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Reaction to government shutting down calls for mandatory bells (+ Poll); Exercise bike...in the cycle lane; Pidcock to the Tour?; Wout wins; Pedal Me rescues family stranded by puncture; Terrible infra; Cycling in the UK is... + more on the live blog

It's Wednesday and Dan Alexander is here to take you through the middle of the week on the live blog...
09 March 2022, 17:31
Poll result
Poll result live blog 9/3/2022

And we'll finish up by linking back to the main story on today's live blog...the results of our poll...

"The ayes have it. The ayes have it. Unlock"

Anyway, Ryan's completing the week, so be sure to check back tomorrow for some more live blog action...

09 March 2022, 17:26
International Women's Day: Belgian edition

Yes, we know it was yesterday... 

09 March 2022, 17:11
Caleb Ewan edges towards Milan-San Remo form with sprint victory at Tirreno-Adriatico

Caleb Ewan sprinted to his third win of the season, in his final race before Milan-San Remo next Saturday. I say last race, he's still got four more stages of the week-long WorldTour stage race to go, and should get at least one more shot at another win later on in the week.

The first of those opportunities comes tomorrow where we'll see just how well the Aussie is climbing. He's been saying all the right things about being in similarly Poggio-defeating shape as last year, but can he win a punchy hilltop finish? We'll see...

Ewan's win came after an audacious four-man group went clear, including Tadej Pogačar, Julian Alaphilippe, Tao Geoghegan Hart and Marc Soler...

09 March 2022, 16:27
Simon Yates' Paris-Nice chameleon impression

The year is 2050, an unnamed bicycle manufacturer has just revealed its integrated rider x frame, all safely above the UCI weight limit, of course... 

09 March 2022, 14:21
The bicycle bell lottery — do you use one?
Cyclists Stay Awesome bell pic.jpg

As expected we've had plenty of feedback on yesterday's story about the government rejecting calls from Labour MP Fleur Anderson for cyclists to be required to use a bell...

It's not a new argument either, the 10s were dotted occasional comments from MPs and Lords raising the issue, sometimes in other unrelated road safety debates.

On Facebook, Carol Loughlin told us she finds using one is a bit of a "lottery" as "some pedestrians move across without issue but some seem to see it as a personal attack on their freedom to spread out across the entire shared path."

Martin Hawkins reports "once [being] told if I rang that bell again he'd stick it up my a**e, charming!"

Rog Davies also pointed out the ding of a bell can sometimes come across as rude or entitled..."The thing for me is 'good morning - just letting you know I'm here as I didn't want to make you jump' is infinitely more friendly than ding, ding get out of my way!"

While, Andrew Drake agreed: "I can shout a warning and in a more friendly way."

We had a couple of emails in on the subject too. One, probably sent from under a bridge somewhere, aksed: "Read an article about bells on bikes, is this to make pedestrians using a crossing aware the cyclist is about to go straight though the red lights and nearly hit them?"

Rod also got in touch to say: "That very conservative organisation the Road Time Trials Council then removed the requirement for time triallists to carry a bell whilst riding in a time trial. I along with most riders removed the bell from both my TT bike and my training bike and they are still to this day on the shelf in my workshop. I have no intention whatsoever of using them again! At 75 I am still riding 200 miles a week on road  and turbo...... without a bell in sight." No bell on the turbo? Surely that's a bit of a risk...

09 March 2022, 15:34
Wout ends drought: Jumbo-Visma continue domination of Paris-Nice

Jumbo-Visma pulled off another 1-2-3 at Paris-Nice this afternoon. Perhaps slightly less impressive than stage one considering today's result was in a time trial...and they've got Wout van Aert, Primož Roglič and Rohan Dennis in their team. 

Van Aert won the stage, with GC favourite Roglič second. The Belgian will be relieved to put to bed a run of uncharacteristically poor form. Before today's win he'd gone three straight race stages without a win...only finishing third, second and third...

Simon Yates looks the biggest threat to Jumbo-Visma's control, the Brit finished in an impressive fifth place on the stagem just 11 seconds slower than Van Aert, and ahead of UAE Tour TT winner Steffan Bissegger, British champ Ethan Hayter and many others.

The Dutch team still sit pretty atop the GC, Roglič ten seconds behind Van Aert, with Christophe Laporte 28 seconds back. Yates is the highest-ranked non-Jumbo-Visma rider at 49 seconds...and with rumours the penultimate stage, a summit finish up Col du Turini, might have to be rerouted due to snow and freezing temperatures...where is anyone going to shift the men in yellow from the top (two) steps of the podium?

