Tag Archive for adaptive bicycles

Bikes and ebikes help people with disabilities, speed kills, and don’t leave your bikes with an angry girlfriend

Yes, bikes are good for people with disabilities.

Even though anti-bike critics invariably claim that bike lanes, or any other bicycle infrastructure — or even just bicycles themselves — somehow pose a risk to people with disabilities.

Or that disabled, older or out-of-shape people can’t ride bikes, so bike lanes won’t do them any good.

Which was never true.

And it’s even less so in the age of ebikes.

Case in point,

Then there’s this woman who suffers from acute hepatic porphyria. And discovers that she can ride an ebike without the white knuckle pain and fatigue that makes physical activity nearly impossible.

Meanwhile, a study from a Colorado university shows that ebike users in the state tend to be older, and like being able to ride longer and farther than they could otherwise.

Which can help keep them riding years after they might otherwise have quit.

Photo by mzter from Pixabay.

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The next time someone tries to tell you a few extra miles per hour won’t make any difference, show them this.

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Everyone enjoys riding with a friend.

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Presenting the best bike helmet ad in at least the last 1,200 years.

Thanks to W Corylus for the link.

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Shoulda used Bike Index.

And maybe not done whatever it was that pissed her off so much.

Thanks to Tim Rutt for the photo.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going. 

There’s a special place in hell for the Ypsilanti, Michigan man who threatened a young boy with a sledgehammer, then went back inside and shot him through a window, for the crime of briefly leaving a bicycle on his lawn. Fortunately, the kid was only hit in the arm; the man who shot him faces an attempted murder charge, albeit with a measly $10,000 bond.

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Local

Metro’s board will vote on modernizing the rules for highway funds later this month, potentially freeing them to be used on transit, Complete Streets, and active transportation projects.

 

State

A writer for Capitol Weekly notes that AB 550 isn’t dead yet, despite being stuck in the state assembly’s Appropriations Committee, where the bill to allow speed cam pilot programs faces a steep uphill climb.

A 61-year old New York pastor passes through Victorville on a cross-country fundraising ride, from LA’s Union Rescue Mission to the Bowery Mission in New York City.

 

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss celebrates older bicycles, with their seemingly endless supply that flies in the face of shortages of new bikes caused by the bike boom.

On the other hand, Women’s Health recommends foldies, calling them “your ticket to getting pretty much anywhere local without sitting in traffic,” while storing conveniently in the hall closet when you’re done. Just try that with an SUV.

A Colorado letter writer asks if it’s legal to drive with a bike rack covering your car’s rear license plate; not surprisingly, the answer is a resounding no. It’s not legal here in California, either. And probably isn’t most places. 

NPR looks forward to the return of the Des Moines Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, aka RAGBRAI, this summer, as the state works to bring back large events.

A Texas man who’s been on and off the streets was forced to walk over three miles to work every day after someone stole his bicycle.

It takes a major jerk to ripoff an Ohio nonprofit bike co-op. Let alone twice in two nights.

Immigrant bicycle couriers are banding together in New York to demand better working conditions, with one rider asking “If we’re essential, shouldn’t we have what’s essential to survive?”

Good advice. After an Alabama bike rider is killed trying to cross the street, a local bike shop owner advises riders to “be as visible as possible and don’t assume that someone sees you.” In fact, you’re usually better off assuming they don’t.

Um, no. Yet another clickbait bike survey, this time bizarrely claiming that Miami is the world’s second-most beautiful city for a bike ride, based on Instagram data. According to the survey, Miami only trails Chiang Mai, Thailand, and comes in ahead of Paris, Athens and Barcelona. As usual, Los Angeles doesn’t make that cut, either.

 

International

A writer in Havana says the city needs to reclaim its bike lanes, many of which were ripped out in favor of cars during the last decade, and that the communist government needs to put more bikes on the market — and maybe build them there, too.

In a socially distanced fundraiser, a record-holding, ultra-marathon riding Winnipeg, Canada grandfather will ride his bike for 24 hours to pick up checks from mailboxes to help feed orphaned kids in Kenya.

A reminder to ride carefully around other bicyclists, as a 62-year old Montreal man was critically injured when two bike riders somehow collided after he allegedly ran a red light.

A new survey from ebike maker Volt says 44% of Londoners are more likely to ride an ebike than use public transit. And in a city where transit actually works, too.

No surprise here, as Scottish bikeshares saw a huge jump in usage during the pandemic lockdowns.

A British bike rider died last year after falling through an open storm drain, leading to calls to cover them — something the US did a couple decades ago.

A European sports website ranks the top seven bikesharing apps, only one of which — Lime — you’ll find here.

