CJ takes another – Bidon practice – Image ©Paul Harris / Cycling Shorts
When you’re growing up, everyone wants to be the hero –PM, astronaut, fighter pilot, racing driver – but nothing achieved in any of those roles ever happens without a vast latticework of support. Cycling is not immune; indeed, when Wiggo thrust cycling into the faces of an otherwise unknowing public last July, the nuances of the support network around him must have been hard to spot for the casual viewer. Sir Bradley had his nine-man squad on the road, of course, and everything that Team Sky could think of in the way of shiny kit and qualified personnel. And on the road, out of the spotlight but orchestrating every aspect of every race in their beautiful black and blue Jaguars were the Sports Directors.
In the never-ending pursuit of the aggregation of marginal gains, for 2013 Team Sky took the opportunity to despatch two of their Sports Directors to the MIRA proving ground at Nuneaton to learn more about handling the Jaguar XF Sportbrake. Marcus Ljungqvist and Dan Hunt both have experience from within the car during races, but neither had previously received specific driver training – under the auspices of Nigel, one of MIRA’s exceedingly capable instructors, Team Sky’s DS’s put themselves to the sword in one of their 2013 cars, merrily sliding and spinning their way around MIRA’s watered, variable grip circuits with some chap called Martin Brundle also on hand to offer the occasional word of advice.
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All Images ©Paul Harris / CyclingShorts.
“So what does the pedal on the right do, again?” Martin Brundle one of the finest racing drivers on earth – maybe the only thing he does better is present programmes about it. ©Paul Harris / Cycling Shorts
The point was not to train Marcus and Dan how to drive like racing drivers, Martin explained as Nigel sped us around to demonstrate, it’s about teaching them how the car reacts so they know what to do if a situation occurs during a race that pushes the car over the limit. “You might think that, as racing drivers, we throw the car around wildly,” explains the former Le Mans winner and World Sportscar Champion, arguably the best Formula One driver not to win a Grand Prix. “In reality it’s all about being smooth and gentle with the car.” The limiting factor is the tyre –it transmits inputs from acceleration, braking and steering, but if you try and throw too many things at it at once, that’s when things go pear-shaped. Being smooth with the inputs not only allows you to run closer to the ultimate limit, it also means that you’re less likely to go skating wildly over it and the car will be more easily controlled.
For Marcus and Dan, the day was about learning to recognise and respond when that limit is approached, and if Nigel’s teaching is anything like his driving, the roads of ProTour cycle races will be the safer for the improvements in their competence – the Sportbrake proved itself amazingly capable, with eyeball-popping go, stop-on-a-dime brakes and a taut agility that’s just wrong in a car that size. In Nigel’s hands, it happily ran sideways on the low-grip track, then flung us around the capacious rear with gay abandon on the dry handling circuit – if the demonstration was anything to go by, it doesn’t seem likely that Marcus and Dan will often be called upon to push the big cat to the limit!
What’s clear throughout the whole process is that Jaguar and Team Sky have an exceedingly warm and productive relationship. With an engineer on hand with a view to improving the car still further for the peculiar needs of bike racing, it’s obvious that, while the cars look like a standard Sportbrake with livery and a bespoke rack, they have already been modified to suit the job (to cite one example, the rear windows in the Sportbrake didn’t quite go all the way down– now they do), and the process is ongoing with discussions taking place on improved information technology and amended wing mirrors. When it comes to marginal gains, nothing is off limits – Team Sky even went to the lengths of putting a rider on hand to practice the interactions between rider and car, Chris Sutton setting what just might be a record for the number of bidons stowed on a single rider.
Marcus Ljungqvist and Dan Hunt – better drivers. – Images ©Paul Harris / Cycling Shorts
So – a useful day? Dan is positive. “It’s great to be able to test the car in a safe environment and being allowed to fail without the risk of consequences.”
“We went on three different surfaces,” adds Marcus. “ Slippery, super slippery, and super-super-slippery! – and we took the car to the limit to learn how it would react. The good thing here is we can do it over and over again, in a really relaxed environment, so we can remember what we did – in a race maybe something happens but you don’t remember actually how you managed to control it.”
“It’s a core component of what we do, we SHOULD be good at it.” says Dan. “At Sky, we always want to be better at everything we do, and driving’s a critical part – getting guys like Martin and Nigel from MIRA, it’s fantastic for us.”
Marcus nods. “A lot of times it’s former bike riders, you’re supposed to be a good sport director but you have no driving experience at all – you think you’re (just) driving thirty K’s an hour behind the peloton but sometimes it’s really crazy back there.”
“Marginal gains doesn’t stop with the riders, every member of staff has a responsibility to do their job better tomorrow than they did today,” says Dan emphatically. “That’s what marginal gains is about, doing things a little bit better, all of the time –for us today it’s about improving our driving skills, tomorrow it might be involve better tactical skills. For the riders it’s about fitness, about improving their race times. Marginal gains isn’t just equipment or an empty philosophy, it’s about getting better at what you do every day, trying to be the best in the world at what we do.”
This day, as with every other day, Team Sky just got that little bit better.
Competitiveness, an urge to do your best, is within human nature, a part of all of us. But in the drive to further yourself, there are steps that you need to take – only the very few are born with a natural ability at any sport, and even for them there’s time to be spent and effort expended in order to hone skills and enhance physical attributes. Cycling is not immune; indeed, there are not many sports where the amount of time you put in so clearly has an impact in the amount you get out. So it behoves you to spend time in the saddle if you want to improve, and part and parcel of that is that there are boundaries to cross in your long personal voyage of self-improvement. I’ve just crossed two of them – my first sportive, and my first half-century.
The event was a new one – the Rawlinson Bracket commemorates the untimely passing of Nick Rawlinson, who passed away in his sleep at the shockingly unfair age of thirty. A keen cyclist, Nick was training for the Maratona dles Dolomites and his first season of racing – accordingly, his friends and family put together the Rawlinson Bracket to allow riders to experience some of the roads Nick knew well and loved to train on, but also to raise funds and awareness for Sudden Adult Death Syndrome. Whilst not a county particularly noted for verticality, Warwickshire nevertheless boasts some fairly beastly climbs along the Edgehill escarpment, and although the more leisurely 24 mile Bottom Bracket would give them a swerve, the 50 mile Top Bracket would utilize these and other climbs to the full.
Registered with British Cycling, online registration and entry was simplicity itself, and a couple of weeks before the event, my event number and on-the-day instructions hurled themselves through the letterbox. The day itself dawned grey and distinctly chilly, but at least it looked dry with no precipitation – parking at the Heritage Motor Centre, however, there were undeniable flakes of snow tumbling from the slate-coloured sky, although we were blessed to have nothing heavier fall during the event. Signing on was just a matter of turning up and signing your name in the appropriate place before heading out into the cold to get kitted up, and one thing was becoming very in-your-face apparent; although nothing was falling from above and the roads were dry, it was painfully, blisteringly cold. I was pretty well prepped, but in a moment of jaw-dropping stupidity, I’d left the winter gloves at home in favour of some slightly cooler* handware, cooler in both senses of the word. With Team NTG pedalling nervously to the startline, my fingers first started to protest, then yell angrily, then finally start to fall silent – and numb.
The briefing was cheerily delivered, useful and to the point, and before we knew it, we’d been set free and were off and running. From the start, the key note of interest was our fellow participants zipping past us at great pace and then disappearing into the distance – Team NTG’s scratch squad were a fairly fit bunch but they were carrying a hybrid-mounted great pudding in the form of your correspondent, and although I had been prepared for Vince, Jon and Steve to similarly make themselves very small on the horizon in no short order, I was very grateful to them for riding at my gentle pace. For the first mile or two, we followed the B4451 towards the amusingly-monitored Bishop’s Itchington and although traffic was by no means heavy, there were a few cars about – once we turned onto Knightcote Road, however, we were into the lanes and the remainder of the ride was blissfully quiet.
It was still flat, though, and digits were definitely on the chilly side. Riding two by two, we pedaled along in amiable fashion, honking about the cold and hoping for a hill to warm us up – Vince was on a box-fresh spanking new Specialized Allez bought only the day before, settling in and reveling in the step up from his Apollo hybrid.
It wasn’t long before we were passing Northend Manor, which meant Burton Dassett and the first serious climb of the day wasn’t far off. Burton Dassett is a lovely piece of parkland that normally calls on you to be shoo’ing sheep out of the way between heavily-gasped breaths – this time there were no sheep in the road as we passed, although my companions made like mountain goats and quickly dropped me. I wasn’t bothered; although tactics hadn’t been discussed, I’d half had it in mind that they might scoot off and ride at their own pace, which wouldn’t have bothered me – I knew that 50 miles would be quite a test for me, and that I couldn’t afford to try and match an unachievable pace, but if they wanted to test themselves, I certainly wouldn’t begrudge them. I also knew from riding with Jon that my modest climbing pace was uncomfortable on his steeper-geared Genesis Croix De Fer, so I was unsurprised that the others would ride away from me when it got steep. What was pleasing, however, was that the others took it steady on the ride away from the top, and it wasn’t long before I was back amongst them.
In companionable fashion, therefore, we proceeded along the way chatting as we went, the next challenge being a climb up through the village of Shotteswell. This led us to the B4100 which runs from Banbury to Gaydon and forms a part of my regular commute, so I was overjoyed to launch myself down the familiar Warmington Hill in spite of the biting wind – by this time, even my trendily-attired fingers were adequately warm…
Turning west before the military camp, I gulped down a gel before we hit the B4086, turning south to aim at Knowle Hill. Knowle Hill is a proper climb, not too long (little more than half a mile), and the guys again worked their way ahead of me as we hit 14% – I’d done a recce a couple of weeks before, as I knew it to be an awesome piece of downhill tarmac, so I knew I was capable of riding up it in the middle ring, but it was still a bit of a shock to see dismounted riders pushing up the hill. My sense of inferiority born of taking a lowly hybrid to the start line against a sea of proper road kit diminished with every revolution of the granny ring.
