We'll kick off with a groundbreaking design... What this is, right, is a leather holder. For a banana. You're pretty stunned, huh? Like us, you're probably wondering what took them so long.
It’s made by Biken Products, it costs £34.26 and... well, that’s about all you need to know, really.
And you can keep your filthy banana-based jokes to yourself, too. Which one of you just shouted out 'banana hammock'? Childish. Get out.
Let's move on.
Quarq has a completely redesigned and rebuilt website with new functions: www.quarq.com.
The new website for SRAM’s power meter brand features more visual displays of products and side-by-side product comparisons. It also has redesigned sections dedicated to product reviews, sponsored teams and athletes, and consumer education, including content from new Quarq Power Coach Gord Fraser, a former pro and three-time Olympian.
But it’s probably easiest if you just head over there and check it out for yourself: www.quarq.com.
As you know, the Tour de France’s Grand Départ takes place in Yorkshire this year, and Lime Lace in Harrogate, the town where stage one finishes, have a bunch of bike prints in stock.
This one is printed on antique uncoated 270gsm paper and is available in A2 (£23.95) and A3 (£18.95) sizes.
They need to do a Tour t’France version over a map of Yorkshire though, don't they? Possibly featuring Compo off of Last of the Summer Wine riding the bike. Just a mildly offensive, stereotype-based idea. But I'd still buy one. Definitely.
Go to www.limelace.co.uk.
Craft’s Hybrid Weather Glove features a 2-in-1 construction that’s designed to keep cold, wind and water out, and it’s especially suitable for spring and autumn. You can change it from a glove to a mitten by positioning the windproof and waterproof shield over your fingers. When the cover is not needed, you just tuck it away.
The other clever feature is that you don’t have to take them off to use your smartphone since the thumb and index finger are touchscreen compatible. The reflective print is intended to improve visibility in low-light conditions.
They’re priced at £24. http://craftsportswear.co.uk/
Get On Your Bike is a new book aimed at people wanting to get into cycling.
We’ve not had a copy yet but we’re told, “If you’ve been thinking about getting a bike but worry that you’re too unfit, too old, too uncoordinated – or you’re worried about the safety of actually riding it on the road – this is the book for you.”
The book looks at how cycling can improve your physical fitness, help you lose weight, improve your concentration and mental health, and maybe even make new relationships. Other areas covered include how to choose the right bike, what to wear, how to cycle safely, and how to keep your bike going.
If this all sounds a bit basic for you, the dedicated road.ccer, maybe there’s someone else in your life who could benefit.
Published by Bloomsbury Sport, Get On Your Bike is written by cycling journalists Rebecca Charlton, Robert Hicks and Hannah Reynolds, costs £14.99 in paperback, and goes on sale on 10 April.
Selle Royal’s waterproof Second Skin saddle covers are now Made in Italy from ultra-resistant silicone. They come in three different designs: Think Bike, Reduce your CO2 Emissions and Xtremely Tyred.
Selle Royal reckon that the highly elastic silicone means it can fit and protect every saddle type and size, without creating creases and seams. The Second Skin is designed to be fitted and removed in seconds. It’s small enough to store in a pocket or saddlebag.
Selle Royal says that the slogans were inspired by the World Naked Bike Ride. /content/news/89457-world-naked-bike-ride-proves-be-all-bit-too-much-clacton-sea
The Second Skin covers are priced at €7.90 from www.selleroyal.com.
If you’re a tourer you might be interested to know that Swedish stove manufacturer Primus have a new Eta Lite LPG stove.
Primus say they have been able to keep the burner’s height very low here, resulting in a lower centre of gravity and improved stability. Another new feature is a simple Triangle Joint connection between pot and burner that allows you to twist and click the pot in place securely.
The Eta Lite, which weighs 355g, boasts a 1,500 watts output, and comes with a hard-anodized aluminium 0.5 litre pot with a cover made from felt and an integrated hanging device.
There is also an optional Eta Lite set with a coffee press. It’s priced at £119 with the coffee press, £109 without. www.primus.eu
Primal tell us that their spring/summer range is now available at www.primaleurope.com.
This, for example, is the Limited Men’s Cycling Jersey priced at £49.99. It’s made from Primal’s SpeedPro polyester fabric that is, of course, designed to wick sweat away from your skin. The cut is slightly relaxed by cycling jersey standards, so it shouldn’t feel restrictive.
Over on the women’s side of things, this is the Accento Helix Jersey (£79.99) made from a lightweight and antibacterial SLR Ion material with a dimpled Z92 fabric for the sleeves and mesh side panels and shoulders.
There are loads more options available for both men and women.
Primal also create custom cycling clothing for teams, clubs, events, and so on. Check out all the options at www.primaleurope.com.
While we’re on about summer clothing, we’ll just remind you that De Marchi have recently opened an online store so you order it direct from Italy by the miracle of the Interweb, or in some cases the De Marchi site will direct you to a retailer.
This is the SCIC 1969 Official Replica jersey, for example. It is made from a wool blend with embroidered logos and mother of pearl buttons on the pockets. It’s priced at €160.
We like the Audace jersey too, again in a wool blend. It’s cheaper at €120.
De Marchi do a full range of more modern, less retro looking designs too. This Veloce Jersey, for instance, is made from quick-drying microfibre with 30% Lycra in there for a close fit. It’s priced at €150.
Browse the full range at http://www.demarchi.com/
Freitag have launched a brand new rucksack that they say is, “The perfect companion for all urban creative workers during their daily downtown excursions on foot or bike.”
Are you an urban creative worker?
We don’t usually print press releases but this one is good so we’ll share it with you...
“In 1874, Alpine journalist W.A.B. Coolidge achieved the first winter ascent of the Jungfrau [a major Swiss summit]. Today’s challenges no longer await us at high altitudes but rather in the daily grind on the streets, and the heroes of today are the urban creative workers; there are no satellite forecasts for their changing order patterns. No thermal underwear can keep them warm during turbulences encountered on the relationship front, and when they are carried away by an avalanche of vehicles while on their bikes, a bleeping tracking device won’t be much help at all. The only thing they need to survive in style is a companion they can rely on – a large, tough, water-repellent backpack.”
Well, we thought it was quite funny.
The R521 Coolidge is made from truck tarpaulin and features a compartment with a padded base for a 15in MacBook. Yes, of course it has to be a MacBook. There’s a zipped outer pocket on the flap and an adjustable cover flap for more volume. The shoulder straps are padded and adjustable. There’s no chest or waist strap though.
The R521 Coolidge measures 330×410×140mm and costs £295. For more info go to www.freitag.ch.
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.