Tag Archive for BMX

Morning Links: Formerly paralyzed BMX champ dances at his wedding, and bicycling as a mobility tool

In today’s best news story, 26-year old Australian BMX champ Sam Willoughby danced with his new wife at their wedding in San Diego, just 15 months after he was paralyzed from the neck down in a training accident.

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Important piece in the Guardian, which notes that riding a bicycle is easier than walking for most disabled people, and that many disabled commuters travel by bicycle.

Which make bike lanes an important mobility tool, rather than an obstacle for the disabled as bike lane opponents commonly accuse.

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This is what happens when a professional BMX racer misjudges his jump over a fence. And is lucky to avoid getting impaled.

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Local

Disappointing news from DTLA, as Arts District coffee shop/bike shop The Wheelhouse closed unexpectedly at the end of the year, though the owners promise to make a comeback somewhere, in some form. Meanwhile, Calabasas-based 10-Speed Coffee, run by the owners of the bike-themed Pedaler’s Fork restaurant, will be opening a new location in Santa Monica this April.

Megan Lynch forwards a South Pasadena news story about the Rose Parade, including photos of bike riders accompanying a bicycle-themed float.

A look back at what could have been, on the 118th anniversary of the famed California Cycleway, an elevated wooden bikeway that was supposed to link Pasadena with Downtown Los Angeles but was never finished.

 

State

Seriously? The new mayor of Solana Beach in North San Diego County says she doesn’t support efforts to get more people on bikes, because she can’t show real estate using a bicycle. Maybe she should try a little harder. Or not judge everyone else by what she isn’t willing to do.

 

National

Less than a year after taking up riding, newly retired NASCAR favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. vows to ride his bike 50 to 100 miles a week, even with a new baby on the way. Anyone who has a new baby is probably thinking “Good luck with that.”

A bicyclist is riding from New York to the CES show in Las Vegas in just 10 days to promote the Elektron Gen 2 e-assist wheel with a beta version of the new Google Assist installed. Thanks again to Megan Lynch.

Sounds like fun. Arizona bike riders welcomed 2018 with a New Year’s ride through the desert under the supermoon.

Utah may consider adopting the full Idaho Stop Law, which would allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, and red lights as stop signs. And potentially go one step further than California, which is set to consider a bill that would allow bicyclists to treat stops as yields, but still have to stop for red lights.  Thanks to Eric Rogers for the heads-up.

Dockless bikeshare finally has Dallas TX residents talking about bikes.

The head of a Wisconsin bike nonprofit says every kid who wants a bike should have one. Not to mention a safe place to ride it.

It’s now officially legal for drivers to pass bicyclists in a no passing zone in Illinois, and for cyclists to ride on the shoulder of a roadway. Even if they may have to wait for the state to thaw out first. It would be legal for drivers to briefly cross the yellow line to pass bicyclists in California if Governor Jerry Brown hadn’t vetoed an earlier version of the three-foot passing law that contained that provision.

Life is cheap in Michigan, where the life of a bicyclist killed by a drunk driver is only worth a lousy nine months in jail.

Auto-centric Michigan is finally getting around to updating the laws to protect people on bicycles, including a five-foot passing law and banning distracted driving. Although based on the previous story, it sounds like tougher penalties for DUI and fatal crashes might be a good idea, too.

Baltimore drivers are complaining about protected bike lanes, saying the streets are too narrow to accommodate a buffered bike lane, a parking lane and two travel lanes. Although it sounds like what they really want is to get their parking spaces back.

A kindhearted Florida woman crowdsourced funds to buy an 80-year old man a three-wheeled ebike after learning he walked eight miles each way to get to his job.

 

International

Lawrence Solomon, head of a climate-change denying Canadian think tank, is back with yet another bike-hating diatribe, urging cities to rip out bike lanes “before more innocent people get hurt.” Never mind that studies have shown that bike lanes — and especially protected bike lanes — improve safety for all road users.

A British bike advocacy group says a biased online survey of that found drivers want bike riders to have insurance and wear hi-viz is, well, biased. Meanwhile, the head of that advocacy group was stunned to get his stolen Brompton back after someone found it abandoned at a train station.

Caught on video: A Brit bicyclist is nearly squeezed off the road in a punishment pass by a bus driver. And he responds with the same language I’ve used under similar circumstances, which is why I usually post my videos with the sound off.