Advocates in Berlin, Germany are campaigning to make the city’s popup pandemic bike lanes permanent. Which offers yet another reminder that Los Angeles can’t make them permanent, because they never installed any to begin with.

Moscow cracks down on e-scooter riders by using GPS data to impose speed controls, limiting scooters to a modest 9 mph in the city center. Thanks to Erik Griswold for this one.

A member of India’s parliament is riding a bike through the country’s dusty countryside to convince people to get vaccinated.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews offers an eight-point plan to improve safety for gravel racers.

Bad news for Olympic mountain bike competitors, as Mathieu van der Poel was officially named to the Dutch mountain bike squad.

Anchorage, Alaska’s Lael Wilcox survived possums and snakes to win the women’s 338-mile Unbound Gravel XL race.

 

Finally…

Your next helmet could be custom 3D printed to fit your head. Go mountain biking from the comfort of your own Playstation.

And this is one way to make an impression. Although probably not a good one.

Thanks again to Tim Rutt.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Able-bodied mtn biker confronts disabled ebike rider, Metrolink helps promote bikes, and redesigning LA’s worst intersections

A video from last fall has popped up again, causing fresh outrage online.

Justifiable outrage, for a change.

David Wolfberg forwards a story from Boing Boing that picks up a video we posted last September, showing an able-bodied mountain biker complaining about a disabled rider’s adaptive ebike, and demanding to see the rule allowing him to use it on the Indiana trail.

Maybe you’ll remember it.

Lord knows I do.

The story doesn’t end there, though, as reprehensible as this uncomprehending attack on a disabled man is.

Wolfberg also forwards videos revealing the disabled man, Tom Morris, to be a noted endurance athlete and coach.

And yes, going back to the original video, Morris had every right to ride it on the trail according to this piece from Road.cc.

Morris…has since said he has been in touch with Terry Coleman, the deputy director of Indiana’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), who told him that his bike was perfectly legal to ride on trails.

Morris said: “What I’m on is not an e-bike, it’s an adaptive piece of equipment. And adaptive equipment is allowed on all of the trails throughout all of Indiana. So if you’ve got this equipment, get out and use it, use it in the state parks, use it on these trails.”

Morris also said Coleman told him that the DNR had actually just bought 12 “off-roading wheelchairs”, to give disabled people in the state more access to trails and paths for leisure activities.

So the next time you find tempted to criticize someone else for some infraction, real or imagined, think twice.

Then don’t.

There may be some reason why they’re doing what they’re doing. And it doesn’t really matter whether you understand or agree with it.

Because it’s not your job to enforce the rules, any more than driveway vigilante drivers have the right to enforce their interpretations — or misinterpretations, more often — of bike laws on you.

Try a little empathy and understanding instead.

And maybe make this world a little better for all of us in the process.

Image by Michael Gaida from Pixabay.

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Remember this tweet the next time someone insists Los Angeles isn’t (insert more progressive city here).

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Metrolink is teaming with the LACBC to promote bicycling as Bike Month sinks slowly in the west.

Taking Metrolink makes a great way to explore other parts of Southern California by bike, especially with their $10 weekend fares.

And particularly now that it’s getting safer to get back on a train.

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Great thread from 18-year old housing and transportation enthusiast Zennon Ulyate-Crow, who is doing the work LADOT should be doing to reimagine some of LA’s most problematic intersections.

Here’s his latest project, which turns an East Hollywood mess into something we could all live with.

Let’s hope LADOT is already keeping an eye on him, with the promise of a job once he gets his degree.

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Speaking of LADOT, it seems the ostensibly progressive department ostensibly focused on Compete Streets still hasn’t gotten the message of the mayor’s Green New Deal — that we have to reimagine our streets and how we get around if we’re going to meet the city’s climate change goals, let alone survive.

Or maybe they still have old school engineers on staff who retain their focus on automotive throughput, as an obsolete plan to widen Burbank Blvd rises from the dead.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton busts the myths in Metro’s half billion dollar highway budget for next year, saying this is not what Angelenos voted for when they approved Measure M funding.

With auto-centric crap like this is still being pushed by Metro and LADOT, maybe we can’t afford to wait, and need to get Ulyate-Crow working there now.

Or better yet, running it.

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration wants to instruct you in how to wear a bike helmet.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going. 

No bias here. San Carlos has installed a bicycle dismount zone where people are supposed to get off their bikes and walk them across an intersection to “minimize conflicts between vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists.” Even though bike riders have every right to just ride across the damn street.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly. 

