Tag Archive for Eagle Rock

Sunset4All at Transportation Comm today, lawsuit filed over Colorado Blvd BRT, and racing a monorail-riding dino on a foldie

Before we get going, remember to clear your schedule for today’s Transportation Committee meeting at 3 pm.

As we discussed yesterday, the LA City Council committee will consider several bike-related issues, including:

  • Sunset4All’s efforts to build a 2-way protected bike lane on Sunset Blvd;
  • A protected bike lane on Riverside Drive and Stadium Way;
  • Encouraging the newly-legal installation of cameras on Metro buses;
  • Expanding LADOT’s budget and staffing for the Slow Streets program.

You’ll find the full agenda here, along with a link to listen live online and instructions on how to comment.

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No surprise here.

The Eastsider reports a lawsuit has been filed over the recently approved Complete Streets makeover of Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock to accommodate the planned NoHo to Pasadena bus rapid transit line.

The complaint says, among other things, that the Metro Board of directors violated the state’s open meeting law by failing to follow proper procedures before holding a public meeting on April 28 by teleconference instead of in person. At that meeting, the transit agency’s board approved the rapid-transit bus line between North Hollywood and Pasadena, which would pass through Eagle Rock.

The lead petitioner also accuses Metro of failing to notify him of the meeting. Because apparently, the transportation agency is required to reach out to every single person in the county who might somehow miss the public meeting notice the rest of us seem somehow seemed to find.

………

Oh, nothing.

Just a rush hour race between a bike rider on a foldie and a dinosaur on a monorail.

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

A Toronto driver was caught on video nearly causing a crash after driving several blocks along a curb-protected bike lane.

Caught on CP24 chopper this morning. Adelaide Construction. Car driver thinks the bike lane is a car lane and almost causes accident from torontobiking

A British woman says she nearly fell off her bike after a taxi driver ignored No Stopping signs to cut her off pulling into a bike lane.

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

If you’re going to ride your bike pulling a freshly burgled safe on a trailer, maybe try to disguise it just a little.

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Local

Caltrans is finally getting around to protecting the bike lanes on the east side of the recently rebuilt Burbank Blvd Bridge. Yet oddly thinks it’s okay to make pedestrians cross ten lanes of traffic, after removing the sidewalk on the north side of the bridge.

Streets For All lists a number of volunteer opportunities to support candidates endorsed by the LA transportation PAC in the last week before Election Day.

 

State 

A new three-quarter million, 3.7-mile protected bike lane will extend along El Camino Real from San Bruno to Burlingame in the Bay Area’s San Mateo County.

 

National

Treehugger considers how drivers can be allies to people on bikes and other nonmotorized traffic.

Bicycling says bike libraries are growing in popularity, with at least 35 current operating across the US. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

After the overwhelming success of Denver’s ebike rebate program, Colorado will introduce a statewide rebate program based on the city’s. Meanwhile, California’s ebike rebate system still hasn’t gotten its shit together.

In a story that could come from any city, a Houston paper examines the dangers bike riders face from a disconnected bike network, which forces bicyclists into actions that anger drivers for their own safety. And gives motorists permission to take that anger out on them.

Market Watch says South Dakota is the perfect place to use as a home base if you’re planning to ride your bikes all over after you retire. Because you wouldn’t have to, you know, actually live there if you’re always on the road, evidently.

A writer for Streets MN says Minnesota drivers are usually happy to share the road, unless you want to turn left.

More heartbreaking and horrifying details about the Ohio woman who lost a leg when she was attacked by dogs; she fought the dogs off alone for 20 minutes after she was separated from her group and got a flat on her bike, before succumbing to the attack. Sadly, it’s the dogs who are likely to be punished, rather than the owner who let them run loose in the first place.

Momentum says New York’s plan to offer a bounty on drivers blocking bike lanes could be a lifesaver. And help put bike riders’ kids through college.

Heather Graham is one of us, as the actress takes a romantic cruiser bike ride through New York with her boyfriend.

Cycling Weekly revisits the recent Philly Bike Expo, with its focus on diverse bike builders and their bikes.

 

International

Planetizen goes back to the basics to define bike infrastructure, and how to overcome objections to it.

The Guardian offers tips on buying an ebike, as two-thirds of Brits consider biking to work to cut transportation costs.

