Tag Archive for Alex Zarnardi

America bikes for racial justice, cars become weapons against protesters, and H’wood k-rails protect mural not bike riders

Not everyone was marching for racial justice this past weekend.

Some were riding and rolling, as LA bike riders took part in a solidarity ride from Echo Park to Los Angeles City Hall on Saturday.

San Diego boarders and bicyclists rolled out over the weekend to protest racism and police violence.

Things didn’t always go peacefully, however, as someone in a plateless SUV drove through a Portland Black Liberation Ride, damaging at least one bicycle.

Dozens of people took the call for racial justice to the casinos on Las Vegas Blvd in a peaceful protest organized by a retired NBA player.

Rochester NY celebrated Juneteenth with a bicycle Freedom Ride, in memory of the Freedom Riders of the 1960s.

By far the biggest ride took place in New York, where an estimated 10,000 people came out on Saturday for a New York City ride to protest police brutality and champion Black Lives Matter.

Hundreds turned out to ride in support of Black Lives Matter in the former capital of the Confederacy in Richmond VA.

Photo by Life Matters from Pexels.

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Meanwhile, NPR says at least 50 drivers have intentionally rammed protesters, as right-wing extremists turn their cars into weapons.

Like this Michigan driver, who asserted her God-given right to the road, regardless of who might be in her way, by driving through a group of protesters, injuring two people and driving over a 71-year old man’s bicycle.

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Let’s just leave this one right here for now.

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Heartbreaking news, as former F-1 and CART champ Alex Zanardi is in a medically induced coma after he was severely injured during a handcycle race in Italy.

Doctors report he is in grave neurological condition, unsure if he will suffer mental impairment.

Zanardi became a champion Paralympic cyclist after losing both his legs in a horrific CART racing crash in 2001, winning gold and silver medals in the London and Rio games.

I got in trouble with someone on Twitter over the weekend after mistakenly saying Zanardi lost his legs in a Formula 1 crash, rather that in CART, trusting nearly 20-year old memories rather than pausing to look it up.

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This is who we share the roads with.

A Corona driver rear-ended a motorcyclist. Then kept driving with the motorbike stuck under his minivan.

Fortunately, the victim was not seriously hurt, and the driver has been arrested.

If there’s any justice, this will be the last time he ever drives.

Thanks to John Damman and Victor Bale for the heads-up.

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The president of Oakland’s city council is belatedly noticing that the local police are targeting kids on scraper bikes.

I’m not sure who sent this one, but thank you, whoever you are!

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BBC presenter Jeremy Vine discovers that we turn invisible on a bicycle.

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Speaking of who we share the roads with, it’s one thing to pull out in front of someone on a bicycle.

But it takes a special skill to pull out in front of a steaming locomotive.

https://twitter.com/Ogilvie_CJ/status/1274602928502956037

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The Urban Cycling Institute goes in-depth to examine the great French street reclamation, as Paris and Nice respond to the pandemic by stepping up plans to reimagine what our streets can be.

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Pink Bike says it’s time to get to know Japanese stunt rider Tomomi Nishikubo.

Meanwhile, don’t watch this downhill chase full screen on an empty stomach.

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

Last week we shared news of a horrible attack on a Florida bike rider, who was shot in the head with a crossbow by a passing driver for no apparent reason — although it’s worth noting that the driver was white, and the victim is Black. A crowdfunding page has raised nearly $64,000 of the $75,000 goal. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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

A Santa Rosa nurse says she was punched in the face by a man on a bike, after she was accused of driving recklessly through a group of protesters who shattered her windshield with a skateboard and a bicycle. Seriously, don’t do that. Take video, take photos and take down the license. But don’t resort to violence. And don’t abuse your bike. 

Police in Chicago are looking for a bike-riding groper who assaulted a woman walking her dog on the city’s Lakefront Trail.

A man suffered a concussion when he was pushed off his bicycle by an aggressive bicyclist on an Indiana trail; witnesses say the attacker was swearing profusely before he intentionally elbowed the victim.

