportedly falling into financial difficulties
Rouleur Classic 2018 Wiggins

Britain's first Tour de France winner and its most decorated Olympian was the subject of a bankruptcy petition from HMRC yesterday, with London's High Court hearing how he had faced financial struggles recently.

The Daily Mail reports that the hearing lasted five minutes, in which the judge heard that Wiggins' lawyers had met with HMRC representatives on 14th July to agree a solution. The petition was dismissed, and Wiggins was ordered to pay £916 to cover HMRC's costs from the hearing.

Wiggins announced in May that he and his wife Cath had split after 16 years of marriage, although it's not clear if his financial troubles are connected to the separation. 

28 July 2020, 08:14
“If cycling is so good for you, how come Boris Johnson caught Covid?": Jack's review of Nick Ferrari's comments on LBC this morning.

Nick Ferrari - an actual national broadcast journalist who hosts an actual radio show listened to (or tolerated) by thousands of actual people - said the above on LBC this morning, during a wider discussion about the government's plans for a “new golden age for cycling” and the £50 voucher scheme. Just 13 words, a 13 word utterance that takes any ounce of sensible logic, turns it a full 180 degrees and takes it into a whole new stratosphere of mind-numbing stupidity. 

Ferrari has form for his anti-cycling rhetoric, seemingly criticising all cyclists for jumping red lights and undertaking vehicles whenever the subject comes up on his morning radio slot. His name may be associated with luxury and style, but sometimes the words that come out of his mouth have all the grace of a clapped out Morris Minor. 

1/10. 

28 July 2020, 08:03
Overnight catch-up
The Bicycle Repair Shop, Acton (picture credit Simon MacMichael)

News, so much news! So as well as our usual weekend catch-up on Monday's live blog, we should remind you of some big cycling stories that landed last night; namely the unveiling of the government's plans for cycling and walking and, finally, all the details on how to claim a £50 Fix Your Bike voucher...

Boris Johnson reveals how he will bring in “new golden age for cycling”

Fix Your Bike voucher scheme opens to public tonight – here’s how to get one

After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake. 

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