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Jeremy Vine hits back at senior cop "appalled" by behaviour of cyclists without helmets; Lucky cyclists narrowly avoid being struck by lightning; Alaphilippe to skip Olympics; Women's Tour de France; Help a community bike project + more on the live blog

It's Friday! So kick back and let Dan Alexander take you through to the weekend on the live blog...
14 May 2021, 15:57
Aussie cyclists narrowly avoid being struck by lightning

Oof, here is a heart-stopping video to take into the weekend...a trio of Australian cyclists were captured on this driver's dash cam narrowly avoiding being struck by lightning. The MailOnline reports the group was riding down a quiet outback road early in the morning when the lightning struck. They then calmly carried on their way seemingly oblivious to what had happened...

14 May 2021, 15:20
Bristol Bike Project raising £35,000 to renovate new home and create new community workshop
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The Bristol Bike Project is raising money to renovate its home in Easton and create a new community workshop. The much-loved community project has moved out of their old premises at Hamilton House to take on a new building in Easton. So far they have raised £20,000 of the £35,000 target which will help ensure the new premesis is well-equipped and ready to "feel welcoming and accesible for everyone in the community".

Founded in 2008, The Bristol Bike Project has benefitted more than 2,000 people through their 'earn a bike' scheme. In pre-Covid times, the workshop was packed out with programmes teaching bike maintenance as well as operating as a bike shop.

Sean was reffered by Bristol Drugs Project in 2010 and has been a volunteer at the Bristol Bike Project ever since. "Finding the Project was such an important part of my recovery," he said. "The bike keeps me clean. But the best thing about this place is that it is immediately welcoming. Anyone who has been an addict will know just how important it is to be accepted in that way."

Here's a link to their crowdfunder...

14 May 2021, 14:54
Comments and reaction to Jeremy Vine dropping some facts on Superintendent James Morgan

Plenty of reaction to round up here...

David9694 commented: "cycle helmets are a distraction, yet another a way for drivers to blame others for their incompetence.  I wear one - for my own mishaps, the occasional overhanging branch, and somewhere to mount my camera."

Jenova20 added: "Sort the problem, not the consequence of the problem. If we all have to walk the streets with helmets and body armour careless/dangerous driving will continue to be rife."

On Facebook, John Bremner suggested the superintendent goes on a holiday to Europe and takes notes on cycling while he is there... 

14 May 2021, 14:53
Safe cycle infrastructure...Aussie style
14 May 2021, 14:32
Women's Tour de France to be revived in 2022: race expected to take place after the men's Tour next summer
Lizzie Deignan wins La Course 2020 (picture Alex Whitehead for

A quick nod to a big bit of news that slipped through our net earlier in the week...Tour de France organiser, Christian Prudhome, told the Guardian that there will be a women's race from next year. It is expected to be held after the men's Tour with more details to be announced later in the year.

"It will take place next year, that’s certain,” Prudhomme said. "It would have happened this year if it had not been for the Covid-19 pandemic, obviously, and above all if the Tokyo Olympics had not been after the [men’s] Tour, so the best riders may not be available. But the decision has been taken. There will be a Tour de France femmes in 2022 following closely after the [men’s] Tour."

Prudhome did not sound completely sold on the idea, saying that all their women's races lose the organisation money and that they have been making a loss on Flèche Wallonne, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Tour of Yorkshire for the last few years. He warned that if they do not become profitable then "it will end up like the Tour in the 80s and it will die."

14 May 2021, 13:46
Julian Alaphilippe to skip Olympic Games in favour of other goals

On paper the course for the Olympic Games road race looked bang on for Julian Alaphilippe to have a great shot at adding a medal to his ever growing trophy cabinet. However, the world champ has ruled himself out of selection, preffering to target other late season goals...

On Instagram he wrote: "After having thought for a long time, in agreement with the coach of the France team and my team Deceuninck-Quick-Step, not to be a candidate for selection for the next Tokyo Olympics. It’s a personal and well thought out decision.

"End-of-season objectives have been defined and in this sense choices must be made. I would be very proud to wear the France team jersey for the next world championships. Of course, I wish the best for the team that will be fielded on this occasion."

Alaphilippe's next big goal is the Tour de France in July and the Critérium du Dauphiné before that in June. The opening stage of the Tour finishes up a short, sharp climb in Brittany, opening the door to a third yellow jersey in as many years... 

14 May 2021, 13:04
Nottinghamshire-based filmmaker documenting 1,000-mile solo charity ride for mental health charity Mind
Jason Croxall.PNG

Jason Croxall is setting off on the famous Land's End to John O'Groats challenge tomorrow. Over ten days he will tackle the 1,000-mile route unaided for the mental health charity Mind. As a sports filmmaker by profession, Jason will be mixing his new passion for cycling and documentary making by filming the best bits using a selection of cameras and a drone before editing them together once he is home.

"I got into fitness and running and cycling in the first place as an escape," the 32-year-old said. "It made me feel better. It nursed my mental health and quite frankly is the best thing I have ever done for myself.

"So many of my friends and family including myself have been affected with mental health struggles and it's really something that needs supporting and talking about more. While the ride will be incredible and really test me, I want to share it with many more people who are teetering on the edge of doing something incredible but need that final nudge. If this film can help that, it might just help me sleep better in the rain, wind and probably snow."

