"It's not a race where you need good luck. It's a race where you've got to make sure you don't have any bad luck."
With Saturday's Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (results), the Belgian professional bicycle racing season has begun. Races are contested in the capricious spring weather, on devastatingly steep hills called hellingen, winding roads, and the cobbles known as pavé. Only cycling's true hardmen win these Spring Classics. [more inside]
Who Pinched My Ride? "Stolen bicycles have become a solvent in America’s underground economy, a currency in the world of drug addicts and petty thieves." Outside's Patrick Symmes tells his story of loss(es), frustration and the failures of modern technology. [more inside]
"Ride With GPS is the best bike route mapping tool for cyclists, runners or anyone wanting an easy yet powerful fitness route planning experience. We offer tools to analyze cycling performance, including graphs of heart rate, cadence, watts (power output from a power meter), speed and elevation gain. Using all this data, we can offer training plans and other insight into your fitness. We work with all Garmin Edge bike computers, Forerunner fitness devices and any GPS unit that can export a TCX or GPX file."
Teenage bicycle messengers carried messages around American cities in the early 20th century, including red light districts. Social reformer and photographer Lewis Hine documented their lives in image and text.
How do you make a bicycle more visible to drivers at night? Create a new wheel-based lighting system: Vimeo / Youtube. Kickstarter campaign is finished and funded, (details of the design at that page) and the company is hoping to have them on sale by March 2012. Via. More. Demo videos. [more inside]
35 days, 2822 miles through 9 states at a cost of $252.51 ($7.21 per day). George 'the Cyclist' Christensen spends a good part of each year bicycling through a different country and wild camping in places like Iceland, Turkey, China, the foot of Mt Fuji and around Lake Victoria; And writing about his travels on his blog from libraries and internet cafés. For the past eight years, too, he has also followed the Tour de France after first watching upwards of 70 films [in 12 days] at the Cannes Film Festival.
A short and sweet video to get your juices flowing this morning: Mike Speed cycles down from the Western Summit of the Beartooth Highway. Here's some info if you want to give it a shot yourself.
After weeks of crashes, injuries, and withdrawls (previously), the 2011 Tour de France will come to a close tomorrow with the largely ceremonial ride into the Champs-Elysees. Barring something highly unusual, this year's winner will be Cadel Evans of BMC, whose time trial performance today vaulted him over Andy and Frank Schleck and makes him the first Australian to win the Tour. [more inside]
"F**king wanker!" "Wanker!" "You f**king wanker!" "You f**king wanker! You tosspot!" "You stupid wanker!" "I am not a wanker!" "F**king are!" And the classic, "Wuuuarrrrgggh!" Ladies and gentleman, I bring you deranged Bristolian electric bicyclist Taypet21's YouTube channel. [more inside]
When American Tyler Farrar symbolically claimed America's first stage win on the 4th of July, he dedicated his achievement to the memory of his best friend, Wouter Weylandt, whose tragic crash just two months ago left many questioning whether modern cycling had become too dangerous for today's professional riders (previously). They may have found their answer in Sunday's Stage 9 of what is now being dubbed by many the "Tour de Crash". [more inside]
The 1950s Called, and They Want Their Transportation Bill Back. "While the bill’s summary lists few specific programs that would be cut, Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) announced in a press conference Thursday that the bill will eliminate funding for several bicycle, pedestrian and transit programs, including Transportation Enhancements, the Recreational Trails Program and Safe Routes to School." League of American Cyclists: "James Inhofe (R-OK), the lead Republican negotiator on the transportation bill, declared that one of his top three priorities for the transportation bill is to eliminate ‘frivolous spending for bike trails.’ " [more inside]
It looked like the early stages of the 2011 Tour de France would not be marked by the carnage of last year. However, after multiple crashes on a windy 5th stage, perhaps it is time to ask: Has pro cycling become too dangerous? [more inside]
Forget Velonews. For years now, the best place to follow the big cycling stage races has been steephill.tv, a "bike travelogue" with stage previews, results, news articles, photos, and video curated every day of the race. This site is an obvious labor of love... with no ads! If you want to watch or listen to the Tour de France for free, steephill will helpfully tell you where to go on the web. But if you're away from your computer or don't have Versus (in the US), there's an NBC iPhone app with live video, for $14.99 (launches iTunes) [more inside]
Danish architect Jan Gehl on making cities safe for people, the art and science of designing good cities for walking, and how to plan good cities for bicycling.