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Local

Free your schedule for tomorrow evening, when the LA Department of Engineering will host a virtual town hall to discuss plans for the LA Riverway through the San Fernando Valley, between Lankershim and Whitsett.

 

State

As we’ve noted before, it takes a major schmuck to repeatedly burglarize a San Jose bike co-op that’s given away over 3,500 bicycles to homeless people.

San Francisco will keep a pilot protected bike lane on a section of Valencia Street, after the temporary lane proved successful.

The Redding bike rider killed in a solo crash earlier this month is described as someone who “did good deeds for everyone;” he was killed when he his head on a curb while riding without a helmet. Crashes like this are exactly what bike helmets were designed for; they were never intended to protect against motor vehicles.

More bad news from Chico, where a man was killed riding his bike in a collision with an apparently driverless car; the victim was blamed for riding through a stop sign. Thanks to John McBrearty for the link.

 

National

It was nice while it lasted. Auto traffic in the US has rebounded to 90% of pre-pandemic levels. Which means time is rapidly running out to take streets back from the big, dangerous machines. Thanks to Aurelio Jose Barrera for the second link.

The new lighted smart helmet from Lumos debuted on Kickstarter over the weekend, taking just four minutes to meet the $60,000 goal — then surpassed it by roughly 2500%. Thanks to Tim Rutt for the tip.

The Daily Beast offers advice on how to plan a long-distance bike ride in the age of Covid-19.

The New York Times offers tips on how to store a big bicycle in a small apartment.

The Today Show considers why bicycling has soared in popularity during the pandemic. Maybe because it’s good for you, with built-in social distancing, and safer when there are fewer cars on the streets. And it’s fun.

Kindhearted members of an Arizona riding club replaced a young girl’s stolen bicycle, and tossed in a lock and a gift certificate for a new helmet.

Speaking of kindhearted strangers, a trail riding group bought a new bicycle for a seven-year old Fort Worth, Texas girl after hers broke. And gave it to her just in time for her Marine father to come home on Father’s Day.

A Michigan man is riding 100 miles a week, with a goal of 1,000 miles by Labor Day, to raise $10,000 for Black Lives Matter.

Even though they’re thousands of miles apart, a father and son spent the weekend riding together in a virtual ride across Maine.

A Brooklyn woman completed a three-year project to ride every block in the New York borough, covering over 4,400 miles.

You already have the Greater Allegheny Passage-C&O Towpath bicycle trail leading 350 miles from Pittsburgh to DC on your bike bucket list, right?

You can now legally ride an ebike anywhere a bicycle is allowed in Florida, as the state rushes to catch up to the 21st Century.

A laid-off Disney World performer has ridden his bike over three thousand miles since the pandemic began in an effort to spread smiles around the area.

 

International

Great story from Brazil, where a man built an adaptive tricycle by hand for his granddaughter with cerebral palsy.

Toronto residents are taking advantage of good weather and a partially closed boulevard along the lakefront to get out on their bikes.

A local website suggests eight Montreal bike paths with incredible views for your next trip to the bicycling city.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a British priest’s bicycle.

Bikes are really booming in Great Britain, where 5% of consumers have bought a bicycle since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis. Although some of those are probably healthcare workers replacing their stolen bikes.

Kate Moss is one of us, as she goes for a leisurely bike ride in the UK’s Cotswolds.

Nice. A new cross-border bike path will connect the Slovak and Czech cities of Trencin and Brumov-Bylnice.

Greek bicyclists stripped down and hopped on their bikes for this year’s edition of the World Naked Bike Ride, which has been cancelled virtually everywhere else due to the coronavirus.

Residents of Dhaka, Bangladesh, explain why they’re taking to their bicycles during the city’s coronavirus lockdown.

Talk about not getting it. The mayor of Manilla says he’s opposed to bike lanes in the city, because the streets are too dangerous to try to make them safer for bike riders.

