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Geraint Thomas or Liz Hurley – who wore the safety pins better? Giro highlights as Ganna doubles up; Boardman calls BBC report on LTNs "irresponsible"; Going Underground with Milltag; Feature film on Phil Liggett coming soon + more

Welcome to Wednesday's live blog, with Liam Cahill providing your updates throughout the day...
07 October 2020, 18:53
Who wore the safety pin dress better? G or Liz Hurley?

Looks like Geraint Thomas's sense of humour is intact, judging by this Facebook post.

Who wore it best? 🤦‍♂️🙄

Thanks again for all your messages. Initial x rays came back fine, but further scans Tuesday...

Posted by Geraint Thomas on Wednesday, 7 October 2020

07 October 2020, 18:26
Giro d'Italia highlights as Filippo Ganna solos to win

Ineos Grenadiers have had to adjust their sights at this year's Giro d'Italia after Geraint Thomas left the race yesterday - and today, Filippo Ganna, winner of the opening time trial on Saturday, added a stage win on the road after getting in the break then launching a solo attack.

“There were strong riders in the breakaway, even riders who aren't far down on GC. Our initial plan was not for me to go away today but I went with Salvatore Puccio and we managed to reach the escape," he said afterwards.

"He has advised me all day. He doesn't win races himself but he's a real leader of the team. He's like a brother for me.

"Yesterday I received a message from Geraint Thomas who told me to break away. With the advantage I had at the top of the climb, I tried to not take too many risks but in some curves in the downhill, I've seen the wall from too close.”

The last time Ganna won a race that wasn't a time trial? Paris-Roubaix U23 in 2016.

07 October 2020, 18:16
Going Underground ... with Milltag

The trainspotters amongst you ... well, those specialising in the London Underground, and the District Line specifically ... will no doubt recognise the pattern in this jersey being officially launched from Milltag later this week.

Matching caps, socks, scarves, bags and ... it's 2020 after all ... face masks ... can be found on the TfL Museum website.

07 October 2020, 13:38
Pidcock wins eMTB World Championships

It was a muddy one it seems and it's going to take a world champion effort to get that skinsuit clean again.

07 October 2020, 13:00
Boardman calls out BBC for "irresponsible" reporting on LTNs

The BBC report spoke to a delivery driver that is "unable to deliver his parcels" due to some roads being closed as part of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods that are aimed at preventing side streets from becoming rat runs for commuters.

While the report then spoke to residents that were very happy to have quiet residential roads, the overwhelming focus seemed to be negative.

The report also failed to note that the thing causing the congestion were the cars themselves. It seems that Boardman has a very valid point.

07 October 2020, 11:42
Anyone need an apartment-mount disc brake?
Wiggle apartment mount typo

Now, us laughing at a typo is the definition of "people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones" but we did have a chuckle at this one.

07 October 2020, 11:19
From Camelbaks to a hydration aircraft tanker.
2021 Giant TCR Advanced SL 0 Disc - bottle cage.jpg

The question of how to stop water bottles from jettisoning themselves out of cages might seem like a simple one. Just use metal cages.

James Huang has also asked in an article for CyclingTips why there is no safety standard for something that has the potential to and often does, cause crashes like the one that forced Geraint Thomas to abandon the Giro d'Italia.

But this is cycling, and no pro cyclist worth their salt would have metal on their lightweight race bike. Heavens no! Michael Hutchinson posed the question regarding an alternative and as you can expect, the answers have been brilliant.

Our vote goes to the hydration car. Sounds perfectly safe to us.

07 October 2020, 10:35
It's nearly lunchtime

And this would be perfect. 

07 October 2020, 09:50
A positive COVID case forces CCC-Liv to withdraw from Belgian semi-classic
CCC-Liv Brabanste Pijl 2019

A positive case that CCC-Liv believes was contracted while its team was inside the supposedly secure race bubble has forced the withdrawal of the whole team. That includes one of the pre-race favourites Marianne Vos.

Team doctor Tessa Backhuijs said that “all riders and staff members in the team bubble were double tested prior to the Brabantse Pijl. The results from both tests were all negative. We shared this information with the UCI in good time as prescribed by the UCI. In the night from Tuesday to Wednesday, however, when the riders and staff were already in the team bubble which was intended to be safe, we were alerted by a test lab that one of the test results turned out to be positive after all. We then took our responsibility on Wednesday morning and decided to keep the entire team out of the race.”

07 October 2020, 09:35
Liggett film to document the commentator's coverage of forty eight editions of the Tour de France
Phil Liggett Photo by Maryse Alberti, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

The veteran commentator has certainly seen a lot of great racing, called some of the sports most dramatic wins and given us some of cycling's most memorable commentary. 

Who can forget Liggett's reaction to Stephen Roach appearing unexpectedly from a sea of race vehicles atop La Plagne in 1987? Liggett has also had some more controversial moments, especially his praise and defence of Lance Armstrong but the film looks at more than just Liggett's commentary, exploring how an amateur racer became one of cycling's greatest commentators. 

“The film explores in detail, the life story of a very complex individual,” says co-creator Eleanor Sharpe.

“Apart from the fame and adulation of his many followers, this is a humble, dedicated man, passionate about so many issues. He is a great raconteur, with a dry wit. Phil gives of his time unstintingly and his interests range far more widely than the cycling enthusiast might know.”

Liggett says that he feels "incredibly lucky and grateful, that I turned my hobby into a way of life. It wasn’t until we started scanning the archives that I was really aware of how full my life has been and how privileged I have been to be a part of this wonderful sport and pastime of cycling. I knew that both Nick and Eleanor could be trusted to handle my story and share it with the world.”

The film has its world premiere at the 2020 Adelaide Film Festival with the major release set for February 2021.

07 October 2020, 07:50
Long injury list for rider taken down by gust from low-flying helicopter
Giro Helicopter crash rider

After yesterday's Giro stage was narrowly won, the cameras cut back to somewhere inside the final kilometre. Two Vini Zabu - KTM riders were lying in the road, one tangled in an advertising banner and barriers surrounding them.

Initially, we thought that this could have been a similar incident to the horrific Tour of Poland crash where the force of riders hitting the barriers sent other barriers flying into other riders.

But a short time later it became apparent that a race helicopter had been flying too low over the course and the downdraft created by the rotor blades had pushed the barriers into the road.

While one of the riders eventually finished the stage, Luca Wackermann (pictured) suffered a concussion, broken nose, cuts to his face, cuts to his dental arch, deep cuts to his left knee, heavy bruising and a suspected back fracture.

As you can imagine, the riders that saw the incident weren't best pleased.

07 October 2020, 07:36
Another big day on the Giro - Here's what to look for
Giro 2020 Stage 5 Profile

Anyone fancy riding 225km with a 23.4km category 1 climb that tops out just 11.6km from the finish? No, us neither. But we certainly fancy watching it.

After stage 4 was won by millimetres in a sprint finish, the general classification riders will be out to play again today, but we don't expect them to contest for the stage win.

The lumpy profile lends itself to a day for the breakaway and enough teams get a representative up the road in the day's early move, it will be one that goes to the finish line. In the early stages look for some of the pure climbers infiltrating the break. They will be looking to ride the wheels until that big final climb where they can then attack.

In the general classification, British hopes now rest on Simon Yates, Tao Geogheaen Hart and James Knox. Yates' DS has said that today is one that Yates had marked so we'll be looking for him to make a move.

We'll also be looking for EF Pro Cycling's stage 3 winner Jonathan Caicedo to steal the two seconds that would put him into the Maglia Rosa.

Today will be anything but dull.

Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the 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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