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Cycling World January 2016

Cycling World January 2016



9 Editor’s Letter


NEWS 12 The London Bike Show at Excel 68 Cycle Revolution: Exhibition at The London Design Museum

REGULARS 17 Ask Anita : Revolution Resolution 24 Bicycle Diaries: Stage 3 Chamonix to Trieste


74 Film Review: On Yer Bike by the BFI 76 Book Reviews: A Siberian Winter’s Tale and A Year in the Saddle



48 E-bike Changes for 2016 54 E-bikes for Hire 56 E-bike Review: Italjet Luxury 60 E-bike Review: Gepida Reptila 62 Product Review: Helite Air Vest


Cycling World January 2016



@CyclingWorlduk @cyclingworld_uk www.cyclingworldmag.co.uk



UK CYCLING UK Businesses Benefit 28 from Cyclists The New Forest 32 Cycling the West 44 Cornwall Loop Land’s End to John O’Groats: The Pedalling Pedlar


BIKE STUFF Winter Jacket Road 80 Test Product Reviews 84

OVERSEAS CYCLING Six Amazing Routes 88 for 2016 Oregon: Big Cycling 90

34 Cycling World January 2016


For every nasty in the road, there’s the new Durano Double Defense. 8

Cycling World January 2016

Advanced cut resistant SnakeSkin sidewalls and RaceGuard puncture protection. More than a match for your city’s streets.

Editor’s letter January 2016


t seems clichéd talking about New Year’s resolutions, but we all make them in some way. Perhaps we don’t all pin them to the fridge or deliberately create accountability by sharing them with a loved one, but I’m convinced they pass through everyone’s mind, perhaps even to the sound track of Auld Lang Syne.

Motivational resolutions can be tough for a cyclist as climate, darkness and road conditions become more challenging. However there is enough good kit out there to keep on riding through, as long as it doesn’t get too icy. In the event that Bing Crosby’s wishful singing has a delayed impact and there’s no snow bike in the shed, one can always resort to a turbo trainer. Seasonal modifications must include the bike, the very least being winter tyres and of course mudguards if you want keep ride buddies as ... ride buddies. Clothing should be considered from head to toe to fingertips: the extremities are the most exposed to wind, rain and road splash though the body’s natural heating system can get neglectful. Garments can also offer increased visibility in addition to the obligatory decent set of lights. Though not wishing to focus on the negative, it’s sensible to consider worst-case scenarios, in general and not just on the bike. Think about the ICE- in case of emergency that is, and how this info and medical information can be shared, be it a tag or even a scrap of paper. Our latest useful discovery is the facility on smart phones, they all seem to allow an emergency call while the phone is locked, with IPhones permitting access to entered medical records.


Cycling World Limited Myrtle Oast Kemsdale Road, Fostall Faversham, Kent ME13 9JL Tel: 01227 750153 Publisher: Colin Woolley colin@cyclingworldmag.co.uk


Editor: David Robert editor@cyclingworldmag.co.uk Sub Editor Intern: Tudor Tamas of Sunderland University Senior Designer: Ivan Boyanov Junior Designer: Matthew Head


Sales Manager: Simon White simon@cyclingworldmagazine.com Sales Executive: Joe Nardone joe@cyclingworldmag.co.uk Sales Executive: Ben Emery ben@cyclingworldmagazine.com Sales Executive: Alice Allwright production@cplmedia.co.uk


Tudor Tamas, Anita Powell, Rebecca Lowe, Jim Duncan, Simon Postgate, Joanna Corfield, Anna Hughes, Rick Perkins, Emily Chappell, Richard Peploe, Neil Wheadon.


COMAG Tavistock Road, West Drayton Middlesex UB7 7QE Front cover photo from Oregon by Neil Wheadon

So keep warm, keep seen, keep safe and most of all: keep riding.

David Robert (Editor)

Although every effort is made to ensure the content of features in Cycling World is accurate and correct, the publisher cannot accept responsibility for the veracity of claims made by contributors, manufacturers or advertisers. No guarantees can be made upon the safe return of any unsolicited copy of photographic images. Thepublisher reserves the right to alter or amend any submitted material that is printed in Cycling World. All material in Cycling World is the copyright of the publisher and any reproduction of said material would require written permission from the publisher. ©Cycling World Limited 2015 ISSN: 0143-0238

Cycling World January 2016





n a resounding victory for CTC, the national cycling charity, Eurostar’s Head of EU Public Affairs, Pierre Delalande sent an email saying: “You will be pleased to know that we are not intending to go ahead with the requirement for all bikes to be carried in boxes and will accept fully-mounted bikes.” Eurostar proposed to make cyclists dismantle and box up their bikes from Sunday 1 November - a plan which sparked a public outcry across Europe. More than 9,700 people signed up to the ‘Zero stars for Eurostar’ campaign spearheaded by CTC and the ECF (European Cyclists’ Federation) which gained the support of the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson MP, and the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo.



amden Council is introducing a 12 month trial of traffic changes on London’s busiest cycling corridor including Torrington Place, Byng Place, Gordon Square, Tavistock Square and Tavistock


Recent surveys have shown that the corridor suffers from a number of issues which include lack of space on the cycle tracks, narrow pavements and poor crossings for pedestrians. The narrow roads make it impossible to provide more space for walking and cycling without significantly reducing the space available for motor traffic. The trial gives the opportunity to test a potential solution to these issues. Once the trial has been in place for a few months the Council will write to local residents and businesses to formally seek views on the changes. These views will help inform a decision on whether the changes should be made permanent.


Cycling World January 2016


ycling World journalist Chris Burn has been entered into the second edition of Europe’s Snow Bike Festival in GSTAAD from January 22 – 24. It will feature a three-day Stage Race, Eliminator Night Race, Fun Ride, Snow Bike Party and Fat Bike and MTB EXPO. GSTAAD in Switzerland is becoming the destination of choice for Fat Biking in Europe. The picture perfect landscape, mountain peaks,

deep valleys and abundance of snow all contribute to the excitement and fun synonymous with Snow Biking. “Mountain biking is an all year sport and the new Fat Bikes are the perfect match for winter. I am very pleased that GSTAAD is the host of the Snow Bike Festival,” says Swiss MTB Legend Christoph Sauser, Swiss Champion and MTB World Champion.



ike Life, the biggest survey ever conducted on attitudes to cycling in the UK, shows that three quarters (75%) of people want national governments to invest more in making cycling safer. The survey conducted by national charity Sustrans revealed that the 11,000 people questioned wanted on average £26 per person to be spent on cycling annually, as part of the £300 per person currently spent on transport. Jason Torrance, Policy Director at Sustrans, said: “Physical inactivity, congestion and declining air quality cost our economy billions. Governments must act to secure a greater share of current transport investment for cycling and walking.”



he team has been nominated for National Geographic’s Adventurers of the Year 2016. In Afghanistan, a woman riding a bicycle is culturally taboo. But in 2012, a group of brave Afghan women began working toward a goal: to compete internationally as a team. Their passion for cycling has sparked a cultural debate about women’s rights as additional women’s cycling clubs have begun to pop up around the country. When asked what motivates rider Frozan Rasooli said: “Riding bikes gives me energy, it has the power to change the common perspective that a woman’s only place is at home raising children and caring for the household. I am in love with riding bikes. When I ride a bike outside, I feel like a king of the streets.” Do vote for these inspiring women: http://adventure.nationalgeographic.com/adventure/ adventurers-of-the-year/2016/vote/afghan-women/



amberwell-based entrepreneur Jem Stein, of The Bike Project, has been announced as the winner of the Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2015. Jem was named the winner of a public vote from a shortlist of five finalists. Having mentored a refugee whilst at university, Jem Stein was inspired to create The Bike Project in 2013 to provide secondhand bikes to refugees

in and around London, providing essential access to free transport in the city. Additionally the Project offers an inclusive and supportive community for refugees to learn new skills through active workshops. In being named the Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneur of the Year, Jem received the grand prize award of £10,000 to help develop The Bike Project.



he Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport award has been won by CEMEX for its safety initiatives including driver training, additional safety features on their LGVs and an education programme working with cyclists to highlight the dangers about LGVs. A key aspect has also been working with industry bodies to help achieve a national standard of safety features on vehicles. Safety features include additional mirrors, proximity sensors and cameras have been added where appropriate to CEMEX vehicles. Additionally a Safe Urban Driving course gives drivers the knowledge, skills and defensive driving techniques to deal with the challenges of driving in a busy urban environment. It includes drivers getting on bikes to see the road from the cyclist’s perspective. Cycling World January 2016



Excel London

The Greatest UK

Cycling Show Returns


The London Bike Show - Excel London

he UK’s largest Cycling Show returns to the ExCel London in 2016, hosting the biggest bicycle brands, the brightest stars of the cycling world and all the best gear for all your cycling needs. Running from 11th14th February, tickets to the Bike Show will also give visitors unparalleled access to The Telegraph Outdoor Adventure

and Travel Show, Triathlon Show: London and for the first time the London International Dive Show. The London Bike Show has over 300 confirmed exhibitors, including the biggest name brands in the cycling industry, including Cannondale, Boardman, GT Bikes, Scott, Hoy Bikes, Enigma and many more. For those looking for the latest

and greatest in cycling gear, the Bike Show is the ultimate destination for everything from bicycles, clothing, innovation and accessories, all under one roof. The Show will feature a 500m bike test track in partnership with Bikes Etc. allowing visitors to test out a whole range of premium road, commuter and electric bikes for size before purchasing. Visiting

For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.thelondonbikeshow.co.uk

10% TICKET DISCOUNT for Cycling World readers: use code

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Cycling World January 2016

families can take advantage of the kids’ track, where budding riders can try out a full range of kids’ bikes in a safe space. New for 2016, Air to the Throne is a must-see spectacle for all freestyle fans, mountain bikers and thrill seekers. The progressive AT3 custom-built course is designed to test the skills of the best riders in the world and will host spectacular demos from 8 world-class BMX and MTB riders throughout Thursday and Friday. Over the weekend the excitement intensifies as the competitions gets underway; 30 of the best riders will battle it out for a chance to win the €10,000 prize pot and to be crowned King of the Throne. Whether you are a freestyle fanatic or new to the sport, the sheer scale of the challenge and the extreme skills of the riders, will keep children and adults alike captivated. Returning to the Show in 2016, The Surrey Performance Training Hub, offering premium performance testing at a huge discount. Visiting cyclists can book two-hour one-to-one sessions with expert sport physiologists, consisting of a full physical assessment around technique, fitness and nutrition. Results will be processed on-site by the team of experts, who will draw up a full analysis and performance review, before outlining a personalised and detailed training plan that will help you to dramatically improve your cycling performance before the new season. After another great year for British cycling in 2015, cycling enthusiasts should not miss out on visiting Cycling Performance

Theatre space sponsored by Cycle Guard for a chance to listen to talks from a stellar list of special guest speakers. Previous guests include Great Britain’s most successful Olympian Sir Chris Hoy, three-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond and downhill MTB legend Steve Peat. The full line-up for 2016 will be revealed over the coming months. Anyone still in need of an adrenaline fix can make their way to the Action Sports Tour area; featuring some of the world’s best stunt riders performing daily demos that will be sure to keep you on the edge of your seat as the riders perform stunts and display their astounding skills, control and nerve. After proving a huge success in 2015, the StreetVelodrome returns in 2016 to give visitors the chance to get involved in the action-packed thrill of track cycling in the world’s only pop up velodrome. Sign-up to take part in the action or simply cheer from the side-lines; the StreetVelodrome is guaranteed entertainment for the whole family. After a busy day at the Show, the Workshop café is the perfect place to unwind, as well as getting useful maintenance and bike-care tips from Cytech’s expert mechanics and trainers. In addition, the annual Cytech Fastest Wrench competition

returns to the café. Fancy your chances at beating the 44 second tyre-changing record? Sign-up on any of the 4 days and be in with a chance to win great prizes and the glory of being Fastest Wrench 2016. The London Bike Show has also teamed up with Evans to organise a pre-Show Sportive, which will form part of the Ride It series, for all cycling fanatics keen for a full day of bike related action across Saturday and Sunday. Setting off early from the ExCel, the route will take riders on a 60 mile loop out of the city and into the countryside, through Epping Forest and back to the Show in time for the Show to kick off. Visitors can buy their combined tickets to the London Bike Show and the Ride It sportive at EvansCycles.com. The huge range of features, attractions and big name brands under one roof ensures that the 2016 London Bike Show is sure to be a highlight in the Cycling calendar. The diversity of the Show means that whether you are a passionate road, mountain or commuter cyclist, you are guaranteed to be kept busy by everything on offer, including access to all FOUR shows for the price of one.

Cycling World January 2016



Win a beautiful cycling print Come and say hi to Cycling World at the Excel Show and enter our competition to win Grid, an original framed print by Alex Cook. Alex is an illustrator based in Norwich, Norfolk. He told us about the inspiration for his work: “I have a love of cycling so I naturally I love to draw cycling related images. I've watched the Tour de France since I was a young boy and still to this day I'm fascinated by the colour and chaos of the peloton. My favourite era of the sport is the eighties and nineties as not only were there some great characters in cycling back then; Lemond, Fignon, Cipollini and Pantani; but also it was visually very exciting with plenty of crazy colourful team kits."


Cycling World January 2016

July 2016 ported by Sup

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online. mobile. tablet. EE TV January 2016


Ask Anita Photos by Alex Loucaides


nita loves discovering new places by bike, having explored many miles of the National Cycle Network, and taken her trusty Ridgeback to roughly twenty countries so far. She does the occasional sportive, commutes by bike in London and Surrey and dabbles in triathlons, mountain biking and visiting cycling cafes. She currently works for the charity Sustrans as a project officer. Anita’s main area of expertise is surrounding herself with experts, whose knowledge she will extract to answer all of your everyday cycling questions…

the feelings of guilt.

produce them.

The good old resolutions

The others

Remember when you used to say you’d stop eating chocolate? Go to the gym?

They’ll say they think you’re crazy but really they’re in awe. They’ll jokingly offer you a lift and brag about how warm their car is. Then the next day they’ll come in fuming because of a traffic jam on the A35 making them late. They’ll grump about all day, whilst you smile on the inside and out, full of (coffee) beans and pleased with your new stress-free journey to work.

Dear Anita I’ve told everyone that my New Year’s resolution is to start cycling to work, and now that means I have to actually do it. It’s so cold outside though, do you think it would be ok if I waited until the spring/ summer/2020?

Sticking to it Stop biting your nails? Then you’re on the sofa one day in February, you glance to your right and see an empty Dairy Milk wrapper, and instantly bite your fingernails to pretend it didn’t happen? Well, that’s not what’s going to happen this time. This time you are going to stick to it because this isn’t about curbing bad habits, it’s about realising your daily commute doesn’t have to be depressing, and then doing something about it. Ready to rumble

Telling people you’re going to do something is your brain’s way of helping you to make decisions that your subconscious wants, even if every muscle in your body is rebelling against it. You’ve said it, it’s out there, people are waiting for you to make good on your word, and that little voice will just start becoming progressively louder as a chorus of friends and family ask how it’s going. It’s probably easier just to get on with it now and avoid

It’s really not cold out there if you layer up appropriately. You can feel a smugly snug warmth under nice base layers and your fingers and toes love a good excuse to be encased in toasty gloves and socks. Straight on a bike and you’re off, no waiting for the heating to defrost the windscreen or to warm your feet, the pedalling does that. Check out your route beforehand and try out different options – often you can avoid the busiest roads adding only a few minutes. Seek out some cycling maps – most local authorities

I don’t think you’ll have a problem sticking to it. I’ve rarely met anyone who tried cycling to work and didn’t like it. Especially if you start in winter, then the spring/summer will be an absolute joy for you. If your bum hurts a bit to start with that’s normal, it’ll go. You can always treat yourself to some lovely padded underwear. Cycling to work is a great resolution – it might seem a daunting prospect right now but it’ll soon be the norm for you, and you’ll wonder what the hesitation was about. The extra bonus is you can consume as many chocolate and fingernail sandwiches as you like after burning off all those calories.