Jason has already beaten the £500 fundraising target on his JustGiving page which had raised £767 at the time of writing.

14 May 2021, 12:42
Mark Christian makes the break on stage seven
14 May 2021, 11:42
Islabikes launches cargo bike trial in Ludlow

Islabikes has taken a step into the cargo bike market by launching an eight-month trial delivering goods for businesses and clients in Ludlow. During the trial the service will be free to local businesses wanting to deliver small goods around the town. The bike manufacturer hopes that if successful the service will expand permanently and be a template for other small towns.

The benefits of cargo bikes are obvious with them replacing polluting delivery vehicles negotiating narrow urban streets. Cargo bikes are non-polluting in terms of noise and carbon emissions and offer a sustainable alternative to vans and lorries.

Matt Baynham, head of sustainability at Islabikes, added: “With more home deliveries than ever, and more vans clogging our streets, we are keen to improve air quality and reduce congestion in our home town”.

14 May 2021, 10:28
Cambridge is the UK's bike theft hotspot, according to ONS data
Bike lock

Bike Biz shared this data from MoneySuperMarket which shows Britain's hotspot areas for bike thefts. Analysing data from the Office for National Statistics, the insurance comparison site found that Cambridge had the highest rate of reported thefts per 1,000 people at 18.4. Oxford and Reading were second and third with eight and 5.2 stolen bikes per 1,000 people respectively, a significant jump down from Cambridge's alarming total.

Tunbridge Wells, Caerphilly and Dudley had the lowest rates, ranging between 0.2 and 0.3 per 1,000 people. In total, more than 72,640 bikes were reported stolen which is down 15 per cent from 85,285 in 2019. 

14 May 2021, 09:47
Domenico Pozzovivo withdraws from the Giro d'Italia due to stage six crash

Team Qhubeka Assos leader Domenico Pozzovivo has withdrawn from the Giro d'Italia ahead of stage seven after suffering a fall on yesterday's stage. The climber, who finished fifth in 2018, crashed and came home more than 20 minutes behind stage winner Gino Mäder. Pozzovivo injured his left arm in the fall and after speaking to his team doctor, he has decided to withdraw. 

The 38-year-old's team should get another shot at a stage victory later today with their sprinter Giacomo Nizzolo. Stage seven is a little bit lumpy but should still favour the quick men. Nizzolo was narrowly beaten by Caleb Ewan on Wednesday, his 11th second place at the Giro...could today finally be the day he goes one better?

14 May 2021, 09:30
Cyclists on the frontline of Glasgow Kenmure Street protests

 These were the scenes in Pollokshields, Glasgow, yesterday as locals successfully protested for the release of two people detained by immigration officers after an eight-hour stand-off. And, according to one attendee, there were a "weirdly disproportionately high number of cyclists"...

14 May 2021, 09:01
Raiders Gravel Galloway presented by Canyon: a new Scottish gravel adventure
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Raiders Gravel is a new "uniquely Scottish" four-day gravel stage race in Galloway Forest Park and Southern Ayrshire's UNESCO Biosphere. The inaugural edition will be held between 7-10 October 2021 and will see riders compete in teams of two over three gravel stages. An all-inclusive event, entries cost £375 per person which includes three meals a day, a camping pitch and all the good stuff that goes with taking part in a mass-participation stage race: GPS rider tracking, professionally managed routes, bike washes and Bioracer leaders jerseys...

Malcolm Smith, Golazo Cycling director said: "we’re stoked to bring this incredibly unique event to the stunning region around the Galloway Forest Park. As a gravel enthusiast myself, I was blown away by the wilderness and scenery here in Galloway. Paired with some of the best gravel tracks in the UK, riders are in for an unforgettable time in the South of Scotland."

14 May 2021, 08:42
No idea who Attila Valter is? You might remember him from this...

You would have to be a diehard follower of pro cycling to have known who Attila Valter was before he rode himself into the maglia rosa yesterday. However, there is something you might recognise him from...remember this spectacular crash at the World Championships in Harrogate a couple of years back? Well, he is certainly making a splash now...

14 May 2021, 07:31
Jeremy Vine hits back at senior cop "appalled" by behaviour of cyclists without helmets

Jeremy Vine has hit back at a City of London Police superintendent who yesterday said he was "appalled by the behaviour of some cyclists", particularly the ones "without a helmet". The broadcaster, who regularly shares footage of his own experiences of poor driving on London's roads, asked the superintendent to: "please think about this carefully. People who cycle need your protection, not condemnation for not wearing the protective gear you want to see them in. The danger they face is from law-breaking drivers. They pose very little danger themselves."

Superintendent James Morgan had tweeted his disgust at the behaviour of cyclists, claiming they had been "endangering themselves, other road users and pedestrians" and that he was "shocked to see so many without a helmet; or, worse, a helmet clipped to their backpack!"

The superintendent's tweet has been widely criticised by the cycling community but Morgan doubled down and offered this explanation...

CyclingMikey was one of the many people to challenge the superintendent...

Dan joined as live blog editor last year. He has previously written 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 exploring the south of England.

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