Mud, glorious mud...
THIS muddy and slippery (from the Masters champs this morning, Friday) pic.twitter.com/oKxKscvAPd
— Matt J Smith 🏴 (@_urban_spaceman) November 4, 2022
It was a big, ol' weekend of Belgian cyclocross with the European Championships held at the infamously lumpy (and muddy) Namur. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective) the organisers appeared to have straightened this turn out by Saturday so the big names wouldn't have to plummet down a wall of sheer muddy steepness...straight into a 90-degree bend...
Anyway, on the course Fem van Empel and Michael Vanthourenhout took the jerseys in the elite races, but women's U23 champ Puck Pieterse and men's U23 silver medallist Thibau Nys were our heroes of the weekend for their skills...
— Katy M (@writebikerepeat) November 6, 2022
Nys riding that climb 🤯🤯 pic.twitter.com/noiXdQ94pL
— Peter. ✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿🚴♂️ (@PBXscribes) November 5, 2022
Get that lad on a road bike smashing it up the Paterberg please...
It wasn't just the pros though...closer to home poor James had one hell of a bike cleaning job yesterday afternoon...
Not sure why my cyclocross bike stopped working at the western league CX race today pic.twitter.com/QCggsfe2DS
— James Bovey (@cheeseworth3) November 6, 2022
Here's the social media rumour going around this afternoon — fuelled by pure speculation... 'Boyhood Man United fan' Sir Jim Ratcliffe (who foots the bill for Ineos' sporting empire) who was also previously interested in buying Chelsea... has now entered the race to buy Liverpool? It's almost like it doesn't matter who he buys...
Very early stages but expecting Sir Jim Ratcliffe to be at the front of the queue to purchase Liverpool Football Club.
It would align well with what the club requires too.
— The Anfield Talk (@TheAnfieldTalk) November 7, 2022
"Thank you for your warm welcome to Old Traff... sorry, I mean Anfield..."
[ 📷: LaPresse/RCS Sport]
Tom Dumoulin has done an interview with Dutch media outlet NRC in which he says he is now able to "feel the love for" cycling again, but is happy to "stay away from a professional team" post-retirement.
"For the first time in my life I can fill in everything myself," he said. "I start with a completely blank page and where I'm going, I have no idea. And I'd like to leave it that way because it feels good."
Dumoulin also spoke of the pain which led to him taking a break from the sport in the first half of 2021 before returning to win Olympic silver and a national championship, stepping away for good in August.
"It was really, really awful. I hated cycling so much, and I hated being there so much," Dumoulin explained. "Still I was able to help the team and I finished seventh. I really don't understand how that is possible. And then you have to imagine that the world was able to watch during the most unfortunate period of my life."
[ 📷:Alex Broadway/SWpix.com]
World champion Annemiek van Vleuten has no plans to wind down before her retirement at the end of the 2023 season, confirming she will once again compete at the Giro d'Italia Donne, Tour de France Femmes and La Vuelta Femenina next year.
The rebranded women's Vuelta will be a seven-day race next season and moves from September to May, something which hasn't put Van Vleuten off going for a third GC win at the race in a row.
"I am clear I want to race both the Giro and Tour again," she told Ciclismo El Pelotón. "It is something that I've already been talking about with my coach and with my team. I still love racing in Italy, and I want to ride one more Giro. It would be a first big block of competition from Flanders to the Vuelta, and a second block including Giro and Tour.
"Stage races reward consistency, which is something that suits me well. I'm very consistent in the Classics, too, but the level is so high on the day that it's harder to win them. And the climbs that are in them are often too short for me. I still like them, though.
"I'm happy to see famous climbs in the [Tour de France] route for next year, with the Tourmalet finish. It's made me excited already. It was important that we have an uphill finish with a climb that has a big name.
“I'm also happy to see a time trial in this Tour de France. I would say that last year we had an awesome start. This year they've fine tuned the parcours a little bit and I think they did a good job."
"A fat tyred behemoth with twin 750W hub motors," is how e-bike tips' Alex described this latest addition to the e-bike market. And although it isn't actually made by General Motors, the Hummer licensing agreement means this not-so-slimline bike is on the market, carrying the monster vehicle's name... at €3,999 a pop...
Setting a default 20mph on residential roads in Wales will save £100 million in the first year alone, research from Transport Research Institute (TRI) at Edinburgh Napier University in conjunction with Public Health Wales estimates.
The default limit will be rolled out in September 2023, with deaths and injuries expected to fall. The Institute's research suggests as many as 100 lives could be saved over a decade.
"Evidence suggests that the health benefits of 20mph are far, far greater than casualty savings alone. They include increased physical activity, and therefore less obesity, less stress and less anxiety, as well as other health benefits such as reduced noise and air pollution," the report states.
"We know from previous studies that 20mph encourages more walking and cycling and in doing so improves cardiorespiratory health, as well as reducing stress and anxiety, thereby improving mental health. With more walking and cycling comes less car use, improving air quality and therefore improving health."
Two cyclists in Germany have won the right to photograph badly-parked vehicles blocking cycle paths and pavements. The administrative court in Ansbach, Bavaria, ruled in favour of the pair who had been fined €100 (£87) each for breaching data protection regulation by taking pictures of the vehicles and sending images to the police.
The Guardian reports the Office for Data Protection Surveillance argued a complaint could be made without a picture, just by handing over number plate information along with the date and time. However, one of the riders successfully argued that without photographic evidence the complaint would just be one person's word against another's.
Environmental Action Germany (DUH) said the ruling sets a precedent and urged more people to submit evidence of illegally-parked drivers.
Here's what you might have missed on road.cc this weekend...
On Saturday, we reported a drink driver had been awarded €4,000 in compensation after winning his case for unfair dismissal. The electrician who was sacked by Irish Rail while serving a prison sentence for crashing into a group of cyclists while drunk and uninsured, leaving two of them with life-changing injuries, was awarded the sum following an employment tribunal. Read more here...
Geraint Thomas looks set to race the Giro d'Italia in 2023 and described the Tour's lack of time trialling as "disappointing". "I'm not too sure why they've done that," the 2018 winner said.
"When I did my first Tour in 2007 – okay, it was a long time ago – it had two TTs of 50km plus, so it's quite extreme to go the other way like that. Those TT days are big iconic stages as well. This year there were only three big bunch sprints, which are iconic stages as well. Maybe they're just trying to mix it up completely. I think it's disappointing there's not more [time trialling]."
Four stars, "real world speed boost on a sensible budget" — could these be your next set of hoops?
Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.