Newspapers reported to press standards body over misleading photos; Dowsett's first Zwift race; Trackstand G&T from Elinor Barker; Spider-man + hex key + rollers; Pub painted yellow for the Tour de Yorkshire facing £20,000 fine + more on the live blog

Today's live blog with Alex Bowden (daytime) and Simon MacMichael (evening)...
09 April 2020, 16:26
Stay out of slipstreams

A bit more relating to our article about the minimum distance you should leave to people cycling ahead of you.

The visuals are runners, but the principles are the same.

09 April 2020, 16:00
Newspapers reported to press standards body over misleading photos of cyclists

Over the weekend, a number of newspapers were accused of distorting the truth through their use of misleading photos of cyclists.

Images were published in the Mail Online and the Mirror that appeared to show groups of cyclists huddled closely together in London’s Regent’s Park.

The newspapers suggested cyclists were flouting strict social distancing rules, but the photos were taken with a long lens that foreshortens the shot and gives a false impression of proximity.

The Times then did the same with photos of cyclists on Box Hill.

It’s worth mentioning that cyclists have been banned from Box Hill this weekend.

Cycling UK have lodged a complaint with the Independent Press Standards Organisation.

Head of Campaigns Duncan Dollimore said: “On the whole, cyclists have been behaving responsibly, avoiding riding in groups and remaining at least two metres from other cyclists and pedestrians.

“These photographs in the national papers give an incredibly misleading impression that somehow cyclists are behaving above the law when nothing could be further from the truth.”

It’s been reported that the pictures of Regent’s Park cyclists have led to aggression from drivers.

Dollimore added: “The effect and implications of using a telescopic lens would have been known to the photographer.

“It has been used to bolster an inaccurate story and dangerous narrative, namely that it is somehow wrong and in breach of guidance and regulations to cycle outside during the COVID-19 crisis, and that groups of cyclists are routinely breaching the social distancing guidelines.

“None of this is supported by the facts reported or the images used.”

IPSO is expected to respond to Cycling UK’s complaints within 15 days.

09 April 2020, 15:22
Video: Alex Dowsett’s first Zwift race

Dowsett says he’d never done a Zwift race until this week – in part because he does, “plenty of normal racing.”

Technically, this was a group ride – but as Dowsett points out, they rank you at the end, “so it’s a race.”

Sample quotes:

  • “I have no idea how sprint finishes work on this. That said, I have no idea how sprint finishes work in the pro tour”
  • “Shit me – that was hard”
  • “It’ll keep you fit and keep you inside”

Did he mention that he was at altitude?

09 April 2020, 14:32
Speed camera sign (CC licensed by DPP Law via Flickr)
Met Police tell drivers to slow down after cyclist is killed in road collision

The London Evening Standard reports that speeds of up to 142mph have been recorded in the capital during the lockdown.

A female cyclist was killed on Tuesday morning. She was hit on the A24 London Road at the junction with Tudor Avenue and Palmer Avenue in Worcester Park, Sutton.

A second cyclist suffered life-threatening injuries after a collision with a motorcyclist near Euston station later the same day.

According to Transport for London, while there has been a 68 per cent reduction in the number of people killed or seriously injured since March 20, provisional data indicates that the crashes that have occurred have been more serious.

Detective Superintendent Andy Cox, head of the Met police’s road command, said: “We are seeing speeds of 142mph, 140mph, 134mph. The 134mph was in a 40mph zone.

“In 20mph zones, [drivers] are averaging 37mph, even though it’s 20mph. These are the zones where our key workers are cycling to work, where there are pedestrians.”

Siwan Hayward, TfL’s director of compliance and policing, added: “We are doing all we can to ensure London’s critical workers — particularly those in the NHS — are able to travel safely to and from work.

“Simply put, no one should be travelling on the roads unless they’re making an absolutely essential journey, and that journey should be safe and under the speed limit.