09 March 2022, 15:07
Tom Pidcock to the Tour de France? Ineos Grenadiers reveal early plans for Tour de France without Egan Bernal
Tom Pidcock in U23 TT at UEC Championships in Plouay 2020 (copyright Alex Whitehead, SWpix.com)

Tom Pidcock may go to the Tour de France after all...

Ineos Grenadiers team manager Rod Ellingworth has confirmed to Cyclingnews that Richard Carapaz will now head to the Giro d'Italia, with Adam Yates going to the Tour de France. Filippo Ganna will also be in Copenhagen for the Grand Depart, with the ambition of taking the first yellow jersey of the race.

And while Pidcock was meant to ride the Giro, alongside fellow young Brit Tao Geoghegan Hart, it now seems possible the 22-year-old could take a break after the Classics before preparing for the Tour.

"Of course, without Egan, it changes how you approach a race like the Tour," Ellingworth said.

"We’ll still stick with Richard Carapaz for the Giro d'Italia and Adam Yates for the Tour de France. The Vuelta a España is now a bit more open but we’ll see how we go.

"We hope to have Filippo Ganna at the Tour and going for the opening time trial. Adam came to Ineos Grenadiers hoping to improve on his fourth overall in 2016 and we’ll work with him on that. He’s ambitious and wants it, so we're going to the Tour all-in with him. The Giro suits Richard pretty well and so that’s why he wants to focus on the Giro."

Ellingworth also suggested Pidcock will remain at Ineos for the foreseeable future: "I can’t say anything officially on his contract but we’re on a journey with Tom."

"He showed the world what he can do across three disciplines: road racing, cyclocross and mountain biking. That’s why we’ve invested in him so much last year. Riders have dreams and ambitions and I always say a team has to follow those dreams and ambitions and make it work for everyone.

"There’s no doubt about what Tom can go on to do. He rode the Vuelta last year after winning gold in the Olympics but came through it pretty well.

"We’re not sure if he’ll do the Giro or the Tour this year. He’s got a big spring programme and so we’ll see how it goes. It’s perhaps too early to fully understand if he can develop into a great Grand Tour rider but you’ve got to keep the door open and explore all the options."

09 March 2022, 14:34
POLL: Do you use a bell?

PollMaker

09 March 2022, 13:03
Legal intervention: Has a police force ever asked you to do this when submitting footage of bad driving?
09 March 2022, 12:00
Finish the sentence: Cycling in the UK is...

Any more 'cycling in the UK is...' sentences?

I'll get you started for inspiration: cycling in the UK is having a headwind on your commute to work...and the way home.

09 March 2022, 11:41
Terrible infra #3751

How exciting. Some terrible UK cycling infra that I can vouch for its terribleness. Having had the displeasure of negotiating Kingston on two wheels more times than I wish to remember, I can confirm — it's frustratingly bad. Frustratingly, because most of the cycling infra is actually shiny and new...just very badly executed.

My personal highlight is the adrenaline rush of the section that runs straight through a pavement bus stop...

09 March 2022, 10:21
Riding an exercise bike...in the cycle lane (of course it's from the Netherlands)

Even when the Dutch ride an exercise bike it's still in a cycle lane...

This lad could be onto something though. What if they invented an exercise bike that could actually ride on the road? What? They've already done that? It's called a...bicycle? Ah well, there goes my Dragons' Den pitch. 

> TurboRocks secures £80,000 investment on Dragons’ Den

I think the man's confused expletive in the video sums it up...but is it an exercise bike on wheels or a scooter with added exercise bike-like parts?

Others were wondering how it steers? Apparently by leaning left and right? So maybe not one for those brutal crosswind days...

Either way, it looks a fair bit less comfy than this...

No exercise bikes or sofas on the move in London this morning...but, more mega cycle commuting crowds enjoying the first signs of spring...

09 March 2022, 08:57
Pedal Me rescues family stranded with cargo bike puncture

We've all been there at one point or other (some of us, naming no names, more than once)...it's usually a mistake you only make once...

Puncture. Shit. No tubes. No spares. No pump. Now you're stuck...it's normally either a very sheepish phone call home or standing on the roadside hoping a fellow rider will take pity on you. Most of the time, the second option works, thanks to the supportive nature of the cycling community. As I said, we've all been there...

Pedal Me sprang to Bea's aid, replying in six minutes, getting in touch with one of their riders, and arriving on scene in around 45 minutes...see Twitter's not all bad...

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.

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