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Anti-LTN ranter's accidental active travel advert... bemoans congestion while walking past gridlocked bumper-to-bumper cars; Giro d'Italia mountain stage; Short stay bike racks? Coming to cycle parking near you? + more on the live blog

BREAKING NEWS: Unconfirmed reports of another three-day weekend... we'll keep you updated on that front. Dan Alexander is on live blog duty this Thursday...
25 May 2023, 08:42
Anti-LTN ranter's accidental active travel advert... bemoans congestion while walking past gridlocked bumper-to-bumper cars

10 points to the first person to spot what's causing the congestion in Alan's video?

I mean, obviously the answer was going to be ULEZ and LTNs, you know the script by now. Presumably a short distance away there is a shockingly dystopian reality unfolding...

 We're not quite sure the video had the effect intended, the replies now full of people pointing out walking, like Alan is so perfectly demonstrating, is one way to move about an eternally traffic-congested city... well, freely. Others suggested how much road space the equivalent number of people would take up if using a bus or bicycles...

But what about ULEZ and those pesky LTNs causing congestion? 

25 May 2023, 15:26
Pain.
25 May 2023, 15:12
Thibaut Pinot second AGAIN as search for one last Giro d'Italia stage win goes on

Somebody's heart was going to get broken, Italian champion Filippo Zanna sprinting for a stage win in his home region against Thibaut Pinot, the darling of the internet's cycling fans...

At least the Pinot fan club is taking it well...

On the GC front, Geraint Thomas will probably be happiest, celebrating his birthday by losing no time to any of his rivals. Some spirited attacking by Primož Roglič earned him seconds on João Almeida and bumps him up to second, but his Ineos Grenadiers rival remains 29 seconds ahead.

Tomorrow's queen stage takes the riders over 2,000m three times, with ascents of Passo Valparola and Passo Giau before a summit finish at Tre Cime di Lavaredo. Then, Saturday sees the much anticipated mountain TT that will decide who wears the maglia rosa in Rome on Sunday.

Hear me out... tomorrow Pinot wins... Saturday, a TT battle royale where the best man wins by a handful of seconds... Sunday, Cav wins...

25 May 2023, 14:25
Cyclist completes 107-mile Cardiff to Tenby bike ride... on a penny-farthing
Mickey Forrest (Facebook)

Mickey Forrest completed the Carten 100 ride last weekend, 107 miles from Cardiff to Tenby, commendable in its own right but even more so when you consider his bike...

"The camaraderie that could be felt that day was incredible," he told the Western Telegraph. "Every single cyclist was acknowledged by the members of the public who turned out to support us on the day, but when they saw the penny farthing coming towards them, the reception they gave was something else. I was even getting high fives from the children."

Inspired by another rider achieving the same feat back in 2019, Mickey got involved, trying it out before buying the rider's old penny-farthing when he got a new one...

"It's a great run, but naturally because my bike doesn't have any gears and the pedals are fixed to the wheel, it’s a pretty slow and steady ride. But the speed tends to balance out. On the flat you reach a certain speed, and this tends to become the speed that's maintained throughout the entire journey.

"The pleasure that this bike is giving me is fantastic. As Carten 100 looks forward to its 20th anniversary next year I'm determined to do everything I can to ride it again in 2024."

25 May 2023, 14:15
Giro d'Italia: Stunning scenery and very popular stage winner?

Italy...

Dolomites (GCN/Eurosport)
Dolomites (GCN/Eurosport)

It's looking like a day for the breakaway, with 20km to go six riders have just over four minutes on the peloton, Thibaut Pinot the pick of the escapees. Alongside him are Derek Gee, Marco Frigo, Filippo Zanna, Warren Barguil and Aurélien Paret-Peintre. I'll give you one guess who the road.cc fan club wants to win...

25 May 2023, 12:37
Maglia rosa Geraint Thomas turns 37

This Giro d'Italia lark looks easy, you spin around Italy for a couple of hours and get cake on the startline... (sarcasm disclaimer: just in case any rain-battered, heavily fatigued, illness-riddled pro is reading this and feels like sending a strong-worded reply)...

First Cav, now G, the bakers of Italy are making a killing off this Giro... 

25 May 2023, 12:06
Insane pro skills from Niccolò Bonifazio clears bottle from Giro d'Italia peloton's path

I'm genuinely in awe at this...