Pedestrian advocates call for banning bike riders from shared pathways in Queensland, Australia, after a 93-year man was killed in a head-on collision with a man on a bicycle.

 

Competitive Cycling

Call it a fixed false alarm. Aussie cyclist Lachlan Morton didn’t set a new record for Everesting after all las week. Then he did, shaving ten minutes off the existing record.

The founder of the Dirty Kanza gravel race has been fired after a social media post calling the Atlanta shooting of Rayshard Brooks justified. However, the name of the race is also problematic; Kanza is another name for the Kaw Nation and its people, which means Dirty Kanza could be read as “dirty Indian.”

A French website says there’s nothing to suggest the rescheduled Tour de France won’t start as planned this August. I wouldn’t hold your breath, though.

 

Finally…

Your next bicycle could read your mind. Your next car could be a single seat backward e-tricycle.

And when you’re carrying heroin, cocaine, fentanyl and crystal meth on your bike, with an outstanding arrest warrant, put a damn horn on it, already.

On the other hand, how the hell could a passing cop even tell if you had one? Never mind what a stupid law that is.

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Thanks to David E. for his generous donation to support this site, and keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day.

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

Morning Links: The Times looks at rising bike hit-and-run rates; and the year’s most inspirational video

You already knew hit-and-runs were a problem for cyclists.

But maybe none of us realized just how bad it’s become.

According to the LA Times, overall injury and fatal hit-and-run rates have actually declined since 2000. Except for those involving bike riders, which have increased a whopping 42% since then.

It’s easy to lay blame for the increase on a rising rate of bicycling over the same period, which has grown 61% since the turn of the century, according to a recent report from the League of American Bicyclists. But the fact that overall rates have gone down while bike-involved hit-and-runs have gone up just raises the question of why so many drivers think it’s okay to leave a bike rider bleeding in the street.

Then again, maybe it’s just that a collision with a bike rider is less likely to leave the driver’s car too damaged to flee than a wreck with another motor vehicle.

Regardless of the reason, nothing will change until the law is changed to make the penalties for hit-and-run greater than the potential reward for running away.

And that won’t happen until someone can get it through our out-of-touch governor’s head that hit-and-run is a serious — and deadly — problem.

Especially for those of us who aren’t protected by a couple tons of glass and steel.

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The Times piece also notes that an overwhelming 80% of all hit-and-runs go unsolved. And only half of the cases that do get solved result in a conviction.

In other words, drivers have a 90% chance of getting away with it if they hit the gas instead of the brake after a collision. No wonder hit-and-run remains at epidemic proportions.

In addition, the story profiles some of the victims of fleeing drivers — at least, the ones still able to tell their own story, including Paul Livingston, whose story was told here last June.

There’s a great interactive map, as well, that drives home the obscene number of bike-involved hit-and-runs every year, and where you need to be on the lookout for fleeing drivers. Including Long Beach, Santa Monica, DTLA, Van Nuys and North Hollywood — in other words, the places where you’re most likely to find people on bikes.

And the paper offers a video interview with Finish the Ride’s Damian Kevitt, who barely survived the gruesome hit-and-run that took his leg.

Then again, it’s not just an LA problem, as a Florida paper asks what kind of driver doesn’t stop after hitting someone.

Or more to point, what kind of pond-sucking scum would even consider it?

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No surprise, as prosecutors have declined to press charges against the South LA bike rider allegedly beaten by cops while being held down after a brief pursuit.

Police had reportedly ordered Clinton Alford to stop while he was riding his bike on the sidewalk along Avalon Blvd, but he kept going because he says they failed to identify themselves as police officers. Then he ran when someone grabbed his bike from behind, which lead to the alleged beating.

Based on the description of events, though, the police appeared to lack probable cause to make the stop, since sidewalk riding is legal in Los Angeles. Which makes everything that followed, including alleged evidence of drug possession and accusations of resisting arrest, inadmissible in court.

Never mind that filing charges would stand in the way of reaching a settlement with the city over the beating.