Cycling World January 2016



Cycling World January 2016

Froome Dog barks on TdeF, team business and motivation Karen Tso of European Squawk Box CNBC spoke to Chris Froomeat the Web Summit at Dublin in October KT: How are you feeling about your preparation for the 2016 Tour de France? CF: At the moment I’m in terrible condition, after a month off when it can just be normal again, you can have a burger, have a beer, but the rest of the year, from November onwards it’s pretty much ten months of living a full-on lifestyle to get ready for the TdeF again. KT: Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador were the last two riders to stand on the podium for consecutive years, but they’ve had those victories stripped. That leaves Miguel Indurain in 1995 since the last back to back win. What do you make of your chances? CF: I’ve won two tours now but it is harder to go back and do it again. You have a lot more pressure on your shoulders, you’re being pulled left and right over the winter doing different appearances and I think a lot of the responsibility there, for me personally, is to try and limit the amount of engagements that I have and try and focus on what I’m meant to do which is riding my bike. KT: Let’s get in to some of the lessons that business people can learn from an elite athlete like yourself. What advice do you have for those who have a long road ahead of them in business? CF: I think to be able to set yourself smaller goals and objectives earlier on, for me personally, once I get to January I know I’ve got to go on a training camp with the rest of my team mates, I’ve got to be fit enough to ride at least pretty competitively with them and then to start racing in February to have a few smaller goals before the Tour de France. KT: What happens if you fall over at

the first hurdle, at the first goal you’ve set? CF: You’ve got to take those opportunities to be able to learn from. If I look back at the 2014 Tour de France, I’d won the tour in 2013, I felt as if my preparations and everything had been perfect leading up until the 2014 tour, the route suited me well, but in the first week there was a touch of wheels in front of me and a careless moment, a careless crash, basically ended my Tour de France completely and I think being able to pick yourself up from the disappointments, and to be able to learn from them and just ask yourself the question, what could I have done better to avoid that situation? KT: What was the toughest part about the 2015 course and how did you mentally gear up for that challenge? CF: I think the toughest part was the penultimate stage, a mountain top finish on quite an iconic climb, the Alpe d’Huez. I had gone into the race with a tactic of trying to get an early lead and to basically fall back on a more defensive role going into the last week, and by the time we had got on to that penultimate stage with nineteen days of racing in our legs already, everyone was pretty wrecked at that point. The toughest point really was defending the yellow jersey at that last stage when my rivals could smell blood, they knew I was tired, they really just went for it and attacked me at every opportunity they had. KT: 2016 looks like it might be a better course for you, why is that and is that even more mentally challenging if you think you might have an easier ride? CF: I think if I look at my strengths as a professional cyclist, I think I’m quite well rounded, I’m able to time trial

relatively well compared to the pure climbers. The 2016 course definitely does have a lot more time trialling and in that sense it’s going to be a much more well balanced-race and it’s going to be that balance of who can hang on the time trials and still climb at the top level. KT: You’ve had injuries along the way, a fractured foot I believe: what tips do you have to stay motivated? CF: I think motivation is an interesting topic. One approach is on the back of disappointment, sure, in the moment it is hugely frustrating and you feel as if you’ve lost months of training and preparation, but actually those disappointments are what motivate me really, I go home and analyse why things went wrong which gives me a lot of motivation to come back even stronger. What’s more tricky is coming in and trying to stay motivated and even trying to improve when things have gone well for you, I think it’s quite easy to become complacent, and OK, I’ve won the Tour de France, well I’ll just go in next year and try and do the same thing again, but it doesn’t work like that. I’m going to have to try and be better next year – I’ve got to look at everything I’m doing, every factor of my nutrition, my training, everything to try and do it even better. KT: What do you do to deal with success and stay on top? CF: I think it’s just that constant evaluation, especially in cycling, everyone’s evolving. You’re coming up against stronger rivals every year. Team Sky has a good basic formula but I do feel as if it’s something that we constantly need to challenge and constantly need to become better at everything we do. Cycling World January 2016


KT: How much of your success is physical preparation versus mental determination? CF: You certainly feel that in cycling the physical demands are of course really important, but it becomes mental when you’re up on a final mountain path, going head-to-head with one of your rivals. You’re going to push each other until one of you flicks a switch and says right, that’s enough for me. And that’s where cycling really is up here and you’ve got to be able to deal with someone pushing you above your capability and to be able to hang on for as long as you can at that point. KT: You’re part of British Team Sky, we know you have a lot of team support. Can a rider with significant talent still win if the team is mediocre? CF: I’d say it would be a lot more difficult to win an event like the TdeF if your team isn’t completely up for it. Sure, it might be possible if you’ve got an exceptional leader. It might be possible for him to ride off other teams and still try to win. But it certainly makes it a whole different game. KT: What do you think are the characteristics of that winning team formula?


Cycling World January 2016

CF: A major aspect is to align everyone’s individual goals with the team goal. Then you really get the buy-in 100% from everyone you’re going to have an unstoppable team. KT: How important is momentum? CF: I think it is critical for me to win at least one or two races, even if they’re smaller events, before the TdeF, just to build that momentum. It builds the trust among my colleagues, my teammates so that I really do have the 100% buy-in from everyone. KT: How much have you seen technology evolve in the time that you’ve been riding and what next? CF: Cycling really does have a very traditional background and I think that there are quite a lot of people out there who actually don’t want to see the sport evolving too much. But we are seeing a lot more use of data in training especially. The gearing now on our bikes is now electronic as opposed to the old manual cabling shifting systems. I think the biggest innovations in the sport going forward will probably be much more in terms of broadcasting in terms of sharing data with our audiences and broadcasting race radio communications between the director

sportif and the riders and between riders. KT: The sport has gone just a little bit techy, run from the back office. How much of this detracts away from the raw experience of just getting on a bike and going for a ride? CF: I fell in love with the sport for just being able to get on the bike and go for a ride and that feeling of independence and just being able to really engage with your body and the outdoors. And still for me that hasn’t changed. But it has become a lot more measured and calculated.  I’m going out and I’m doing specific efforts at certain power wattages, really measuring the efforts and it does take a little bit away from that old feeling of just getting on your bike. KT: How successful do you think technology will be to stop and identify those who might be cheating in the sport? CF: It’s been a massive part of the evolution of the sport over the past ten years, I mean, especially moving on from the whole Lance Armstrong era where we all know what was happening back then, I think the anti-doping agencies have stepped up their game, I’d like to think they’ve







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Cycling World January 2016

Adv-Cycling World-90x270.indd 1

19/11/2015 08:39

got a lot of new testing procedures in place. There’s the World Anti-Doping Agency who have a set of rules and the introduction of the biological passport in 2009. The UCI has introduced even more measures, we’re now the only sport with 24-hour testing, so they can come and wake us up at two o’clock in the morning, 365 days a year, and also a no needles policy. They’ve gone above and beyond to try and get rid of doping within the sport. KT: What are you doing as an adrenalin junkie, because you’ve been filmed jumping out of planes, doing all kinds of stunts, any more daredevil feats on the horizon? CF: It’s pretty difficult for me now with the team contracts, I’m pretty limited on what I’m allowed to do. I must admit, a couple of weeks ago, I did go up in a little glider and do a bit of acrobatics and I love it, I love the outdoors, I love experiencing life in that way. KT: Let’s get one for the retail cyclists: when you go to get a bike, what are you looking for, or any advice on buying a road bike? CF: On an amateur level is just to enjoy it, concentrate less on looking the part than being the part. I think there are a lot of people out there with equipment far superior to the equipment we’re racing on, but remember why you go in to the sport in the first place, which is the love of the sport and enjoy it.

Giclée prints by Simon Taylor, printed on fine quality paper measuring 450 x 326 mm. Each edition is limited to just 195 copies and cost £89 each. In 1996 Simon was nominated as best selling published artist. Since becoming a fan of the Tour de France he has developed a style which is a modern take on the art deco posters of the 1920s and 30s TO PURCHASE PRINTS VISIT WWW.SIMON-TAYLOR.COM Cycling World January 2016


The Bicycle Diaries One woman’s solo cycle from London to Tehran: Stage 3 Rebecca Lowe, a human rights journalist, embarked on a 10,000km, 20-country ‘bummel’ through Europe and the Middle East in July 2015. Her aims are threefold: cultivate a pair of shapely calves that will be the envy of all she meets; survive; and shed light on a region long misunderstood in the West. She hopes to reach her final destination, Tehran, by April 2016. Chamonix to Trieste (Aug 15 – Sep 1) Total miles cycled: 400


y final stop in France is Chamonix. Rather than the oasis of peace I am hoping for, however, it turns out to be a throbbing Disneyland of designer tourists and overpriced tat. It is also bucketing with rain, so I swiftly escape to a nearby campsite to spend a soggy night under canvas. The next morning, it’s with no small relief that I’m forced to jump on a train to Milan: my only escape route to Italy, as the Mont Blanc tunnel is closed to cyclists. In Milan, I realise I am feeling strong for the first time. After a short break filled with good food, deep sleep and a newly configured bike that shifts my weight from hands to rump, I have the sensation of a corner being turned. I am no longer a complete bike touring amateur, I think exultantly. I’m no longer a Ramsbottom United or Ossett Albion. I’m a Bromley or Kidderminster Harriers – at least. Maybe even a Grimsby Town. I don’t stay in the city for long, however. I find I am developing an aversion to crowds, which now ooze and blister about me with cloying regularity. So instead I journey east, through Vaprio D’Adda, Lake Iseo and Desenzano del Garda. The Italian countryside is not as pretty or relentless as France, but the roads are (mainly) flat, and laden with friendly cyclists. Particularly prevalent are swarms of spandex-clad old goats, their nuts and buns hoisted with wishful elasticity. When does that moment come when such attire seems appropriate, I wonder? Is it a gradual constriction over time or do these men wake up on their 70th birthdays and find their shorts suddenly shrunken to half their former size? Accompanying me are all the ingredients of a glutton’s paradise: Prosecco, pizza and pasta, plus a dangerous array of excellent cheap local wine. Lugana, made from the Turbiana grape, is ever-suppable, while the Soave Classico Superiore is pure silk. Such ‘superior’ wines, I am told, have to pass a multitude of stringent tests, covering grape ripeness, barrel maturation and production standards, so the moniker is hard-earned. Understanding how much Prosecco and pizza I can consume while still


Cycling World January 2016

remaining upright in the saddle is an important lesson I learn early on. In fact, every day is a learning curve. I have learnt, for example, never to put loose cartons of milk in my panniers. Or loose bananas in my bar bag. Or wear my clip-on security alarm to the loo, where it is at risk of falling into the toilet and going off for ten minutes, attracting the frenzied attentions of half a dozen restaurant staff and an off-duty policemen.

kind of grotesque fairground hall of mirrors. So I stay only one night before moving on, bypassing Padua for the countryside. Following a little stream, I cycle until the buildings fall away and sun starts to set, and settle in the centre of a soft, spongy wheat field. It turns out to be the best night’s sleep I’ve had – as well as one of the loveliest mornings, as I awake to a glistening meadow of sun-kissed dew.

Most importantly, I have learnt that you can never have too many wet-wipes. And if I don’t take anything else away from this trip, that alone will be enough.

The road to Venice is perfectly flat and punctuated by a series of featureless villages. There seem to be a lot of them about in Italy, as if they’ve poured all their beauty into their chief attractions, with none left over for the parts inbetween. The entrance to the city is particularly gruesome. A huge, convoluted intersection leads onto a vast 2.5-mile bridge, where the walkway ends suddenly at a gnarly knot of roadworks, spitting you into the path of speeding cars.

After two days on the road, I arrive at the beautifully serene Lake Garda, and I’m delighted to find a camping spot right on the water’s edge. Here I meet my first solo female cyclist, a charming 50-something Belgian who is on her way to Rome by electric bicycle. The hardest part was telling her mother, she says, who begged her not to go and forced her to write a blog. It all sounds oddly familiar. If anything is universal in this world, maternal angst is surely it. Having met no lone women bummelers until now, two then come along at once. I meet the second en route to Verona: a 20-something cardiovascular surgeon from Munich, who has spent the past week biking in the Alps. ‘It can be tough,’ she says. ‘There’s not a lot of women doing this kind of thing.’ No, I say – though I happen to have just met two of them. Perhaps there are more lurking in the shadows, waiting to be smoked into the open? My next stop is Verona. It’s clearly a beautiful city, but in August its charms are choked at source by crowds of selfie-snapping feeders. Many are British, and reflected in them I see myself, swarming and pestilent, like some

The worst thing about this experience was that it turns out to have been completely unnecessary. Unable to lift my bike without assistance, I am as useless as a Dalek when it comes to staircases, and when I arrive, staircases surround me on all sides. I am stuck fast, and begin to wonder if I'm destined to remain rotting here forever like that randy, choleric old pederast from Death in Venice (this being my only cultural reference point for the city, other than Don’t Look Now, the 1970s Gothic horror film with graphic sex and a psychopathic dwarf — both of which would considerably liven up my trip). In the end, I decide instead to brave the bridge again and return to a campsite on the mainland. Later, I return by bus to explore. I am excited to be in one of the world’s most beautiful cities, but the crowds again prove oppressive. And I am not the only one to think so. ‘Everything is tourist, tourist, tourist,’ a cafe owner tells me. 'Prices are crazy. My Cycling World January 2016


brother earns more than €100,000 as a gondolier, but even he can’t afford it.' Much like the cholera-ridden water of Death in Venice (to labour a theme), tourists are clearly both the lifeblood and death knell of the city. They provide the income, but also suffocate local industry. Even vaporettos (water taxis) are now reportedly imported from Greece. As a consequence, the place is emptying fast, its permanent population dipping below 60,000 in 2009. Without serious intervention, this former great trading hub is clearly at risk of becoming a faded fresco; a lifeless shell of commoditised beauty and romance plucked from the shelf. It’s a sad state of affairs, and I console myself with a delicious pizza and glass of Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore – the finest of the sparkling wines, made exclusively in the Treviso province of Veneto. My final stop in Italy is Trieste. It’s a fairly easy cycle, and when I’m three miles away I text my hosts to say I’ll be on time. And I would have been – had it not been for the small matter of the Scala Santa. The Scala Santa, in a nutshell, is 1.5 miles of hell. Its average gradient is reportedly 16%, but frequently surpasses 25%. Small cars avoid it. Motorcyclists think twice. Rock climbers perish. Unfortunately, at the start I know none of this, and start up it with mindless, naive optimism. This lasts about four minutes – perhaps a little less. And then I start pushing. And pushing. And pushing. And sweating. And swearing. And despairing. Every ten steps I stop, gasping for breath, my full weight needed to keep the bike at a standstill. At times, I feel amazed I remain attached to the slope, rather than tumbling to the bottom by sheer force of gravity. At one


Cycling World January 2016

such moment, I meet a wiry old walnut of a man zipping down on his bike and we stop for a chat. ‘Yes, it’s a hard climb,’ he says helpfully. ‘It’s probably not the best way to come on a bike.’ An hour later, nearing death, I finally heave my clammy carcass to the top – and run straight into N-, my host, who has come on his motorbike to find me. ‘I’m so sorry!’ he says, distraught. ‘I’ve been meaning to tell people about that hill.’ N-, his American wife and two daughters are the perfect hosts. I learn about the wild boar, plentiful and aggressive, and Aperol Spritz, the Italian cocktail made from oranges, rhubarb, gentian root and fizz. I learn about the local Osmizza, when people sell their own food and drink tax free for eight days of the year, and the local dialect, Triestine, which is markedly different from Italian and often spoken to non-Triestines to emphasise their outsider status. I also learn the expat view of Italians. They are styleobsessed, I am told, and highly conformist. Wardrobes transform between summer and winter, and few deviate from the code: light shoes in summer, dark in winter; a thin piumino in summer, a thick one in summer. Summer ends on September 15th, no matter what. And draughts are to be avoided, for health reasons. I could stay in Trieste much longer, but know I must push on. So as August draws to a close, I head off towards Slovenia: my first stop in what transpires to be a fascinating tour of the Balkans.

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Cycling World January 2016


National Cycle Network

UK businesses benefit from hungry, thirsty and adventurous cyclists


Joanna Corfield of Sustrans on the beauty and benefits of the National Cycle Network

s any seasoned cyclist will tell you, one of the highlights of cycling in the UK is the pit stops you get to make along the way. From cream teas to fish and chips, pasties to deep-fried Mars Bars, these isles are full of tasty treats for hungry cyclists. These indulgences are your reward for a morning of hard pedalling, but it’s also a chance to take in your surroundings and experience some local culture. Many of the UK’s cycle routes pass by shops, pubs and cafes but they can also lead you to historic sites, churches, grand houses and museums. So keep one eye on the road and the other searching for stopoffs, because you never know what you might be whizzing past. The National Cycle Network - a 14,000 mile network of traffic-free and quiet on-road cycling routes passes by thousands of attractions.


Cycling World January 2016

The routes are connected to National Trust properties, Woodland Trust sites, RSPB reserves and run through National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The Network is so well connected that more and more people are using it as a way of getting to attractions, and this increase in cycle tourism is benefiting local economies around the country. It’s estimated that people who use the Network for holidays and day trips spend an average of £7 a day - although this figure is likely to be even higher for people who take cycling holidays. Sustrans, which created the National Cycle Network twenty years ago, estimates that people cycling on the routes bring over £650 million to the UK economy each year. The charity’s research claims that the National Cycle Network directly

support 15,262 full time equivalent jobs across the services industry, particularly in the food and drink sector where it supports over 10,000 jobs. This means that across the country, there are hundreds, if not thousands of businesses which are benefitting from new cycling routes. In Worcester, a new bridge across the River Severn near Diglis Island opened up the city centre and riverside to cyclists. One example is the Diglis House Hotel, which has seen a 20% increase in their bar and restaurant sales since the route opened. Steve Pirone, who is the General Manager at the hotel, said: “The riverside is a very important part of the tourism industry in Worcester but until the bridge was built there was no way for people on bikes or on foot to get from one side to the other. As a result of the bridge being built

we have experienced a real benefit and I’m sure other businesses near the route have seen an increase in business too.” Meanwhile, in North Yorkshire, Fountains Abbey is also experiencing the benefit of welcoming cyclists through their doors, thanks to the Abbey’s position next to the Way of the Roses route. The Abbey, a National Trust property and UNESCO World Heritage site, sees up to 170 cyclists a day passing through on summer weekends. The Trust estimate that 35 per cent of the passing cyclists stop and spend on average £3.50 in their café, that’s nearly £20,000 of additional income each year. Alexa Morton, Visitor Experience & Marketing Manager, said: “We’ve always been happy to welcome cyclists to Fountains but since we were included on the ‘Way of the Roses’ route in 2010, we’ve seen an unprecedented increase in the number of people arriving at the Abbey on two wheels. The impact has been threefold: cycling has reduced pressure on our car parking facilities; it’s helped to reduce traffic and pollution around the site; finally

it has increased the café’s income because cyclists are always hungry and thirsty! As a world heritage site we try to ensure as many people as possible can enjoy this special place be they cyclists, families or dog walkers enjoying the route through the deer park.” It’s not just pre-existing businesses who have benefited from new cycling routes; some entrepreneurs were clever enough to spot the cycling boom coming and launch businesses to meet cyclists needs. In Cornwall, Nigel Wiggett started Bridge Bike Hire in Wadebridge in 1983 with six folding bikes, today the company is based in a warehouse containing 400 hire bikes that are used year round. Nigel, said: “With the development of the Camel Trail in the 1980s and then the National Cycle Network in 1995, cycling in the area really took off and has had a massive impact on the local economy. Along with that we employ two full time mechanics and during peak season we have 20 members of staff. Interestingly we are busy all year round; winter is actually as busy as

summer which is quite unique in the tourism sector and really important to the local economy.” Liz Hodges, another cycling entrepreneur in Devon set up the Route 2 bike café in Topsham and now runs the Route 2 bike Shop in the same town. Liz, said: “We set up the Route 2 café after the National Cycle Network route 2 was developed in 2008. I knew cycling would be popular but I never expected the cycling revolution that we are seeing today. The National Cycle Network has definitely been key to getting more people out on their bikes for day trips and holidays. And the ‘Wiggins effect’ has also been important. Lots of businesses have benefitted and in my case allowed me to reinvent myself in a completely new career.” Considering which stop-offs to take on a ride is an essential part of planning a weekend cycling trip or long-distance adventure. To help you decide on your destination, Sustrans has picked some of the tops routes in the country which have great stopoffs nearby.