The road rash I'd get trying that... 

Having gushed about the skill, it's probably worth adding Bonifazio never made it to the start today, we're assuming just because he's a sprinter and there's not much point him slogging through the mountains, but maybe he tried this one too many times?

Tell a lie, he's got bronchitis, that would explain it. You keep on casually flicking bottles out the road, Niccolò...

25 May 2023, 11:27
Dame Sarah Storey slams drivers who turn "a blind eye to yet another death", asks for progress after three HGV crashes with cyclists in a day — two of them fatal
25 May 2023, 10:16
Frasers Group buys ProBikeKit, report suggests

Earlier this week the rumours began that ProBikeKit was to be bought by Mike Ashley's Frasers Group, the high street empire that already owns Evans Cycles...

ProBikeKit

> Cycling retailer ProBikeKit to be bought by Mike Ashley's Frasers Group, reports suggest

This morning, Cyclingindustrynews is reporting the deal is complete, sources telling them it has gone ahead and PBK has joined the group. None of this will be particularly surprising as it was expected the deal would be finalised and announced by the end of the week.

25 May 2023, 10:03
When it's mountains, mountains and more mountains for the next three days...
25 May 2023, 09:55
COMMENTS: Short stay bike racks

Thinking about it more, I'm guessing most of these racks would be in the sort of busy location I'd probably avoid leaving my bike locked for more than just a pop into a shop, but here are some of your comments on the subject...

Short stay cycle parking (@KentRiderGaz/Twitter)

a4th: "There used to be (I haven't been for a couple of years) some small bike racks near the shops on the concourse at Glasgow Central station — really handy for getting stuff before you got on the train. Not sure if they were actively managed but they seemed to work. Location and exposure meant I wouldn't want to leave a bike there long term."

Hirsute: "I'd hazard that if a bike has been there too long, they will remove it a bit like the notices that say no bikes locked to these railings."

mitsky: "Wait. 1) Are they going to actually employ someone to monitor the bike racks with a timer to ensure none are kept there for more than 20 minutes? 2) As bikes don't have registration plates (!)... how would they identify anyone (aside from CCTV footage of the bike/user) to post a fine to? (OK, I know they could attach a fine to the bike... but with no vehicle registration to tie to the record like with motor vehicles I can't see this working very well.)

marmotte27: "As this cannot be policed, the sign seems more of an informative nature. Success depending on many factors, including the quality of the long stay cycle parking facilities. Based on that a civil-minded person like me might respect these signs."

hawkinspeter: "I'd go find the long-term parking if I saw a sign like that. If it's intended for cyclists to pop into shops, then I wouldn't want to prevent them doing that if there's a good alternative fro me that's more suitable."

Live blog comment 25/5/2023

 

25 May 2023, 09:34
NEW 2023 Specialized Allez — first look at the (disc brake only) entry level road bike

If you missed Jamie's vid from the other day...

25 May 2023, 07:58
Short stay bike racks? Coming to cycle parking near you?

Here's one for us to all get our heads around this Thursday morning...

I guess I'd just never considered the idea that extra cycle racks could be offered specifically for those who just need to nip in for something. Perhaps that's because most of the time we're pleased to see ANY cycle rack, let alone trip-dependant provision...

Admittedly a train station seems a more bizarre location for these, can't remember too many rail-based 20-minute round trips in my time, although I guess if there are shops or cafes outside it would make sense to let those dropping in have handy bike rack access, while those leaving their steed all day can lock it safely inside the station?

Anyone seen these before? Do they work well or is there still the obligatory one-wheeled, flat-tyred, battered mountain bike with a rusted chain knocking around six months later?

Dan is the road.cc news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined road.cc in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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25 comments

Avatar
Hirsute | 1 year ago
5 likes

Can't resist posting this vine tweet

https://twitter.com/theJeremyVine/status/1661729285152055297

Although I have no idea what he did wrong other than the "being on the road whilst on a bike" offence.

Avatar
mitsky | 1 year ago
6 likes

For the entry about cars (motorists) causing congestion/anti-LTN:

My average speed on a bike is a tad faster than motorists during rush hour, even when accounting for the whole journey including stopping at red lights etc.