Your Sweet Justice story for the day: In February, K.C. was riding her bike home from work. While waiting at a stop light, she felt a slight bump from the car behind her, followed by laughter from within. K.C. wasn't looking for a fight, and did her best to ignore this. Disappointed with his failure to elicit a response, the driver bumped her again, this time a bit harder. This is when K.C. pulled out her police badge, and things started to get weird...
Crazy Guy On A Bike: A place for bicycle tourists and their journals. 5,863 journals and articles, with 790,939 pictures. [more inside]
On one level America reCycled is simply the journal of two brothers riding recycled bicycles across the United States and meeting people. Lots of them. On another level it is a Homeric tale of an American adventure. It has been a long time since I have seen web content of this quality. The writing is superb, the videos so compelling you can't look away and the perspective gained is invaluable. I am positive this has been posted here before, but it certainly deserves a bump.
"I saw [EPO] in his refrigerator...I saw him inject it more than one time like we all did, like I did many, many times." Ex-professional cyclist Tyler Hamilton, a former teammate of Lance Armstrong, has accused the seven time Tour de France winner of using performance enhancing drugs such as EPO and testosterone during several of his Tour wins. Hamilton made the allegations during an interview with "60 Minutes" which will be shown this Sunday. Hamilton rode with Armstrong on the US Postal Service team from 1998 until 2001 and was himself banned for eight years in 2009 for taking testosterone. Armstrong is already the subject of a federal grand jury investigation into alleged doping conspiracies and financial irregularities. A year ago Floyd Landis, after finally coming clean about his his own drug use, accused Armstrong of systematic drug abuse. Armstrong, who recently retired from professional cycling, has always denied these claims.
26 year old Belgian cyclist Wouter Weylandt crashed and died on a 60mph descent on stage three of this year's Giro D'Italia. The teams paid tribute the following day. [more inside]
"The previous cycling was conducted by using the general cycle with two wheels, but JACKIE SPINNING ™ is the Group Exercise Program using specially designed stationary bikes." [more inside]
Moving Beyond the Automobile is a series of ten short videos by Streetfilms that highlights new directions in urban transportation. It shows how cities in the U.S. are encouraging a shift away from car dependency and making it easier and more pleasant to get around by other means. [more inside]
Downhill Carnage (SLVimeo)
Bicycle racing requires strategy and skill as well as strength and endurance to keep up pace with the peloton. This article from Cycling Tips breaks down basic techniques to gain and keep position in the pack.
L'Eroica in Italy offers something truly unique: a race on ancient roads using obsolete bikes, surrounded by gorgeous scenery and fuelled by a mouth-watering selection of food and wine. [Official site]
Keirin: Speed Racers is a short film, presented in a visual anthropological style, that explores the Japanese gambling sport of Keirin [more inside]
Joe Simonetti is a 57-year-old psychotherapist who lives with his wife in Pound Ridge, New York. His commute takes him from the northern reaches of exurban Westchester County to his office just south of Central Park. It's about three and a half hours each way. By bike. [more inside]
Malaysian cyclist Azizulhasni Awang is recovering in hospital after a 9-inch splinter went through his lower left leg after crashing his track bike at the cycling world cup in Manchester, England. But he still managed to finish the race in bronze medal position after remounting his bike and staggering over the finish line. [Linked pictures and video very very NSF the squeamish]. [more inside]
Hipsters! Feeling less unique now everyone has a fixie? Don't worry, $27,000 will guarantee you peace of mind. (via @lancearmstrong).
The 100th Berliner Sechstagerennen (Six Day Race) ran from Jan 27 to Feb 1 2011, continuing the local tradition started in 1909.
Earlier today, Graeme Obree revealed that he is gay, attributing his struggles with mental health in the 1990s to this. "I was brought up thinking you'd be better dead than gay." [more inside]
In the summer of 2004 I [Jason Oliver Goodman] set out alone on my bike to make a photography project called A Girl's Bike. In roughly 4 months I documented close to 200 women and their bicycles around NYC, mostly on the street as I found them. In 2008 it was made into a book published by Partners & Spade. It also toured with the Bicycle Film Festival as a slide show before films and in the art show Joy Ride.
