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Man cycles from Poo Poo Point to Pee Pee Creek to raise funds for Yemen crisis; F1 pundit crashes BMX in garage; £2 million cash boost on Bike to School Week; Cyclists find human skull on trail; Alaphilippe makes a good Begbie + more on the Live Blog

Welcome to Monday's live blog, with Liam Cahill and Jack Sexty providing your updates throughout the day...
28 September 2020, 14:37
US cyclist rides from Poo Poo Point to Pee Pee Creek to raise cash for Yemen humanitarian crisis... riding 69 miles a day

It turns out there's no better way to raise awareness of your cause than some rude names and a healthy dose of innuendo... as Ruben Lopez has surpassed his $5,000 fundraising target halfway into an epic 5,000 mile bike ride, having completed over 2,500 miles to get from Poo Poo Point in Washington to Pee Pee Creek in Ohio already.

Riding 69 miles a day (of course), Mr Lopez now has to get from Pee Pee Creek to Pee Pee Island as part of his "Reinstate aid to Yemen in 60 days" challenge - he has just under 24 days left to get to Pee Pee Island, riding "not a mile more, not a mile less" than 69 a day. 

Mr Lopez revealed that he has used a vintage Quintana Roo Kilo triathlon bike for most of the journey, his gear attached to it with bungee chords. 

The GoFundMe page says: Since the start of the Yemen war, millions of Yemenis have suffered in a country that is already the poorest in the region. The World Food Program and USAID has decided to cut funding that provides food to millions of citizens at the start of Yemen's COVID-19 pandemic. This is aid that is already congressionally approved.

"With over 22 million Yemenis experiencing starvation, and over 85,000 children dead from malnutrition, a suspension of aid is nothing but cruel warfare against innocent civilians. 

"On top of this, Saudi/UAE airstrikes continue to attack Yemen, destroying hospitals, clinics, homes and schools. With few medical institutions running, Yemen is unequipped to handle the COVID-19 pandemic, cholera and dengue fever outbreak." 

As well as donating, Mr Lopez has urged his US followers to lobby state representatives to reinstate aid to Yemen, using the hashtag #yemencantwait on social media. After passing his fundraising target today, he added: "Woke up to being past the goal. I’m in fucking tears. I was so nervous about not hitting the goal though I know anything helped. I’m gonna post a vid about it later. From the bottom of my heart and from the organization: thank you so so so so so much."

28 September 2020, 15:37
Police appeal after cyclist pushed from behind as thieves steal his mountain bike in Scarborough
stolen capra mountain bike - via north yorkshire police

North Yorkshire Police are appealing for information after a cyclist was assaulted and robbed of his bike in Forge Valley, Scarborough. 

After returning to his vehicle the man was pushed from behind by the suspects, who made off with the Capra AL worth £1,500. Police are appealing to anyone who has been offered the bike for sale, knows where it is now or was in the Forge Valley on the evening of 13th September.

28 September 2020, 15:06
One traffic incident a week involving cyclists recorded in Swindon
Commercial Road, Swindon (via StreetView)

Data from CrashMap found that there were 263 collisions involving cyclists in the Wiltshire town between 2015-2019, or one every 7.7 days. 220 of those were 'minor incidents', but 41 were classified as 'serious', with one death recorded. 17 of the incidents also occurred on the town's notorious 'Magic Roundabout'. 

The Borough's council cabinet member for highways, Maureen Penny told the Swindon Advertiser: “Any accident on our roads is one too many, whether it involves motorists, cyclists or pedestrians.

“Since 2014 we have invested £4.5m in new or improved off-carriageway cycle routes across the borough and we are currently making the most of government funding to upgrade some paths used by cyclists to encourage more people onto their bikes. Work is also underway to create a new Toucan crossing on the Magic Roundabout to improve safety for bike users.

“On average each day more than a thousand trips are recorded on our three flyer routes and that increased three-fold in places over lockdown. We are blessed in Swindon to have a good off-road cycle network of more than 100 kilometres, and dedicated cycle routes have been factored in to future major housing developments, such as Wichelstowe and the New Eastern Villages. We look forward to making even further improvements for cyclists in the years to come.”

28 September 2020, 13:42
93-year-old Ron Longstaff is still riding 150 miles a week

Mr Longstaff, who is often spotted riding around country lanes in his native Northumberland, has been cycling for around 70 years, and only stopped competing when he was 80. 

He told Yahoo News: "I go out three times a week and ride around 150 miles a week. Where I live, it's very rural so it's quiet but it's quite hilly, so whichever direction I cycle in, I have to take on a hill cold. That's the hardest part of it, taking on the hills.

“When my father was demobbed after the war, he bought me a lightweight racing bike. I began racing when I was 20 and I was still racing at 80.