It is usually a bit faster outside of rush hour as I'm not slowed down by queues of motor vehicles in the way, sometimes taking up too much space on the road for me to pass at a reasonable speed.

But overall my increased journey time is relatively low even with traffic, on the order of 10% or less.

The same cannot be said for motorists where delays caused by congestion can often result in journey times many factors greater than if the roads were clear.

I suggest, with knowing that traffic gridlock means an average speed of 6 mph according to this latest snippet, people work out what their average driving time is outside of rush hour and compare it to that of other times.

Avatar
Matthew Acton-Varian | 1 year ago
1 like

Considering Penny Farthings are the most cumbersome and impractical bikes to ever exist, I tip my hat to anyone who rides them in such a manner. Well done, Mickey Forrest!

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brooksby | 1 year ago
2 likes

North Somerset Council promises Clevedon road review

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-65698239

Quote:

A Somerset council chief has promised a review of a controversial seafront road scheme.

A wiggly white line and a cycle lane were added to The Beach in the town of Clevedon in January.

North Somerset Council leader Mike Bell said that if action was needed, "we'll consider options".

Motoring group the RAC had previously called the new road scheme "bizarre". The makeover is reported to have cost nearly £700,000.

And that picture says they've removed the bike stands, which are surely the least controversial part of the whole scheme...?

Avatar
NotNigel replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
4 likes

A few miles left in this picture yet.

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Mungecrundle | 1 year ago
10 likes

LTN rant:

Obviously the solution to traffic congestion is more cars. However, even this is better than the American solution which would be more guns.

Avatar
OmarCuoreMatto replied to Mungecrundle | 1 year ago
11 likes

Average American: "Why can't we have both?"

Avatar
brooksby replied to OmarCuoreMatto | 1 year ago
2 likes

OT, but...

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/may/25/winnie-the-pooh-books-te...

Quote:

Inside pages of the book, featuring other characters from the Hundred Acre Wood, tell kids: “If it is safe to get away, we should RUN like Rabbit instead of stay … If danger is near, do not fear, HIDE like Pooh does until the police appear.”

The “hide” page has a drawing of Pooh burying his head in a pot of honey.

On the following page, Kanga and baby Roo are shown wearing boxing gloves. The text says: “If danger finds us, don’t stay, run away. If we can’t get away, we have to FIGHT with all our might.”

The book was given to children in Dallas-area schools on Monday without discussion or comment either with teachers or the families who received it. The move came on the week of the first anniversary of Uvalde, the mass shooting in a Texas elementary school in which 19 children and two teachers were killed.

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
5 likes

brooksby wrote:

OT, but...

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/may/25/winnie-the-pooh-books-te...

"No Way to Prevent This", says only nation where this regularly happens

Avatar
Rendel Harris replied to brooksby | 1 year ago
6 likes

I'll join you off topic with a poignant quote I saw last week from a parent who had lost a child in a school shooting: "You had a choice between stopping selling guns and starting selling bullet-proof school backpacks. You chose the latter."

Avatar
Matthew Acton-Varian replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
1 like

Ah, yes, but capitalism. Why not sell both guns and bulletproof backpacks? More money! Who cares if it's covered in the blood of the innocent? Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, school kids, what are those to people who they don't affect?

Avatar
peted76 | 1 year ago
3 likes

Y'know I watched that fella video.. and he's not ranting, he's being nice and calm, enjoying a walk seemingly the voice of reason.. 'We need to move freely Stop ULEZ Stop LTNs Together'  .....  I really wonder if he believes that the answer to conjestion really is to allow unimpeded access for cars.. does that mean he wants cars to be able to park anywhere too?  

I can from his tone and manner that some people would be fooled by what appears to be a level headed approach to the probelm he highlights.. oh why oh why can't people be clever'er..er... y'know, like we is.

 

Avatar
chrisonabike replied to peted76 | 1 year ago
3 likes

I mean, man's got a point.  He has had to walk there because there's too much traffic to drive.  And it's all happened over his lifetime - there never used to be any LTNs or cycle lanes or worries about emission zones.  Ergo...

Avatar
HoldingOn replied to chrisonabike | 1 year ago
7 likes

chrisonatrike wrote:

 And it's all happened over his lifetime - there never used to be any LTNs or cycle lanes or worries about emission zones.  Ergo...