The husband of an English woman killed in a crash with a bicyclist calls for a new law banning dangerous or careless cycling that results in injury or death. Even though the rider who hit his wife was sentenced to 18 months behind bars, which is more than most drivers get.

A man in the UK is looking for the Good Samaritans who helped him when he broke his arm after his bike was crowded off the road by a passing driver.

A bighearted stranger bought a British boy a new bike after the one he got for Christmas was stolen at knifepoint in a bike-jacking.

The deputy director of Zimbabwe’s national intelligence agency was posthumously named a national hero after he was killed in a traffic collision, despite killing a bike rider in a crash 16 years earlier.

This is why you should always carry ID when you ride. Australian authorities are trying to identify a man who collapsed while riding his bike. I wear my Road ID whenever I leave home, whether or not I’m riding; it doubles as my medical alert bracelet.

A travel writer calls Taiwan a bicycling paradise.

 

Competitive Cycling

Eight-time world BMX and mountain bike champ Caroline Buchanan is expected to make a full recovery after she was critically injured in a one-car crash in Australia’s New South Wales state over the weekend.

Pro cyclist Kristian Sbaragli learned the hard way not to leave his team bike unattended when he stops for coffee after a training ride.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to use a bike as your getaway vehicle, at least show a little respect and rob something better than a dollar store. Don’t extort money from the driver that hit you.

And seriously, don’t wear your headphone turned up so loud you can’t hear an oncoming train.

 

Morning Links: Jonathan Weiss on LA and BMX, the LABAC meets tomorrow, and the improper use of a bicycle

My apologies for the continued problems with email notifications for subscriber to this site. We’re still working on getting it fixed.

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Jonathan Weiss, longtime LA Bicycle Advisory Committee, has discussed the history of BMX racing with us before, including the birth of the sport right here in Los Angeles. So when I received the following email from him over the weekend, I wanted to share his thoughts with you.

I have a local history addiction.  I’m into bicycling.  And I hopped off curbs on my Schwinn as a kid in suburban Detroit.  So, when I learned that Palms Park in the nearby Palms district of West Los Angeles was the birthplace of BMX, I had to do something about it.  I could imagine and identify with some these local kids (and others they attracted) racing up, down, and around some hills on their modified Schwinn Stingrays like motocross racers and with races sanctioned (entrance fees, awards and even insurance) by Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department.  This nearby park was the Elysian Fields, the first field of dreams, the epicenter of the first X-Games sport.

So, I put together some of the story, I set up a Facebook page, and I got in touch with some of those who started BMX racing.  That’s the fun part of history.  The tougher part is when some of the participants and eye-witnesses to history, those who I’ve been lucky enough to get to know, start to go.  On October 1st, another left us – Rick Twomey.

From me, and from fans from around the world, thanks for sharing your memories with me and on the Facebook page, Rick.  And thanks for what you’ve left behind.

If we’re lucky enough to have the 2024 Olympics in Los Angeles – with BMX competition in Long Beach – I know I’ll be thinking of you, innovator, sponsor, and author Rick Twomey, and of Rec and Parks’ Ronald Mackler, who left us in 2010, and of Scot Breithaupt, who left us last year.

Note: I failed to mention that Weiss left the BAC earlier this year. We all owe him a round of thanks for his years of service to LA’s bicycling community.

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Speaking of the BAC, the next bi-monthly meeting of LA’s only official voice for bicyclists is tomorrow night in Hollywood.

bicycle-advisory-committee-agenda-2016-10-04

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If you missed it, bicyclists sadly lost their lives in both Palm Springs and Yorba Linda over the weekend.

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Local

The Los Angeles County Bicycling Coalition’s Tamika Butler spoke about Planning While Black at the NACTO Designing Cities Conference last week, with a presentation that reportedly brought down the house.

CiclaValley complains about serious city inaction on clearing the dirt hazard in the Forest Lawn bike lane.

Mickey Rourke is one of us, as he takes his dog for a ride in WeHo.

Santa Monica police arrest a man for attempting to steal a number of bicycles from the Bike Center after employees wrestled him down.

Plans are in the works for a single, integrated bikeshare system that would include Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Long Beach and UCLA, with possible expansion to Culver City and the South Bay.

