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Cycling account criticised for sexist meme posted on International Women's Day; Mathieu van der Poel's stupendous 1,000 watt attack; Before and after cycle lane photos; Brompton mobility hubs; New bike for theft victim, Paris-Nice + more on the live blog

It's Monday and Dan Alexander is here for the first live blog of the week...
08 March 2021, 16:40
Some positive International Women's Day news to follow the last post

Here are some of the best International Women's Day posts from the cycling world we've seen today to make up for the last blog post...Elisa Longo Borghini and her Trek-Segafredo teammates have decided to put their prize money for her second place at Strade Bianche back in to the sport to help women's cycling grow. Fans raised more than €25,000 in extra prize money for the women's race...

08 March 2021, 16:14
Cycling Twitter account criticised for sexist meme posted on International Women's Day
Sexist cycling meme

Clearly there isn't any time that sharing this would be acceptable, but posting this meme that has been criticised as creepy and sexist to your 9,000 Twitter followers on International Women's Day seems tone deaf at best. Awesome Cycling posted a video asking 'Which one are you?' showing the supposed different types of cyclists you pass on a ride. The ones who give you a nod, the ones who wave coolly, the ones who wave enthusiastically and apparently the ones who ogle female riders and take photos of them...  

One reply from Chris Gerhard summed up the mood in the comments Awesome Cycling got for their post: "The creepy sexism here is really not acceptable. It’s not funny, it’s disturbing. Take it down."

David T.Isaac added: "Don't be the pervert. And @AwesomeCycling it's really weird that you included "sexual harasser" as like a fun little type of cyclist that we can all joke about. It's not funny. Be better."

08 March 2021, 15:29
Cees Bol wins stage two of Paris-Nice

Cees Bol earned Team DSM a first win under their new sponsorship on stage two's uphill sprint in Amilly. Mads Pedersen was second, while Bol's former teammate Michael Matthews took third. With Sam Bennett fifth and outside the bonus seconds, it will be Matthews who pulls on the yellow leader's jersey for stage three tomorrow. The stage in question is a 14km individual time trial which will be crucial to deciding the overall victory come Sunday.   

08 March 2021, 14:42
Reaction to Van der Poel's thermonuclear power data from his Strade Bianche winning attack

We're still trying to get our heads around Van der Poel's power data. The educated conclusion seems to be it's bloody impressive... Over on Facebook, Rod Leach suggested it's all very well winning Strade Bianche with a 1,000 watt attack but he'll need to up his game if he wants to win any Zwift races... 

08 March 2021, 13:43
Stockport County fan's generosity helps out fellow supporter who had their bike stolen

Phil Robinson has been named a 'County Hero' by Stockport County after he bought a fellow fan a replacement for his stolen bike. Andrew Rowden, affectionately known as Oaf at Edgeley Park, had become well known for cycling to home and away games and had racked up thousands of miles following his team around the country.

Andrew had his bike stolen during a time when he was mourning the death of his father, which also prevented him from getting around as it was his main form of transport. Phil contacted his local bike shop, Woodson's Cycles, and paid for a replacement with the help of the shop's owner who offered discounted price. 

Oaf's new bike was delivered to his home where he said: "I can’t believe that Phil has done this for me, I am completely overwhelmed. I’m very lucky to be a part of a Club with such incredibly thoughtful fans."

08 March 2021, 13:05
Brompton Bike Hire announces mobility hub trial at Imperial College

Imperial College staff will be offered exclusive use of a Brompton bike for a two-month trial of a mobility hub based at the London university. The trial will allow researchers to assess the uptake and barriers to shared transport use and inform future mobility schemes at other workplaces and cities. Staff will be asked to leave their cars at home for the two-month period and use only their Brompton or two shared alternative fuel vehicles provided by Enterprise.

08 March 2021, 12:25
Lizzy Banks says female cyclists feel undervalued and are "scared" to make a stand
Anna van der Breggen after winning 2021 Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (TV still).PNG

British pro rider Lizzy Banks has told BBC Sport that female cyclists feel undervalued because of the disparity in prize money at events and are scared to speak out. Last week, Flanders Classics, who organise many of the Belgian Classics, came under scrutiny over the difference in prize money at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. Men's winner Davide Ballerini won £13,766, while women's winner Anna van der Breggen (pictured above) took home just £800 in comparison. 

"We have so many battles to fight," Banks said. "I don't think this [equal prize money] is the most important thing out there in women's cycling, but I do think that it is important. I just feel like it sends a message that we don't value the women's sport as much as we value the men's.