Cycling World December January 2016 2015


Girona Cycle Breaks Girona is as near a perfect destination for cyclists as I have ever found. Catalunya, Northern Spain offers great weather all year round, great roads and trails and the city of Girona is a fantastic place to visit with a beautiful medieval old town and historic buildings. Girona is a small place, easy to find your way around and surrounded by mountains and pristine countryside, easily and in fact best accessed by bike. We are blessed with roads and trails and traffic free cycle paths so there really is something for anyone and everyone who likes to ride their bike.





Cycling World January 2016

Drake's Trail


Laira Bridge, Plymouth


Tavistock Town Hall


18 miles

Terrain type:

A steady climb for much of the way with a gentle descent in the final five miles. Tarmac path and stony trail with some on-road sections at Clearbrook, Horrabridge and Tavistock. Sustrans’ Devon coast to coast

Local map:

Stay: Eat & Drink:


Craven Arms train station


Shrewsbury city centre, next to the train station 40 miles

Distance: Route type:

This hilly route which is mainly on quiet roads, could be difficult for some

Attractions on Shrewsbury Castle, Museum and Art route: Gallery is well worth a visit. Eat & Drink:

Mellington Hall Country Hotel does light lunches. www.mellingtonhallhotel.com

Cycle hire:

Stan Cycles www.stanscycles.co.uk


Dover Priory station


Hastings station


52 miles

Terrain type:

Mainly flat and using a mixture of quiet roads and traffic free sections

Local map:

Sustrans’ Kent Cycle Map

Attractions on route:

Castles aplenty – Dover, Camber and Hastings Castle are all worth a visit.


The historic Mermaid Inn at Rye offers a warm welcome. (01797) 223065 www.mermaidinn.com Lots of pubs and cafes line the route, try The Smuggler Inn, Pett Level or The Star, Mary in the Marsh Dover White Cliff Tours rents bikes (locks and maps included) www.doverwhiteclifftours.com

Eat & Drink: Cycle hire:

Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal

Garden of England

Shropshire Castles Cycleway

Cycle hire:

Moorland Garden Hotel, Yelverton (01822) 852245 www. moorlandgardenhotel.co.uk Conveniently located at the midpoint of the route you’ll find The Skylark Inn at Clearbrook Rockets and Rascals, Plymouth (01752) 221295 www.rocketsandrascals.com


Attractions on National Trust’s Saltram and Tavistock Pannier Market route:


Abergavenny train station




22 miles

Terrain type:

Moderate: A mostly flat, traffic-free tarmac path and stony trail which is rugged and narrow in parts. Sustrans’ South East Wales cycle map

Local map:

Attractions on Brecon Castle and Cathedral route: Stay: Eat & Drink: Cycle hire:

The Star Inn, Talybont-on-Usk, www.starinntalybont.co.uk The Coach and Horses is canal side at Llangynidr. In Brecon, The Café on High street is lovely. Hopyard Cycles, Abergavenny www.hopycycles.co.uk Cycling World Cycling World December 2015 January 2016

31 31


The New Forest Discovering the lanes and woods the local horses walk, graze and sleep in. Text and photos by Anita Powell


’m sitting outside the pub on the roadside contentedly biting into a brie and ale chutney sandwich, when a horse saunters past. Then two more. Then a cow. The Londoners next to me stop playing with the fart apps on their phones and rear up in surprise. I’m in the New Forest for the Wiggle New Forest sportive on Sunday, but this is a good excuse to spend the whole weekend exploring the quiet, smooth roads of the National Park on my trusty steed. I’m keen to discover this land of grazing ponies and find out how well bikes and horses mix – who will win in the battle of the riders? Animals rule the road here. Grazing horses are everywhere, and it’s they – not drivers, cyclists or pedestrians, who have right of way and take priority above all else. This seems fair to me, after all they’ve been here since the Ice Age, whereas in the grand scheme of things the rest of us are all just visitors. The pub serving the aforementioned brie sandwich is the East End Arms in the village of East Boldre. Today horses are shading themselves in the wooden shelter of the bus stop opposite the post office, and getting here involves weaving in and out of cattle feeding their calves in the middle of the road. There’s time for some casual riding today before the sportive tomorrow – from experience, it will whizz by in a flash with no time to soak up the surroundings. We’ll all have our heads down, focusing on getting to the next flapjack, and shielding our eyes from the brightly coloured lycra encasing nearby sweaty bodies.


Cycling World January 2016

I’ve come a day early to immerse myself in the New Forest properly – to spend some time sleeping outside in nature, and quietly pootling around the tranquil lanes, seeking out spots to remember. The sun is shining, and I have parked up in Ivy Wood car park near Brockenhurst, where a sign politely asks visitors to refrain from picking more than 1.5kg of mushrooms. I don’t think my pockets would fit that many mushrooms in anyway so I decide to leave the spores to do their thing and get on the road. My most recent memory of the New Forest was on an overnight ride from Guildford to Christchurch on the summer solstice. The scenery couldn’t have looked more different then, emerging into the misty park at sunrise, the forest provided an eerie and surreal other-worldy morning awakening. This time the sun fills the sky with light and my back with warmth. I smear on suncream and fill my tyres with air in the shady seclusion of the car park. Heading out and turning right onto the main road, all seems surprisingly quiet. There’s a bit of an incline to start but the forest is peaceful and welcoming and before long the terrain flattens out. Signs for off-road trails are dotted along the way, and the occasional bike crosses in the distance ahead of me. It’s not long before the road opens up onto the gorse-scattered heathland that my mind associates most with the New Forest, and which confused me greatly on my first visit. Why is a vast area of shrubbery called the New Forest?

I’ve since discovered there are more trees than I initially thought. The sunshine makes this scenery magical and wonderful, very different from the misty morning moonscape it was the last time I saw it. Birdsong is in full flow, and the hills of the South Downs are visible on the blurred horizon. There are blackberries in abundance here, and I wish I’d brought a container to put some in to take home and make a crumble or a cake – perhaps a New Forest

Gateau. I continue along to Hatchett Pond, which is empty and just waking up despite it being nearly midday. Later in the afternoon, the area is crowded with cars, families with dogs wander around, and an ice cream van tempts passers-by to 99s. I succumb. To my surprise, there are signs around the area for a cycling event tomorrow – my understanding was that the sportive route was further to the west and north. Human Race vans are putting up the signs and it transpires that there is another event too tomorrow in the forest – the Macmillan Cycletta, part of a women-only series of rides which is going from strength to strength. Something tells me many of these ‘cycling event’ signs stay put all through the summer, with organised rides happening frequently in this perfect cycling terrain.

I want to try out a route from Matt Carroll’s ‘Escape Routes’ book – a gift given to me by my dad a couple of years ago which I have enjoyed perusing but never managed to actually escape with. This particular local route starts at the East End Arms – which is apparently owned by Dire Straights’ bassist John Illsley. The tables at the front start off promisingly full of cyclists – a group of mountain bikers and a couple on what look like folding electric bikes. Sadly they’ve all gone by the time I come back out after ordering food – although the horses continue to pass nonchalantly. In the heart of Escape Routes territory now, I spread out my OS Explorer map on the table alongside the book, happily planning my own version of Matt Carroll’s route with a slight detour to Beaulieu, and factoring in a short cut back to Ivy Hill car park. The feeling of sunshine on my back is reassuring and I set off, following the route in the book,

although the book didn’t mention squeezing yourself through a small gap between horses at the first junction. True to the book though, there is a lovely tithe barn on the left along this road, and just before this I am stopped in my tracks by the view of a large ship on the River Beaulieu off to the right. Having forgotten that we were so close to the sea, this came as a surprise and I was pleased to see a sign educating me about the history of this ship-building and launch area for warships. Bucklers Hard is a bit further along with beautiful views, a historical village and museum providing more information about this maritime history, with river trips available. There’s a stone seat perfect for resting cycling legs just outside the village, and I indulge for a few moments then continue on, ignoring Matt Carroll’s left turn (I have already explored East Boldre) and opting instead to go to Beaulieu. Retrospectively this decision was a bad one – after admiring the outside of the National Motor Museum and sitting by a pond with donkeys, I discover the main road out of Beaulieu is the busiest yet, and there’s a hill too. But it’s not long before the roads get quieter again, and there’s that pungent sweet smell of horses and gassy vintage camper vans passing me by as the lane snakes back through shrubs, forest and dappled sunshine clearings to Ivy Wood. My next mission is to find a suitable spot to camp wild. I’m aiming for a year of ‘microadventures’, inspired by Alastair Humphries, whose book of the same name is another that sits alongside Matt Carroll’s on my favourite shelf. Bivvying under the stars should still be fairly comfortable at this time of year, and my friend Tom, who is arriving at Brockenhurst tonight, is up for adventure. The key is to identify a spot whilst it’s still light, so you know roughly what you’re going to Cycling World January 2016



wake up to. Back at the car park, it transpires that the woods have beautiful clearings just out of view of the main road with a river running through the bottom, perfect for a morning wild swim/paddle. I meet Tom off the train, and we go to the pub to eat hot food and soak up warmth for the night under the stars ahead. We talk about bikes, horses and the plan and I describe the spot I’ve identified. I start to scare myself as we discuss things that might happen. What if a car pulls into the car park? What if we get trampled by angry horses, shouted at by park rangers. What if it all goes Blair Witch project? He offers me his warm socks and I calm down. Luckily the clearing still feels good in the dark. Tom’s tent goes up, my bivvy bag goes down next to it. Cosy in three layers of clothes, I fall


Cycling World January 2016

asleep looking at the stars, framed by fronds of high leaves. The trees are oak and this means acorns fall off occasionally landing on me. Owls screech, creatures scurry, and horses bray. One comes so close I can hear it’s breath as it explores the clearing around us. My mind, tense in the dark, relaxes as the morning dawns, and by the time I have the stove on making a cup of tea I’m the happiest person alive. And I’m about to embark on a 42 mile sportive – life could not be better. After a breakfast of porridge, fruit and nuts, we’re sleepily in the car on the way to Matcham’s Leisure Park, where the Wiggle New Forest Sportive begins – we’re doing the ‘short’ route. Time is a bit tight, but there is just enough time to register, change from camping clothes to cycling attire (in my case behind a pile of rubble in the car park), stick numbers on our bikes, load pockets

with bananas, cereal bars and sweets and get to the start line before the 9.45am cut-off. Everywhere is bright lycra, vibrant smiles and shiny energy bars and drinks, a shock to the eyes after a night of darkness and trees. Excited people with energy exuding from their pores mill around, filled with anticipation of the ride ahead and sharing it with others. The drive to the venue had taken in the final stretch we’d be cycling, so we’d seen that the route had good signage and was well-planned and manned. Slightly sleepy-looking marshals were positioned before any tricky junctions and managed to summon up enough energy to wave flags at vehicles and warn riders loudly of the impending dangers. Some even looked like they were still enjoying themselves. The first hour or so was beautifully flat, easing the legs into the ride nicely.

CUBE: new products for 2016 NEW ROAD RACING BIKES; GREATER SHOE AND HELMET RANGE- IT’S A CUBED YEAR This year sees three striking additions to the road bike range. The Litening is aimed at pure race performance; the Agree is perfect for long distances; the Attain is designed for comfort. The Litening C:68 model is ridden by team Wanty-Groupe Gobert. Named after its high carbon percentile (68%) it offers extreme stiffness to weight ratio. New this year comes its sibling: the C:62 carbon edition, a competitive race bike that’s tough on training rides. With CUBE’s new C:62 full carbon fork and high quality components these are fast and light race machines. The Agree has the same light and stiff C:62 carbon frame. It’s ideal for training and high mileage rides, with classic V-brakes or modern hydraulic disc brakes. The Agree C:62 models look like pro team riders’ bikes and are just as fast. The brand new Attain frame is available in alloy and our Gran Turismo Composite (GTC), equipped with V-brakes or hydraulic disc brakes. Its new geometry has been designed to create a comfort racer with a more upright seated position and 28mm wide tyres can be mounted offering further comfort. CUBE has been investing in optimizing their products specifically for female riders. The Women Like Series star attraction is the Axial road frame with narrowed handlebars, wider saddle and shorter cranks. The Axial models are available in both C:62 and GTC carbon and alloy with V-brakes or hydraulic disc brakes. CUBE CUBE Helmet AM SL Sizes: S (52-56), M (56-59), L (59-63) Colours: Black’n’Black, White’n’Black, Green’n’Kiwi, Blue’n’Blue, Flashred’n’Blue RRP: £109,99

CUBE extends its high-end carbon shoe and helmet range. Based on the Natural Fit principles for ergonomically optimized comfort and technology. CUBE cycling shoes reduce burning soles, knee pain and even discomfort at the spine by combining maximum comfort with efficient power transmission. The C:62 carbon shoes, available for MTB and road cycling, are both stiff and light. The turnlock fasteners and Velcro straps can be easily used when wearing gloves. The upper allows for ventilation, front shields protect the toes, while reflecting elements provide extra visibility.

CUBE Helmet HPC Sizes: S (52-56), M (56-59), L (59-63) Colours: Black’n’Black, Teamline Black, Teamline White, Red’n’Black RRP: £129,99

CUBE helmets feature the renowned Bluecore impact protection, offering extra safety even upon low-speed impact, which is most common in cycling. All helmets have been developed to provide comfort and easeof-use. The CUBE vent system ensures constant cooling while advanced features, such as the magnetic Fidlock™ buckle, provide simple handling. Comfort is provided by a deep-drawn rear section covering the entire back of the head.

CUBE Shoes MTB C:62 Sizes: UK 3-12.5 Colours: Teamline, Black RRP: £169,99

CUBE Shoes ROAD C:62 Sizes: UK 3-12.5 Colours: Teamline, Black RRP: £179,99

Cycling World January 2016


WIN AN ACTIVITY BREAK TO THE NEW FOREST! Win a 3 night break in a self-catering cottage from New Forest Cottages and £200 of vouchers to use at New Forest Activities


New Forest Cottages have over 130 properties in the area, from cosy cottages for two to sprawling houses for twelve; enjoy the ponies grazing outside the window and direct access to open forest from the front door. Some properties are great for children, including swimming pools, adventure playgrounds, tree houses and sports pitches, there are even private beaches!


Leave your bikes at home as New Forest Activities offer bike hire; tag-a-longs, children’s seats and trailers available. For time away from two wheels, book instructor led tours in sturdy 2-3 seat Canadian Canoes and kayaks and get up close to vibrant wildlife. They also offer high and low ropes courses, archery, escorted walking tours and wild food foraging.

To Enter simply email your name and address, with subject heading ‘ENTRY’ to cyclingworld@newforestactivities.co.uk Download your FREE NEW FOREST GUIDE for more information www.newforestactivities.co.uk call 01590 612 377

To see New Forest Cottages, last minute deals and special offers www.newforestcottages.co.uk call 01590 679 655

Terms and conditions: Prize up to the value of £500, to be taken during 2016, excludes Easter, Christmas, Bank Holidays and subject to availability. Winner must be over 18. No cash value or alternative. All entries must be in by 01/03/2016. Winner will be notified by email. Full terms and conditions apply, ask for details.


Cycling World January 2016


The scenery was different than yesterdays, if equally idyllic. We zoomed down lovely, quiet lanes with lots of hedgerows, skirting around and going through villages such as Kingston and Ringwood, and Fordingbridge, where riders were instructed to thin out to single file. Out of the corner of my squinting eye (I had not expected to need sunglasses at this time of year) I spotted signs along the way for such tempting tourist attractions as a heavy horse museum and an owl sanctuary. I made a mental note to visit these in some future life.

official snack of Mark Cavendish. I am assuming this must mean the official bar snack of Mark Cavendish. Don’t get me wrong, I have practical experience of on-bike food assembly whilst touring (camembert baguettes mainly) but you really don’t want to be shelling pistachio nuts whilst riding a sportive. Wisely, most people seemed to leave them until the end which resulted in finishing the sportive and stepping onto a pistachio shell carpet – a fun and crunchy alternative to the red carpet, the sound of cleats on shells reverberating around the finish area.

The feed station appeared much faster than expected, with water, flapjacks, banana, jelly beans and a free PowerBar energy bar to take for later. The additional and less traditional snack available was pistachios - not just any pistachios but American Pistachios, the

When not worn on nutshell carpets, cleated bike shoes often sound to me like ponies approaching, which cleverly brings me back to my original equine observations. In the middle of the dilapidated go-karting track that marks the sportive start/ finish is an untethered grazing

pony. Whether or not she notices the thousands of man-made steeds around her is unclear – but without doubt she knows that the men and women gripping onto them have just ridden their socks off and enjoyed whizzing through land she and her ancestors have munched on for generations. It seems that horses and bikes mix together perfectly well in the New Forest, sharing not only the lanes and junctions but a quiet and mutual respect for the serene surroundings, and an understanding of what it means to experience it with all your senses, with your own freedom of movement, in your own time. I’m going to miss the New Forest ponies wandering about when I head back to my native Surrey, where horses are securely encased in stables and privately owned pastures.