“Breaking the speed limit is dangerous and especially reckless during this time of national crisis. Action will be taken against drivers who put themselves and others at risk.”

09 April 2020, 13:30
NHS in England logo
Free cycling memberships for NHS staff

Another reminder that Cycling UK is offering free membership to NHS staff. Please pass the news on to anyone you know who could benefit.

Membership includes access to third party insurance and legal advice.

The charity says that over 500 staff have taken up the offer so far.

Details on how to sign up here.

London Cycling Campaign are also offering free membership for NHS staff. It also includes insurance, plus a range of other member benefits.

Details on that one here.

They’re also offering a free advice service via Facebook Messenger at or on 020 7234 9310 or at advice [at]

09 April 2020, 13:09
The Golden Lion (via StreetView)
Pub painted yellow for the Tour de Yorkshire facing £20,000 fine

What colour should a Golden Lion be? White apparently.

The owners of the Golden Lion in Todmorden, Calderdale, have been threatened with a £20,000 fine and jail for painting their building yellow.

Yorkshire Live reports that they painted the pub yellow in anticipation of the Tour de Yorkshire passing through – although the race has since been postponed.

The council actually threatened the fine last week while they were still in the process of painting it. Apparently someone had complained.

Matthanee Nilavongse, who owns the pub, explained: “I understand that we are a listed building, but the building has in fact been orange and pink in the past. We also understand that we are based in a conservation area, so there is a bit of confusion at the moment, but I’m hopeful we can cut through that.”

09 April 2020, 11:15
US car designer talks about his love of bikes

We hadn't heard of the improbably-monikered Chip Foose. Apparently he designs cars.

He's into bikes too and it's interesting to hear a different perspective.

Some pretty interesting bikes in his collection too.

09 April 2020, 11:10
Quite by chance, it's Zwift's London 'classic' this weekend, which will involve two trips up its version of Box Hill
09 April 2020, 10:36
Seattle bike lane markings
09 April 2020, 10:03
Free membership of London Cycling Campaign for NHS workers
09 April 2020, 09:59
The correct way to judge whether cyclists are maintaining a safe distance from each other

Misleading press pictures of Regent’s Park cyclists reportedly have reportedly led to aggression from some drivers.

09 April 2020, 09:54
G+T trackstand update

A few of you are questioning Elinor Barker's gin-to-tonic ratio.

It's also been pointed out that this is not necessarily a stunt that will become easier with practice. 


09 April 2020, 09:17
All your cycling Kickstarters in one
09 April 2020, 08:54
World's steepest street (via StreetView)
Harlech street no longer the world’s steepest

You may remember that the Guinness Book of Records last year recognised Ffordd Pen Llech in Harlech as the world’s steepest street.

Welsh Cycling celebrated by heading to Harlech for the Harlech Hell Climb.

Well there’s been a rethink. The BBC reports that the criteria for the record have been changed and measurements now follow a road's centre line.

"The findings revealed that in order to fairly assess the different shape of the streets, whether they're straight or curved, steepness must be measured by the central axis – the centre line of the road," explained officials.

This means that the gradient of Ffordd Pen Llech has gone from 37.45% down to a piffling 28.6%.

The upshot is that Baldwin Street in Dunedin, New Zealand, is back on top again with a gradient of 34.8%.

09 April 2020, 08:23
A bite from a radioactive spider gave him mad skills on the rollers

The latest from Dafne Fixed.



Spiderman Spiderman @kappa.1985 #fixedgear #CYCLING #BIKE #RIMINI #fixed #spiderman #marvel #spider #superman

A post shared by DAFNE FIXED (@dafnefixed) on

09 April 2020, 08:14
Dylan Groenewegen delivering groceries by bike

Last week we reported on Astana pro Davide Martinelli, who said he was "the happiest man in the world" delivering food and medicine in his home town of Lodetto in Brescia.

Jumbo-Visma sprinter Dylan Groenewegen's doing something similar. And apparently he's doing it in his team gear.

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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