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Unbelievable. A Paso Robles cyclist is dead and her riding partner severely injured because the jerk behind the wheel dropped his effing cell phone and bent down to pick it up. Then had to swerve to avoid the stopped car ahead of him, slamming into the riders in the process.

Never mind that using a hand-held phone while driving is illegal in California.

Or that taking your eyes off the road to pick it up is idiotic.

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Local

CicLAvia offers a narrative guide to Sunday’s event (pdf) from the real voices of South LA.

An Aussie travel writer takes a 32-mile bike tour of LA in — gasp! — a single day.

West Hills’ Spoke N’ Wheel Bicycles bounces back after a summer fire nearly put it out of business.

An important bike route through the UCLA campus is needlessly blocked by construction. And Porta Potties.

Santa Monica sees a dramatic increase in bicycling since 2000, nearly six times the national growth in cycling. And yes, this story is where I got that stat about the 61% increase in bike riding nationwide.

Riding for a great cause. The Midnight Ridazz annual All City Toy Ride takes place on Friday, December 9th. Thanks to James Hawkes for the link. 

The Eastside Bike Club is hosting a family-friendly Slow ES Cool — Cypress Park Ride to explore some of LA’s and the San Gabriel Valley’s beautiful sites and diverse eateries on Saturday, December 13th.

 

State

Riverside police plan to offer a $10,000 reward in the hit-and-run death of fallen rider D’Andre Sutherland.

A San Bernardino man is the victim of a bike-by shooting; he’ll survive, but may have trouble walking for awhile.

Evidently, they’re just a bunch of old softies, as a group of Hell’s Angels — yes, the notorious motorcycle gang — buy up all the bikes at a Fresno Walmart and donate them for needy kids. And not for the first time.

San Jose prepares to ban all bikes on the sidewalk because of a few overly aggressive riders.

The popular East Bay Bike Party has been cancelled for December due to out-of-control and disrespectful riders.

 

National

Evidently, bad research never dies, as the press continues to report on that highly flawed Governors’ report on bike safety.

Rails to Trails offers 10 great bike movie moments.

Your next GoPro could offer overhead shots, as the company is reportedly developing its own line of drones.

A Maine man admits to fatally running down his bike riding friend while driving drunk, after initially claiming he found him lying in a ditch.

New York City cuts the speed limit in Central Park to reign in all those dangerous bikes.

New York police use faulty, or perhaps made-up, data to justify a crackdown on bike riders.

 

International

A Vancouver writer says motorists must take more responsibility for keeping cyclists and pedestrians safe.

An Ottawa paper goes for major click bait, asking their readers whether an idiot on a bike or a moron behind the wheel is worse. How about the idiot editor who approved the piece?

A new association of the top pro cycling teams plans to bring a little more rationality to the sport.

A London writer offers up five mistakes that cancel out even the best bike lights.

London’s mayor Boris considers holding open streets events in the city after seeing similar events in Jakarta. If he thinks that’s impressive, we should invite him to Sunday’s CicLAvia.

Bike cams are being accepted as evidence in cases against Scottish motorists.

An American man and his 12-year old son tour Amsterdam by bike, including the Red Light District.

Caught on video: A Polish rider participating in a bikejoring competition — racing with dogs pulling her bike — is tackled by, not 10 Lords a Leaping, but a leaping herd of deer.

A Chengdu, China bike rider invents an air purifier that fits in a very big backpack.

 

Finally…

Florida cyclists connect through Facebook to get a man’s $5,000 Cannondale back before he even knew it was stolen. Lance just can’t keep away from the sport, as he admits to motorpacing BMC’s Tejay van Garderen.

And they must make ‘em tough Down Under, as a 13-year old boy rides his bike back home after being bitten by a shark.

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One quick bonus video: Michael Eisenberg forwards what may be the most inspirational video you’ll see this year, featuring former race car champ and champion paracyclist Alex Zarnardi, who lost both legs in a car racing collision.

Seriously, if he can get back on a bike, so can I.

And so can you.

 

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