Cycling World January 2016


Land’s End to John O’Groats

Land’s End to John O’Groats The Pedalling Pedlar A nation-long, bicycle book Tour by Anna Hughes


he journey from Land’s End to John O’Groats is a well-ridden one; thousands of cyclists ride this route every year, many for charity, some simply for the challenge, and they ride in all guises, fully supported, fully laden, in groups, solo, lightweight, cargo bikes, Bromptons. This September, it was my turn. I decided I would take on the famous route as a book tour, promoting my book Eat, Sleep, Cycle about my ride four years previously around the coast of Britain. It’s roughly 1000 miles from end to end, and I would take my time, spending the whole month making my way up the middle of Britain, giving talks and selling my book in each of the places I passed through. The pedalling pedlar. The trip was planned meticulously, with an event to be held in almost every stopping point: twenty events in total. I had spent two months planning and confirming and promoting the events, leaving nothing to chance. I had booked a sleeper train to Penzance, dusted off my old touring bike, and packed everything I would need into my panniers. I wanted a nice outfit each night for the talks, so the idea was to buy a dress in a charity shop in each location and donate it to another the next day. I had sourced a huge pile of vegan snacks from


Cycling World January 2016

Riverbank Bakery as I knew that these would be hard to come by in the far reaches of the UK. Everything was set. Then, four days prior to departure, I received a phone call telling me my train to Penzance had been cancelled, and the following day, I dropped a D lock on my foot and broke my toe. A few frantic phone calls to doctors and train companies later, I was on my way, toe strapped up, limping to the start line at Land’s End. A large crowd of cyclists was there, ready for their End to End ride, with their lycra, their road bikes, and their luggage safely stowed in the support van. “Are you riding to John O’Groats?” they asked. “With all that stuff? Rather you than me!” I smiled with false confidence, but quietly I worried. Would I be able to ride with my broken toe? What if no one came to my events? Where would I stay? Would I be able to stick to my vegan diet? How would I manage the hills? But, once the cycling had started, none of that mattered. Yes, the hills were tough, very tough in fact, much tougher than I had remembered. The last time I was there had been eight weeks into my round-thecoast journey, with eight weeks of hill-climbing practice behind me. This time, I had no practice, just

determination and the vague notion that I should keep on pushing. But I learned to climb them again, my muscles gradually adapting to life back in the saddle, and with that I remembered the beauty of cycle touring, the simplicity and freedom of keeping the pedals turning. Niggles iron themselves out. “What did I need to know that the road wouldn’t teach me?” I ask in my book, and there I was, discovering what it meant all over again. I quickly settled into my routine. I would wake in my tent, pack my

simple belongings onto my bike, and set off in search of breakfast. I would ride between forty and fifty miles to my destination, find the venue for the event, find an outfit, await my audience, and start talking. I spoke in cycle cafes, bookshops and church halls. Some nights I spoke to sell out audiences, some to just a handful of people. Once I had a surprise visit from two of my hosts from the roundBritain trip. Each evening people would thank me for inspiring them to explore Britain more - exactly the purpose of having written the book and taken it on tour in the first place. “What was the best part?” It’s a common question, and one almost impossible to answer. Certain points stick in my mind. A wrong turning just five miles from Land’s End saw me reaching a dead end at Lamorna Cove, so instead of grumbling I went swimming. There’s something magical about swimming in the sea, something I had wanted to do daily when cycling round the coast trip but hadn’t managed to, so it was an utter pleasure to find that cove and take the time to go for a dip. It was followed with a swim off Plymouth Hoe the next day, and one in the River Dart the next. After my Truro event I had my first UK ‘wild’ camping

experience, in the grounds of a National Trust property which had closed for the night, where I arrived after dark, with no clue of the view that might greet me in the morning, only knowing I was pitched beside a river for the flashing of navigation buoys in the darkness. I awoke to the mist rising through the trees and the quiet co-cooing of wood pigeons. On day six I picked up an old railway trail, the Strawberry Line, just outside Wells. This marked the start of around 30 miles of traffic-free cycling, followed as it was by the Colliers Way, then the Two Tunnels Greenway, on the old trackbed of the Somerset and Dorset railway which passes beneath the huge hills at Combe Down and Lyncombe on its way to Bath. Approaching the tunnel entrance was daunting - at over a mile long, the Combe Down tunnel is the longest cycling and walking tunnel in the UK - but lights throughout and a music installation partway through made it a pleasant, if eerie, experience. Then onwards along the Bristol-Bath railway path: the old Midland railway along which horses had once pulled coal carts. These were the remnants of the railways that were closed in the 1960s by a certain Dr. Beeching when Cycling World January 2016


Land’s End to John O’Groats

they ceased to be profitable. When the axe fell, a group of Sustrans volunteers began work to convert the Bath to Bristol trail into a shared-use path for cyclists and walkers - the very first route on what was to become the National Cycle Network. The ride from Bristol was a particular highlight, along the Avon gorge and beneath the iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge to Avonmouth, where the vista opened up to reveal the wide waters of the Severn and the two Severn bridges striding across from England to Wales. The suspension bridge has a separate track for cyclists so it was this that I crossed, marvelling at the sunlight on the waters below, the views down the estuary, and the feat of engineering that allowed me to soar so high above the river. From there I continued northwards, criss-crossing between England and Wales through Tintern and Monmouth along the luscious Wye valley. Each place had something remarkable about it: Hereford’s lovely cathedral, the winding River Severn in Shrewsbury, the Tudor buildings in Chester, the Transpennine Trail that led me traffic free almost all of the way from Warrington into the centre of Manchester.


Cycling World January 2016

While rain poured down in London, I pedalled from Lancaster into the Lake District under a piercing blue sky. I rode at the foot of slopes with peaks of light brown and grey, the green fields below spotted with a scattering of grazing sheep and a grey scribbling of stone walls. Past Windermere, Rydale, Grasmere, Thirlmere and Derwent Water, the road undulated along the water’s edge, an utterly spectacular panorama of peaks lining the view on all sides. From Bassenthwaite Lake it was an ascent of several hours to the Uldale Commons, that wild, rugged landscape where the wind roams freely and sheep wander across the path, then a ten mile descent into Carlisle. I passed into Scotland at Gretna Green, in almost the exact spot that I’d left the country on the round-Britain trip. That border crossing had been so significant, my time in Scotland having shaped so much of my journey, a place where I had gone from touring novice to confident traveller. So it was wonderful to be back, to explore some more of this country, and it didn’t disappoint: Scotland is fabulous for cycling. From the busy metropolis of Glasgow to the

bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, to the spectacular pass of Glencoe and up the Great Glen Way, I relished each mile, the lowlands gradually building towards wild mountain passes and thrilling descents. I camped in Fort William and Lairg and finally Thurso, pitching up after dark right next to the bay, where the sound of the waves on the rocks lulled me to sleep. I awoke to see the sun rise over the water, then I was off for the final miles to John O’Groats, and a long-awaited detour to Dunnet Head. Dunnet Head was one compass point that I’d by-passed on the round-Britain trip, not having had the chance to ride to the tip of the peninsula then, the most northerly point of mainland Britain. But here I was, striking out across the windswept farmland, the sun at my back, each pedal stroke overflowing with excitement to finally be there. I knew what I’d find: one of Stevenson’s lighthouses sitting squat near the edge of the cliff, and a headstone letting me know that I was as far north as I could possibly be. And there it was, exactly as I had imagined, predictable yet extraordinary, with a breathtakingly clear view of Orkney across a rich blue sea. The approach to John O’Groats was


Really special cycling holidays in England and Wales

THE ‘END TO END’ SPECIALIST! Need a challenge ? Cycle from Lands End to John O’Groats, Mizen Head to Malin Head (Ireland), plus others! All challenges are supported by a cycling tour leader PLUS vehicle and driver.

Group cycle tours in beautiful scenery From a weekend to a full week Fixed-centre, staying in country houses Well-researched routes to suit a range of abilities Friendly, non-macho atmosphere Vegetarian catering Good food, good company, great cycling!




Cycling World January 2016


Land’s End to John O’Groats

O’Groats!” Well, I was, but not anymore. Now what?

less euphoric - exhaustion had begun to set in and the road seemed never ending, each village that came and went a teasing prelude to that which would signal the end of my journey. But eventually it came, and down to the water’s edge I went, to where the famous signpost stood pointing all that way back to Land’s End. I had my photograph taken then sat in the tea rooms eating my soup, feeling


Cycling World January 2016

something of an anti-climax. That was it. All over. This point had been in my mind since day one, whenever anyone has asked where I was riding, whenever I wrote my blog or arrived at a venue with one of my posters displayed on the door: “Anna Hughes is riding from Land’s End to John

And so it is with long trips, the jumble of emotions that comes at the end, the exhaustion, the elation, the glow of achievement, the sadness that it’s all over, the quiet gloom of returning to real life. One of my motivations for cycling around Britain was to discover the extraordinary in the ordinary, to discover the unfamiliar in a place that was quite familiar. And the same was true of this trip, to have a wonderful adventure without leaving home. I think I achieved it.

CyCling HOliDAyS in SOUTH COrnwAll if you are looking for a destination for a long weekend break or a full weeks cycling, South Cornwall has a lot to offer with routes and trails to suit all levels of experience and fitness. For a weekend break why not stay in one of portscatho Holidays properties, www.portscathoholidays.co.uk and take on the Feock loop cycle route http://www.cycleroute.com/routes/Feock_loop- Cycle-route-6663.html This is a 46 Mile 75 Kilometre moderately difficult loop starting on the south coast and going up to and along the north Coast before returning back to Feock. Or for something less strenuous but with some fantastic views there is the St Mawes to St Anthony Head loop which has views out over Falmouth Bay and the Carrick roads and is around 9 miles 15 kilometres in length.

For a longer holiday there is the Cornish way which runs for 180 miles from land’s End to Holsworthy, passing through historic towns, fishing villages and beautiful countryside on the way. The Cornish way consists of five trails, plus the Camel Trail, providing a total of 180 miles/288km, for walkers and cyclists. The five main trails are The First and Last Trail, the Engine House Trail, The Coast and Clay Trail, The St. piran Trail, The north Cornwall Trail and The Camel Trail. Full details of The Cornish way can be obtained from Cornwall Council or downloaded from: http://www.cornwall.gov.uk/media/3620340/TheCornish-way-web.pdf.



01326 270900 / pOrTSCATHOHOliDAyS.CO.Uk @ pOrTSCATHOHOlS


Cycling World January 2016


West Cornwall

Cycling The West Cornwall Loop Text by Visit Cornwall


hink of Cornwall located on a peninsula tumbling into the vast Atlantic Ocean and scenic fishing villages, sweeping expanses of golden beaches and blue waters spring to mind. Head to the far west of the county and you’ll find Cornwall at its most rural and rugged – as its most native may say. A large part of the peninsula here was once an island, and even though nowadays joined to the mainland, a feeling of individuality remains. Heathland covers the granite outcrops and the area is scattered with remnants of an incredibly ancient heritage. As you slip off the edge of the map into rocky gorges where tiny fishing villages face a wild ocean it’s as if you have slipped off the edge of time where Cornwall reveals its most individual and captivating side. The coastal and serene ingredients make for perfect cycling conditions. Throw in more than a fair few undulating hills and hairpin bends and it starts to get interesting. This is where 2016 JLT-Condor signing, Steve Lampier, comes to train on the West Cornwall Loop, popular with

local cyclists and part of the Land’s End 100. This 100 mile sportive takes place in October each year and tours some of the most picturesque parts of Cornwall. Starting out in the ancient market town of Marazion the route heads to

What to see and do along the way… St Michael’s Mount

Just off the coast of Marazion, this iconic landmark rises dramatically from the bay. A former Benedictine Priory, here lies thousands of years of incredible history brought to life with a tour of the medieval castle which is still home to a modern family. www.stmichaelsmount.co.uk

The Lizard

The rare geology of the area creates a haven for exceptional plants and flowers. Around the coastline you’ll find little fishing ports with huge granite sea walls to protect from the Atlantic gales and gorgeous sandy bays with jagged black rocks jutting out in to the sea. Eat Grab a window seat with uninterrupted harbour views at Rick Stein’s Porthleven outcrop. Here the


Cycling World January 2016

freshest of local seafood comes with an international kick inspired by Rick Stein’s travels. https://www.rickstein. com/eat-with-us/porthleven/ Do Visit the Lizard Lighthouse and find out more about maritime history in the visitor centre and enjoy the views from the top of the lighthouse. http://www.trinityhouse.co.uk/ lighthouses/lighthouse_list/lizard. html

St Ives

A picturesque fishing village with an artistic flair. Follow the winding streets to the town centre which surrounds a scenic harbour and explore St Ives’ warren of back streets which hide a mixture of galleries, cafes and stylish art stores. You will stumble across many working artists taking inspiration from the

the UK’s most southerly point, the Lizard Peninsula, and then cuts across Cornwall to the north coast. It then follows coastal roads with breathtaking views out to sea to the most westerly point, Land’s End, before heading back to Marazion.

surroundings and making the most of the quality of natural light. Eat Call into one of the many Cornish pasty shops lining the harbour and enjoy a taste of Cornwall’s finest export with sand between your toes on the beach – just watch out for the seagulls who find pasties rather hard to resist! Do Explore Tate St Ives sitting in a spectacular gallery overlooking the Blue Flag beach of Porthmeor. The Cornish branch of this national art museum lives up to its city counterparts epitomising why St Ives is a mecca for worldwide acclaimed artists. www.tate.org.uk/stives/

status for its mining history. Head underground for a tour of Geevor Tin Mine or visit Levant Mine to experience the landscape made famous by BBC’s Poldark series. www.geevor.com www.nationaltrust.org.uk/levantmine-and-beam-engine


Land’s End


The most westerley point of Cornwall famous for its unique location and stunning scenery. Get a photo under the iconic Land’s End signpost and

Eat A favourite pit stop for cyclists is the Apple Tree Café just a stones throw from Land’s End. Refuel with a Cornish Cream Tea or a handmade lunch. www.theappletreecafe.co.uk

With gorgeous fine soft white sand washed by a sea that turns turquoise in the sun and high cliffs on both sides providing shelter, Porthcurno is an

St Just Mining District

Much of the stretch of coast between St Ives and Land’s End has been bestowed World Heritage Site be inspired by the End to End interactive tribute to the adventurers who have made the remarkable journey from Land’s End to John O’Groats (or vice versa) covering the entire length of Great Britain.

oasis of stunning natural beauty Do Visit Minack Theatre, the most famous cliff side theatre in Britain, and enjoy a performance under the stars. Call into the Telegraph Museum to discover Cornwall’s hidden communication history and the role Porthcurno played in connecting Britain to the world. www.minack.com www.porthcurno.org.uk

Cycle-friendly places to stay Gurnard’s Head –dining pub with rooms perched on the cliff-tops www.gurnardshead.co.uk Trevose Harbour House – boutique luxury in the centre of St Ives www.trevosehouse.co.uk Land’s End Hotel – incredible views at the tip of Cornwall www.landsendhotel.co.uk For more ideas visit www.visitcornwall.com Cycling World January 2016



Cycling World January 2016

Cycling World January 2016



changes for 2016

New rules will govern the sale of electric bicycles in the coming year so what does this mean for riders? Will it drive electric bicycles with throttles out of the picture forever? And if so, should this change be welcomed… ... by Jim Duncan Founder of Nationwide eBikes What has changed? As ever, it’s all about Europe. Finally, after much deliberation, the UK Government has updated the regulations on electric bicycles. The old rules dated from 1983 and much has changed in the electronic world since then. An electric bicycle was taken to be something with two wheels, pedals and a motor no greater than 250w, which could drive up to 16mph. The new ‘EPAC’ (electrically assisted pedal cycle) Regulations of 2015 aim to bring us much closer to the rules governing electric bicycles in the rest of Europe. On the continent, if you have an electric bicycle, the motor can only assist you whilst you are pedalling. You can’t sit there and just twist the throttle like a motorbike. ‘Quite right too’, many people say. Until this point, the UK law has always allowed for a form of simple override, usually a twistand-go type throttle. Not anymore. What does this mean for the future of electric bikes in the UK? Put simply, the vast majority are going to remain as EPACs, with the electrical assistance only being initiated by the action of pedalling.However, for the VERY determined e-bike manufacturer who absolutely wants to give their customer a throttle option, the Government will create an entirely new vehicle category. It has the catchy name of “L1e-A”. This will be treated much more like a 15.5mph moped and will require type approval in a similar way. This is likely to be a costly process and therefore not an option chosen by many producers. The exact Department of Transport procedures are yet to be announced. Who will gain? The big motor firms. As ever, the likes of Bosch, Panasonic, Yamaha and Samsung will most probably see rising sales of their


Cycling World January 2016

pedal-activated motor systems. Exactly the same systems which are already widely available across Europe. Who will lose? The smaller motor firms and the Chinese. Because throttle bikes are popular throughout China, many of the cheaper and simpler to make moped-style bikes, which have traditionally come from the Far East, will lose out. What should we conclude? Electric bikes like everything are evolving and maybe there shouldn’t be any more of the crude moped-like throttle e-bikes of yester-year still on our roads. It appears that they are to be outdone by a more subtle, more sophisticated form of electric bike. Ones which are capable of working in partnership with the rider and not overwhelming them with a twist grip which leaves them passive and passengers in the whole riding experience. In our experience, customers will often come to a dedicated e-bike specialist like our stores, absolutely determined to purchase a twist-and-go type electric bicycle with throttle. Yet, when sent out on comparative test rides, they will very happily choose a modern pedal assist only e-bike, regardless of any price difference. What tips the balance for many is trying something like the Panasonic Next Generation motor systems (found on Flyer e-bikes and a couple of other brands) where the assistance kicks in from the instant there is pressure on the pedal i.e. even before you move off - it’s a very reassuring feeling. So, whichever systems you try and whatever e-bike you chose - Happy Pedalling!

Cycling World December 2015



changes for 2016:

Has the sun now set on electric bicycles with throttles?

