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"So assault isn't assault?": Reaction to aggressive driver attacking group ride; Suspended HGV driver apologises for "spandex-wearing f******" threat; Near miss interrupts Pogačar interview; Bennett ignores Lefevere; Aldi kit deals + more on the live blog

It's the start of a new week and Dan Alexander will be getting you through Monday on the live blog...
13 September 2021, 16:24
CyclingMikey teases another classic Gandalf Corner encounter

Netflix and Amazon should be battling for the rights to this... 

13 September 2021, 15:52
Cycling holiday to Chernobyl, anyone?
Chernobyl cycling (screenshot via EuroNews video)

35 years after the world's worst nuclear disaster, a new type of tourism is becoming popular in Chernobyl's 30km Exclusion Zone. Cyclists can take tours of the site's "scenic routes" near to where the explosion ripped through the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. 

Euro News reports 123,403 people visited the Exclusion Zone in 2019, it's unknown how many of these were taking cycle tours. All riders are checked for radiation levels before they leave the site.

In April, Ukraine marked the 35th anniversary of the disaster by applying for the site to be a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.

13 September 2021, 15:21
Primož Roglič to skip World Championship time trial, according to Italian media reports
Primoz Roglic wins Stage 17 of 2021 Vuelta - Copyright ASO, PhotoGomezSport

Olympic gold medallist Primož Roglič will skip the World Championships time trial next week, according to reports from Gazzetta dello Sport. The Italian outlet says sources at the Slovenian federation have confirmed Tadej Pogačar and Jan Tratnik will take the nation's spots instead.

The 43.4 kilometres course, ending in Bruges, is flat and will favour the powerhouses. Home favourites Wout van Aert and Remco Evenepoel have already confirmed their participation. Newly crowned European champ Stefan Küng and defending champion Filippo Ganna are likely to be two of the big favourites for the rainbow jersey.

13 September 2021, 14:39
Vandals rip out bike racks in Cirencester Park
Vandals rip out bike stand Cirencester (Cotswold Police)

The Wiltshire and Gloucestershire Standard reports vandals pulled out two bike stands from a Cirencester Park last month. The vandalism occurred in the Thistle Park area on Wednesday 18 August between 4.30pm and 4.50pm. Anyone with information is asked to report it to Gloucestershire Police on 101 quoting incident 324 of 18/08/2021.

13 September 2021, 14:17
Ride food done right...Rally Cycling sample Scotland's finest

Caramel Wafers are elite ride food. I won't accept any criticism - 20g of delicious carbs per wafer. Any excuse to eat as many as possible is a strong nutrition strategy.

13 September 2021, 13:30
Your number one stop for all your cycling needs...Aldi?
Aldi Specialbuys cycling kit

I'm more of a Lidl man these days, but respect to Aldi too...its famous middle aisle Specialbuys will soon be featuring a host of cycling kit, including base layers for £17.99, £14.99 jackets and gloves for £5.99. Now we just need them to release creatively marketed readily available Shimano-standard (and compatible) components for half the price...

The latest Specialbuys are in store from Sunday and also include some genuinely quite tempting looking deals...Muc-Off for £3.99, GT85 for £1.99...they've even got wheel bags and workstands...

Aldi Specialbuys cycling kit


13 September 2021, 12:22
Team Jumbo-Visma's youngest recruit steals the show in Scotland

Wout van Aert may have won the final stage of the Tour of Britain to win the race overall, but it was local rider Xander Graham who was the star of the show. The pint-sized youngster caught the TV camera's attention as he sprinted off up the pavement, putting distance between himself and the breakaway. 

As the group passed, Pascal Eenkhoorn handed him a bottle...

Xander got the call up to meet with the team in Stonehaven for the start of stage eight and even got a bit of free kit and a tour of the team bus. Great stuff, story of the weekend...

13 September 2021, 12:06
Behind the scenes at the Tour of Britain with Alex Dowsett

Ever wondered what it's like being on the other side of the TV and actually racing the Tour of Britain? Alex Dowsett's been kind enough to make a vid for his YouTube channel...something for your lunch break.

13 September 2021, 11:25
Suspended HGV driver apologises for Facebook comment threatening to knock down "spandex-wearing fuckers"
HGV driver comment name removed

The suspended White & Co. HGV driver, who last week threatened to knock down "Lycra-clad, spandex-wearing fuckers", got in touch with a statement apologising for his actions. 