Rolling Hills Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes and Palos Verdes Estates make plans to work together to address traffic and safety issues across city borders on the peninsula, as South Bay bicyclists push for greater safety on the roads.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition is holding their October meeting tonight.

Bike the Vote LA is hosting a ballot party in DTLA tonight to discuss choices for next month’s phone book-sized ballot.

 

State

Get your pizza delivered poolside by bicycle in Palm Springs.

The San Luis Obispo District Attorney proves it is in fact possible to charge a driver who wasn’t texting or under the influence with vehicular homicide for killing a cyclist — in this case, a champion triathlete and the wife of a Cal Poly dean.

The story of Benicia cops buying a new bicycle for a teenager who was walking four hours a day to get to and from work has gone around the world.

Napa County tries rumble dots, rather than rumble strips, to keep drivers from drifting off the road, and protect bike riders on the shoulder.

Sad news from Modesto, where a bike rider was killed in a collision Friday night.

A horrifying story from Redding, as a man believes he was attacked while riding his bike to the drug store, but can’t remember what happened after suffering a broken arm and eye socket, along with multiple skull fractures.

 

National

A government website says sharrows don’t make bicycling in urban areas any safer.

Yes Magazine says women are being left behind even in the most bike friendly states, and offers suggestions on how to change that.

A sports website looks back on the Tour de Trump, the American bike race sponsored by the GOP’s current presidential candidate for a two whole years back in the ‘80s.

Colorado Springs CO residents can’t seem to grasp the concept of a road diet, let alone give time for traffic to adjust.

A Polish bike rider sets a new record for bunny hopping 3,461 steps up the former Sears Tower in Chicago.

A Chicago letter writer says bikes should be banned from the city’s busiest streets, insisting that bicyclists somehow make traffic worse by never obeying the law on streets he claims are paid for with gas taxes. Never mind that public taxes pay for city streets, traffic is caused by all those cars, and most drivers aren’t all that law abiding, either.

A Connecticut man returns home after a 12,124 mile ride around the perimeter of the US to help ensure veterans have enough to eat.

A new study finds that every $1,300 spent on New York bike lanes adds another year of life to the overall population of the city.

A New Orleans bike rider plans to keep riding even after she was the victim of a hit-and-run.

A Florida man faces criminal charges for putting a milk crate on his bike.

 

International

The next bus driver who honks at you may not be one.

Stunt cyclist Danny MacAskill offers advice on how to fall off your bike, while Bike Radar tells you how to hose it down.

Caught on video: A London pedestrian berates a bicyclist for riding through a crosswalk when people are using it.

A former Premier League soccer player plans to run and ride 1,000 miles linking 44 UK soccer stadiums.

A one-legged Irish cyclist sets the world’s first Paralympic hour record.

Here’s your chance to cross the Rubicon and take a month-long European bike tour in the steps of Julius Caesar.

A Dutch study concludes bike riders will usually choose the most comfortable route rather than the most direct.

California’s former Governator is busted for biking in the Munich rail station.

Bicycling continues to grow around the world, as Iranian cities Isfahan and Neishabur work to accommodate bicyclists, though Tehran lags behind.

New Zealand bicyclists push for a repeal of the country’s mandatory helmet law, even though the country’s leaders appear to have no intention of doing so.

 

Finally…

Who was that meth-carrying masked man on the lightless bike? It’s one thing to carry a joint when you ride; another to carry the entire plant with you.

And this is not the proper use of a bicycle, no matter how pissed off you are.

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L’shanah tovah to everyone nursing a Rosh Hashanah hangover this morning.

Morning Links: Founding father of BMX found dead in Indio; man fixing bike shot dead by LASD deputies

Sad news from Indio, as one of the founding fathers of BMX riding was found dead in a tent over the weekend.

A member of the BMX Hall of Fame, Scot Alexander Breithaupt had organized some of the first races while growing up in Long Beach in the 1970s, before going on to win a national championship and founding SE Racing bikes.

There was no sign of foul play.

He was featured in a 2005 documentary about the sport.

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A Hawaiian Gardens man was shot and killed by sheriffs deputies reporting to a report of a prowler last night.

According to his wife, he was just fixing his bicycle when the officers arrived. Although she doesn’t explain why he jumped a fence in a apparent attempt to get away.

No weapon was found at the scene, and no reason was given for the shooting.