Cycling World December January 2016 2015


E-bike co. leitrim

e-bike through Co. Leitrim by Eileen and Seamus Gibbons


o Leitrim, located in the North West of Ireland has a landscape dotted with hills and valleys and is surrounded by mountains and lakes. There is a myriad of quiet country roads and lanes in this sparsely populated County that is ideal for either the cycling enthusiast or those who wants to escape the maddening crowd and rejuvenate the body and soul. Seamus and Eileen from Electric Bike Trails realised this fact and started a bike hire business in their native Leitrim Village in 2012. Leitrim Village is located in the heart of the Shannon Blueway with canal pathways going north and east from the village, as well as being on the banks of the magnificent River Shannon. The network of canals built in the 1900s for boat navigation are now being recognised and developed as a hive of outdoor adventure activity from stand up paddling, canoeing, kayaking to walking and cycling along the banks. Electric Bike Trails, as the name suggests, have seen the real potential for cycling for everybody with the provision of electric bike hire. We use the German brand Kalkhoff Electric Bikes which have proven to take people over the toughest mountain ranges without any real effort. You do have to pedal all the time but these fantastic bikes kick in with the motor sensor and give you a boost of power when you feel you need it. With these bikes cycling is no longer an activity for the super fit. Electric Bike Trails also stock a large range of regular hybrid bikes, children’s bikes, child carts and child seats and even a few tandems for a real laugh as you try to synchronise your pedalling with that of your partner. The service we provide includes all the cycling equipment such as helmets, hi-vis vests, pannier bags, bike locks as well as specially selected trail maps to allow you to self-guide with ease. The cycle trails vary from easy cycles along the canal banks, ideal for families with


Cycling World January 2016

small children, to longer distances from 15 km to 65 km. One of our most popular trails is across Kilronan Mountain and Arigna Mountain to the highly-acclaimed Arigna Mining Experience where you get to marvel at the panoramic views over Lough Allen and Sliabh an Iarainn (The Iron Mountain), as well as taking an underground tour of the old Arigna Mines with an ex-miner as a guide. There is a mining museum and a coffee shop to fritter away another hour or two before you hop on board your bike for the mostly downhill cycle back to base. This 36 km ride can be enjoyed at your ease over the

course of a day with a detour to see the River Shannon as it flows from Lough Allen at the hydrometric dam at Bellantra Bridge, with a picturesque return along the Shannon Blueway to Leitrim Village. Other day tours include a short cycle around the Fairy Hill (Sheemore) which is renowned for its stories of fairies having a massive battle between the hills of Sheemore and Sheebeg, hills made famous in a tune by Turlough O Carolan, the blind harper that wandered the lands of Leitrim in the 18th Century. If you are feeling really energetic you can cycle in the path of legends as you cross over Sliabh an Iarainn, the home of Tuatha De Danann. They were reputedly a race of small dark people who fled into the more inaccessible regions of the country. It is supposedly from these battle shy little people that the myth of fairies

and leprechauns emanated. This tour is best taken as a guided tour with a freshly-prepared picnic lunch at a hidden waterfall location. Here at Electric Bike Trails we like to provide you with a great cycling experience that will have you raving about the beauty and hospitality of the area. Whether it’s good food, traditional Irish heritage or the best of local culture you are interested in Electric Bike Trails have it all here in abundance. We will give you loads of tips to make your trip a memorable experience. Back up transport is available if required so no need to worry about a thing. We also offer bike delivery to local accommodation. Apart from day hire there are two to eight day tours available. There is a Castle to Castle tour where you stay at the four star Kilronan Castle Estate and Spa Hotel and Lough Rynn Castle and Gardens Hotel, cycle through the heart of Co Leitrim and Electric Bike Trails will take care of your luggage. There’s a three day Shannon Highlands Tour including glamping accommodation in a Yurt at Pink Apple Orchard overlooking Lough Allen. For the more experienced cyclist there is an eight day Lakelands to Wild Atlantic Way Tour with B&B accommodation and luggage transfer. Electric Bike Trails also have a bike hire base at Lough Key Forest and Activity Park, Boyle Co Roscommon. There is an eight km traffic free cycle path through natural woodland to enjoy which is very popular for a family fun cycle. Bikes can be hired by the hour during the spring/ summer season from Easter to the end of September. FOR MORE DETAILS on the tours see http://www.electricbiketrails.com info@electricbiketrails.com or 00353 (0)87 7386439.

Leitrim Tourism Image showing cycling on Sliabh an Iariann

Cycling World January 2016


More Power To The Pedal

Exciting New Models & Upgrades 2016 Ibex Plus

Ibex Plus

Frame Wheel Colour Gears Battery Level Controller Motor Charging Time Range Working Style

Aluminium 20” White - Green & Black Decals 6 Speed 10ah/13ah 36v LED 250w 4-5 Hours Up to 35/50 Miles Pedelec & Throttle

CODE: BYO-2015LFD 36v






Zest Plus

Zest Plus

Frame Wheel Colour Gears Battery Level Controller

Motor Charging Time Range Working Style

Aluminium 26” Black - Green Decals 7 Speed 9ah/11ah 36v 3” LCD Display With 5 Modes Of Assistance 250w Brushless Geared Motor 4-5 Hours Up to 30/40 Miles Pedelec & Throttle Control

CODE: BYO-2015ZES+ 36v

Chameleon LS






Chameleon LS Frame Wheel Colour Gears Battery Level Controller Motor Charging Time Range Working Style

Aluminium 20” White - Green & Black Decals 6 Speed 10ah/13ah 36v LED 250w 4-5 Hours Up to 35/50 Miles Pedelec & Throttle

CODE: BYO-2015LFD 36v






Want to go for a test ride? Visit our website, for one of our local dealers near you. Website: www.byocycles.com

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Cycling World January 2016

02392 488362

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ByoCycles is fast becoming known as a brand that can be relied upon to build bikes to the highest standards of quality and reliability, whilst still being affordable to the growing following of ‘E-Bikers’.

reliable electric bikes that can be used by everybody every day. We continually develop and improve our range of bikes to ensure we stay at the forefront of E-bike technology.

Established since 2008, ByoCycles Ltd is aiming to become the market leader in affordable and

By purchasing a Byocycle electric bike, you are joining the growing number of people breaking free


from their car, or public transport. When you buy ByoCycle, you don’t just buy a cheaper mode of transport, you buy a cleaner, healthier and more active life, you buy the beautiful scenery that we’re all guilty of missing on a daily basis. Where will your adventure take you?


Electric bikes are better for the environment, better for you, cheaper and quicker. There is no reason not to ride an electric bike! Electric bikes will allow you to climb hills you previously walked up, achieve distances you thought were impossible, and you can do all of this whilst feeling awesome! Perfect For Commuting To Work & For Leisure Bored of that 1 hour commute to do a measly 10 miles? Wake up later, jump on your electric bike and be there in half the time, and unlike a conventional bike you won’t arrive at work all hot and sweaty - you’ll be ready to start the day. Every rush hour commute is faster by electric bike. Friendly For Your Heart & Your Soul Electric bikes are not cheating – they’re a way to exercise longer and harder than you could previously, tackle things you didn’t think your body was capable of, you are in control now, add as much or as little

effort as you like. Whilst electric bikes are fantastic for your body, one less car on the road means less pollution! Cheap To Run & A Whole Load Of Fun… Electric bikes are one of the cheapest modes of transport, 12p to completely recharge the battery, with a range of up to 60 miles, maintenance costs no greater than that of an ordinary bike. No tax, no MOT, no Insurance, you’ll be saving money the minute you ride out of the shop!

Cycling World January 2016



Are electric bikes the answer to congestion, transport and health conundrums? Eleven new projects providing electric assisted pedal cycles for hire could help Carplus find out.


hese schemes, selected by Carplus for funding from the Department for Transport, will put over 200 new electric bikes into circulation. The bikes have small electric motors which boost the riders’ pedal power and will be used in a variety of situations including: • Electric bikes for hire in hilly towns and cities where riding pedal-only bikes is challenging. • Cargo bikes with electric motors to help hirers transport heavier loads. • A scheme providing transport for housing association homes in low income areas. • Tourist areas offering electric assisted bikes on hire to encourage people onto bikes for the first time or back onto bikes after a long break. Around one in ten bicycles sold in Germany, the Netherlands,


Cycling World January 2016

Austria and Switzerland are pedal-assisted e-bikes; bike hire schemes in many cities like Madrid and Copenhagen now have electric fleets. Carplus would like to support increasing interest in similar schemes in the UK. The project will follow the development of new projects to investigate the potential for shared electric bikes to: • Help more people make door-to-door journeys on shared and public transport. • Reduce congestion, demand for parking and pressure on the transport system. • Reduce pollution, CO2 emissions and improve air quality • Encourage more people to try or return to cycling, and for people to cycle more often. • Improve health and wellbeing, whilst stimulating community cohesion

Antonia Roberts, Electric Bike Programme Coordinator, said: “We will be using the data from these projects to find out what sort of people are attracted to electric bikes in different contexts, and why. It’s important for future planning to learn more about the sort of journeys might be appropriate for shared electric bikes and what sort of journeys people actually make using them. We need to know whether shared electric bike schemes work in urban or rural environments and whether the bikes need to be based together, along rail corridors, in workplaces, leisure facilities or residential areas.” The successful projects include a range of operating models including self-service bikes, point to point hire networks, community led bike pools and schemes integrated with car clubs and public transport networks.

over the off-season.

• Bristol: 24 e-bikes at four workplace hubs. Self-service cardopening bike lockers bookable through the Co-wheels car club website or app, available to employees in office hours and residents for weekends and evenings.

• Rotherham: Expansion of 70 electric bikes to the Journey Matters bike scheme, offering bikes to employees and the public via a popular mobile hub, aiming to attract commuters who previously do not cycle with short loans.

• Exeter: 22 e-bikes situated at railway stations and business parks integrated with Co-Cars operations in partnership with Nextbike and First Great Western Trains.

• Isle of Wight: 25 Red Squirrel Bikes e-bikes located at visitor centres in Newport, Ryde and Cowes for tourists and public sector employees needing to travel round the area.

• Oxford: adding 16 e-bikes to the popular bike hire scheme run by Hourbike in Headington and East Oxford, in association with Oxfordshire County Council.

• Hebden Bridge: 15 e-bikes including cargo bikes for residents, local businesses and tourists to hire from the Hebden Bridge Alternative Energy Centre to ride in this hilly area.

• Ryedale: providing 12 e-bikes for tourists exploring the areas of Malton, Pickering and the Howardian Hills. The bikes will be used in the wheels to work scheme

• Housing developments: 18 e-bikes at trial sites in Sustainable Ventures backed housing developments in low income communities to combat transport poverty in the east of

E-bikes for hire


England. • Cambridge and Norwich: Cargo bikes on hire to local residents and businesses to transport larger loads from Outspoken.

• Eastbourne: 20 e-bikes connecting the hilly route between the University of Brighton campus in Eastbourne and Eastbourne railway station. • Plymouth and surrounding area: Adding 20 e-bikes to a hire fleet of 60 bikes aimed at tourists and trials for local commuters, based around park and ride sites. • New Forest National Park: New Forest National Park Authority and PEDALL scheme exploring the potential take up of cycling for a wider group of less able people by adding an all-ability cycle training programme with four adapted e-bikes.

Cycling World January 2016


Italjet DiablOne £2,700 E-Bike review by Simon Postgate


ell, here’s a machine whose arrival I was anticipating with genuine excitement. What an outrageous beast! A handmade Italian electric bicycle, from a distinguished firm by the name of Italjet, an adventurous company that has been around since 1959. The DiablOne has enormous presence with its bad-boy bobber looks including lovely girder forks, super-fat tyres and antique-looking sprung saddle, curtesy of Brooks. The details, however, are bang up to date with a hydraulic disc brake up front (cable rear)and racy red calipers, not to mention a classy digital readout on the raked-back handlebars. This is a bike that begs to be ridden, but not before you’ve rifled through your wardrobe to find some appropriate garb to match the bike. Pretentious? Maybe. Fun? Definitely! Italjet have obviously put a lot of thought into this machine, working out every detail with typical Italian flair. The motor, a Chinese Bafang 8 Fun 250watt item, is in the front wheel, an arrangement that’s not my favourite but works fine in practice, partly, perhaps due to the weight of the bike which is a hefty 30kgs. To help with this the controls have a walk mode, which will shove the bike along for you if you need to push it. At the rear is a NuVinci planetary hub which changes the gear arrangement without the steps of normal bicycle gearing via a half-twist grip on the right handlebar. This is a system which, while not being as quick-fire as a trigger changer works well and suits the nature of the bike. The


Cycling World January 2016

DiablOne has a thumb throttle as well as pedal activated assistance so, if one wishes, takeoffs can be performed without the use of the pedals and you can run right up to speed (about 16mph) and then pick it up with the pedals although these kind of antics take a rather heavy toll on battery range and you soon learn to save it for just the odd occasion. The DiablOne will chop along at a fairly lively clip and it’s tempting to adopt a board track racer crouch as you wiz past slightly incredulous pedestrians. Well ..why not? There is a version with smaller frame and wheels, by the way, called the Angel (£2,500). There is also a, some might call authentic, bonk, from the exquisite girder forks as they top-out over the larger bumps, this is noise made as the mechanism returns to full extension and perhaps could be quietened down with a bit of rubber in the system. Lewis, from Italjet headquarters who kindly supplied the bikes, assures me that this can be done, and the bike quietens when done completely. The DiablOne is stable, rolling nicely on its lovely great tyres although one would hesitate to describe it as agile and it takes a little while to master low speed nadgery, this is also partly because use of the effective brakes cuts the power. The information display is fine, giving everything needed including lighting up with a muted glow at night. The front headlight is a fine feature and has a glorious spread of light, comes on at the touch of the handle bar buttons right next to the motorcycle-style electric horn, pity the back light wasn’t wired in too.

All in all, this is a great attention-grabbing, stylish bike as well as an effective, economic form of transport. A bike for the nostalgic enthusiast and a superb statement of Italian audacity and flair. I loved it! Just make sure you get a good lock. SPECIFICATIONS Motor 8Fun, 36Vx250W, brushless Battery and charger 36V 17, 3Ah lithium ion and 42V 3A Frame Formed 6061 aluminium Fork Italjet Spinger style with double spring and 4 bearings Max Assisted Speed 15mph default setting Chainwheel 42Tx170L, CP teeth, alloy crank Freewheel 19T NuVinci Front brake Tektro hydraulic disc-brake Rear brake Tektro mechanical disk brake Hub and shifter NuVini N360B-36SV-DC-12 N360 CVP BULK Saddle Brooks Flyer Display KM5S LCD, 5-steps Range 50 miles average Accessories Black leather bags available made by A.G. Spalding & Bross NY (not included in price) Weight 30 kg

Italjet ASCOT £3,500 E-Bike review by Simon Postgate


he Italjet Ascot is a truly unusual beast full of finely crafted details put together to create something to make people’s jaws drop open as you pedal by. This is not a bike for the taciturn recluse, children point and gasp and older gentlefolk approach with respectful curiosity. Everyone loves this bike, it’s the perfect mount for a Sunday ride through the park or a leisurely cruise along an elegant Victorian seafront promenade. The Ascot is quite low, which is good for stability and has 24 inch wheels with thick, milk chocolate coloured tyres. The handlebars are wider than the DiablOne and pulled back, giving an authentically antiquated feel, but in a good way: it works rather well, resulting in a feeling of laid back control. There is no thumb throttle on this bike but you don’t really miss it, you just have to pay a bit more attention to the gearing which is again supplied via a Nu Vinci planetary hub. You get the same beautiful girder forks, and the same clonks, but this time with lovely brass nuts and an elegant clock set into the top yoke, useful to remind you about the time of any appointments with Jules Verne. Although quite outlandish in appearance, this is a perfectly practical runabout and will bop along at a surprising lick, power supplied curtesy of a 250 watt motor in the front hub and linked to an elegant leather-clad console giving all required information and operated by a handlebar-mounted button switch which incorporates a powered walk-the-bike function, useful on a 30kg machine. There are some beautifully-crafted extras for this machine including thick leather panniers, a neat saddle-mounted tool bag and a rather unusual umbrella case tucked down behind the seat post tube. The panniers can also be made available for the DiablOne, in black, of course. This is a more traditional style of machine than the DiablOne, less aggressive, with a riding

position a bit like a delivery bike but with heaps more panache! I think Italjet are to be applauded for producing these wonderfully playful and eccentric machines, the world would be a duller place without them. Go on… treat yourself!

SPECIFICATIONS Motor 8Fun, 36Vx250W, brushless Battery and charger 36V -13, 2Ah lithium ion and 36V 3A Frame Grade 50 alloy leather bag integrated made in Italy by A.G. Spalding & Bross NY Fork Italjet Spinger style with double spring and 4 bearings Max Assisted Speed 15mp/H Chainwheel 42Tx170L, CP teeth, alloy crank Freewheel 18T, NuVinci Brakes Tektro disk brake Hub and shifter NuVinci 360 Saddle Brooks Flyer Display King Meter digital multifunction with leather cover Range 50 miles average Accessories leather bags integrated, made in Italy by A.G. Spalding & Bross NY Weight 30 kg

Cycling World January 2016


Visit Isle of Wight


the Isle of Wight an ideal destination for a UK cycling holiday or short break.

isit Isle of Wight are delighted to announce the launch of an innovative, shared electrically-assisted pedal cycle (EAPC) programme on the Isle of Wight. The Red Squirrel Electric Bike project will have a fleet of Peugeot EC-03200s available for hire at three key locations. There is a central 'hire hub' in Newport and supporting sites at key gateways to the island in Cowes and Ryde. The Isle of Wight can be a challenge to some riders and so having EAPCs available will open up Bicycle Island to everyone. Quiet country lanes and scenic off-road cycling routes make

Project4:Layout 1

Hop over on foot and pick up your bike and see what the beautiful Isle of Wight has to offer. There are cycling routes to suit everyone, with a choice of challenging offroad bridleways, peaceful byways and level purpose-made tracks on former railway lines. Within an area of just 147 square miles you will find over 200 miles of cycle routes enticing you into the countryside or along the coast. FOR MORE INFORMATION www.viistisleofwight.co.uk



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Coming soon to the Isle of Wight We’re keen to encourage less car use for our residents, businesses and tourists. That’s why we’re pleased to be launching Red Squirrel Electric Bikes for hire across the Isle of Wight.

You’d be nuts not to use them... @redsquirrelbike


To find out more go to www.nutsnotto.co.uk or call us on 01983 521555 58

Cycling World January 2016


Whichever your riding style, Take Charge Bikes have the electric bike to suit you. With stores in Bath, Cheltenham, Exeter and Woking.