Our ascent of Edgehill marked an approach on the halfway mark, and the rest stop at the top of the hill gave me time to assess – I felt ok, pretty good after a banana, and in my head there was only one more serious climb left. I’d had a bit of a play along Edgehill prior to the event, and thought I had things covered, but although I felt strong on the restart, once we’d descended into the picturesque village of Tysoe (there’s a great downhill on the way in – I unclipped the inside foot into a hairpin left just to be on the safe side, and my team members were asking if I was worried about impacting the scenery on the outside of the turn. Pff – bunch of old women). Tysoe led us onto Lady Elizabeth Hill which was a comparative long grind, at the top of which I struggled to make the time back up to the rest of the squad – I was definitely starting to lose strength. Just to make things more tricky, I managed to pull out an energy bar on a flat section shortly afterwards, but struggled to open the beast – as a result, I ended up trying to chomp on chocolate and orange as the road swooped up and down, turning the simple act of eating into a tricky prospect.
As we got to Compton Winyates Hill, passing the 35 mile mark, my legs had definitely got it into their collective head that they’d more or less had enough of this pedaling lark. Vince had to stop right at the foot of the climb to locate an errant gel, but came past me at a blistering pace on his way back to joining Jon and Steve – I was indifferent; by now it was all about trying to make the finish, and my legs felt like mush. Trying to generate extra power was like pushing water uphill.
The route then rejoined at the top of Lady Elizabeth Hill, and I sped gleefully down back into Tysoe before rejoining the lads just a couple of miles before Sunrising. I knew Sunrising of old – as a family we’d been driving up it on the way to Silverstone since the Seventies, and since I’d worked in Banbury, Sunrising had been a frequent part of the commute if I couldn’t face the motorway. I’d only cycled up it once, but it was and is the steepest hill I’ve cycled up so far. That was the end of January, and I’d managed to hold the middle ring, but on the day, little more than three weeks later, I had to drop to the granny ring almost as soon as the climb started; it seemed almost endless, but my bloody-minded spinning eventually had me round the top corner and at the apogee of the hill. From there I knew the route home – we’d cleared all the serious climbs. It was an overwhelming experience.
Once atop the escarpment, I put in some effort in aero mode to try and catch the rest of Team NTG, but we were through Edgehill before I rejoined with them. By then we were poised over Edgehill, a hill I’d ridden down a couple of times before and with my gravitational potential energy advantage, I managed to open a small gap on the rest of the team before we started to span the plain to Kineton. Putting in a turn to try and catch a couple of riders ahead of us, I gave it a dig before Vince took over, dragging us past them but also separating the team, the new Allez giving free expression to his prodigious ability. Steve gave vain chase as Jon and I worked our way more steadily home, but there was no doubting who finished with the most ammo in their legs.
Still, 50 miles, done; my first half century, and first sportive. It was a brilliant feeling just to finish the event, and it ranks high amongst my thus far meager athletic achievements. But complete it we did; cheerily run, the event was fun from start to finish and with over £4000 raised for SADS, there was a clear correlation between the fun had and the funds raised. No-one I spoke to had anything but praise for the event, and there was a pleasing finale when Steve and Jon looked to donate. When they went unsatisfied in their hunt for charity buckets, they asked a SADS-t shirted lady who advised them that there were no buckets, but they could leave contributions with her. In jest, Steve asked if they could be sure that contributions left with her would be safe and she smiled as she said that yes, they would be safe, as she is Nick’s mum. I thought it symbolic of the quality of the event that Nick’s family were there to pitch in, a year to the day after his untimely passing.
Nothing that I saw or heard leads me to conclude that the event was anything other than a complete success. I’ve no idea if there are plans to make it an annual event, but if there are, sign me up now!
*Coolness, of course, is in the eye of the beholder, but for me, the gloves I wore were as cool a pair as I own.
For more information SADS (Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome) visit: www.sadsuk.org.uk
To learn more about Nick and details on The Rawlinson Bracket event visit: www.the-rawlinson-bracket.co.uk
from a first-timer’s viewpoint
There’s a cliché about velodromes that, if you’re like me and have never been to one before, you’ll have heard a time or two on telly – it’s that the camera cannot show just how steep those banks are. You hear these things and you nod to yourself, and you file them away in the back of your mind – and if like me, you finally get to go somewhere like Manchester’s magnificent National Velodrome, well… If my experience is anything to go by, your jaw will drop open and you are going to spend fifteen minutes running around laughing inside your skull and going “that’s incredible!” No, the camera really does not do it justice. It’s like staring up a 75 degree slope from the middle. And from the outside, it’s like looking down a sheer cliff face – you’ll be impressed, trust me on this one.
If the banking looks steep from the bottom, it look like a sheer cliff from the top, like riding a wall of death – Image ©Paul Harris
One thing that you DON’T really hear is how much the camera slows things down, too. When I got there in the afternoon for Revolution 39, there were riders casually spinning around before the National Madison Championships, in groups and individually, fresh-faced youngsters and crusty old seasoned pros alike. Their pace was pretty impressive, even just as they warmed up, but my attention was seriously grabbed a few minutes later – without me really noticing, the composition of the riders changed subtly. The traffic slowly thinned out, and instead of groups going round at the bottom, chatting and practicing the odd changeover, all of a sudden it turned into stocky fellers, circulating slowly and silently on their own, high up on the banking. I happened to be sat facing the track when their purpose became clear – with no warning, a dark blue streak arrowed across my line of vision almost too fast for my poor unprepared brain to track. There was no sound in advance, and you could almost feel the whump of the air being forced apart by the speeding rider – the sprint guys, out for a final tune up before the heats that afternoon. I don’t want to exaggerate – they weren’t faster than a speeding train, or so fast they were blurred, but if you’ve never had a sprinter unexpectedly go past you at speed close up before, trust me on this too: it will make you sit up sharply and utter an involuntary expletive.
A couple of other things surprised me early on – the first was how small the arena as a whole is. With a capacity of around 3500, the National Velodrome can only seat about 6% as many people as the City Of Manchester Stadium over the road. The second was that it wasn’t sold out for the National Madison Championships. It wasn’t empty by any stretch of the imagination, but I would estimate it was only between half and two thirds full, which is an absolute crying shame not only because the racing itself was superb from start to finish, but also because tickets were just six quid – for £6, those with the foresight to be present got to see the likes of Fostermann, Hindes, D’Almera and Pervis in action during the early sprint rounds, they also got both Boys and Girls rounds of the DHL Future Stars Madison, and the race for the first National jersey of the year. Six quid – they should have been queueing ten deep at the doors!
Pervis’s sprint win was warmly welcomed – it was to the credit of the knowledgeable crowd that away team wins were so readily applauded as home victories. – ©Paul Harris
The Madison itself was an incredible race, going right to the wire after a smidge under an hour’s racing, and there was a wait of an hour or two between that and Revolution itself – and when that started, you couldn’t have got a seat for love nor money. The quality of the competition was absolutely top draw – even when there was a “favourite” for an event, it was by no means certain that they would win, and frequently they did not. Spurred on by the world-class racing, the crowd were vocal and enthusiastic all night long which really added to the atmosphere, and one aspect of that that I was really pleased about was that it wasn’t just people cheering for the home riders –when one of the less-fancied riders, or a rider racing for France or the Rest Of The World won, even if it was a British rider they beat, even one of the stars, the crowd stood and cheered the performance. Pete Kennaugh’s astonishing ride in the Points race drew plenty of praise, of course, and was a hugely popular win – but the crowd cheered just as loudly when Robert Bengsch and Marcel Kalz smashed the kilo Madison TT field apart like a well-aimed bowling ball scattering the pins to all corners. I really liked that lack of jingoism.
Was there a downside? Not that I can think of – only that tickets are hard to come by, but the series can’t be faulted for being a successful draw. The only thing that I did come away thinking was, I wish I could have a go – but then, having said that, a handful of brave and hardy souls took to the boards for a taster session between the afternoon and evening events when the velodrome (thankfully for them!) was free of spectators. And watching them gamely spin round, another thought occurred – the gap in talent and ability between the national pro and the keen amateur man in the street is a gulf so vast as to be virtually insurmountable. They make it look easy, the pros, they really do – that’s another thing the camera doesn’t show you. Would I go again? I can’t wait for the next one…
Revolution is a brilliant evening, it’s truly action packed you don’t get a moment to blink. The Manchester Velodrome is an amazing venue and now contains a BMX Park. The seating is comfortable, the Velodrome staff are the friendliest you’ll come across at a sports venue, even the guys stood out in the freezing cold directing you into your parking space have a smile and a joke for you. The car park is well organised but if you are attending an event you do need to check the Manchester City Football fixtures beforehand as the velodrome traffic can get caught up in the Football queues as the stadiums are opposite each other. The Velodrome is very well signposted from all sides of Manchester.
Food at the Revolution is ok, there are a couple of nice kiosks that sell good coffee and pancakes, but most of the food is burgers and hotdogs, the queue’s tend to be huge, if you’re travelling a long way I would suggest eating before or taking something with you, there is a large supermarket next to the venue if you get stuck. Ticket prices are excellent, sporting events tend to overcharge but the Revolution and most other cycling events held at the National Track Cycling Centre are peanuts in comparison, it only cost £6 to attend the National Madison Championships in the afternoon! Revolution will set you back between £10 and £20 for a single standard ticket but discounts are available for family tickets, carers and pensioners, season tickets are the best buy, you get a British Cycling early bird ticket buying option if you’re a member. If you want to get up close and personal with the riders and teams then the VIP tickets or Track Centre Lounge tickets are for you.