A man in Baton Rouge, Louisiana was sentenced to 25 years behind bars for fatally shooting another man who tried to take his bicycle from outside a convenience store.

A Jackson, Mississippi man is on trial for fatally shooting a 14-year old boy in the back after one of the boy’s friends stole a bike from his yard. We all hate bike thieves. But no bicycle is ever worth a human life. 

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Local

Streets For All introduces Destruction for Nada, a much-needed campaign to stop all highway widening in LA County, as Metro considers an induced-demand boosting jump in highway spending at Thursday’s board meeting, along with a proposal to kill the wasteful and destructive $8 billion plan to widen the 710 Freeway. It’s long past time all of Metro’s funding was shifted to transit and Complete Streets.

Speaking of Streets For All and highways, mark your calendar for Wednesday, June 9th, as they host another of their virtual happy hours, featuring Caltrans District 7 Director Tony Tavares.

LAist examines the battle over the Beautiful Boulevard plan to create a livable Complete Street along the route of the planned NoHo to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line through Eagle Rock.

 

State

Antioch could build the Bay Area’s first Bicycle Garden, a fully landscaped miniature streetscape within an existing park to teach bicycling skills to kids and adults.

The post-pandemic reopening is raising a debate over the streets of San Francisco, as advocates call for keeping closed-off streets carfree, while drivers insist they need the roads open to get around. That’s a debate that should be happening in Los Angeles, as well, as the city faces an urgent need to reimagine how people get around in order to meet climate goals, and confront the ever-increasing congestion on our streets. But isn’t. 

San Francisco installs the city’s first advisory lane, where bike riders use bike lanes on either side of the street, while drivers in both directions share a single center lane.

Sad news from Northern California, where a man riding a bike in Cottonwood was killed by a hit-and-run driver who just left him on the side of the road to die. As we’ve said before, in cases like that, the driver should face a murder charge once they’re caught for making the conscious decision to let their victim die.

 

National

Marketplace reports on why you should care about the draft update to the MUTCD, the country’s traffic control bible.

The NRDC has rejected the proposed federal highway bill under consideration in the US Senate, calling it a small step when we need a great leap.

Bicycling explains why you should ride your bike for fun more often. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

An anonymous donor gave a whopping $1 million to purchase land for mountain bike trails on Washington’s Bainbridge Island, as well as conserving land and expanding an existing dog park.

A Chicago man took an “epic” bike ride across Indiana just to dine at the nearest Waffle House. Although the real story is how he was able to make almost the entire trip on offroad bike paths.

The New York Times offers a photo essay examining bike style around the city. These days my only sense of style is whatever will look least humiliating in public.

Island Press introduces Bike Easy, which has played a significant role in the remarkable transformation of New Orleans into a bike friendly — or at least, friendlier — city.

Miami joins the Vision Zero club, as the city announces plans to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030. Let’s hope they take it more seriously than Los Angeles does, like planning to remove bike lanes and sidewalks to widen Burbank Blvd.

 

International

Momentum Magazine offers a primer on the different types of cargo bikes.

An IT professional from a tiny Uruguayan pueblo is now riding a bicycle through Mexico, in the fourth year of his quixotic quest to ride from Uruguay to Alaska.

A Canadian girl got a new BMX bike for being honest enough to return a bike a stranger had given her, after learning it had been stolen. Although the question is why did a stranger give her a stolen bike to begin with.

This is who we share the road with. A British man will spend six years behind bars for intentionally running down and killing another driver in a road rage dispute.

The UK press continues their onslaught of photos contradicting Prince Harry’s claim that he was never he was able to ride a bike with his father, heir-to-the-thrown Prince Charles.

Members of a Dublin bike club testify that a speeding driver rounded a bend on the wrong side of the roadway moments before slamming into a woman who couldn’t get her bike off the road in time; the driver is on trial for her death.

You’ve got to be kidding. When a Welsh bicyclist tried to take video of dangerous drivers to the local police, they threatened to charge him for swearing at the motorists who nearly killed him, instead.

The Air Force Times tells the story of a top secret suicide squad of bike-riding Jewish commandos dropped behind German lines during World War II.

More proof that bicycling pays. A study of bike paths in Helsinki, Finland, shows a gain of the equivalent of $4.41 for every $1.22 spent to place bikeways along major arteries in the city. Then again, they increase property values, too.

 

Competitive Cycling

The BBC questions whether anyone can beat Columbia’s Egan Bernal, saying the pink leader’s jersey is his to lose.

However, Cycling Weekly says the race is far from over, and offers five things to watch for as it enters its final week.

American Joe Dombrowski rode the cycling roller coaster in the just the first week of the Giro, going from winning a stage one day to crashing out the next.