To find out more, email: info@takechargebikes.co.uk

Flyer Goroc www.nationwideebikes.co.uk  0800 612 3449 ride@nationwideebikes.co.uk


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Cycling World January 2016



Gepida Reptila 900 £1,895 E-bike review by Simon Postgate


fter hearing that I was to review the Gepida Reptila I wasn’t quite sure whether I would be expected to ride it or fight it with a flaming torch, so… I was somewhat relieved to find that it turned out to be a straight forward electric bicycle with an air of solid German quality and an accessible stepthrough frame. The Reptila 900 is equipped with the excellent Bosch power base, a tried and tested system. There’s a choice of four power settings on the neat display console, which is removable to discourage theft, indicating remaining charge level, quantity of power assistance, range and speed. The Reptila 900 is a Pedalec, which means the Bosch 250 watt Active Line motor is where the pedals are, exactly where it should be for optimum efficiency and weight distribution. As you pedal the power you use is augmented by the motor, increasing power by up to 225%, particularly welcome when you come to a hill. The assistance fades away seamlessly at around 15mph so beyond that you are on your own, meaning the bike can remain legally a


Cycling World January 2016

bicycle and as such, does not require tax, registration or insurance. The limit works OK in practice as most users are unlikely to want to go much beyond this kind of speed unless they feel like a proper workout! The Reptila’s power is supplied by a fairly substantial 400Wh battery, located on a sturdy, pannier-ready, rack at the rear of the bike, removable for charging. The whole bike looks as if it’s built to last, the overall impression being one of durability and well thought-out details such as the integrated lighting system, with both front and rear activated by a button with a wide beam from the headlamp and a large and bright rear lamp. There is also a strong ‘Abus’ lock which is engineered into the rear and operated by the same key as the battery. There is even a bicycle pump neatly tucked away behind a frame tube. Braking is supplied by Magura and although appearing to be conventional rim brakes, they are actually operated hydraulically: impressive. This is a bike that would be a safe choice either as regular personal

SPECIFICATIONS Motor 250w 36v Crank-Mounted Bosch Brushless Motor Frame Gepida Hydroforming - 6061 Alloy Battery Bosch Lithium 400Wh Front Fork Suntour CR8 50mm Brakes Magura HS-11 Hydraulic Rim BB Bosch Handlebars Gepida Alloy, 650mm Headset Gepida Integrated Crankset Miranda 18T/170mm Weight 25.9g Wheel Size 26" Lights Intergrated Front and Rear Lights

transport or for a delivery or hire company. Gepida is a factory with many years of experience producing electric bicycles and can be relied on to supply well-sorted machines. Out on the open road the bike performs well, gear changes are made using a half twist grip on the right handlebar and there is a handy numbered gear indicator window. The eight gears are contained within the Shimano Nexus 8 rear hub which is a tidy low-maintenance system with nothing exposed to collect muck. It is predominantly a road bike but should you wish to venture off the beaten track it comes with a sturdy pair of Suntour CR8 suspension forks with 50mm of travel and a suspension seat post under the well-padded saddle. The bike weighs in at around 25kgs, not as light as some but perfectly acceptable for this category of machine. The frame is composed of hydroformed aluminium alloy, so it’s good and light and bang up-to-date.

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There’s a variety of different colours and sizes available for this machine, the 26” wheel version reviewed here comes in matt black but is also available in gloss white, and for the Gepida Reptila 1000 the 28” wheel version with the larger frames, there’s a choice of black, grey, red or bronze. To sum up, what we have here is a lively, good-looking little workhorse which will endear itself to the many potential owners who are looking for a reliable, sturdy machine, which does exactly what it says on the can, and for the competitive price of under two grand, there’s no need to drag your tail!

Flyer TX Series www.nationwideebikes.co.uk  0800 612 3449 ride@nationwideebikes.co.uk Cycling World January 2016



Helite Air Vest £399.95 A review by Simon Postgate


t’s not always a comfortable subject but most cyclists have come a cropper once or twice during their cycling career. My own experience includes undesired contact with the road both in cycling and motorcycling mishaps. Recently, horse riders and motorcyclists have been given the option of protecting themselves by using inflatable air vests which at one stage or another begs the question: would cyclists benefit from the same kind of protection? Well, arguably the best air vest available is the one made by the French company, Helite, with long experience in this kind of technology. The vest is activated via a lanyard which attaches to the frame or saddle of the beast you are riding. In the event of a mishap such as a collision, the force of a moving body pulls a ball on the lanyard out of the vest and releases CO2 gas from 60cc cartridge, triggering the inflation of a tube inside the vest which curls around the neck, chest and pelvis, creating an effective cushion for the whole area of the upper body including an outer back protector. The whole process takes under a tenth of


Cycling World January 2016 December 2015

a second, a big and important advance in reaction time. Now, a horse or motorcycle is a lot heavier than a bicycle and supplies a more solid and reliable platform to attach the lanyard to. But get this, in less than a year’s time, Helite will be bringing out a remotely activated vest which will not require a lanyard, opening up real possibilities for other applications. The vest itself is fairly substantial, aimed towards motorcyclists; nonetheless, it feels comfortable and unobtrusive when worn, adjustable straps holding it close to the body. For winter use, particularly for an e-bike it would be unlikely to raise many eyebrows. I found on an e-bike, with less of a body heat issue, and during inclement weather, you more or less forget about it being there, until it’s needed. There are, however, some limitations in terms of its use for regular cycling such as ventilation and compatibility with a backpack and it will be interesting to see how the situation evolves, perhaps into a vest that’s designed specifically for cyclists.

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Introducing the new

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Tel: 01709 886677 Cycling World January 2016



Text by Shaun Dutton Dutto; pictures: - PicturesSam by Sam Needham Needham and Shaun and Shaun Dutton Dutton


ycling World World readers readers will will probably probablyappreciate appreciatethat thatriding ridingaabike bikegives givesus usan anincredible incrediblefeeling feelingofoffreedom freedomand andallows us to reminisce allows us to reminisce back toback a time to in a time our youth in ourwhere youth every wherepedal everystroke pedaltook stroke us took somewhere us somewhere new andnew exciting. and exciting. As our confidence As our confidence and skill and grew, skillsogrew, did the so did extent the of extent our adventures… of our adventures… from local from streets local to streets outlying to outlying fields and fields woods, and with only woods, with theonly promise the promise to our parents to our parents “be back“be before backdark” before thedark” limiting thefactor. limitingItfactor. was with It was inspiration with inspiration from this childhood from this childhood memory that memory “Totalthat Mountain “Total Mountain Biking,” a Professional Biking” a Professional Coaching and Coaching Guiding and Company, Guiding was Company born. was born. The company continues to progress and develop with our focus being on “Skills Coaching” and “Guided Rides” which are curAre you a MTB or Pilot…? Putting the Mountain back into Mountain Biking rently our mostPassenger popular elements. I amyou always asked “what can a client expect to get from of Are a MTB Passenger or Pilot…? our Skills Coaching Days”... Most clients are unaware of how their riding improve from attending a Skills Imuch am always asked can “what can a client expect to get fromCoachof ing Day they have attended one, just makingofsmall our Skillsuntil Coaching Days” ... Most clients areby unaware how changes to the body weight distribution and much their riding canposition, improvethe from attending a Skills CoachthenDay developing mind to focusone, in the places,small the ing until theythe have attended justright by making improvements huge. We video analysis changes to the can bodybeposition, thealways weightuse distribution and so it’sdeveloping immediately easy theinclient to see how they then thevery mind to for focus the right places, the look whilst riding performing a skill… which be very improvements canand be huge. We always use videocan analysis different from how very they easy thinkfor they that when so it’s immediately thelook. clientWe tofind see how they a client is unable ride a section aofskill… trail we would look whilst ridingto and performing which canbebeforgiven fordifferent instantly focusing on technique skilful very from how they think theyand look. We application find that however moreisoften than need tooflook thewould psychowhen a client unable to not ridewe a section trailat you logical aspect…. What arefocusing you seeing? What areand youskilful telling be forgiven for instantly on technique yourself? Byhowever workingmore on strategies to not eliminate or to manage application often than we need look at this psychological “interference”aspect…. we can get theare results client desires. the What you the seeing? What are you telling yourself? By working on strategies to eliminate or manage this “interference” we can get the results the client desires.

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Cycling World January 2016

Riding inthe natural terrain gives usMountain a great sense of self -reliPutting Mountain back into Biking ance and self-awareness of our ability to look after ourselves. IMountain can sometimes out on an adventure where outBiking head in rugged natural terrain gives usthe a great come and it’s only my skills as ability a navigator, sense is ofnot selfguaranteed -reliance and self-awareness of our to mechanic and rider that will get me safely This a look after ourselves. I can sometimes headback. out on anisadgreat feeling and this is the feeling we want to and share venture where the outcome is not guaranteed it’swith only our skills clients offering a mechanic Guiding Service so they my asby a navigator, and rider that can will sample get me the wonders of rugged, natural riding withisthe safely back. This is a great feeling and this theconfidence feeling we of ridingto with a fully-qualified guide to experience real service Mounwant share with our clients by offering a Guiding tainthey Biking its truest We of arerugged extremely lucky to have so canin sample the form. wonders natural riding accessthe to confidence the most envious riding the country with of riding withterrain a fully in qualified Guidewith to four National Parks withinBiking a one hour theare days experience real Mountain in its drive. truest So… form.asWe are now getting youto will be planning your extremely lucky longer to be able guide clients on thenext mostadenviventure, biking takes you, an withepic ous ridingwherever terrain inyour the mountain country with 4 National Parks guided mountain a Skills Coaching session, in a 1 hour drive. bike So… adventure as the daysorare now getting longer remember ride safeyour andnext enjoy. you will beto planning Mountain Bike adventure, wherever your riding takes you, an epic guided adventure or a Skills Coaching session, remember to ride safe and most of all enjoy.





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The Campagnolo Gran Fondo San Diego San Diego, California, a worldrenowned cycling destination, is home to mountains, beaches, deserts, lakes and the longest running Gran Fondo in the United States. San Diego shares Italy’s temperate Mediterranean climate, and riders can look forward to pedaling in ideal temperatures between 18-21C. The four routes of the Campagnolo Gran Fondo San Diego, scheduled for 10 April 2016, showcase the scenery of America’s Finest City and combine it with a true Italian gran fondo: challenging rides, professional support, cameo appearances by professional riders, commemorative medals, and a four-course finisher’s feast. Now in its eighth year, the event draws cyclists from around the block and around the world. Entry includes chip

timing, closed sections of roadway, aid stations, post-ride pasta and massage, sponsor goodies, and sag support. Commemorative kits are available for purchase, too. The routing options of the Campy Gran Fondo offer something for everyone. A 32km Fun Fondo brings riders along San Diego’s picturesque Big Bay. The 55km Piccolo Fondo adds more challenge, heading inland for 274m of climbing. Hardier riders will enjoy the 90km Medio Fondo with 457m of climbing, and the Gran Fondo route, at169km, includes 1,524m of climbing and a timed King/Queen of the Mountains challenge. Join thousands of riders under San Diego’s iconic Little Italy sign for a Ferrari-led start along the Big Bay and post-ride celebrations in San Diego.

Registration is open at www.sdgranfondo.com


Cycling World January 2016

Cycling World Letter Page We have now started the Letter Page! Thanks for the contributions and please keep sending your thoughts, feelings, ideas and insights about all things cycling. Letter of the month wins: A Velo Hinge Home Bicycle Storage. It is a foldaway hook that fits most standard road, mountain and kids’ bikes. Send letters to: Email: editor@cyclingworldmag.co.uk Post: Editor, Cycling World Magazine, Myrtle Oast, Kemsdale Road, Fostall, Faversham, Kent ME13 9JL We may edit your letter for brevity and/or clarity. We look forward to hearing from you. Editor

Potholes sketches


started riding when very young and painted the bikes I had a different colour every month, sanding it down by hand. Now I’m sketching bike scenes for a pastime. Now I can think of a couple of bikes ideal for a 65-year-old like myself and also suitable for the local potholed roads – a simple but rigid 29er Mountain Bike and a Fred’s Bicycles Gentleman’s Model that was actually built for African terrain.

Alan wins a Velo Hinge from Feedback Sports for his letter of the month The loose nut


bought five inner tubes for £10 in a bulk deal at a cycling shop. The first tube kept losing air. I checked for slow punctures but found nothing. Every cycle ride would begin with the same procedure - check tyre, pump it up and pedal off in frustration. One by one I changed the cheap inner tubes and all of them did the same. I reckoned there may have been a weakness around the joint in the tube. That’s what happens when you buy cheap, I thought. I then bought a pack of expensive ones. Alas, the same problem arose! I couldn’t believe it and was more determined than ever to work out the issue. Eventually ... I discovered why my tyres were going down. I filled a kiddies’ paddling pool and submerged the whole wheel in water. Okay, the hub bearings might have suffered but I managed to detect a few bubbles from the valve. All along the leaking air had been seeping out the valve. It wasn’t broken. Just that my arthritic hands had never quite screwed down the tiny Presta style locking nut properly. It had been the same with every single tube. Other cyclists please take note! - Alan Woodison, Ayrshire, Scotland (email)


Tandem de France

’m 84 now and although I’ve been cycling for the last seven decades of my life, I only got interested in Cycling World Magazine about two years ago, as it was the only magazine I found that had some insight into tandems. I found a good tandem – a Dawes one – after about a year of reading Cycling World and since then we have been round Anglesey, Norwich, King’s Lynn and Ferry Meadows in Peterborough – a great area with nice lakes and a few good cafés. The question is: why not have something like a Tour de France for tandems or a similar race? I reckon it would make for a fast, good sport and would get more tandems on the road. - D. Reeves, Swindon

- David Warwick, Haslemere, Surrey

This month’s competition winners Winners of our Hiplok competition: Ray Witts of Blackpool and Giles Martin of Berkshire.

Cycling World January 2016


Exhibition Design museum

Cycle Revolution: the present and future of cycling Tudor Tamas wandered around Olympic medal-winners' recordbreaking, everyday commuting and cargo bikes that race each other at the Design Museum’s Cycling Revolution Exhibition in London.

A celebration of technological cycling masterpieces that broke away in the last few decades, the Cycle Revolution Exhibition at the Design Museum in London showcases some of the most powerful and remarkable cycling stories.

Credit to Emily Maye

“It feels like the right time to stage an exhibition on cycling,” said a very friendly and welcoming Donna Loveday, the collection’s curator. Her mood was the perfect reflection of the exhibition’s ambience, which so invitingly lured the curious visitors along the aisles crammed with famous items that have left their mark on the history of cycling. The Lotus Type 108 used by Chris Boardman at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games – the event that kick-started the whole cycling revolution and brought the first little bit of cycling success for the United Kingdom – rightly opens the superb collection 68

Cycling World January 2016

of the High Performers tribe, which worships the efficiency, technological triumph and sheer beauty of road and track racing and the designs and innovations that have helped to create superior bikes. Francesco Moser’s 1984 Hour Record bike is the next in line, before Eddy Merckx’s famous 1969 Faema racing bike and 1972 bright orange Hour Record bike: the race is on for the title of the most prestigious item. Sir Bradley Wiggins’ 2015 Hour Record and World Championship Time Trial bikes magnificently adorn the neatly ordered left-handed wall, making a smooth transition towards Team Sky’s 2015 Pinarello bikes that were so successfully deployed in Chris Froome’s victorious Tour de France. David Millar’s Cervélo S5 Racing bike ridden at the 2014 Commonwealth Games; Joanna Rowsell Shand’s 2015

Track bike and the 2015 bikes from McLaren Tarmac and HOY Fiorenzuola complete an amazingly prestigious and, if the oxymoron is to be excused, well-sorted peloton of Olympic medal-winners and recordbreaking bikes. There wasn’t a single thing diminishing the excitement that surged through our bodies when we explored the exhibition, not even the constant noise coming from the adjacent room where drills were still working to finish the gallery before the official public opening. “Cycle Revolution looks at where cycling is right now – incredibly popular – and where it may go in the future,” said Donna Loveday. The Design Museum shows where it may be headed. A constant double track of now and the tomorrow that inevitably leads to urban cycling and commuting, presented in another tribe of the exhibition.

The Urban Riders section is led by Lucy Granville, winner of the Design Museum’s global search to find the ultimate urban rider. Entries came from Bangalore, Sao Paulo and Gothenburg, but Lucy is a Londoner who has been traversing the capital since birth. “My bike is my freedom pass. Riding is liberation and sanity,” she says; and so believe hundreds of thousands of commuters from all around the world. The number of urban residents cycling to work has registered a steady increase in the past years, especially in large towns and cities, with a record number of people now riding bikes in London – a total of 610,000 cycle journeys are made every day, equating to 223million per year. The figures are rising and designers have always set themselves the challenge of producing the ultimate city bike. The Urban Riders tribe displays some of the best of these designs, from innovative small-wheeled and folding bikes including the earliest 1976 prototype Brompton to the 2015 Schindelhauer model. Other stars like the 1962 Moulton Deluxe F-Frame, 1988 Moulton AM SPEED, the 1971 Bickerton portable prototype or the 2015 Princess Sovereign and Gocycle bikes further enhance the exhibition through their very different designs. Cyclists have always been passionate about their bikes, which represent an extension of the owner and nobody else can prove this point any better

than cargo bike designer and founder of Porterlight Bicycles Lawrence Brand, who roadtested his prototype by riding it for more than 3,000miles from Eastern Europe all the way to the Chinese border of Kyrgyzstan.

and skills that combine to create a bespoke machine. Six independent British bike builders are profiled through specially commissioned films and bikes – some of which were created specifically for Cycle Revolution.

Before the widespread introduction of motorised vehicles, cargo bicycles were fundamental in the transportation of freight, equipment and other goods. They have been made in every imaginable size and shape, and put to use everywhere – from factory floors to market stalls, from small family businesses to large companies, by postmen, milkmen, butchers and fire fighters. But now, they seem to be enjoying a resurgence.

Bikes considered to be the future of cycling are lined up in a very fashionable style, perhaps offering a taste of things to come – the 2015 Bamboo road bike, wooden models from Paul Timmer, Jurgen Kuipers and others, the very fanciful CinelliARCC Mystic Rat fitted with the ARCC e2-pod Intelligent Power system and the 2013 Pininfarina Fuoriserie, to name a few.

Bicycles with a longer wheelbase and a large cargo container positioned either between the wheels or over the front wheel are used today like cars for commuting, shopping, running errands, transporting unwieldly objects or even children and pets. The Cargo Bikers collection comprises modern such as the 2015 Delibike, Donkey Bike and Bilenky Chuckwagon models, but also a 1982 Coventry Eagle. The city of Coventry, so famous for its decades of bicycles manufacturing, also provided Cycle Revolution with a Rover safety bicycle built around the year 1888, which is the oldest bike in display. The exhibition recreates a bike builder’s workshop, showing the tools, materials

At the start of the 1980s, mountain biking was still in its intimacy, with the majority of bicycles being made in relatively small numbers by specialised manufacturers. Mass produced mountain bikes, such as the Stumpjumper and the Slingshot, saw sales of mountain bikes overtake those of road bicycles by the end of the same decade. The fourth tribe of the exhibition, the Thrill Seekers, is all about mountain biking. Off-road cycling has registered a huge rise in popularity over the last 30-odd years and this resulted in a number of new designs requiring tremendous balance and precision handling. Great Britain is now a downhill mountain biking and BMX racing superpower with men’s and women’s World Champions Cycling World January 2016


Exhibition Design museum

Credit to Emily Maye

Crete photo by Juan Trujillo Andrados

in both disciplines. Coventry contributed once more with a model from Coventry Transport Museum, as the 1970 Raleigh Chopper joined new models like the Specialized S-Works, the Inspired Sky Team bike or Tracy Moseley’s Trek Remedy mountain bike in a very diversified collection.

wanted Bradley Wiggins’ Hour Record bike on the show. I thought it was going to be really difficult to get hold of it, but it turned out it was relatively easy. There was no lack of enthusiasm from any of the partners who provided us with the items for the exhibition.”