There are some great stands from bookstalls to cycling brands and some things for you to have a go at including Watt Bikes and Rollapaluza, it would be good to see some more though.
We give the Revolution Series our Star Buy rating!
The next and final round of the 2012 series will be held at The Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow on Saturday 2nd February 2013
For more information on the series visit: www.cyclingrevolution.com
Standard tickets are sold out for Revolution Series Round 4 but Track Centre Lounge and VIP tickets are still available – buy Track Centre Lounge tickets here.
Watch Revolution Series Round 4 highlights on Thursday 7th February at 8pm on ITV4 and catch up in ITV Player
Photograph: Lucas Jackson/Reuters
Now this brief interlude – musings on Lance before the soap Oprah starts
I’ve been a staunch and vigorous supporter of Lance Armstrong since It’s Not About The Bike came out – I remember hearing sports stars raving about this must-read book, so I read it, and I raved about it too, and I made as many people read it as I could. Even back then there were rumours on message boards that maybe things weren’t as clear cut as they might be on the surface. As a general rule of thumb, I was an Armstrong groupie – I didn’t follow cycling, but brother, believe me; if you were going to start casting dark aspersions on the validity of Lance’s triumphs, I was going to be on your case.
So he won, and he won, and he won, and I was happy every time I heard about it for this remarkable man and his Hollywood fightback from the edge of the abyss. Occasionally people would say things, and I’d sneer – “he’s the most tested athlete ever,” I’d say. “And he’s never failed a test. He’s been through chemical hell – why would he ever voluntarily do it to himself?” You don’t need me to run through all the clichés, they’ve been around for a long time and you’ve heard them all before.
Lawsuits and accusations kept coming, and he kept fighting them off, and every time he won, it vindicated the truth I thought I knew. When the USADA story broke, I shook my head sadly and said to myself – “when will they ever let it drop?” Even when it was announced that he wouldn’t be fighting the charges, I still felt I stood on solid ground – they’ve finally done it, I thought, they’ve worn him down and won a meaningless victory. I felt sad for him and angry at USADA – it was like they’d been hunting this beast they feared, and when they finally caught it, I was 100% convinced that the coup de grace would show them that they’d caught nothing, a Lance into the side of an empty balloon.
So when the “reasoned decision” was released into the public domain, I snorted with derision and awaited the riposte, for surely there must be something coming – I couldn’t imagine that a man with his drive, integrity and will to win would just walk away from the fight, even if he wouldn’t put up with any more courtroom battles. There had to be something, some killer statement, some undeniable evidence that would blast USADA out of the water and end the argument for good. I knew there had to be some killer blow waiting to fall on the quivering necks of all the suits to put them out of their misery!
So I sat back with a grim smile and I waited. And I waited and waited. And nothing came out, there WAS no comeback, nothing more than fragile statements. And every day that passed, I felt the earth beneath the foundations of my Lance faith begin to grow weaker, and start to slip. And then I took the time to read the Reasoned Decision, and my little castle of faith crumbled to dust on the floor.
And the barmy thing is, I still don’t think I really feel angry about the duplicity. It’s like the “say it ain’t so, Joe” story – an apocryphal tale, maybe, but I’ll tell you now, that’s exactly how I felt; not angry, I didn’t crave justice. I just felt saddened to the core that something I held so dearly was shown to be a falsehood. I didn’t want Lance to be a villain – I had too much invested in him being the hero.
As I write, the Oprah interview has been filmed, we are two days away from the showing of it, and rumours are already floating about on Twitter about a confession. For my money, what I can’t work out is motivation – ostensibly, Lance wants to speak publically in order to be able to race again, triathlons and other endurance events. Is it going to be a confession? I don’t see how it could be otherwise – surely any attempt to continue the delusion would finish him for good. So – what else is there for him? I can see it going one of two ways – either it’s going to be a soft-peddled “I had to because everyone was doing it” flavoured confession aimed at winning the favours of a passive, non-specialist audience and keep hopes of his rumoured desire for a political career alive. Or maybe he’s going to properly tell everything – no holds barred, and let’s clean this sport up.
I would be disappointed with the first. I think it would fulfil the expectations of a public and cycling world that is rightfully cynical, and the only people who might soften their hearts to him are people whose opinions aren’t worth a huge amount to the cycling world. But what could he achieve with the second? If he names and shames other dopers or complicit members of teams or governing bodies, or at least makes it clear that that is what he’s going to do, then he will at least have done what he can to right the wrongs of his past. Redemption is too much to ask for, I think – he’s guilty of too weighty a burden to make that step, and I think the talk of returning to competition is a pipe dream at best. What I hope is that he has a conscience, that he wants to try and lay his own demons to rest, and that in his change of heart he does everything he can to identify culprits and – more importantly – uses his knowledge to work towards stopping the use of PEDs in sport, a la the remarkable David Millar. Unlike Millar, for Lance redemption might not be achievable, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be worked towards.
GB’s sprint team came away relatively empty handed, but it wasn’t through lack of effort.
National Madison Championships and Revolution 39 report.
Revolution 39 landed at the National Velodrome at Manchester on Saturday – the National Madison championships made an understated start to proceedings, run during the afternoon before the main event, with a surprisingly sparse crowd privileged to be present to witness some absolutely corking race action, the stadium maybe halfway full for the afternoon programme.
First on track was the qualifying time trial for the Revolution Sprint – Francois Pervis took pole on 10.130, a full tenth quicker than Robert Fostermann, Callum Skinner and Michael D’Almeida, with Philip Hindes a smidge off the pace down in eighth. The opening race of the day was the DHL Future Stars Girls Madison, a knock-out battle straight from the off, but Sky Procycling took the upper hand, putting themselves into a dominant position by winning the first sprint ahead of howies and Raleigh GAC. Sky took the second ahead of howies again this time with Rudy Project taking third, but already an ominous pattern had started to form – Maxgear Racing and FACE made a break but Sky went with them, howies crossing the gap to make a group of four, and with four laps to go FACE made one last big effort to break free but the pack shut them down and it was left to Sky to celebrate their overall victory by nicking the final sprint on the line.
British National Madison Championships 2013
Second race of the evening was the National Madison Championship, a 50km slugfest, and it was a battle from the off right the way to the line. Pete Kennaugh and Adam Blythe took the first sprint ahead of Russ Downing and Jonny McEvoy with George Atkins and Jon Mould right on their heels to set the pattern for the major players right from the pistol, but Atkins and Mould threw down the gauntlet with four laps to go to the second sprint – Kennaugh and Blythe went with them, but couldn’t close the gap, with Russell Hampton and Evan Oliphant third, and Downing and McEvoy back in fourth. The lead pair then made a break, putting a lap on the whole field bar Downing and McEvoy who had to work heroically to close the gap, sprint three being comparatively uncontested after the previous 20 laps of effort, Kennaugh/Blythe leading Atkins/Mould and Downing/McEvoy over the line after the catch. Ryan and Paul Whatmough made an effort to muscle in on the action by going early for the fourth sprint, but Kennaugh/Blythe and Downing/McEvoy went with them, Downing/McEvoy edging it on the line. By the halfway sprint five, the leading three teams were fully two laps up on the rest, but James McCallum and Michael Nicholson managed to grab one back with just over a hundred laps to go, Atkins/Mould and Kennaugh/Blythe separated by just 2 points at the halfway mark, 19 to 17, with Downing/McEvoy battling to stay in contention on 13. Kennaugh/Blythe made an opportunistic move as Downing/McEvoy switched but Atkins/Mould charged with just a lap left and managed to hold on ahead of
Adam Blythe and Pete Kennaugh reflect on second place in the National Madison Championship – ©Paul Harris
Kennaugh/Blythe and Downing/McEvoy, which put the two leading pairs on dead level terms. Kennaugh/Blythe launched an attack with 74 laps to go but Downing/McEvoy and Atkins/Mould managed to just tag along, dropping the pack but unable to make another lap up, and they were all back together with 65 laps left to run – four laps later Kennaugh/Blythe launched an assault on sprint seven but Atkins/Mould clung on and countered, edging it on the line to take the lead by two points, Downing/McEvoy then launching a doomed break to try and get on terms. With just three sprints left, Kennaugh/Blythe seemed to catch the others on the hop and took sprint eight with comparative ease to put the two leading teams on level pegging once more, with Downing/McEvoy and Hampton/Oliphant breaking opportunistically with 26 to go to try to get into the mix – the break ultimately failed but they took the penultimate sprint which meant that, with just the final sprint to go, Atkins/Mould led Kennaugh/Blythe by a solitary point. As the laps wound down, Kennaugh/Blythe made a late break that failed, and the pack was all together as they reached the final stages. Atkins/Mould took a very early leadout and it looked as though they might have bitten off a little more than they could chew with Kennaugh charging like a missile down the back stretch but with terrifyingly brave timing, Mould switched perfectly with Atkins on the final turn, driving across the line bare inches ahead of Kennaugh to take the first British National Championships of the 2013 season. It was an absolute belter of a race, and for the whole hour you never knew who the ultimate victors would be.
As the dust settled from the Madison, the sprint stars came out to play in round 1 of the Revolution Sprint. With just the winners to go through, Pervis had too much for Kian Emadi and Craig MacLean to win heat 1, whilst Forstermann just did what he had to in heat 2 to cross the line ahead of John Paul and Louis Oliva. Callum Skinner rode 10.755 to beat Hindes by half a length ahead of Julien Palma in the third, and D’Almeida cruised home in heat four ahead of Matts Crampton and Rotherham.