It takes a major schmuck to steal a bike from an English park ranger after he stopped to help an injured mountain biker.

The head of British Cycling was forced to step down, three weeks after announcing a misguided greenwashing sponsorship by Shell Oil, as well as advising people not ride a bike during the queen’s funeral, which was later rescinded.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz urged climate activists to be more creative and avoid endangering others after a recent protest delayed first responders from getting to a bike rider stuck under a cement mixer.

They get it. A physician in Nepal says the future belongs to bikes — if we can make it safer and more user-adaptable.

Tokyo police are stepping up their crackdown on scofflaw bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Gravel Cycling Hall of Fame is accepting nominations for their second class of inductees. Which doesn’t mean they’ll accept second-class inductees.

 

Finally…

Evidently, knighthood is no protection from bike thieves. That feeling when the caste system applies to bikes, too.

And the road to hell may be paved with good intentions, but at least you can ride there (click for the full image).

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Killer Michigan drugged driver allegedly a repeat offender, and California to get $631 million for climate resilient infrastructure

This is why people keep dying on our streets.

The 43-year old woman who killed two men and critically injured three others participating in a 300-mile Michigan fundraising ride for the Make-A-Wish program faces her second arrest for driving under the influence of prescription drugs.

Mandy Marie Benn reportedly had been prescribed Aderall and Suboxone, and had prescription bottles for Benzodiazepine in her car at the time of the crash.

Suboxone is used to treat opioid addiction.

The prosecuting attorney in her case described her as so stoned that she “had slow and slurred speech, lack of balance and couldn’t follow instructions,” and told police the jumble of mangled bikes and bodies “almost looks real.”

She had previously been arrested on a charge of operating a vehicle while visibly impaired back five years earlier.

However, there’s no word on a conviction. Which suggests the charge was dropped or bargained away, allowing her to keep driving until she killed someone.

And she did.

Allegedly.

Just one more example of authorities keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late.

Benn is charged with two counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death, as well as a couple misdemeanors charges.

She’s being held on a million dollars bail, and faces a maximum of 31 years behind bars.

Which pales in comparison to the cost paid by the victims and their families.

Meanwhile, the victims were identified as a 57-year old man and a 48-year old man, both from Michigan.

Two of the men who were injured have been released, while the third remains hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries.

And the Make-A-Wish foundation reports they’re “heartbroken” over the needless deaths and injuries.

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

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U.S. Senator Alex Padilla announced that California will receive over $631 million for “climate resilient transportation infrastructure” over the next five years through the federal infrastructure bill pass last year.

The bill includes provisions for transit, bicycling and pedestrian projects designed to combat extreme weather conditions.

Meanwhile, Calbike looks at how pandemic bike riding led to the birth of SB 932, the Plan for the Future Bill.

The bill from California Senator Anthony Portantino, and sponsored by Streets for All and Calbike, requires local governments to include provisions to make streets safer for people biking, walking, using scooters and taking public transit in the circulation elements of their general plans.

And it includes deadlines for starting and finishing construction of the new facilities, so cities have to actually build them.

………

Seriously?

A writer for City Watch says residents of Eagle Rock deserve better than a remake of Colorado Blvd to make it safer and more livable for everyone, accusing Metro of jamming plans for a bus rapid transit down down their throats.

Evidently, keeping it a deadly, traffic-inducing car sewer is somehow better for them, in some inexplicable way.

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Yes, you can do stunts on a commuter ebike.

………

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

Police in New Orleans are looking for a bike-riding man who fired a single shot at a group of people walking down the street.

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Local

A Los Angeles couple has filed suit against Seattle ebike maker Rad Power Bikes, blaming a flawed design that makes it difficult slow down and stop while going downhill for the death of their 12-year old daughter from head trauma last year.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton examines the newly renovated Culver Blvd bike path in Culver City, noting that the project improved pedestrian and rainwater facilities, but didn’t make major changes to the bikeway itself.

Helicopter and paramedic crews with the Los Angeles Fire Department rescued an injured mountain biker from a trail in in Shadow Hills on Saturday.

West Hollywood is now home to the next generation of Lime ebikes, with new ebikes from Bird coming later this month.