These initiatives worked a treat for Cycle Revolution and the curator was really pleased with the wide selection of bikes – a few newcomers but also some great landmarks.

Cycle Revolution does not only celebrate the whole concept of cycling with everything it involves, from old items to famous bikes and latest innovations, but it also offers an invitation to ride, being an inspiration for the afternoons

She said: “From day one I really 70

Cycling World January 2016

spent in the saddle. “I will be cycling more now because you can’t work in the cycling industry and not cycle. I have a mountain bike that has been in my shed since last year. I’ll pump up the tyres and get back on the bike as soon as I get a small break,” concluded Donna Loveday. The Design Museum will be hosting the exhibition until 30th June 2016, giving you plenty of time to clear your busy schedule and book a ticket for this wonderful event.

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Cycling World January 2016

K8-s designed for cobbles, ridden by TeamSky photo by Pinarello Donky designed by Ben Wilson Tall bike by Peter Georgallou photo by Ben Broomfield

Bespoke Bike by Sebastien Klein

by Emily Maye

Exhibition Design museum

by Emily Maye

Brompton Factory

3D printed bicycle by Renishaw and Empire Cycles

Cycling World January 2016


ON YER BIKE Review by Rick Perkins (www.redvelo.co.uk)


n Yer Bike is a fantastic collection of short films, documentaries, advertisements and public information films that are all cycling related, spanning the years 1899 – 1983. There is also a booklet detailing each item. This two DVD set will appeal to all with an interest in the bicycle, modern history and general observers in the changes in society over the years. It covers a whole range of cycling related activities, building and competition.

Many of the items by today’s entertainment standards are quite dry, almost whimsical. Clearly the Great British public were better at taking an instruction from the media than they are today … perhaps the public had more trust in the media in bygone years or maybe the media were of a higher standard or probably a bit of each. Thus the set will probably appeal to people of a certain age who can relate to some of the contents and make a great gift for a cycling grandparent.

The DVDs are a collection of short standalone items that are only connected really by the bicycle. Some are as short as a minute whilst others are 47 minutes. This means you can watch this DVD in one shift or pick and choose the items that appeal to you; this should certainly appeal to the YouTube generation.

It is also quite interesting to watch scenes of so many recreational cyclist going about their business without any helmets or high visibility clothing; again highlighting how things have changed over the years.

Many of the activities documented in these films have passed into the far reaches of historical records and the viewer is often left with an overwhelming feeling that life as a cyclist in bygone days was far better than it is today; with car ownership at much lower levels the bicycle holding a much more prominent position in society than it does today.

Cyclist Turning Right (1983)


Cycling World January 2016

Given the breadth of material here there is something for everyone. I particularly enjoyed the “It’s a bike” safety/historical drama to highlight road safety and maintenance; the sound track and narrational rap are impressive. The slap stick comedy is basic at best but it is very engaging and amusing to watch. In addition there are a number of technical items; “The Moulton Bicycle” item covers the design, development and evolution of the Moulton Bicycle that was hugely popular in the mid-60s and late 70s … what ever happened to small wheel bicycles? I was certainly convinced as to their benefits after 20 minutes thinking this was the way to go … Some of the safety items didn’t shy

 Film Review

British Film Institute 2 Disc Collection Released June 2015 Available: £15.99 at http://shop.bfi.org.uk

away from the dangers of cycling; in “Cyclist Turning Right” the risks are certainly served up on a plate in a refreshingly basic way … the film reflects a more relaxed era with children out unsupervised on their bikes; the film makes sense though even by today’s standards. The DVDs also include some advertisements from the 50s with “Hercules Lion Clubs” being a wonderful early animation and the marketing men of the era were not afraid of making some bold claims about the qualities of their products; many of which would not have made it past the Advertising Standards Authorities of today. For the sport cyclist there is a real treat in store with “Race for the Muratti Cup at Manchester Wheelers’ Annual Meet.” Filmed in 1901 it shows the riders giving their all in front of huge crowds who are all well-turned out in their Woman Wheelers (1929)

Sunday best. This item isn’t narrated so it is not entirely clear what is going on all the time; though it is particularly interesting to see the riders/racers in full uniform with their weapons on board. Even in 1901 if you pointed a camera at a crowd, people will goon around: not much has changed there. Finally my highlight of the DVD was “Skid Kids;” a post war short film from the Children’s Film Foundation. I’d almost forgotten about Saturday morning cinema and the CFF and the style of their films. An absolute classic about Cycle Speedway in bombed-out, post-war SE London with great characters: the spivvy bicycle thieves are spot on … In summary these DVDs are a wonderful collection; some of the items are amusing, some a bit dry, others slightly odd but all very engaging.

Cyclists Special (1955)

Tom’s Ride (1944)

Riding on Air (1959)

Cinema Adverts Humber, Raleigh, Rudge (1938)

Riding on Air (1959)

The Racing Cyclist (1966)

Cyclists Abroad 1957

The Racing Cyclist (1966)

Cycling World January 2016



 Book Review


“Any interesting account of a solo, long-distance cycle ride is bound to be misleading. It will undoubtedly give a warped impression of how the vast majority of the cyclist’s time is spent.”


o says Helen Lloyd, midway through the account of her solo, long-distance cycle ride across Siberia, in the frigid winter of 2014. But I’d disagree with her. In fact, what makes A Siberian Winter’s Tale so particularly engaging is its accuracy in portraying the day-to-day struggle, frustration and tedium of a winter journey by bike. (And I should know – I went on a similar journey, albeit on the other side of the Bering Strait, the following winter.) Lloyd’s expedition did not meet with any noteworthy triumph or disaster, and it’s a sure testament to her skill as a writer and as an observer of people – most notably herself – that her book is just as compelling as if she had been fighting off bears and wolves, losing her extremities to frostbite or being dismembered by the “psycho cyclist-killers” she occasionally imagines to inhabit the deserted towns and villages she passes along the way. It’s the writer’s imagination that is the star of the show here – as Lloyd points out, “you have so much time to think while cycle touring, there are few topics you won’t have considered or debated from all angles”. She endlessly questions her own motives: “What was the point, and why was I doing this [if] is was not enjoyable or the rewards commensurate with the hard work put in?” Elsewhere she meticulously recounts both her torturous to-ing and fro-ing over the decision to end her eastward journey in Magadan rather than the more remote Chersky (a decision reconsidered countless


Cycling World January 2016

times before she reaches the point of no return) and her rhapsodic and somewhat surreal companionship with people she encounters early in her journey – who by the end of it have become fully fledged imaginary friends, following her along the road, whispering in her ears, and occasionally encouraging her to be sensible, eat well, keep warm, sleep properly. But between these flights of fancy, Lloyd is frank about the humiliating and often insurmountable difficulty of her undertaking – about her reluctance to move on from each cosy café and her barely contained desire to flag down every passing vehicle for a lift. It is, she notes, difficult to remember how painful -40°C is when looking out at it from a car or café window (or recalling it from a comfortable desk in the English summer), and yet she succeeds in evoking the frantic desperation of trying to get a sleeping bag out of a pannier with utterly frozen fingers. Eventually she thrusts her head into the pannier, yanks the bag with her teeth, and watches it spill out “like guts from a torn stomach”. It’s a violent image, but it perfectly captures the savagery of the cold; the visceral fear of knowing that help may not come. I read the book in a single sitting. Helen Lloyd’s prose is lively, frank, engaging, and occasionally sublime; it holds the reader with both the chilling grip of the Siberian winter, and its haunting beauty.

Author: Helen Lloyd Publisher: Take On Creative Date: 16 December 2015 Available http://www.helenstakeon. com/a-siberian-winters-tale/ Format: Paperback Pages: 262 ISBN: 978-0-9576606-2-5 Price: £9.99

London to Paris Cycle Ride 8 – 12 June 2016

SHOW POVERTY THE FINISH LINE Join Oxfam at the London to Paris Cycle Ride and together we can end poverty, faster. In just 15 years extreme poverty has been halved. In 15 more we can end it. Cycle for Team Oxfam and you can help make sure everyone has enough food, safe water to drink - and the chance to build a better life.

Join Team Oxfam today www.oxfam.org.uk/londontoparis

Irene, from Zambia, where Oxfam is helping people earn a better income from farming, so they no longer have to see their children go hungry.

Cycling World Oxfam is a registered charity in England and Wales (no 202918) and Scotland (SC039042). Oxfam GB is a member of Oxfam International. Photo: Abbie Trayler-Smith/Oxfam.

January 2016



The premise of this book is clear: for every day of the year it provides a brief summary of an event that can be linked to that date – then adds some illustrations inspired by one of those events.


hat I found less clear was just how best to work with the book. By its very nature it is not the sort of book that is easy to read from cover to cover; nor can you look for information on your favourite subject, because there is no index. My conclusion was that the book rewards taking ‘pot luck’: as I did, you might start by looking at what is on offer for today, then you might see what happened on significant days (like your birthday), and finally you are tempted to choose pages at random – perhaps drawn in by one of the many splendid illustrations. Just don’t go looking for February 29th: you get


Cycling World January 2016 December 2015

365 stories, not 366. Most of the events covered relate in some way to the sport of cycling, although many of the stories are of general interest – and might therefore have featured on both the front and back pages of newspapers at the time. Sometimes the link to the sport is unexpected but no less welcome, such as the sale of Mavic (30/11/90). In choosing what events should be allocated to which date, you know that certain dates are non-negotiable: the death of Tom Simpson on 13/07/67, the Merckx hour record on 25/10/72, or winning the Tour de France by 8 seconds on

23/07/89. Not surprisingly that man Merckx provides enough material to be included several times (such as the last of his 525 victories on 17/09/77), as does the Tour de France (the start of the first one on 01/07/03 for example). In other cases there is story that needs to be included somewhere, but there is some flexibility as to which date to choose as the starting point. Take Team Sky: their story covers the first race, the first win, and of course the first Tour de France victory – but it is the day of the announcement of the team that provides the date (26/02/09). Not all stories have an associated image, but any image will always have a link to a story: some links are more obvious than others, but the connection is always there and enhances the appeal of the illustrations. When you know that Paris-Roubaix is often referred to as the Hell of the North, the name of the film and the accompanying picture of swearing make more sense. It is fitting that the December 31st slot is used to talk about the achievements of

Tommy Godwin in 1939: having started on January 1st, he exceeded the highest total mileage ever cycled in a year (62,657) on October 26th, but went on to finish the year with 75,065 miles. He then used that head start to cycle 100,000 miles in less time than anyone else (500 days). By the time you read this we should know if the first of his achievements has been beaten, because as I write this there are at least two attempts on the record underway.

 Book Review

There is a lot of information in this book; some of it is well known, and some less so. How you use that information is up to you, but I suspect that you will be dipping into the book and discovering new stories long after the year is out.

Author: Giles Belbin with Daniel Seex Publisher: Aurum Press Date: October 2015 Format: Hardback Pages: 352 ISBN: 9781781314432 Price: £20

Cycling World January 2016



80 Emily Maye

Cycling World January 2016


The right cycling jacket not only enhances your ride, it can also be a life saver


here’s nothing more crucial than getting your top layer spot on: the right skin for the ambient conditions and a rider’s needs. A jacket protects you from the cold, the rain, the wind and other road users during low visibility. It needs to be breathable, there’s no point in getting wetter from sweat than you would from the rain. Comfort is crucial, especially if the jacket’s to be worn all day or for multiday touring. Careful consideration of needs is required: how many pockets are desired, does a paper map need to be kept dry, will the jacket be stuffed into a jersey pocket, is smart wear desired post ride?

Jackets have become impressively technical; materials can offer good protection from the elements whilst still being breathable. Hi-viz elements are becoming more evident, with 360 degree dazzling visibility now on offer. As most things cycling the range of jackets on offer is immense with a broad price spectrum to match. We at Cycling World put a few to the test on our rural commute as temperatures dropped and evenings darkened.

Cycling World January 2016


VISIJAX COMMUTER JACKET WITH TURN SIGNALS Above and beyond the bare essentials of road safety


isijax have developed the patented technology that makes their Commuter Jacket award winning. They’ve tackled the most dangerous time of a cyclist’s journey head on, with motion activated turn indicators on the arms. When you wear the jacket, you’ll never feel invisible on the roads again. Simply raise your arm to indicate as you would normally and the built in amber LEDs light up on the front and back of the sleeve. The indicators switch off automatically after you’ve made your turn; the entire process is

controlled by your natural body movement. The Commuter jacket also features 23 high intensity, integrated LEDs in both white and red to alert other road users to your presence. The outer is polyester with Teflon coating, the inner lining polyester. Thus the jacket is washable, with a breathability of 5000 and waterproofness of 10000, making it a reliable, functional winter garment. No fuss, no messy cables: just charge it up and get riding!

Also available in fluorescent yellow



For wet days and light enough to be worn for all day riding

T Also available in Cobalt Blue



Cycling World January 2016

his jacket is a high spec, hardworking jacket to combat the British grimness. Its classic lines disguise fantastic wind and rain proof practicality. It has an outer shell to rely on for hours of battling the elements with wind and rain proof material that combines great breathability for comfort on long rides. There are two large under-arm vents, angled

against the wind that remove warm moist air if you’re working hard. Two large easy access rear pockets and a waterproof zipped pocket will keep your valuables safe. A beautifully detailed winter workhorse that is smart enough to use as an après-ride garment. It is no coincidence that Hoy Vulpine items are included in the current Cycle Revolution exhibition at the London Design Museum.

FUNKIER’S WJ-1323 SOFT SHELL WINDSTOPPER A stalwart winter jacket that is windproof, water resistant and breathable

Also available in Silver-Reflect(£110) , blue and black.



xcellent in cold winter conditions and shaped to perfectly fit virtually any rider, the jacket has reflective stripes on all sides for maximum safety while riding in lowvisibility conditions. With seven ventilation openings, including along the arm for use during extreme workout, its fitted cut ensures great comfort while riding. The jacket also integrates a large back compartment for valuable items secured by a zipper, a front side pocket for casual use and an inner silicon gripper to ensure the jacket stays in place. Insulation is ensured through tight and soft arm endings, while the zipper has a firm plastic puller for ease of use while wearing full finger gloves.


PROVIX REFLECT360+ A jacket aimed at the commuter market, with a 100% reflective outer shell.


his impressive jacket uses a highly technical film to ensure higher rates of breathability and waterproofing (10,000gm/24hr) while not losing any of the incredible reflective capability of the outer shell material. The fabric used is designed by Proviz and is highly technical. During daylight it is a modest grey

colour. At night, when the fabric picks up an external light source, e.g. vehicle headlights, it gives astonishing reflectivity. The material is CE EN 20471 certified. The REFLECT360 incorporates a tailored fit and uses

a unique lighter weight material to help ensure cyclists stay cool. The ‘through-flow’ extra ventilation is achieved using



effective shoulder/ back vents that allow air to escape without letting in any rain water. Simply open up the front zip vents to achieve maximum ventilation. During winter, these can be kept closed and double up as watertight pockets. The jacket also incorporates an inside chest pocket and large lower back pocket to store any extra layers or a map. Cycling World January 2016






his stylish and rugged overshoe is faring well so far this winter. The waterproof and windproof upper coupled with three-layer material is doing what it needs to do- keep the feet warm and dry. The fit is good and snug thanks to a stretchy top panel covering the shoe closure. The overshoe is high enough to ensure there is no gap between the bottom of the bib tights.

We await to see how they survive long term, as so many overshoes wear quickly or the zips get stuck. But these by Fizik have the credentials to last a few seasons with a waterproof YKK zip and waterproof, thermos-welded seams. Visibility has been considered with the appreciated touch of a reflective logo and piping.

They come in S-XL (UK sizes 3.5-15.5) in a fine shade of black.

Lumicycle Explorer 2016 Pro Extender Pack £514.00


e received this new pair of front lights from Lumicycle in a nice metal case, which boldly stated the company’s professionalism – Lumicycle don’t fool around with their products and the new Explorer series is magnificent. The 2016 Pro Pack sells at a little over £500 but can you really put a price on a lifesaver? No other lights have worked better on the pitch-black rural roads we use for commuting, where the potholes give the feeling you are cycling on the lunar surface. It is a must-have for anyone who takes part in night events, especially off-road. The Explorer 2016 Extender Pro Pack has a powerful twin three LED lamp system compatible with all existing Lumicycle batteries and charges. The lights can run in a permanent boost mode of 6000 Lumens, making them astonishingly bright. Cycling World World 84 Cycling January 2016 2016 January

Each front light system incorporates a LumiDRV™ enhanced LED control board, which contains a high power microprocessor and a 2.4GHz system. The lights can be synchronised together so you get a single fingertip control for all the Lumicycle lights on your bike and/or helmet through the dedicated wireless handlebar controller. The enhanced battery monitoring design will place the lights in a lowpower flash mode when the battery level is around 5%, giving the rider 20-40 minutes run time to get home. Additionally, due to its security switch-on feature, it is highly unlikely the lights will accidentally turn on in your bag and run their life out before you even need to use them. We also liked the easily added clip extension for wider handlebars- no more rubber padding.

MEkey Card £18.99


he new MEkey ICE Tag is a USB device designed to store your essential medical information needed to be accessed by the paramedics or any first aiders in case of emergencies. It can be worn either as a dog tag or a wristband and carries the paramedic star featuring the staff and snake design, making it highly recognisable. The medical ID record can contain the owner’s basic information (name, sex, year of birth), allergy information, emergency contacts, blood group, organ donor status and EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) details. Everything is neatly organised in the application, which comes in five languages, but despite basically being ‘the key to who you are’, the ICE tag has

its downsides. The information cannot be accessed without a laptop, so instead of paying the price for the MEkey card, the same medical details can be stored on any ordinary £4 flash drive. There is also the question of private information security in case your ICE tag is stolen. Tap4ICE ID Sticker is a similar product from MEkey ICE that stores the essential medical information of the owner, only it is then accessed either online using the unique code or with a smartphone through the NFC application. You get two stickers for £7.50 and they can go on the helmet, making them easily noticeable, but whether or not the first aiders have the NFC app downloaded and are able to use it effectively is difficult to say. We couldn’t.