Race three on the programme was the DHL Future Stars Boys Madison, which put the first crash of the evening into the books in the opening laps. Once everyone was dusted down and the race got back underway, it was IG Sigmasport who took the first sprint ahead of Rudy Project RT, NetApp Endura, Rapha Condor Sharp and WD40 – IG Sigmasport then attempted a break but the pack worked to close them back down, before four teams went toe to toe for the second sprint, IG Sigmasport taking a second win ahead of Rudy Project RT, NetApp Endura and WD40. With four laps to go, Sportscover made a break, but IG Sigmasport were right there on a watching brief, Sportscover taking the final win and IG Sigmasport sealing a comfortable overall victory. Rudy’s brace of seconds was enough for the second step of the podium, whilst the hitherto-pointless Sportscover’s last-gasp win gave them bronze.
If you could squat 700kg, you’d need bottom bracket bracing like this. Robert Forstermann’s steed quivers in fear. ©Paul Harris
The DHL Future Stars Boys Madison concluded the afternoon session, and there was an hour or so to catch your breath before the action resumed for the evening – and in contrast, if there had been a few empty seats during the National Madison Championships, there was not a single free space in the house when it came to Revolution 39. Proceedings kicked off in suitably flamboyant fashion with the Sprint semi finals – semi one was a French civil war, Pervis going head to head with D’Almeida – the pair put on a trackstand demonstration on the back straight before battle was commenced, former World Champion D’Almeida leading into the bell but Pervis had gas in the tank to ride around the outside and edge it on the line. Semi two saw Callum Skinner, riding for Great Britain A, go up against another former World Champion, the imposing Robert Forstermann – the race saw Skinner lead out from the bell with the man with thunder in his legs right on Skinner’s shoulder, but if Forstermann had thunder, Skinner had lightning – and lightning was the quicker, the 20 year old Scot holding off Forstermann for the whole lap, taking the win and lifting the crowd to their feet. As a way to kick off the main event, it would have been hard to better.
Next up was the Elite Flying Lap, the first Championship event with the results going towards the overall team contest. Evan Oliphant was up first for Raleigh GAC, clocking a 14.765, followed by Jonny McEvoy (NetApp Endura) and Jacob Scott (Sportscover) who both failed to improve. FACE Partnership’s Tristan Marquet took the lead with a 13.912, but Ross Edgar was next up for IG Sigmasport and smashed it with a 13.541. A string of contenders did their best to top Edgar’s time – Adam Blythe (WD40), Adam Duggleby (MaxGear Racing), Franco Marvulli (Howies), Peter Kennaugh (Sky Procycling), Jasper De Buyst (Rouleur) – but it wasn’t until Marcel Kalz took to the track for the penultimate run that there was any movement at the head of the table, Kalz’s 13.798 enough to relegate Marquet to third. However, with Ed Clancy going last, there was always going to be more to the story – the Rapha Condor Sharp JLT man demolished the opposition with a 13.160 to bolster the leading Championship Team’s title assault.
Sim Parrott’s audio interview with Ed Clancy coming shortly
Event 3 in the evening programme was the DHL Future Stars Girls 6 Lap Dash. After a couple of cagey laps to start, things started to heat up, Lauren O’Brien (NetApp-Endura) and Grace Garner (Sky Procyling) jumping the pack to take a slender lead at the halfway point. With two laps to go, the pack had dragged them back, Jessica Roberts (Raleigh-GAC) leading Garner and Lucy Shaw (Rudy Project RT) over the line at the bell, but as they sprinted for the line, it was Garner who had the gas left to take the win ahead of Paige Millward (IG Sigmasport) and Shaw.
Callum Skinner beats Robert Forstemann in the Revolution Sprint… No thighs in this tongue in cheek picture – ©Chris Maher
Next up was the Revolution Sprint Losers Handicap Race – a fast-paced 6 lap battle of wits, with a pack of 7 riders there was no place for the normal sprinter’s stalking, it was all go from the off. Julien Palma led Hindes over the line first time round, the pair of them joined by Crampton as they tried to make a bit of a gap, but the pack were never going to let that develop. Kian Emadi tried another break at the halfway mark but again got reeled in, and as they headed into the last lap, Matts Crampton and Rotherham were at the head of the field and travelling fast. Matt Rotherham it was who had kept the most in reserve, taking the win by a length or more ahead of Crampton and Hindes.
The capacity crowd was then treated to the sight of top-class athletes beating themselves into the ground in the next championship event, the Elite Devil Takes The Hindmost or Elimination Race and it’s often called. With no place to hide, this brutal event (complete with sound effects) was compelling viewing all the way through, but as it drew into the final stages, it seemed Ed Clancy was on the cusp of being knocked out. For maybe the last six or eight laps, the Yorkshireman was amongst the scrabblers at the back fighting to stay in, but time after time he seemed to have just enough in the tank to squirt in front of some other unfortunate as they crossed the line. The last five standing were Clancy, Adam Blythe, Jon Mould (howies), Franco Marvulli (howies) and George Atkins (WD40), and you never knew who would go next. Atkins was first to tumble, followed by Blythe, then Mould to leave Clancy up against Marvulli for what looked to be a desperate final dash to the line, but the Olympic gold medallist had the gas left to ride away from multiple world champion Marvulli on the run in.
Next up was the DHL Future Stars Boys Points Race – Thomas Rotherham took the win for Maxgear Racing ahead of Sportcover’s Levi Moody and Gabriel Cullaigh of NetApp Endura.
Event seven was the first round of the Keirin. Heat 1 saw the on-form Pervis take the win ahead of Oliva and Crampton, with Emadi ahead of a Philip Hindes showing signs of not being fully on his game. Heat 2 was another collective victory for Team GB against The Man With Thunder In His Legs (©Hugh Porter), Rotherham beating Forstermann, Palma, Skinner, D’Almeida and MacLean, and yet again the crowd were cheering to the rafters – the affable German is a popular character, and it should be taken as a sign of the respect given to him that victories against him were so rousingly received.
The next event was the third championship event of the evening, the first round of the Elite Madison 1km Time Trial. Evan Oliphant and Russell Hampton were up first for Raleigh GAC, clocking a benchmark four laps in 61.677, but Downing and McEvoy eclipsed that for NetApp-Endura with a 60.415. Sportscover were unable to better that, but the FACE Partnership’s Tristan Marquet and Moreno De Pauw topped the leaderboard next with a blistering 58.184. IG Sigmasport and WD40 took a tilt at it, the FACE duo remained unbeaten to head the table before the rest of the teams took to the track in the second part of the event.
The DHL Future Stars Girls Scratch Race saw a second win of the evening for Grace Garner, the Sky Procycling youngster beating Jessica Roberts (Raleigh GAC) and Lucy Shaw (Rudy Project RT) to the line.
Pete Kennaugh’s ride in the points race was world class, the Team Sky rider putting two laps on the whole field. – ©Paul Harris
As we headed into the second half of the evening’s programme, the Elite Championship Points Race awaited –it looked an inviting prospect with the likes of Edgar, Clancy and Marvulli in the mix, but Pete Kennaugh came out determined to spoil the party. Kennaugh took the first sprint ahead of Downing and Tom Murray, then dug out blind and made a break, and inside 20 laps, the Sky man had put a lap on the field to the huge cheers of the crowd. Adam Yates took the next sprint but Kennaugh was right there in second ahead of Marvulli – the third sprint was between Clancy and Jasper De Buyst (Rouleur), and you wondered whether the effort had taken enough out of Kennaugh for it to become a race, but then a streak of black touched with blue left the pack again and with thirteen laps to go, Kennaugh had put a second lap into the rest. He even found the legs to lead into the final lap, but couldn’t quite hold off Adam Yates (Maxgear) for the finish, Yate’s five points just enough to stop Kennaugh from scoring double anyone else. Even so, at 28 points to Yates’ 15 and Downing’s 13, it was an incredible display in front of an appreciative audience.
The Revolution Sprint Final was our next show, Callum Skinner taking on Francois Pervis – Skinner led out a tense start, the Frenchman stalking all the way but as they took the final bell Skinner had put the hammer down and won himself the slightest of gaps. Pervis wasn’t going to gift it to him, however, and began to slowly work his way around the outside but it was deadly close and impossible to split the pair of them as they crossed the line to tumultuous applause. The riders had finished one warm down lap and were halfway around another before the picture came up on the big screen – Pervis had taken it by a whisker.
Event 12 was the DHL Future Stars Boys 6 Lap Dash – the pack was three and four abreast heading into the bell, but Tom Rotherham (Maxgear) took the long way round to lead into the final stretch to win going away from Jake Kelly (Rudy Project RT) and Joe Truman (Rouleur).
LtoR: Madison TT: Robert Bengsch & Marcel Kalz of Rudy Project RT blitz the opposition with a sub 50second ride, just shy of the all time champion pairing of Sir Chris Hoy & Arnaud Tournant who set a time of 54.549 in Revolution 20 – ©Chris Maher
We then had the final half of the Elite Championship Madison 1km TT. Clancy and James Macallum were out for Rapha-Condor, their 58.364 putting them into third. Maxgear were unable to make an impression on the riders who had gone before, but Marvulli and Mould managed to put howies into fourth. Sky were next up with Kennaugh and Martin Irvine, and they just managed to top FACE with a 57.934 to set the crowd off once more – Rouleur’s Murray and De Buyst put themselves into seventh overall, and we were left with just Robert Bengsch and Marcel Kalz to go for Rudy Project RT before another Sky win could be celebrated. However, no-one had told Bengsch and Kalz…. The two Germans absolutely tore up the track to clock an astonishing 54.922 to put themselves three seconds ahead of the rest. I’ll say that again – three seconds. The crowd went absolutely ballistic, Hugh Porter (exemplary as ever driving the microphone) almost had a fit, and if there was an award for ride of the night, this might just have been it.