Cycling Tips introduces Tim Declercq, who they call one of the world’s best domestiques, and who is always at the front of the action.

International politics once again reaches into the sports world, as Germany responds to the hijacking and apparent torture of an opposition journalist in Belarus by pulling out of next month’s Elite Track European Championships in the country. And yes, that’s the right move; hopefully other countries will follow their lead.

Durango, Colorado’s annual Iron Horse Bicycle Classic mountain bike race has proven to be a launching pad for cycling careers, including rising US WorldTour star Sepp Kuss.

 

Finally…

The answer to N+1 could soon be a subscription. Your next ebike could go 40 mph — as long as you’re willing to get a helmet, registration and motorcycle license.

And if your toddler feels left out by the time you spend on your Peloton, just build him one of his own.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Morning Links: December bike events, dockless bikeshare, and adaptive bikes and kindhearted people

We’ve got a long list of bike events this month. So grab a cup of whatever you’re drinking, and settle in for awhile.

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The Abbot Kinney outpost of Bay Area bag maker Timbuk2 is hosting a Break Up With Your Bag food drive next weekend.

Here’s how they describe it.

Timbuk2, the San Francisco-based creator of intuitive, stylish and personalized bags to outsmart the city, is hosting a two-day Break Up With Your Bag event from Saturday, December 9 to Sunday, December 10. Stop by the Venice shop for a chance to give back to the local community and gain something special in return. Have some extra food or an unused bag lying around? Timbuk2 encourages their neighbors to donate to someone in need for something they can use in exchange.

Here’s how it will go down:

  • First, bring in any non-perishable food item OR any gently used bag, no matter the brand, that’s ready to bid adieu.
  • Next, Timbuk2 will donate every used bag to Bikerowave, and every non-perishable food item to the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.
  • At last, Timbuk2 will hook it up with a new item for 40% off!

To enhance this rewarding experience, Timbuk2 will provide tasty snacks and refreshing libations from Fort Point Beer. So mark those calendars and grab a bud, because breaking up feels good when it means giving back.

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In other bike events this month,

Bike SGV invites you to join them in tonight’s La Puente Holiday Parade.

Heal the Bay is hosting an Explore Ballona! Bike Ballona Creek ride this Saturday.

I. Martin is holding their “Shut Up Legs” Saturday morning ride, while Helen’s Cycles is hosting a Monthly Group Ride tomorrow, and a TriFit Beginner’s Ride on Sunday.

Bike SGV celebrates the season with their annual holiday awards fest Noche de las Luminarias Saturday afternoon.

Join Bike Oven in the NELA Holiday Parade this Sunday.

Also on Sunday, the LACBC teams with AARP for the December edition of their popular monthly Sunday Funday Ride, offering a tour of Griffith Park. And no, you don’t have to be over 50 to participate.

Bike SGV is celebrating the Monrovia Holiday Parade on Bicycles December 7th.

Also on the 7th, the LACBC is holding their annual Open House.

Santa Monica Spoke is hosting an Ugly Sweater Holiday Ride with the Mayor of Santa Monica on December 9th.

Also on the 9th, the LACBC is teaming with former pro Phil Gaimon, author of the new Draft Animals, for the 3rd Annual Clean UP Mulholland.

CicLAvia returns to iconic Wilshire Blvd on December 10th.

The very busy Bike SGV is holding a Cycling Santas Holiday Lights Ride on the 16th.

The 12th edition of LA’s iconic Feel My Legs, I’m A Racer hill climb competition rolls December 17th.

Also on the 17th, Walk Bike Glendale and the equally busy LACBC are hosting a Holiday Bike Ride.

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Today’s common theme is dockless bikeshare — and dockless bikeshare problems — around the world.

A new semi-dockless bikeshare system from Zagster promises to overcome the problem of abandoned bikes by offering a system that can be locked to their docks or any bike rack. Although that could mean bikeshare bikes hogging limited bike parking.

Dockless bikeshare is raising safety concerns in Dallas as abandoned bikes litter a popular tiding trail, even as a fifth bikeshare provider prepares to come to town.

A writer for Bicycling offers thoughts after riding dockless bikeshare around DC for a week.

A bike industry website says the uncontrolled spread of dockless bikeshare is not what European cities want.

Sydney, Australia’s government councils have given dockless bikeshare operators three months to clean up their act.

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Another common theme is adaptive bicycles. And the kindhearted people who help keep their owners riding.

It takes a real schmuck to steal an adaptive bike from a Danville school; fortunately, police were able to recover it.