Firstly, I would like to take this opportunity to apologise to you and your members for any offence or fear I have caused by posting this aggressive and uncharacteristic post.

Secondly, I would like to assure everyone that despite what I said... I would NEVER intentionally harm a cyclist or any human being for that matter.

Writing this post was a stupid and thoughtless mistake and I never expected it to go this far. In reality I am a hard working, family man who was momentarily carried away by social media and took things too far.

Not only has this reflected badly on myself, my family and my company, but it has also caused offence to many around the cycling community and community as a whole so once again, I would like to apologise whole heartedly to anyone that has been affected by my actions.

Best wishes to you all

13 September 2021, 10:17
"So assault isn't assault?": Reaction to aggressive driver attacking group ride

 That video of a driver assaulting a Swindon Wheelers member and knocking off another rider picked up a lot of attention over the weekend. The motorist became enraged by having to wait a few seconds behind the group riding two abreast, brake checking them before punching ride leader Ady Short as he tried to calmly explain why they ride in that formation.

The reaction has been a mixture of anger and disbelief that the driver was only given a caution for the attack. Questions have also been asked about Ady's explanation that Wiltshire Police ignored the camera footage of his wife being knocked over as the police "couldn't actually see her".

Under our story, the comments rolled in...Shades wondered what's the point of even bothering carrying a camera..."Camera evidence AND witnesses; only a caution!  Next time I'm riding I'll save the weight and leave the cameras at home; normally if I'm riding with someone else I'll leave them behind as I've (hopefully) got a witness in an incident."

OldRidgeback summed the whole situation up nicely: "So assault isn't assault?"

On Twitter, Detective Chief Superintendent Andy Cox commented on the story: "Road rage has appalling traits and is never a good look. How many seconds did waiting to pass safely cost him? Hardly any but his reaction cost time! Glad the headcam proved a deterrent when he spotted it. The assault is a crime but so was his driving, putting other lives at risk."

We also updated our story with links to contact the office for Wiltshire's Police and Crime Commissioner due to the extremely strong reaction to the article...

13 September 2021, 09:09
Tell that to Tadej Pogačar...
13 September 2021, 08:48
Sam Bennett ignores Patrick Lefevere comments on return to racing
Specialized S-Works Ares 6 Sam Bennett

As it turned out, Patrick Lefevere's suspicions that Sunday's European Championship road race would be too hard for Sam Bennett turned out to be correct. Although in fairness to the Irishman, only 31 of the 150 starters made it to the finish.

Bennett was asked about his team boss' furious comments last week after finding out his sprinter was competing behind the team's back. Bennett distanced himself, saying: "I just want to focus on my race today and try to forget about that and focus on the race.I’m coming back so it will be a hard day today. The first climb will be the first challenge then I’ll take it climb-by-climb after that. I’m looking forward to being back in the mix."

Last week, Lefevere accused the 2020 green jersey winner of "playing with his balls in public" by competing, and suggested the appearance was a stunt reacting to the Belgian's threat to cut his pay by 50 per cent. It was the latest example of the Deceuninck-Quick-Step boss making unsavoury comments about his rider...before the Tour de France, Lefevere accused Bennett of being mentally weak. Then, in July, he compared Bennett's upcoming Borah-Hansgrohe return to a woman returning to an abusive relationship. 

13 September 2021, 07:55
Tadej Pogačar interview interrupted by reversing driver nearly hitting Tour champ

Even when you're the Tour de France champion, you have to put up with terrible driving from time to time...Tadej Pogačar found this out while being interviewed after yesterday's European Championship road race where he finished fifth. The double yellow jersey was speaking to Slovenian radio when the driver got closer, and closer, to the point the reporter had to shout a warning...

Pog was characteristically unruffled, barely pausing his sentence. Igor Tominec, the radio reporter, posted the video on Twitter, with the caption: "Cycling is a dangerous sport. Even when you’re at the finish line, you’re not safe." Italian police have identified one early suspect in the investigation...

Pogačar was making his reappearance, competing at the European Championships as he begins his late season campaign to Il Lombardia. The 22-year-old has only raced three days since the Olympic Games road race but is expected to compete at next week's World Championship time trial and road race. 

Dan joined in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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