Sim Parrott’s interview with Martin Irvine coming shortly
Next up was the DHL Future Stars Girls Points Race. Grace Garner took the first sprint by a mile, but the next was a tussle between Sophie and Emily Capewell (both of WD40), Sophie coming out on top. The third was a photo with Emily Haycox (howies), Garner and Lucy Shaw (Rudy Project RT) in that order, before Shaw edged the sprint to the line ahead of Henrietta Colbourne (Sportscover) to take victory by a point from Garner, with Haycox in third.
We then had the Team Sprint event – with four teams entered, they would compete in pairs with the fastest times taking the win. An All Stars team of Forstermann, Crampton and Dave Daniel lined up in the first heat against Great Britain B, Oliva, Rotherham and Paul, and it was a comfortable win for the visitors in 46.067. Heat two saw Pervis, D’Almeida and Palma as a strong French squad take on Great Britain A in the form of Hindes, Skinner and Emadi – GB A looked strong and it was in the balance, the crowd were hopeful of a home win, but the French rode an incredible final lap to take the heat and the overall in 45.012 in front of an appreciative crowd and a whisker ahead of GB A on 45.037 for second overall.
DHL Future Stars Scratch Race winner Team Sky’s Joel Partington – ©Chris Maher (www.chrismaher.co.uk)
The Scratch Race was the final event of the evening for the DHL Future Stars Boys, and like all of the Future Stars races it went to the wire, Joel Partington (Sky Procycling) edging Thomas Rotherham and Joe Evans (Rudy Project RT) to the line.
Next up was the day’s last Championship event, the Elite 10km Scratch Race – newly-crowned British Madison champion Jon Mould was out of the blocks early with Madison runner-up Adam Blythe trying to make a break, but after a long night’s racing they struggled to make it stick and when Jacob Scott tried to bridge the gap, he took the pack with him and the break closed down – Scott tried to push on, but was unable to make more than ten or fifteen lengths before being forced to concede to the inevitable. Early breaks contained, the pace dropped for a few laps before Downing and McEvoy injected some pace, making themselves some space with about five and a half K to go, Oliphant jumped away from the pack with 25 laps to run and managed to bridge the gap, the trio then managing to make a lap on the bunch. As Oliphant was bridging to the leading duo, Marquet and Duggleby also put in a shift to drop the bunch – it was hard going and Duggleby was himself dropped before they could bridge, but Marquet made it eventually to put four riders a lap ahead. Kennaugh tried to make a last-ditch attempt to put himself on the lead lap with 13 laps to go but couldn’t make it stick, but Kalz and Yates did manage to make it across at the death. The pack was all together for the last four laps and it was Marquet who took the honours after a fine ride.
NettApp Endura’s Russell Downing leads the bunch midway in the Championship Scratch Race. – ©Chris Maher (www.chrismaher.co.uk)
All that remained was for the last two Keirin events. The ironically-titled “minor” final was fought out between Hindes, D’Almeida, Skinner and Emadi. Emadi led Skinner and D’Almeida – the veteran of the field at 25! – into the final bell as Hindes trailed but Skinner had the power left to sweep round and take the win ahead of Emadi, the young Brits taking a quality scalp in the Frenchman. With the three GB A riders in the B final, it was left to the B riders to defend home honour in the final against France and the thundering German thighs of Forstermann – Forstermann it was who led early doors with Crampton, flying under the false flag of the All Stars instead of Union colours, holding a watching brief and even laying back with three laps to run in order to give himself running room, Pervis and Palma of France hanging back behind Rotherham and Oliva, but as they came to the bell, Pervis launched a ferocious attack past the charging Rotherham as Forstermann rallied around the outside, and it was the Frenchman who had his wheel in front, denying Fostermann and Rotherham at the line. As finales go, you couldn’t have written it to be much more of a spectacle.
Raleigh GAC’s Jessica Roberts & Sportcovers Levi Moody take over the DHL Future Star Champions Jersey at Revolution 39 – ©Chris Maher
With the conclusion of the racing for the evening, all there was left was to tot up the points. Sky Procycling took the championship win on the evening, three points ahead of WD40 who were just another two ahead of howies, which leaves Rapha Condor JLT still at the head of the series table, a healthy 25 points clear of Rudy Project RT who are themselves 20 points ahead of Rouleur in third. In the DHL Future Stars Girls table, Jessica Roberts holds a 15 point advantage over Emily Haycox, and 48 points over third placed Emily Nelson, whilst in the Boys Levi Moody is fully 22 points clear of Tristan Robbins, with Thomas Rotherham 39 points off the head of the table in third. In the Elite class, Ed Clancy holds sway on 88 points after round 3, John Dibben some 28 points in arrears in second and Marcel Kalz in third on 45.
The series leaves Manchester now to head north for the fourth and final round at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome on the 2nd of February. If the response of the crowd is anything to go by, sold out in Manchester for the third time this series, if you’re a fan of cycling and you can make your way there, you’d be a fool not to go…
Don’t forget to enter our howies Revolution Series T-Shirt Competition by clicking here.
You can catch the highlights show on ITV4 at 20:00hrs on Wednesday 09/01/2013 and afterwards on ITV Player in the UK, for those outside the UK you can watch an edited highlights show on the Revolution Series website and YouTube channel.
You can download the full event results in PDF format by clicking here.
Revolution Series 10, Round 4 is on 2nd February at The Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow.
To find out more about the series and to grab one of the few remaining tickets left for the Finale of the season at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow visit: www.cyclingrevolution.com
British Cycling National Madison Championship 2013 50km (200 Laps) – Race time: 59:16.510
1 George Atkins (USN) / Jon Mould (UK Youth) 36pts
2 Adam Blythe (BMC) / Peter Kennaugh (Sky Pro Cycling) 33pts
3 Russ Downing (NetApp-Endura) / Jonny McEvoy (NetApp-Endura) 25pts
4 James McCallum (Rapha Condor JLT) / Michael Nicolson (unattached) 6pts -1Lap
5 Russell Hampton (Raleigh) / Evan Oliphant (Raleigh) 7pts -2Laps
6 Adam Lewis (Wolverhampton Wheelers) / William Rudgard (Wolverhampton Wheelers) 0pts -3Laps
7 Peter Williams (IG Sigmasport) / Tom Murray (IG Sigmasport) 1pt -4Laps
8 Stephen Bradbury (Tomacc) / Jack Kirk (VC Hyerois) 0pts -6Laps
9 Ryan Whatmough (Shepherds Cycles) / Paul Whatmough (Shepherds Cycles) 0pts -10Laps
10 Jack Cracknell (V-Sprint Racing) / James Locker (V-Sprint Racing) DNF
Future Stars Madison Girls 15000m – Race Time: 20:09.486
1 Team Sky 12pts
2 howies 8pts
3 Maxgear Racing 4pts
4 FACE Partnership 0pts
5 Rouleur 1pts
6 Sportscover 0pts
7 Rudy Project RT 3pts -1Lap
8 Raleigh-GAC 2pts -1Lap
9 IG Sigmasport 0pts -1Lap
10 Rahpa Condor Sharp JLT 0pts -1Lap
11 NetApp-Endura 0pts -1Lap
12 WD40 0pts -2Laps
Future Stars Madison Girls 15000m – Race Time: 14:52.973
1 IG Sigmasport 13pts
2 Rudy Project RT 6pts
3 Sportscover 5pts
4 NetApp-Endura 5pts
5 howies 2pts
6 WD40 1pts
7 Rapha Condor Sharp 1pts
8 Team Sky 2pts 0pts -1Lap
9 Raleigh-GAC 0pts -1Lap
10 FACE Partnership 0pts -2Laps
11 Rouleur 0pts -2Laps
12 Maxgear Racing 0pts -4Laps
Elite Championship Standings after Round 3
1 Rapha Condor Sharp JLT 160
2 Rudy Project RT 135
3 Rouleur 125
4 Sky Procycling 122
5 howies 110
6 Maxgear 103
7 WD40 100
8 FACE 84
9 NetApp-Endura 72
10 IG-Sigma Sport 70
11 Sportscover 57
12 Raleigh-GAC 32
1 Ed CLANCY Rapha Condor Sharp 88
2 John DIBBEN Rouleur 50
3 Marcel KALZ Rudy Project RT 45
4 Simon YATES Maxgear Racing 44
5 Russell DOWNING NetApp Endura 40
6 Andy TENNANT Rapha Condor Sharp 40
DHL Future Stars Championship Standings after Round 3
1 howies 586
2 Sky Procycling 559
3 IG-Sigma Sport 536
4 Rudy Project RT 535
5 Raleigh-GAC 512
6 Sportscover 485
7 FACE Partnership 478
8 Rapha Condor Sharp 462
9 Maxgear Racing 435
10 WD40 434
11 NetApp Endura 409
12 Rouleur 402
Future Stars Girls After Round 3
1 Jessica ROBERTS Raleigh GAC 197
2 Emily HAYCOX Howies 182
3 Emily NELSON IG Sigmasport 149
4 Grace GARNER Sky Procycling 148
5 Lauren O’Brien NetApp Endura 126
6 Victoria KINRADE Rouleur 123
Future Stars Boys After Round 3
1 Levi MOODY Sportscover 206
2 Tristan ROBBINS Howies 184
3 Thomas ROTHERHAM Maxgear Racing 167
4 Joe EVANS Rudy Project RT 162
5 Jake KELLY Rudy Project RT 140
6 Maximilian STEADMAN IG Sigmasport 139
Race Results Revolution 39
Elite Mens Flying Lap
1 CLANCY Ed Rapha Condor Sharp 13.160
2 EDGAR Ross IG Sigmasport 13.541
3 KALZ Marcel Rudy Project RT 13.798
4 MARGUET Tristan FACE Partnership 13.912
5 DE BUYST Jasper Rouleur 14.090
6 BLYTHE Adam WD40 14.397
