When I was younger I was in the school swimming team and played in goal for our hockey team, but cycling has always been my sport. I have always gone hillwalking, but for me that is definitely not a sport and more something that I enjoy doing. I don’t obsess over it the way I do about cycling.
I’ve only gone and done it again! Last year, if you recall, I finished the Strathpuffer mountain bike race, almost in tears and vowing that it was all over.
I looked at the computer on my handlebars. I was hitting 52 mph. I crouched down on my bike a little more, but I couldn’t edge out any more speed. My fingers were off the brakes and I was out of gears to pedal any faster.
Podcasting has been around for a number of years now. The nascent technology that allows audio content to be recorded, serialised and put online for a potential audience to download on to their various smartphones and other devices first came into prominence around 2003, but it was with the advent of the iPod shuffle that the media form really started to take off.
Crashing, unfortunately, is part of cycling. Generally they are innocuous and the pain they cause is more likely to be wounded pride rather than actual physical harm.
Stage 17 of the 2017 Tour de France on Wednesday July 19 will take the riders on an epic 183km journey from La Mure to Serre-Chevalier. It is the first of two big Alpine stages in this year’s race (the other is the following day with the stage from Briançon to the Col d’Izoard) and will shake up the general classification as riders head over the giants of the Croix de Fer and the Col du Galibier.
The Tour de France (TdF) starts today in Düsseldorf with a 14km time-trial on the banks of the Rhine. This short course is almost completely flat and will organise the race standings for the next flat road race stage and decide the first wearer of the Yellow Jersey for 2017.
Last week my son reminded me of the simple joys of riding a bike. He had just been given a new road bike for his birthday and was delighted with it.
It’s hard to imagine a time when bicycles didn’t have tyres. The first bicycle wheels were made entirely of wood, soon progressing to iron, but you can imagine that the comfort of one’s ride on such velocipedes was not great.
Sitting in a café last week, mid-ride, the owner asked how far we were cycling today. I replied nonchalantly: “60 miles”. She smiled and said she could never cycle that far. When I told her she would be surprised how far she could actually cycle if she built up to it to, she replied that she had thought about getting an electric bike (e-bike), but hadn’t pursued this as she thought it was cheating.