Ergo.... he is to blame? Things were much better before he was born....

Avatar
IanMK replied to peted76 | 1 year ago
3 likes

It's difficult to tell whether he's come up with this nonsense himself or whether he's been groomed in to believing it.

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chrisonabike replied to IanMK | 1 year ago
4 likes

IanMK wrote:

It's difficult to tell whether he's come up with this nonsense himself or whether he's been groomed in to believing it.

We've all been groomed!  "Normal" is ... normal, right?  Driving everywhere (and parking almost anywhere) is entirely normal for most of the UK.  As is waiting ages to cross the road etc...

I hope he's right to be concerned - otherwise there will be no change!  Even for the most minimal transformation of our streets to occur some people are going to have to change their behaviour.  They are very unlikely to do this willingly and certainly won't do so spontaneously - otherwise it would have happened.

Obviously I have a radically different view from this chap of what is happening, the way we should go etc.  I think these changes will have positive effects that he's not dreamed of.  I think change is possible, not a pipe dream.  I do so mostly because I've seen it for myself though.

Avatar
Brauchsel | 1 year ago
9 likes

I rode past an anti-ULEZ protest in Beckenham at the weekend. They'd blocked off a roundabout, and the traffic was appalling. I asked the man handing out leaflets if that was how he wanted things to be, but he didn't find it very funny. 

Avatar
mitsky replied to Brauchsel | 1 year ago
2 likes

A picture of that would be brilliant to add to the dictionary definition of "irony". laugh

Avatar
a4th | 1 year ago
2 likes

There used to be (I haven't been for a couple of years) some small bike racks near the shops on the concourse at Glasgow Central station - really handy for getting stuff before you got on the train. Not sure if they were actively managed but they seemed to work. Location and exposure meant I wouldn't want to leave a bike there long term.

Avatar
BigSigh replied to a4th | 1 year ago
2 likes

Like yourself, I haven't been in Central in a while but they worked well and I don't know of any security issues. I used to leave my bike there while I was driving trains and my bikes were always there when I came back. They have very similar set up at Waverley and, again, I know of no security issues (I have never left a bike there). Both locations do seem to suffer from a large number of bikes parked there years ago and still not claimed...
Queen Street station does not have those same bike racks but it has recently opened up indoor bike storage which seems well used and staff do checks. (This is in addition to the outdoor bike racks at both sides of the station). I know of a couple of my colleagues who had bikes stolen from outside of Queen Street a few years and I met someone recently whose bike has gone missing unfortunately but it seems rare. The issue with the indoor bike storage though is it is only open between 7am and 10pm. I guess this suits most people - unless you miss your train and arrive back after 10!
Given that I'm the only daily cyclist working there - there are 3/4 other occasional cyclists - I just stash my bike in the bothy and no one bothers.

Avatar
Hirsute | 1 year ago
1 like

I'd hazard that if a bike has been there too long, they will remove it a bit like the notices that say no bikes locked to these railings.

Avatar
mitsky | 1 year ago
1 like

Wait.

1) Are they going to actually employ someone to monitor the bike racks with a timer to ensure none are kept there for more than 20 minutes?

2) As bikes don't have registration plates (!)... how would they identify anyone (aside from CCTV footage of the bike/user) to post a fine to? laugh
(OK, I know they could attach a fine to the bike... but with no vehicle registration to tie to the record like with motor vehicles I can't see this working very well.)

Avatar
marmotte27 replied to mitsky | 1 year ago
2 likes

As this cannot be policed, the sign seems more of an informative nature. Succes depending on many factors, including the quality of the long stay cycle parking facilities. Based on that a civil-minded person like me might respect these signs.
 

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to marmotte27 | 1 year ago
1 like

marmotte27 wrote:

As this cannot be policed, the sign seems more of an informative nature. Succes depending on many factors, including the qualitiy of the long stay cycle parking facilities. Based on that a civil-minded person like me might respect these signs.

I'd go find the long-term parking if I saw a sign like that. If it's intended for cyclists to pop into shops, then I wouldn't want to prevent them doing that if there's a good alternative fro me that's more suitable.

Avatar
chrisonabike replied to mitsky | 1 year ago
10 likes

Didn't we have an example of a short-stay bike rack in yesterday's news?

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