Elite Mens 1km Madison Time Trial
1 RUDY PROJECT RT 54.922
2 TEAM SKY 57.934
3 FACE PARTNERSHIP 58.184
4 WD40 58.264
5 RAPHA-CONDOR-SHARP Rapha Condor Sharp 58.364
6 HOWIES 58.745
Elite Mens Points Race
1 KENNAUGH Peter Sky Procycling
2 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing
3 DOWNING Russell NetApp Endura
4 MARVULLI Franco howies
5 OLIPHANT Evan Raleigh-GAC
6 BLYTHE Adam WD40
Elite Mens Devil Elimination Race
1 CLANCY Ed Rapha Condor Sharp JLT
2 MARVULLI Franco howies
3 MOULD Jon howies
4 BLYTHE Adam WD40
5 ATKINS George WD40
6 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing
Elite Mens Scratch Race
1 MARGUET Tristan FACE Partnership
2 IRVINE Martin Team Sky
3 OLIPHANT Evan Raleigh-GAC
4 MCEVOY Jonny NetApp Endura
5 KALZ Marcel Rudy Project RT
6 YATES Adam Maxgear Racing
DHL Future Stars Girls
1 SHAW Lucy Rudy Project RT
2 GARNER Grace Sky Procycling
3 HAYCOX Emily howies
4 CAPEWELL Sophie WD40
5 COLBOURNE Henrietta Sportscover
6 ROBERTS Jessica Raleigh GAC
6 Lap Dash
1 GARNER Grace Sky Procycling
2 MILLWARD Paige IG Sigmasport
3 SHAW Lucy Rudy Project RT
4 HAYCOX Emily howies
5 DENTUS Abbie FACE Partnership
6 KINRADE Victoria Rouleur
1 GARNER Grace Sky Procycling
2 ROBERTS Jessica Raleigh GAC
3 SHAW Lucy Rudy Project RT
4 BROUGHTON Charlotte Sky Procycling
5 HAYCOX Emily howies
6 DENTUS Abbie FACE Partnership
DHL Future Stars Boys
1 PARTINGTON Joel Sky Procycling
2 ROTHERHAM Tom Maxgear Racing
3 EVANS Joe Rudy Project RT
4 BAILLIE Karl Sky Procycling
5 MOODY Levi Sportscover
6 CULLAIGH Gabriel NetApp Endura
6 Lap Dash
1 ROTHERHAM Tom Maxgear Racing
2 KELLY Jake Rudy Project RT
3 TRUMAN Joe Rouleur
4 MOODY Levi Sportscover
5 HOLT Joe IG Sigmasport
6 STEADMAN Maximilian IG Sigmasport
1 ROTHERHAM Tom Maxgear Racing
2 MOODY Levi Sportscover
3 CULLAIGH Gabriel NetApp Endura
4 KELLY Jake Rudy Project RT
5 EVANS Joe Rudy Project RT
6 ROBBINS Tristan Howies
Revolution Sprint Events
Sprint 200m – Time: 10:662
1 PERVIS Francois France
2 SKINNER Callum Great Britain A
Keirin 200m Time: 10:536
1 PERVIS Francois France
2 FORSTERMANN Robert All Stars
3 ROTHERHAM Matt Great Britain B
4 OLIVIA Louis Great Britain B
5 CRAMPTON Matt All Stars
6 PALMA Julien France
Team Sprint Heats
1 All Stars (Forstermann, Crampton & Daniel) 46.067
2 Great Britain B (Oliva, Rotherham & Paul) 46.415
1 France (Pervis, D’Almeida & Palma) 45.012
2 Great Britain A (Hindes, Skinner & Emadi) 45.037
Cycling Shorts unleashes Santa’s (last minute) Little Helpers.
We’re up to our eyes in bicycle shaped packages badly wrapped and covered in sticky tape, it’s all got a bit manic, so much to get organised and so little time, so we’ve got together to give you a list of gift ideas that won’t disappoint even the fussiest cyclist in your life.
We’ve split our choices into four perfect price parcels. Let us know what you intend to give, or hope to receive.
I’m going to give you a long list of favourites, a pick n’ mix if you will.
Ideas for the kids… why not go for a Crazy Stuff Helmet, choose a crocodile, cat, eagle or numerous other critters, all for under £30.
Keep your loved ones visible on the daily ride or commute and weekend roaming with this selection of road safe stocking fillers:
Daub the kids (or your own) bikes and clothing with this brilliant Glowtec Reflective Paint, a little pot goes a long way! Besides my bikes I own a KMX Trike Kart which is very low, so for extra safety part of the frame and the wheel rims are painted with this stuff, during daylight you can’t see the paint, but at night when light hits it it’s amazingly bright and a steal at £4.99 a pot. Also try the Glowtec glow in the dark paint if you’re riding in the countryside (it needs pitch black to stand out). What about a brilliant Proviz Triviz Light, this neat little gadget will attach to clothing and bikes, it has a number or light settings and to recharge you plug the battery into your USB hub on your laptop. Genius! and a snip at £29.99. howies reflective Roadsign Backpack, now available for a limited time at £25! Why not pair it with an awesome howies T-Shirt, so many designs to choose from, all classics!
Let people know you’re coming… and with a bit of panache… this Brass Striker Bell does the trick! Personalise your bike with your own Custom Head Badge for £17.00.
For the stylist female rider in your life, why not treat her to some AnaNichoola Goat Skin Kestral Cycling Gloves (fingerless mitts) they are so buttery soft on your hands, well padded and a great value buy at £34.99 (yes I know over budget a bit, but worth every penny). Available in white or black.
For the men… these Bike Chain Cufflinks should do the trick £20.
For the serious roadie… some excellent ASSOS Chamois Cream, I swear by this stuff, it’s cooling menthol feel is great and it lasts twice as long as other brands I’ve tried, it’s a bit more expensive that some others (£13.99) but I think it’s worth the money.
Something to give you your coffee stop fix, why not send some Montezuma’s Doppio Coffee Pip Sweets, get your coffee and sugar rush on the go. If you’re feeling naughty why not try some of their award winning chocolates too! Bean Machine bars and chocolate covered coffee beans. All these goodies start at £2.39 and go up to £4.99.
If only a hot coffee fix will do; then why not go for a Keep Cup, these reusable cups help keep your coffee warm between the coffee shop and the office. They come in a range of colours and sizes and will only set you back £8.50, they fit under most coffee machines to be refilled.
Lets get a bit arty… what about one of the gorgeous prints from friends of Cycling Shorts; Bruce Doscher and Andy Arthur aka Magnificent Octopus. All for around £30, what a treat!
For the collector types why not gather your own peloton, with these great die cast cyclist figures from France, made as they always have been, each is hand painted, available for around £6 each.
Rapha Winter Socks… £15
I’ve spent countless hours in the saddle with cold and numb feet… often extending up the legs until it feels like they’re made of wood. Some toasty winter socks such as these can help make that peg leg feeling a thing of the past!
Keep those feet dry and warm in a pair of Campagnolo Thermo Txn Waterproof Overshoes, these are a real favourite of mine. Slightly over budget but what the hell!
Because you are the revolution!….What about an – RPRT T-shirt £20
It’s book time… ‘Vélo’, £21 from those fine gentlemen and ladies at www.rouleur.cc. A series of short essays by Paul Fournel, he of ‘Need for the Bike‘ fame, beautifully illustrated throughout by Jo Burt. A book the cyclist in you life will find themselves returning to time and again. I’d bundle this with ‘Need for…’ To complete the Fournel Christmas cycling package.
Has to be a book! Not an electronic version to go on the Kindle or iPad, the real thing I mean. For anyone who hasn’t read it yet, Tyler Hamilton/Daniel Coyle’s The Secret Race has to be up there, but I think David Walsh’s Seven Deadly Sins is likely to be the top seller and the one I want to read the most (along with the rest of my family!). As a stocking filler, again for anyone who hasn’t read it, it would have to be Paul Kimmage’s Rough Ride. If you do have an iPad then for £2.99 Lanced: The Shaming of Lance Armstrong is all the old David Walsh articles from the Sunday Times about Armstrong and are well worth a look, especially for those shocked when Armstrong was finally caught out!
Fantastic images by two of the best photographers in the business – a gift that keeps on giving throughout the year. Gruber Images Cycling Calendar
This is a tough one. It’s either got to be a mix or cycling related toiletry goodies such as Hoo Ha Ride Glide for the girls, some Muc-Off Dry Shower for the commuters and some Joshua Tree Salve for the road rash we’re bound to get in the new season!
Alternatively, it’s been a topic on every cycling fanatics tongue of late, but I’ve heard some fantastic reviews on Tyler Hamilton’s book, The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs.
Inside-Out Sharp Cycling Book £10
Giordana Skull Cap – Stops heat escaping through your head when you’re out in the cold.
Registration to the Cycling Development North West Road Race League
Be a part of one of the most successful road race leagues in the country, with over 19 road races, supported by the National Escort Group, next season – visit www.cdnw.org for more information.
Taster session at Manchester Velodrome
Fancy being the next Emma Trott or Sir Chris Hoy? Get yourself down to a taster session at the National Cycling Centre to have a go – check out: www.nationalcyclingcentre.com
There’s only one thing on my list for the Secret Santa category – after his immense year, what could possibly be better Christmas day viewing than a review of Wiggo’s Tour de France victory? You can get the 4 hour edition plus a commemorative water bottle for twenty quid from the Cycling Weekly website, which leaves ten pounds to spend on seven and a half litres of Alpro chocolate soya milk, maybe not scientifically the best recovery drink, but certainly the tastiest… Between them, they should see you safely through digesting the turkey.