Friends are crowdfunding a new adaptive tricycle for an Iowa woman with cerebral palsy, after someone stole the one she used to ride to work.

Ohio firefighters buy a new adaptive bicycle for a 12-year old girl with cerebral palsy after she called asking for help finding one.

After someone stole a three-wheeled bike a man with Down’s syndrome used to ride to his job at a Cleveland restaurant, his boss quickly ordered a new one for him.

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This is day eight of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can donate with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated to help keep SoCal’s freshest bike news coming your way every day.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

And thanks to Chris K and Megan L for their generous donations to help support this site.

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Local

A very polite editorial in UCLA’s Daily Bruin calls on Councilmember Paul Koretz to provide desperately needed bike lanes in Westwood Village. Maybe they’ve forgotten Koretz’ promise to business owners in the Village that he’d never allow bike lanes on Westwood Blvd in the Village.

LA plans to complete two LA River bike path projects by 2025 as part of their Twenty-Eight by ’28 list to complete before the coming 2028 Olympic Games.

CiclaValley recognizes the bad driver of the month.

Santa Clarita opens a new trailhead leading to the Santa Clara River Trail, complete with bike racks and a repair stand.

Los Angeles reaches a settlement with El Segundo that will allow planned improvements to go forward at LAX, including a consolidated rental car center and improved bicycle and pedestrian access.

Now you can rent ebikes in Long Beach’s Shoreline Village.

 

State

San Diego County agrees to a $77,500 settlement in the death of an unarmed man as he was working on his bicycle in his parent’s garage.

San Bernardino authorities have filed a murder charge against 34-year old Dominic Simmons in the death of Elroy Preston last Sunday; Simmons allegedly ran down Preston as he rode his bike after the two had been in the same home together.

San Francisco police hold a fundraiser for a bike cop who was severely injured when he was run down by a driver in October.

No irony here. After an Oakland cop refuses to ticket a driver parked in a bike lane because he has better things to do, a Streetsblog writer see his patrol SUV in the parking lot, with a police bicycle on the back.

Lake County’s Bike Angels are planning a bicycle giveaway next month for anyone who survived October’s Sulphur Fire.

Seriously, always look both ways before you cross the street, unlike this Chico rider.

 

National

Momentum looks at why North American cities rarely rank among the world’s best bike cities, and what we can do about it.

Ohio police are looking for a bank robber who made his getaway by mountain bike.

A Cambridge, Massachusetts bike rider calls on the city to suspend new bike lanes for the winter, saying they make traffic worse by putting bike riders in the middle of the lane, slowing traffic. Which makes it sound like he doesn’t know the difference between a bike lane and sharrows.

A Brooklyn bike shop owner wants you to visit your local bike shop December 9th for the first Bike Shop Day.

Philadelphia cyclists demand safer bike lanes now, after a woman was killed by a garbage truck while riding in a bike lane.

A Georgia woman won’t be behind the wheel again for a very long time, after she was sentenced to 25 years behind bars for killing one bike rider and injuring another after plowing into a group of riders while driving distracted with methadone and other drugs in her system, and her two-year old daughter in the car with her; she was still driving despite two previous DUI arrests. Yet another example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late.

Heartbreaking story from Florida, as a woman survived Hurricane Irma in a dramatic rescue, and fell in love with her rescuer, only to die at the hands of a hit-and-run driver as she was riding her bike.

 

International

The UK’s Cyclist Magazine writes in praise of the bicycle.

A British advocacy group calls on Britain not to miss a huge opportunity to change the country’s future by expanding safe bicycling networks, as 37% of say they aren’t willing to let their kids ride to school.

An Irish writer calls for an end to hate speech directed towards bicyclists, which is banned when directed towards other groups. The 1st Amendment means a prohibition like that would be illegal in the US.

A French company launches what they consider the world’s safest bicycle, complete with electronic anti-lock brakes, automatic emergency braking, and a 360-degree warning system. Full body bubble wrap is optional.

Aussie riders call for safety improvements along a highway that’s a popular but frightening riding route, which one rider terms a “goat track.”

 

Competitive Cycling

A European website recounts the biggest scandals in pro cycling over the past year. Of which there were many, evidently.

The Giro d’Italia won’t start next year’s race in West Jerusalem after all, after Israeli officials threaten to cancel the race because there is no east or west Jerusalem as far as they’re concerned. But the only thing that actually changed was the wording on the website.

 

Finally…

How a NASCAR racer overcomes his fear of spandex. You may not be able to make it up the world’s great climbs, but now you can down your coffee from them.

And if you don’t like your commute, just paint your own road signs.

Thanks to the aforementioned Megan Lynch for that last link.

    

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