Meanwhile, the LA Times calls on Gardena to release the dashcam video of officers shooting the unarmed brother of a bike theft victim two years ago.

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People for Bikes offers six reasons to watch the Tour de France, which kicked off on Saturday.

Aussie Rohan Dennis got a yellow bike to go with the yellow jersey he won in stage one of the Tour de France, while GoPro offers a first-bike view of the first stage.

Two of the four pre-race favorites are down, if not out, after just the second wind-swept, rainy stage in the Tour de France. Cavendish appeared to tank it at the end of the second stage, and blames everyone else.

Joaquim Rodriguez took stage three, as Chris Froome finished just behind and slipped on the yellow jersey this morning.

VeloNews says Andrew Talansky is riding back into form just in time. Bicycling asks if it’s safe to root for Tejay van Garderen or if he’ll break our hearts again. And looks back 40 years to when a fan punched the great Eddy Merckx, and kept The Cannibal from winning a record sixth Tour.

Turns out there’s another race going on right now. And unlike the other one, an American is in first place, as US Nat. champ Megan Guarnier takes the leader’s jersey after the second stage of Italy’s Giro Rosa.

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Local

A bike-riding Pomona boy was seriously injured when he was hit by a car Sunday night.

A legally blind Santa Clarita vet rides a four-wheeled ‘bent led by his guide dog, and was honored as the 2014 National Veteran Volunteer of the Year.

Hundreds kick off the 4th with a bike ride in Long Beach’s Belmont Shore.

A 21-year old Harbor City man was killed in a bike-by shooting. Proof bike riders aren’t always the victims. Or the good guys.

Sounds like fun. Bike-themed restaurant Pedaler’s Fork hosts the 10-Speed Grinder ride, complete with BBQ lunch, on the 19th.

 

State

Inspirational story from Oakhurst, as a vet who lost both legs in Afghanistan — and nearly his life — is riding across the US on a recumbent handcycle to raise money for the Semper Fi Fund.

 

National

The Economist says America’s roads remain extremely dangerous. No shit.

Bike Radar discusses the nine things you should never ask a female bike shop employee.

Riding cross-country on a solar powered e-bike.

The Spokane sheriff concludes a deputy violated policy by driving 70 mph on a surface street without lights and siren. But somehow, that had nothing to do with the death of a teenage bike rider who went over his handlebars as the speeding car passed within one foot of him.

A Montana paper looks at how national bike routes bring bike tourists and cash to rural towns.

A Denver couple explain the benefits of going car-free.

Even tiny Norway, Maine — population 5014 — gets bike share before we do.

A West Virginia paper looks at one of the riders critically injured in the first responders bike race that took the life of a Brazilian police inspector.

Virginia police write a whopping 12 tickets for violating the state’s new three-foot passing law last year, but at least that’s up from two tickets for unsafe passing the year before.

 

International

The physics of how your bike can keep going without you.

A Canadian bike collector rescues an 1889 bicycle he found in a landfill.

The Toronto Star says too many bike riders are getting doored, and says it’s time for bike lanes everywhere. Those same stories could have been written right here.

A cyclist tries bicycling the path of the Thames on a path not intended for bicycling.

A British lord says a survey saying people don’t like spaces shared by cars, bikes and pedestrians is proof they’re a dangerous and costly folly. After all, there’s no point in relying on facts or anything.

A Brit driver is allowed to remain on the road with three-and-a-half times the number of points against his license for moving violations than the law allows. No point in taking dangerous drivers off the streets, either.

A record-setting adventurer rides 102 miles through the Scottish countryside on a Penny Farthing.

An Irish cyclist says everybody hates cyclists. Even cyclists.

A 10-minute mini-documentary explains how bicycles are helping to liberate women in war-torn Yemin.

Now that’s more like it. The man in charge of managing roadways for an Australia’s Victoria state says you can’t build your way out of congestion, and recommends getting a new job or riding a bike to avoid gridlock.

Aussie cyclists ride topless to protest the country’s mandatory helmet law. No, not like that.

 

Finally…

That’s one way to stop a breakaway. The CHP is called out to deal with a bull blocking a roadway — and a bike race; seems to be an epidemic of that these days. When you’re a convicted felon carrying coke, marijuana and a .357 on your bike, don’t ride salmon.

And don’t forget your ankle monitor when you ride.

 

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