Yehuda Moon and the kickstand Cyclery is a three year old daily webcomic about Bicycles, advocacy, and beards. You'd probably want to start at The beginning.
The Joy of Cycling, "Unfortunately [Transport for London] didn’t go for our take on the classic 70’s illustrated sex manual."
It's autumn, which means for some nerdy bike racers, it's cyclocross season. Cyclocross is an off-road cycling discipline characterized by short, hard, intense racing that requires skilled bike handling, running through mud or sand, and quickly dismounting, carrying, and remounting your bike to navigate obstacles. After all, sometimes, carrying your bike is just faster than riding it. In Europe, cyclocross draws huge crowds despite terrible weather, but it remains a niche sport in the United States, though with increasing popularity - perhaps it's because it's one of the few sports where rank amateurs can closely mingle with (and race the same courses as) top professionals. With the 2013 UCI Cyclocross World Championships to be held in Louisville, Kentucky, its popularity and domestic appeal is expected to continue rising. Previously.
Need to fine-tune your bike riding warmth? Here are three great patterns (last link opens as PDF) for making your own cycling cap, plus one very good video tutorial.
Three time Tour de France champion Alberto Contador has tested positive for clenbuterol. I know what you're thinking... [more inside]
Felix Salmon formulates a theory regarding the interaction of cars, bicyclists, and pedestrians in New York City: "Cyclists get no respect as road users. Instead, tragically, they’re treated like pedestrians."
Laurent Fignon, French cycling champion, two-time winner (1983-84) of the Tour de France, has died of cancer at 50. [more inside]
"This is the best day of my life. I want a cold beer and a shotgun. I’m definitely losing my mind." The third annual NW Rapha Gentleman’s (Bicycle) Race took place this past weekend. Featuring a punishing route that follows the northern base of Oregon's Mt. Hood from Forest Grove to Portland, six-person teams traverse 125 miles over a 6400 foot elevation gain. It's 20% dirt and many miles of gravel climbs. Route Map. Another Recap. Photos. Background. A Saturday in Hell. (Via mathowie)
Alberto Contador of Spain has solidified his third win of the Tour de France, edging out Andy Schleck of Luxembourg with a lead of 39 seconds after the penultimate stage today. The two have ridden an exciting Tour, with last year's winner Contador challenged by the evenly matched Schleck. [more inside]
In 1982 John Marino first organized The Great American Bike Race (now known as Race Across America, or RAAM.) The rules were simple: start at the Santa Monica Pier and end at the Empire State Building 2,968 miles with a small support team. Along with Marino were three other riders: Lon Haldeman, John Howard, and Michael Shermer (a decade later being a founding member of Skeptic Magazine.) Haldeman won with a time of 9d 20h 02m with second place, Howard coming in 14 hours later. ABC covered the race that first year as part of their Wide World of Sports [part 1 of 10]. [more inside]
News from the world of ultramarathon cycling: 1. Peter Heal recently rode the ~15,000-km perimeter of Australia in 48 days, 23 hours, 37 minutes; 2. The 3005-mile Race Across America recently concluded, with veteran Jure Robic winning the men's solo in 9 days, 1 hour, 1 minute, and Barbara Buatois winning the women's solo in 11 days, 19 hours, 48 minutes. [more inside]
What happens when you strap one of those new Canon 7D SLR cameras that do HD video to a remote controlled helicopter? You get amazing video, on the cheap. [via]
The Copenhagen Wheel project transforms ordinary bicycles into hybrid electric bikes that also function as mobile environmental sensing units. [via digital urban] [more inside]
"Au Soleil" is based on my memories of a cycling trip I undertook across Eastern Europe from Berlin to Istanbul. Vimeo video. A (surprisingly relaxing) short multimedia documentary, created using open source 3D animation software and a keen artistic eye. [more inside]
SFPD's new chief, George Gascon, is reportedly considering putting an end to Critical Mass, the group cycling event that occurs the last Friday of every month. There has been speculation, after a January ruling that New York City can force groups of 50 people or more on bicycles to get a parade permit, that similar action may be taken in San Francisco. Critical Mass appears unworried. (Previously)