Lifepaint Spray by Volvo Cars


olvo Cars Lifepaint is a unique reflective spray, which was first available as part of a limited pilot in April 2015, designed to react to a car’s headlights, alerting drivers to the presence of cyclists in the dark. The product, first distributed through six London bike shops, ran out within 24 hours creating massive demand for wider distribution. It is now available in participating Volvo dealers. LifePaint is an illuminating safety paint which is invisible by daylight, but in the dark reflects light in the same direction as the light source, shining brightly to illuminate the objects it has been sprayed on. It is transparent and can be washed off. It can be applied to clothes, shoes, helmets, pushchairs and children’s backpacks – even dog leads and collars. Its aim is to make the invisible visible at night.

Volvo has secured a partnership with the makers of the product, Swedish start-up Albedo100 to distribute the product through its dealer network. The inspiration for the Volvo Cars LifePaint project came from Intellisafe – a pedestrian and cyclist detection system on the all-new Volvo XC90. The technology uses a combination of radar sensors and cameras to identify other road users and automatically brake if the driver fails to take the necessary action. This works in conjunction with Volvo’s Active Bending Headlights, which connect to the steering input to help see round corners better and improve safety at night. Together, these innovations contribute towards Volvo’s Vision 2020 – the concept that that no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo by 2020. Cycling World January 2016


BikeRegister Permanent Marking Kit (£20.99) The National Cycle Database BikeRegister has launched a brand new range of products for cyclists who want to take part in the UK’s leading online bicycle identification and registration initiative. The Membership Plus Kit (£12.99) is essentially a tamper resistant QR barcode label you can stick anywhere on the bike’s frame and can be scanned with a smart phone for instant identification. With the Permanent Marking Kit, you can chemically etch your unique BikeRegister ID on the frame. The ID can then be easily checked online and will lead to your contact details. It is really easy to apply the blue mark on the bike, as you only need to wipe the marking compound over the ID label and leave it for 30 seconds before peeling the label off.


Those of you who want an extra bit of precaution, the Covert Marking Kit (£29.99) will allow you to mark the frame and all of your bike’s components with hundreds of microscopic dots printed with a unique ID. Also included in the kit is a colourless UV etch that invisibly marks the coating of the bike. BikeRegister is used by every Police Force in Britain as it aims to reduce cycle theft, identify stolen bikes and assist in owner recovery. Very recently, a man (Steven Lovelock) had his black Genesis bike stolen from his shed in South East London but it was recovered within 2½ hours by the police. He had the bike registered with BikeRegister and flagged it up as stolen immediately after he discovered it was missing. You can order your preferred kit on bikeregister.com.

Road · Race · Mountain Wear or Carry Emergency & Medical ID

Available as Dog Tags · Wristbands · ICE ID Cards · Key Rings For more information and the full range of MEKEY ICE products visit our website:



Cycling World January 2016

· Emergency Contact Details · Medical & Allergy Information · Store Encrypted Documents · Multi Language Translation · Water & Dust Resistant IP57 & IP58 · Easy to update


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e t u o r is r a P o t n o ond L s u * o m a f e h t le e c e f Cy n o i t he registra

t ff o 5 2 £ h t i w w o n

eFrance bhf.org.uk /Tourd

21–25 July 2016

*£25 off registration fee offer for London to Paris bike ride ends 31 January 2016 © British Heart Foundation 2015, a registered charity in England and Wales (225971) and Scotland (SC039426)

Cycling World January 2016




Six Amazing Cycling Routes for 2016

Article by www.formbycycles.co.uk Providing the kit to take on a challenge

The euphoric sense of achievement that comes from crossing the finish line of a challenging bike race or route is hard to beat, especially when it’s situated in one of the world’s most scenic locations. But which challenge should you take on and where?

Here’s six amazing cycling routes to add to your bucket list for 2016:


France: Alpe d'Huez, Megavalanche Race 4th-10th July 2016, registration opens 4th January Unlike most time trial enduro races, this legendary run is all about surviving the exhilarating, snow -drenched, downhill run to cross the finish line before anyone else, and there’s plenty of competition. Last year more than 2000 mountain bikers took on this challenging 2600m descent from the Pic Blanc summit to the Allemont valley, racing through alpine forest, over snowy plains and past perilous drops and obstacles. If you’ve got the riding skill, stamina and nerves of steel required to take it on, it’s the race of a lifetime.


Canada: Whistler Mountain Bike Park May to October depending on weather conditions in each run Home to four distinct mountainside zones and one indoor training facility, Whistler Mountain Bike Park caters for every kind of mountain biker. Among each zone, newbies and pros alike can find a track to satisfy the need for adventure and adrenalin. For the ultimate bucket list experience, take a scenic ride up to the fully, lift-serviced peak at 4900m and then race down over 80km of descents lined with jumps, berms, roots and rocks.


Cycling World World Cycling January 2016 2016 January

Italy: Pila Bike Park June September depending on weather conditions This bike park located in the heart of the Italian Alps is the reserve of skiers and snowboarders during the winter but when the snow leaves, bikers arrive to take on the variety of downhill, freeride and stadium routes. Experienced riders should take a moment to enjoy the breathtaking view from the peak of the Desarpa track at 2100m because once you set-off, your eyes need to stay focussed on the route. During the 15km descent, you’ll have to navigate the turns, berms, obstacles and wildlife that lines the route through stretches of dense Alpine forest and open countryside.



France: Mont Ventoux for Race or Recreation Riders Anytime but conditions are best between May and October Mont Ventoux is notorious. For race and recreational riders alike it presents a real challenge but the euphoric payoff makes the pain of overcoming it totally worth it. Known mostly for featuring as a gruelling stage in the Tour de France, Mont Ventoux offers cyclists three paved routes of varied difficulty to reach the summit. No matter how experienced or fit you are, climbing the mixed gradient straights and bends to reach the peak requires stamina and determination.


Italy: Granfondo Stelvio Santini Race 3rd – 6th June 2016 If you only take on one competitive road race in your lifetime, let this be it. Three uphill courses ranging from the short, 60km (1950m) route to the punishing 151.3km (4058m) ascent all offer outstanding scenery and the opportunity to test your skill, stamina and speed against other riders in this legendary race.


England: Fred Whitton Challenge 8th May 2016, Registration opens in January This time-trial road race through the towns and countryside of Cumbria is so popular that entrants are often selected by ballot so apply early if you want to compete. Taking a circular route from Grasmere, this challenging 112 mile course takes you through Keswick, Ennerdale and Eskdale on to the Hardknott and Wrynose passes which, individually, are worthy of a spot on anyone’s bucket list on their own, before returning to the start. With a combination of perilously steep inclines and descents, hairpin sequences, unstable road surfacing and open flats, the Fred Whitton Challenge can be both intensely painful and intensely exhilarating. Cycling World January 2016




Oregon: Big Cycling Text and photos by Neil Wheadon


orldwide bicycle touring for many brings images of South East Asia or New Zealand, however North America remains off the radar for many considering a cycling holiday. Now consider that with no language barrier, familiar food and fabulous cycling, it’s a destination that once discovered is hard to beat. Oregon, in the Pacific Northwest, has made huge efforts over the past ten years to become a cycle friendly State, so much so that Portland has become almost revered amongst American cyclists as a fabulous example of what can be done. In the winter of 2014 I put a tour together with Cycle Oregon for a nineteen-day tour of the western part of the State. As a result, eleven of us flew in on a warm September day to be met by Chris who runs the appropriately named ‘Bike Friendly Guest House’, complete with a fully tooled up workshop making bicycle re-assembly a piece of cake. Exiting Portland along blissfully quiet roads we crossed Cascade Bridge and headed northwest to join the Banks Vernonia cyclepath. Built in the 1920s to transport lumbar, it was Oregon’s first “rails to trails” project and provided 21 miles of tarmacked bliss through the Douglas Firs.


Cycling World January 2016 December 2015

Arriving at an isolated bed and breakfast north of Vernonia, our host Glen explained with a smile that due to trees and fire risks, the fire department required them to have a 5000 gallon pond on hand; rather than have a stagnant pond in the garden he’d plumbed in the hot tub which was much enjoyed by everyone. Dinner was a feast of ribs, pasta salad followed by apple crunch all washed down with a glass of wine from a local winery. Morning arrived and it was pretty obvious that our hosts were having as much fun as we were. Glen reminisced about his long lost Peugeot PX-10 bike and Sandy snapped away with the camera, so rather than the planned 09:00 start we got away an hour later - but isn’t this half the fun of cycle touring? We were immediately greeted by great tarmac, a flat road and the logging trucks. Logging is big in these parts, which sounds worrying. However they are great drivers, always overtaking with metres to spare, so far from intimidating. We were travelling through an unpopulated land. Even the elk at the elk viewing area had disappeared, houses were few and far between, and other than the views, there were few distractions. If you stopped awhile and let the ticking of the freewheel cease, the silence was

amazing. Food stops are a reflection of local life and needs, giving a real flavour of the area. Country music blared out, car parks were littered with huge pickups and Red Dodge cars with vast exhausts. Inside more clues; chainsaws and stuffed animals decorated the walls and the TV tuned to the hunting channel: yes we were in ‘real men territory.’ You could hear them from the road as we turned along 38th street. The

sea lions of Astoria marked the start of four days down the Pacific Coast. Hundreds had taken over a set of jetties, splashing about in the morning sun, creating quite a sight. Under the enormous Columbia River Bridge akin to a giant Meccano kit - to arrive at the coast near Seaside, courtesy of the 1.5 mile long boulevard that runs next to the beach. All, thanks to Oswald West, the14th Governor of Oregon in the early 20th century, who

declared that all coastline up to high tide is public land, and so the terrific view of the coast at Oswald State Park at the top of a long climb was worth every pedal stroke and testament to his vision.

them. We headed east along route 38, then along Umpqua River scenic drive as it snaked through the forest. Roosevelt Elk are the largest mammal in Oregon and they so enjoy the meadow grass in the valley that they stay put and a scenic turn off has been built. The pace had changed; gone was the frenetic coast, replaced by a backcountry life as we headed eastwards.

In parts, the ride hugged the coast tightly, past herons, cormorants and pelicans. Were we really in Oregon or Florida? The roads varied between super quiet and reasonably busy as the road southwards alternated between quiet roads and route101. However, with over 10,000 cyclists a year doing this ride, shoulders were wide on the busy bits due to good planning. At Depoe Bay we spotted the spouts of grey whales as they migrated from Alaska to Baha peninsula, learning that in the summer 90 reside here and are unique in filtering sea floor sediment for food. It was here that we met a round the world cyclist from Oxford. He’d bought a bike two months before his trip and after fifteen months had traversed Russia through to Japan. Now heading down the West coast, he was due to finish his trip in Panama. It wasn’t just the sea views that entertained us. At Heceta Head, the state acquired the lighthouse which had been built in 1894 and are the process of renovation to bring it back to the standard to which the keepers kept it all those years ago. The only hiccup was a volunteer over-polishing the original English lens and managing to push out the central section of one of the prisms: $25,000 later, it’s thankfully been repaired.

North America’s largest sea cave was passed, filled with sea lions and for $12 you could take a lift down and say hello to our flippered friends. So it went on, fantastic vistas, ascents and descents in the company of other cyclists heading south. The most remarkable was a guy riding a road bike with an enormous backpack heading for Brazil! Waving farewell to the coast with one last fabulous view, it was inland to Florence before finishing the coastal section at Reedsport. The next phase of this remarkable State was the Cascade Mountains. Stretching from Southern Canada to Northern California, and we had to get over

Beep went the waffle iron. Breakfast is big in the States in all senses of the word. Pancakes, oatmeal and coffee were the favourites and they would fuel us up for another glorious day through the mountains. Onto the “Row River Trail”, at 16 miles one of an increasing number of rails to trails projects in the USA. ‘You guys are awesome’ cried an American lady as she realised where we were going and joined us down the trail on her bike, guiding us past the covered bridges that are a feature of the area. Ascending towards Oakridge, the road paralleled a small river, quiet and peaceful. I’d expected a few logging trucks but we were passed by only two cars all day. There were plenty of facilities, campsites and toilets and all the time we slowly plodded upwards, topped the climb and descended to our motel for the night where the English manager had written “Welcoming United Kingdom cyclists” on the board outside: a lovely touch. Onwards to the McKenzie Valley where the hot pools were enticing and we enjoyed a dip in pools at a barmy 104 Fahrenheit surrounded by folks in all varying

Cycling World January 2016




degrees of undress. ‘I’ve been here all summer’ said the resident naturist and went on to explain that the water came from the cave at the top into which he dared not enter. The McKenzie pass is one of Oregon’s classic rides and for us, the last day over the Cascades. It’s a scenic byway as the moss covered sign proudly told us with the added bonus that trucks were banned. Rain started to fall, passing the 2000 foot then 3000 foot marker with the rain continuing and no let-up in the gradient, it became harder and colder. We weren’t quite as cold as John Templeton Craig who froze to death delivering mail in 1877, but passing his memorial and grave, it was starting to feel like it. Never mind onwards and upwards, a change was in the offing and at just under 5000 foot it flattened and we were able to speed along skipping the puddles as we passed prairie flats. Then suddenly the most incredible change took place as we entered a lava field. As far as the eye could see there were blackened rocks of all sizes. ‘It’s like the moon up there,’ I’d been told, and NASA must have agreed when four astronauts trained here in the 1960s. As the rain fell harder and the wind blew stronger we reached the top and piled into the Dee Wright Observatory, a shelter built out of lava in 1935. Mercifully the sun came out shortly afterwards as we descended 12 miles for a rest day at Sisters, named after the two mountains that glowered from above. The sun shone and so did the snowcapped mountains, with a dusting


Cycling World January 2016

of snow from the night before, so good that even the locals were taking pictures. We’d conquered the Cascades and could now settle for endless plains and good agricultural land that the pioneers had striven so hard to acquire. Volcanic activity littered the area and at Smiths Rocks, it reached a crescendo. Ominously present is a series of enormous rocks fashioned by the wind from volcanic activity, now a Mecca for rock climbers with over a thousand possible climbs. Being an American park, the walk from the parking lot to the viewpoint wasn’t far at all, revealing the Crooked River that wound about at the base of several of the more impressive (and high) rock faces. The river led to another of nature’s fantastic attractions; Pallisades State Park. Making Cheddar Gorge look like a furrow made by a pointed stick, vertical walls hundreds of feet high enclosed a flooded valley. From 1803 the first Europeans arrived in Oregon. History tells us that Native Americans were shunted onto reservations and it was through Warm Springs Reservation that we now headed. It was immediately obvious why this area had been chosen. It was dry, hilly and almost devoid of life, and for a people used to roaming the prairies it must have been devastating. To make a living today is tough in these places, so there was little aside from the two huge casinos built into the barren landscape. The Deschutes River marks one of the reservation’s boundaries. In 1908 two railroads were built on either bank by two separate companies; one survived,

the other didn’t. The legacy - a lovely eight-mile ride along the riverbank, in the company of fly fishermen. However the Native Americans had a far better idea. Instead of a rod, they simply built wooden platforms over the narrowest point and dipped a big net to catch the migrating salmon. The last major climb of the holiday took us up Route 197 with a steady gradient of 6 % before descending into Dufur, home of the Dufur Pastime Saloon, a place where every conceivable wall was covered in Elk and deer heads, beer mirrors and sketches of Wild West stars. The 197 wound its way south, but we chose to take the back roads through the freshly cut corn. As far as the eye could see was an ocean of yellow, with







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the occasional isolated farmstead on the horizon. Past abandoned houses and mill houses we went, before finally following a delightful valley towards Cascade Locks. From the quiet of the countryside, it was a rude introduction to the Columbia Valley. The interstate roared as we rode an almost abandoned road just above it. Compare this to the UK, where it would have been a rat run. In the USA even though there are fewer roads, vehicles stick to the major roads and local knowledge of other roads can be zero. Comments like ‘I’ve never been along that road’ even though there may be only three roads into town are pretty common. The final stage of our tour was a trip down the mighty Columbia River. With perfect timing the Columbia Discovery Centre appeared on our right, beautifully illustrating the story of this historic area. What stood out for me was just how poorly the Native Americans were treated. 160 years ago Warm Springs Reservation had been set up, but the Native Americans had retained fishing on the Columbia utilising the rapids and waterfalls to catch the salmon. Along came white man, who set up fish wheels in the 1920s that industrially stripped out the salmon; the railway on both sides split villages in half; and then, as a final insult, Roosevelt in the 1930s dammed the river in several places to provide work and electricity. Result: no rapids, no fishing, and no meeting point for the tribes, so in 1957, the treaty was redrawn, compensating the Indians 27 million dollars in exchange

for an almost complete loss of social life. Back on the road again, we rode the King of Roads or historic Route 30 as it’s now called. Running alongside the river, this engineering feat from 1915 must have been remarkable, and much was still in evidence. The glorious triple white wooden barriers instead of galvanised metal, stone arches lining water culverts, and the intricate use of concrete to create lovely bridge decorations. As the Model T Ford had limited horsepower like us, the gradients were gentle so all we had to do was find a low gear and spin away.

predecessors that they made a monument of certain points, so the climb to Rowena Crest was marked by a pull in and fabulous views east along the river. The engineering marvels continued at Mosier twin tunnels. Finished in 1921 after two years work they proved too narrow for the modern car, so were filled in after the interstate was built. In 1995 work started to reopen them and now they are a shared hiker/biker path. Our last day and a different attraction; waterfalls. ‘The highest number of waterfalls in a State park,’ an advert

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proudly proclaimed. Wahclella and Horsetail falls came and went, then came the mother of all falls, Multnomah. This was so popular that it had its own gift shop, snack bar, and even its own birthday party a week ago; 100 years since a white man stared at the double waterfall taller than Niagra. Onwards and upwards, literally, as we climbed the perfect 5% grade to the aptly named Vista House. Here was sited a sandstone monument to the highway, a mix of gothic and art deco architecture that you could climb and admire the

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