Breaking the Chain by Willy Voets RRP £8.99
‘Rough Ride’ by Paul Kimmage RRP £8.99
Kimmage has certainly endured a rough ride both in cycling and journalism, fighting what seemed a losing battle against omerta and the powers-that-be. As cycling looks to (hopefully) be on the brink of massive change, Rough Ride serves as a reminder of a cyclist who never fulfilled his youthful potential as he was generally beaten by juiced-up riders for the entirety of his career. Very enlightening, made even more so with the addition of hindsight. Try and pick up an updated edition if possible. An absolute steal – available at well under £30. One of the best and most honest cycling books ever written.
A huge amount of chocolate! Energy for my riding… honest!!
Park Tools Pizza Cutter – £17.99 – Great for the cyclist who has everything, a small novelty item that shows thought without breaking the bank or requiring knowledge of cycling from the buyer!
100 Greatest Cycling Climbs – RRP £8.99 – A handy little book for the cyclist who fancies self-medicating their lack of willpower with extreme pain.
Marty MacDonald McCrossan:
Would have to be one of my own Wiggo Cartoon mugs or a T Shirt all the way on that one! £12.50 and £20 respectively.
Eddy Vinyl Figure £35
Hmm secret santa now thats always a hard one…I had to go over budget by a fiver on this one http://rouleur.cc/eddy-vinyl-figure
Santa’s Little Helper
Maybe something for the coffee table? What about the stylish book Merckx 525. It’s a beautiful book and any true cycling fan or cyclist would be happy to receive this.
Treat your bike to some luxury this Christmas… Brooks Leather Handlebar Tape £45.
This little curiosity caught my eye, the Lightskin LED Seat Post, contained within the stem is your rear light, not sure how great it is but it looks very stylish £43.
For the cycling mad ladies you can’t go wrong with an AnaNichoola Sun Cat Jersey (£75) and matching Sun Cat Padded Cycling Shorts (£80); both are beautifully made and the shorts have a high waist unlike other brands so you won’t find your back exposed when you lean forward on your bike. The waist is really comfy too, it doesn’t dig in. Available in Black and white (I opted for one of each colour).
Another favourite of mine and great value are the dhb Women’s Vaeon Roubaix Padded Bib Tights, great for winter, they have a zip front and they are really comfortable, only £49.99.
Quality unisex items that won’t disappoint are the TwoZero Verso Hi-Vis Cyclone Cycling Jacket, available in Black or Yellow, in a range of good sizes and well made, price £54.99. For a few pounds more for a limited time is the Visijax Signalling LED Cycling Jacket, this jacket is really well made, it has a soft feel and is extremely bright, there are reflectors all over the jacket and integrated front and rear lights with indicator lights when you lift your arms. It’s a great jacket with the lights off and you’re like a neon christmas tree when the lights are switched on, no one will miss you in this thing! Limited offer prices of £58 – £78 (depending on size) from an RRP of £149. It should also be a hit with gadget lovers in your life as Stephen Fry was spotted wearing one in his latest series ‘Gadget Man’. The other unisex item is a wonderful New Zealand Soigneur Merino Wool Retro Cycling Jersey
Monkey Bike Wheel Lights… for kids and proper big kids! Turn your spokes into a party of patterns and colour. £39.99
RPRT fluo Helmet Sterling – Keep visible, safe and sound even in the Christmas rush on the dark icy winter nights.
Nick Dey & Felix English:
Nick says: Has to be the Rapha Merino bundle especially with their current discount. Not cheap but how can you not give socks, etc, for Christmas? £90 with 15% discount.
A really bright rear light (not sure which one) or a luminous jacket (again no preference) to show someone how much you care. You can never be too safe out on the road, so anything which makes you more visible in my mind, even though in the case of the luminous jacket you can probably see it from outer space is a fantastic gift!
Channel the great Eddy Merckx on long winter rides.
Molteni Retro Long Sleeve Jersey
Everyone consider’s their bike a piece of art, so there’s no better way than to display them in the home than with a bike shelf like this wooden beauty from Urban City Bike Shelves www.urbancitybikeshelves.com
Castelli Leggera Jacket – This is one of the best rain jackets that I have ever owned (and I have owned a few).
British Cycling Membership and Race Licence
For under £100 you can have £10m liability insurance and personal accident insurance if you buy the Gold membership package, together with loads of other offers plus if you purchase the racing licence for £32 if you’re over 18, you can compete in various British Cycling events! Visit www.britishcycling.org.uk for information about the racing licence.
A nice set of pedals. E.g. Look Keo 2 Max Carbon Pedals
For the most friendly, secure and satisfyingly fantastic cleat click you could ever wish to experience, invest in some nice pedals for your bike. Money can’t buy the confidence and assurity you get from a quality pair, meaning you can keep the power down for longer without any niggling fear of pulling out of a cheaper pair. An excellent investment that will last.
For a hundred quid, you’re approaching serious territory – if it’s for someone who spends a long time on their bike, how about a gift that keeps on giving? The Brooks Swift saddle is an example of hand-crafted British finery, a piece of leather perfection that, once worn in, will be more comfortable than anything else on the market, and will last… Well, last longer than the bike you fit it to.
A voucher for a massage, really need it, on a bike every single day for hours can do anyones back in! …and preferably a hot young lady.
Foska Novelty Jerseys – £48.99 – Great jerseys worth a giggle and surprising comfortable. Comes advertising Road tax, Baked Beans, Newcastle Brown or Cornflakes amongst others.
Tacx T3075 Cycle Motion Stand
Jonathan Tiernan-Locke: & Jack Holroyd:
Lezyne Super Drive – £99.99
What JTL says: Super bright and compact little unit, and very well made. Just leave it on the winter bike and never get caught out in the fading light again. Flashing commuter mode through to full power where it’s good enough for MTB night rides!
What Jack says: A 500 lumen light under £100? This baby is seriously bright. Whether commuting through London or climbing the Pennines after dark, this little sliver of CNC aluminium will really light up your life.
Camelbak All Clear
And finally, Camelbak has a cool new biotech offering that uses an ultra light long lasting battery with a UV light to clean and purify water from “iffy to safe”. Made for travel to some remote parts it’s great for the car or hiking or just to be on the safe side. Retailing for $100
Marty MacDonald McCrossan:
A nice expensive bottle of Montepulciano!
Shutt Velo Rapide Active Softshell Jacket £99.00
Affordable, well made, great design and fit… what more do you look for in a jacket?
Something Under the Tree
For this price range I’m starting with my favourite winter jacket. I really love my Le Col Ladies B3 Winter Cycling Jacket, everything about the design is perfect in my opinion. A couple of my friends have road tested my jacket and it doesn’t seem to matter if you’re tall or short, busty or less so the design works. My favourite feature is the extra long thumbhole sleeves which my friends and I all found brilliant. There has been real attention to details on this jacket, the finishing is excellent. It looks great, feels great on, fits perfectly and is really well made. Wicks well, and keeps you snuggly warm and dry. This is going to be a favourite for years but I can’t wait to see what Le Col do for the girls next season. £234 pricey but worth it, you’ll get year worth of wear out if it.
To accompany the jacket and complete the look why not try the Le Col Unisex Padded B3 Winter Tights £159.99, same as the Jacket, beautifully made and really comfortable (speaking from a female perspective).
If Santa cares to listen I’d love a set of Elite V-Arion Parabolic Inertial Rollers (£229.99 current price), during the winter months there’s nothing better than staying toasty warm and still being able to give yourself and the bike a workout.
The other item to catch my attention was a pair of ASSOS Zegho Crystal Glasses £223.99 (normally £279.99) I’ve heard good things about them but not had a chance to try them out for myself, they have good eye coverage to protect from any unidentified flying objects that may be airborne (and if you temporarily take flight) which I like, they also have great reactive lenses at the top so going in and out of shade won’t leave you temporarily totally in the dark as the bottom third of the lens will be clear… so I’m putting them on my little list… I can but hope.
Karcher Pressure Washer… around £200
I used to dread coming back from a muddy MTB ride or wet road ride in the lanes…not anymore. What used to be a lengthy and freezing cold chore is now less than a minutes work!
Thule Bike Case – Let your bike travel in style and safety, just in case you can’t wait for spring.
A GoPro HD Hero 3. These little cameras are so much fun to play with regardless of what you’re doing. I sure had a great time watching my descending videos this year!
David James, Heather, Anna & Nick Dey:
David says: I would have definitely said a Go-Pro Pro HD Camera, but the price has crept up too much, so there’s can’t be anything better than a Garmin 500 with the cadence sensor and heart rate monitor to see how your training is going, or in my case to tell me just how unfit I am!
Nick says: The Garmin Edge 500 GPS performance with heart rate and cadence. £199 (Amazon) to £229 (Wiggle) depending one where you shop. A fine little bike computer that makes for very useful analysis with Strava.com. If, like me, you get lost a lot, then the Garmin Edge 800 is the perfect bike buddy – but too pricey for this category.
Heather says – ‘A trusty favourite at Cycling Shorts Towers, this computer is small yet will still monitor your heart rate, cadence and track your trip with GPS – a brilliant buy if you are looking at building on your performance next season.’
Anna says – ‘Always popular, one of the most picked item’s on last years list, I’m picking it again. If I had the cash though I’d splash out on the Garmin Edge 800” title=”Click to buy the Garmin Edge 800″ target=”_blank”>800‘.
Anything with Yak leather must be worth the money!