“I went across to Austria with my friend and stayed in his caravan and won the world championships on the Monday and the European championships on the Wednesday.

“I still have 11 bikes, including one that cost me £3,500. You can pay up to £10,000 for one. One of my favourite bikes is my old racing bike. I did all my best times on it.”

Chapeau Ron, ride on! 

28 September 2020, 13:32
Probably the most valuable lube giveaway in history... don't delay, enter our latest mega competition today!
28 September 2020, 12:57
Government announce £2 million cash boost 'to get more kids cycling and walking to school' on Bike to School Week
tfl child and parent cycling to school - via tfl

The government say the extra funds will go towards getting "more students and their families physically active in time for Bike to School Week". Cycle repair shops will be set up in primary schools and neighbourhoods to offer free bike checks, and some of the cash will also be invested in tackling barriers that might prevent kids from cycling or walking to school. 

Cycling and Walking Minister Chris Heaton-Harris commented: "Cycling and walking is good for people and the planet’s health, so we want half of all journeys to be cycled or walked by 2030. To do that, we must encourage young people to see cycling and walking as as normal as getting the bus or train.

"This funding will support schools and local communities to get more children walking to school, and set up bike surgeries that will help children get their bikes ready to roll, so they can start their day healthy and happy!"

Organised by Sustrans with support from the Bikeability Trust, Bike To School week is described as "a celebration of cycling to school and the benefits of travelling actively for children".

School posters, daily class activities and a video guide for checking bikes are safe to ride are among the resources available to support schools, and the activities aim to inspire pupils to think about their journey to and from school while "understanding the benefits of active travel". You can find more info on Sustrans' website

28 September 2020, 12:48
Less demonisation of folks on two wheels and 'incident' replacing 'accident' when reporting on collisions are some of the recommendations being put forward
28 September 2020, 11:29
Blame the tyres, David

Mark Webber was having a great time doing some analysis at the weekend's F1 race, when the cameras managed to capture David Coulthard having a bit of an 'off' while riding a BMX around the pits before the race.

To be fair to Coulthard, like all good racers he seems to have been fully committed to the corner, and was straight back up and riding again in seconds.

Why was he riding a BMX around an F1 pit garage? We're not really sure, but the former F1 racer can pick from a number of excuses for the crash:

  • Tyres were not warmed up
  • There was oil in the corner
  • Unbalanced handling

Any more? Leave your best crash excuses in the comments below. Socks for the funniest!

28 September 2020, 11:20
Big ring, meet 15% gradient

If you'd like to get an idea of how strong Alaphillippe was after 250km of hilly racing in yesterday's men's World Championships, simply head to your local 15% climb, chuck it in your 53T big ring and the 25T (we think) at the back. Then just go full gas and you too will be World Champion (or sick, that's the more likely outcome). 

But the new World Champion was cross chaining! The horror. It's a miracle that he still won while losing all of that power to a sub-optimal chain line.

28 September 2020, 09:04
CSI Cyclists
Lake Tahoe via Pixabay

Imagine heading out for a spin around a lovely lake, only to find a human skull sitting out in the open. A group of mountain bikers did just that while riding the Flume trail near Lake Tahoe State Park on Sunday.

Speaking to the Reno Gazzette Journal, Carson City Sheriff's Office Detective Sam Hatley said that the riders "were riding their mountain bikes and saw the skull sitting at the edge of the trail.”

After the skull - which reports suggest had been exposed to the elements for quite some time - was found, more remains were discovered after a wider search, which have been sent for further analysis. 

28 September 2020, 07:24
Ribble Weldtite go 1-2 in National 25. Lowden takes women's title.

Archibald wins, Bigham 2nd and generally a very good day for Ribble Weldtite.

Archibald didn't upload his ride to Strava, so did he even win? Thankfully for us data geeks, Bigham did.

He pushed an average power of 371w, covering the 25mile course in 45:40. That's an average speed of 32.85mph. So just a casual ride then. Winner of the women's race Joscelin Lowden also uploaded her ride. 277w for just under 52 minutes was enough to net her the win.

Archibald though, absolutely nailed the course, setting an impressive time of 44:50. World Tour pro Alex Dowsett came home in 45:58.

28 September 2020, 07:19
Worlds reaction. Alaphillippe is rather popular and Van der Breggen rides to the most beautiful win

Firstly, Van der Breggen won the women's time trial. Then she decided that time trialling was great and rode off with about 50km left to go in the women's road race. An amazing double win for the Dutch and can you believe this shot? What a way to win in style!

And the new men's World Champion is quite a character too. We expect Alaphillippe to be a brilliant World Champion and it won't be long before we see him racing in the rainbow bands. Today is a 'rest day' before 48 days of at least one World Tour race. If you need me, I'll be slightly distracted.

PLOT TWIST: NAIRO WON...

Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.

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