"We're all a bit scared to say something. It's not that there's a culture of fear - that's definitely not the case - but our jobs are relatively insecure. Often we are on one-year contracts, you have to be quite careful what you say and also especially if you are the ones at the top of the sport then you are also the ones who are going to be reaping the benefits so you don't want to seem selfish.

"In female cycling it's always a balancing act of wanting to promote the right causes but also being careful what you say because I think being outspoken can really inhibit your chances of getting another contract."

08 March 2021, 10:31
Mathieu van der Poel uploads stupendous 1000 watt Strade Bianche attack to Strava

On Tuesday, after Mathieu van der Poel had led out his teammate Tim Merlier to victory on the tops having snapped off and chucked away his drop, I asked on this live blog — is there anything he can't do? Just when his brilliance seems to have reached an unbeatable level he raises the bar again. Some mind-boggling numbers at the end of close to five hours of hard racing have been released by his team this morning. The things we'd do to have his legs for a day...

Van der Poel has also uploaded his full ride to Strava, which saw him claim KOMs for the segments covering the final 25km of the race, the final gravel section where he put in his first crazy attack at Le Tolfe and from part way up the final ramp to the finish line.

A slight surprise was to see his time, strictly on the uphill section of the final climb to the finish up Santa Caterina, was only eighth fastest and nine seconds off the time his now teammate Petr Vakoc set in 2016. Although this can probably be explained by Van der Poel's more conservative start to the climb before that incredible 20 second explosion near the top where he averaged 1,000w... 

Van der Poel Strade Bianche Strava


08 March 2021, 10:56
This is what averaging 1,000w for 20 seconds up a 15% climb looks like

And some wise words from Alex Dowsett...

08 March 2021, 10:06
Great Britain Cycling Team mark international women's day by celebrating step towards gender parity in track cycling
Team GB women's team pursuit team, Rio 2016 (copyright

British Cycling and the Great Britain Cycling Team are marking International Women's Day by celebrating a step towards gender parity in track cycling this season. Most notably, the women's team sprint, which used to be a two-woman event over two laps, has been extended to match the male event and will now involve three female riders racing over three laps. 

The changed event will make its Olympic debut in Paris in 2024 with senior academy sprinters Blaine Ridge-Davis, Lusia Steele and Milly Tanner already eyeing up the opportunity to make history with Great Britain's first ever Olympic medal in the team sprint.

08 March 2021, 09:52
Downtime Podcast featuring our very own editor Rachael Wight is the place to go for your mountain bike fix of reviews and news. It has all the best bits that don't fall under the umbrella, including a link to a new episode of the Downtime Podcast which features editor Rachael Wight.The mountain bike focused interview-based podcast has this week been handed over for a celebration of International Women's Day with a discussion around equality, experiences, challenges, opportunity and the changing face of women's mountain biking. Rachael is joined by mountain bike guide and coach Emily Horridge and Nukeproof  Marketing Executive, Katie Wooster. It's well worth a listen and can be accessed via all major podcast platforms via this link or at the top of this post...

08 March 2021, 08:49
"Incredibly powerful" before and after video shows cycle lane's potential

 Chris Boardman loved this before and after video of Old Bethnal Green Road, calling it an "incredibly powerful before and after look at a street," and saying that it would be "interesting to count the number of people using it in both. My guess is there's more in the after version."

Another angle of the new cycleway shows kids free to walk around the neighbourhood without the streams of motor traffic in the before video...

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


alchemilla | 3 years ago
1 like

Old Bethnal Green Road - I got distracted by the pigeons in the 'after' shot - they're definitely preferring the new lay out.

nikkispoke | 3 years ago

The Old Bethnal Green video is fantastic and shows what is possible and how it improves lives. How do we get an connection to persuade those who would remain blinkered and wish to sit in a car and not care about the harm, purpose or need. Very sadly and I try to be polite the same can be said on the people who feel it OK to place or agree on a twitter feed from the aw(ful) not (some) cycling brigade who cannot make the connection that women, especially young women will not feel comfortable or safe to enjoy and explore an area by bicycle whilst pathetic voyerism, intimidation and perversion is marketed as exceptable, one unacceptable danger, road traffic, should not be changed for another.

Velophaart_95 | 3 years ago

MvdP doing MvdP things....even more jaw dropping than his accelerations to drop Schurter at Nove Mesto & Lenzerheide in 2019.....

We know he's world class on a CX, MTB & Road bike - What's he like on a Downhill bike?? 

CXR94Di2 | 3 years ago
1 like

VDP acceleration into Sienna was jaw dropping.    


Bethnal Green- fantastic transformation

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