Rapha Grand Tour Cycling Shoes
Rapha Hardshell Jacket £240
Mavic Aksium Wheelset
Worried about trashing your carbon deep section wheels on potholes? Then invest in a paid of Mavic Aksium wheels – superb value for money and make a great spare wheelset – have a look at the following link for more information: www.bike-treks.co.uk
Association of British Cycling Coaches
So you want to improve next season but can’t afford a coach? Why not become a coach yourself through distance learning with the Association of British Cycling Coaches? Prices start at £250 and you don’t have to qualify as a coach if you don’t want – but the content of the course will be invaluable in helping you exceed your targets – check out: www.abcc.co.uk
Tacx Galexia Roller Trainer £245
A turbo trainer. “While away the wintry hours safe in your garage or shed, away from the perils of black ice and the dark. You get the additional benefit of working off all those mince pies, and you’ll definately notice a massive difference in your riding as the training pays off. A perfect motivation booster, if all seems lost in your bid to get fit for next year.
You’ve got to like someone to spend two hundred and fifty quid on them – if you like them that much, it would be a good plan to do something to make sure they come back to you, so why not make sure they can see their way back home after a winter training ride? The Exposure Revo is a dynamo powered light that’s available for road and off road disk hubs, so there’s no need to worry about keeping your battery charged and at 800 lumens there shouldn’t be any problems seeing where you’re going.
My current tv cost me about 20 quid, it’s so old school, I’d like a big tv that I can hook a laptop up to so I can watch all the latest bmx videos!
Tacx Booster Turbo Trainer – £231.99 – A winter trainer suitable for long term use, the Booster is a solid piece of kit for moving the bike inside in bitter conditions.
Kask Vertigo Helmet – £164.99 – As worn by Wiggo and Cav, this helmet is a serious piece of kit. It’s super lightweight, increasing the comfort from the already stonking padding. Add in it’s beautiful looks and you’ve got a winner.
Cycling clothes – Nothing makes me want to ride more than a new cycling kit
This year Interbike was showing bright NEON colors for Spring for Women at least.
Who said the 1980s were over!! But for cycling gear it makes great safety sense and fashion sense too.
Pearl Izumi has cycling and Tri-athlete wear in blue, black, white with neon green accents. From $80 to $150. Giro was showing some Empire cycling shoes in everything from the traditional black with bright GIRO pink inners, naming and laces with matching soles to some really glow in the dark neon green show and traffic stoppers. Retailing for $299.
And Giro also has a line of nice open helmets in blues and silver to protect and add extra styling to the outfit. Retailing from $40 to $275.
Genesis LED Light from £195
New front light. I’d love to have the more expensive one but that’s over budget so it’s this baby.
Marty MacDonald McCrossan:
Having had Yanto in the commentary box with me a fair few times over the years I would have to go with one of his Arcus Winter Jackets methinks!
Dream gift… The sky’s the limit!
Well obviously if a budget is no option I could go on forever, but for me I’d be happy with a WSD [Women Specific Design] Trek Madone 7, being a short girl these bikes really work for me…. Oh and maybe a set of custom made V-Sprint Wheels… yes please!
Ok… I hear you, coffee does feature quite heavily on this list… but we like a good espresso here at Cycling Shorts, so we would really love a top notch machine to help us though the day.
For the cycling gent who has everything… a Dashing Tweed Reflective Stretch Tweed Cycling Jacket, this design is cutting edge even though it takes inspiration from 16th century equine armour. The underarms are open for ventilation and the classic tweed is woven with wool mixed with modern reflective fibres. It’s yours for £850!
If I was truly dreaming then a I’d like a Pro Women’s Cycling Shorts Cycling Team!… you never know… it could happen!
2013 Cyclo-cross World Championships, Louisville USA: Weekend VIP tickets, Flights & accommodation… approx £1000 (other ticket packages are available).
This is something I’d love to go to; the atmosphere at ‘cross races is incredible and I’m sure the US won’t disappoint. An awesome weekend of racing, with foghorns, chips and beer!
Fuji Altamira SL – It fits perfectly into the Thule Bike Case and takes the ride to at new level.
Four offerings here. Firstly in terms of equipment it simply has to be a custom build Serotta Ottrott SE. The frameset comes in at £6,499. It’s a journey!
But what about an experience you will never forget? My choice would be Flanders Week with Nico and his fantastic team at www.go4cycling.com. It’s as close to pro riding as many of us will ever get. Ride the Ronde van Vlaanderen, Paris-Roubaix, and several classic routes under the watchful eye of the Lion of Flanders, Johann Museeuw; fully supported as only the pro’s know how. Follow the pro-races at several points as the Go4cycling team play ‘Belgium hopscotch’ across Flanders for the Ronde, the midweek Scheldeprijs and Paris Roubaix. Keep up with the race via a satellite feed in the ultra-comfy bus. But best of all, don the VIP pass, enter the service course and watch the teams prepare, chat to the riders, the DS’s, the mechanics and support staff. Fully embrace the the flavours, sounds, and energy of an elite Race. A week never to be forgotten. Genuinely classic.
Charity fundraising £500: why not sign up your loved one for one of the splendid Action Medical Research century rides? The ‘must ride’ UK event of 2013 is the Ride London Olympic route sportive on 4th August. Relive the glorious memories… Cav’s heartbreak, team GB’s chase, and, if you really need to, Vino’s success!
Charity fundraising £1500: ride from London to Paris with a hundred plus other like minded souls and be there when the centenary Tour de France finishes, and Cav wins, on the Champs Élysées. When: 17th to 21st July 2013.
I’m sure it would be very easy to list endless number of presents in this section, but whenever I’m in a position to spend a decent amount of money I try to give that extra bit of thought and apply Epicurus’s philosophy and say to myself “Would it really make me happy?”. So is it the latest carbon 29er hardtail MTB that first springs to mind the one that would make me really happy? After some deliberation it is a resounding, no. Just riding a bike should bring happiness, not the type of bike you are riding. So on those lines, I think if money was no object I’d love to be able to go to a remote community somewhere in the world, with a lorry full of bikes for people who may have never ridden one before. I reckon they would have so much fun the look on their faces would be worth far more than anything money can ever buy! I’m not sure everyone would want this as a present, but it certainly ticks all the boxes with me.
Twice in one stage can’t be missed. Hopefully to see Chris Froome outsprint Contador to the line.
I absolutely love love love the TDF 2010 paintings by Sarah Halliday and can imagine they’d look fantastic in every one of our ‘training rooms’. And at Price On Demand, I can imagine they’re pretty pricey!
And if art isn’t your thing – a week (or 3) cycling in the pre-alps with VeloVercors.com ;)
Condor Lotus Type 1 LC Road bike £5,200
Jaguar XF Sportbrake
For the ultimate team car, this is on the wish list – if it is good enough for Team Sky, surely it should be good enough for your team or club? Check it out at: www.jaguar.com
A Parrotti Roubaix full carbon frameset fitted with Pete Mathews custom wheel set and Campag Superrecord EPS
An Unlimited Budget?! Go hard or go home. Buy a cycling team. Or better still, several. Perhaps you could invest in women’s cycling, or sponsor an amateur team? If the sky’s the limit you would even some money left over to buy the £8,000 bike you’ve always dreamt of. How about the Cervelo P5 Time Trial bike? Buy one of those and watch your 10 mile time trial PB plummet by probably about ten minutes! Stealthy.
The clue’s in the question – if money was no object and Sky was the limit, you couldn’t get much more extravagant than purchasing a celebratory Pinarello Dogma 2 in glorious TdF yellow. You probably don’t deserve it, you probably couldn’t get anywhere near pushing it to its extraordinary limits, and you’d had to have been very, very good indeed for Santa to leave one of these under the tree – but you know you want one. And even if modesty forbade you taking it out in public, wouldn’t it look great hung on the living room wall…
My perfect gift would be for my very own indoor BMX flatland area for me to ride in, with a heater, a fridge, sound system, even a disco ball… and also a new VW Transporter for me to cruise around in to get to my venue with my bikes in the back…. and then a nightclub to put a BMX night on once a month where they only play the music I want and the dancefloor is for BMX riding!… and then maybe a chicken shop to deliver to me wherever I am (I love chicken), all kinds of chicken, jerk chicken, fried chicken, chicken curry etc; all this riding makes me hungry ya know!… Oh and a decent mountian bike so I can ride at Cannock Chase!…. and also a tandem so I can have fun jumping stuff and trying tricks with another rider…. hope that’s ok Santa… I hope I’m on your good boy list.
Brompton M3L – £870 – The Brompton is the iconic british bicycle. Small, convienient and sturdy, this thing turns heads and folds into a couple of square foot for easy carrying. It’s ideal for commuters, for regular city riders or anyone with limited storage space. A definate winner.
BIKND Inflatable Bike Case
This is THE inflatable bike case. Made in Quebec, Canada by biknd. Really cool, easy to use, innovative and so fast to get the bike ready for those short or long destination cycling trips. Priced at $599 it’s about half the price of the industry standard Sci-Con case (but takes half the time to put the bike in or out!) I was totally impressed with it. It’s #1 on my wish list.
Marty MacDonald McCrossan:
Euskatel Team Bus – To me would look great to rock up at the local 10 or Wednesday night World Championship of Criteriums and you’ll be helping to feed the families of the team as well as they have €1million shortfall to pay the wages
this month……I think I would have a jacuzzi fitted as well though!
Bianchi’s 2013 Vacansoleil-DCM Team Bike
A 55cm frame weighs a claimed 895g… yes please!
Let us know your cycling gift ideas.
All the Cycling Shorts Team wish you a happy, healthy and safe Christmas and New Year!
If you don’t see anything that fits the bill, check out last years list by clicking here!