Santa Monica is planning another bike and pedestrian safety operation for today, ticketing any traffic violations that could put bike riders or pedestrians at risk, regardless of who commits them. Which means the standard protocol applies — ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

 

State 

Sad news from Bakersfield, where a 40-year old man was killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike through an alley Monday morning.

Sad news from Grover Beach, too, where a 29-year old man on an ebike was killed when he reportedly crossed in front of an oncoming fire truck.

A 69-year old driver crashed into a Berkeley bike rider participating in a group ride Sunday afternoon, before slamming into three parked cars and flipping over; both the driver and the 29-year old man on the bike were taken to a local hospital with injuries that didn’t appear to be life-threatening.

SFist questions whether San Francisco’s mayor is trying to kill off the city’s popular Slow Streets program.

 

National

Ebike and e-scooter provider Bolt Mobility, founded by Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt, has ceased operations in several cities virtually overnight, abandoning its vehicles on the streets.

Bike Portland talks with a disabled Portland woman and new bike rider who gained greater mobility on her adaptive bicycle. Proving once again that bikes are for everyone, not just for the healthy and strong.

A 16-year old Las Vegas boy has been missing since he left for his new job on Friday; his phone is turned off and his bike was found in a dumpster ten miles from his home.

Operators of Colorado’s Palisade Plunge mountain bike trail are urging everyone to beware of the scorching heat and bring extra water, after the heart-related death of one man.

Houston patients with pre or existing diabetes or hypertension can now get a prescription for rental bike use.

A Minnesota advocacy group offers a 45-minute recorded discussion on tips for utilitarian bicycling, complete with a print transcript in case you’d rather read it.

Bike lanes in a Boston neighborhood has become the latest battlefront in the battle over gentrification, as Black and Latino residents complain they’re neither needed or wanted by the residents in danger of being pushed out. Even though Black and Latino people ride bikes, too.

The New Yorker ponders what a 9,000 pound electric vehicle should sound like, since silent cars and trucks pose a significant danger to bike riders and pedestrians who rely on vehicle noise for their safety.

That’s a good problem to have. The Manhattan Borough president is suggesting that the city convert a traffic lane on the West Side Highway to a separated bike path to relieve bike traffic congestion on the popular Hudson River Greenway.

NPR talks with the Director of Transportation for Hoboken about how the New Jersey city has eliminated traffic deaths for the past four years through a series of incremental safety changes.

Another reminder to always carry ID when you ride a bike, as authorities in Baton Rouge, Louisiana struggle to identify a man killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding a bike.

 

International

After a British teacher flipped over his handlebars and broke his collarbone, he credited the what3words app with pinpointing his rural location for the paramedics.

Here are 18 bicycling routes throughout the island nation for your next trip to Singapore.

 

Competitive Cycling

Another day, another major crash in track cycling at the Commonwealth Games; Australia is leading a push for better safety measures.

Veteran Dutch cyclist Annemiek van Vleuten says she’s “super proud” to have won the first women’s Tour de France in 33 years, despite nearly quitting due to stomach issues early in the week.

The Astana Qazaqstan cycling team reinstated Colombian rider Miguel Ángel López after he was questioned, and apparently cleared, in the investigation into the alleged activities of a Spanish doctor suspected of drug trafficking.

 

Finally…

Celebrate a Tour de France finish on your next bike ride, complete with cheering fans. Your next ebike could have a built-in boombox to annoy everyone as you ride by.

And Aquaman is one of us.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Upcoming bike events, Metro approves plan for NoHo to Pasadena BRT, and NBA’s Klay Thompson is one of us

Let’s start with a look at a few upcoming events.

The raucous Belgian Waffle Ride rolls through the countryside around San Marcos this weekend, with races starting today.

The LACBC and Metro Bike will host a family friendly Earth Week ride through the NoHo Arts District tomorrow.

A South Pasadena paper looks forward to the opening ceremony for Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets Mission-to-Mission open streets event, which returns after a three year Covid-induced hiatus.

Wednesday is National Bike and Roll to School Day, so plan accordingly.

Mark your calendar for Thursday, May 12th, when Streets For All hosts a virtual happy hour with Culver City mayor and congressional candidate Dr. Daniel Lee.

………

Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding news of several events in both Northern and Southern California.

He reports racing has resumed at San Diego’s open air velodrome.

San Jose’s Viva Calle SJ open streets event rolls on Sunday.

And San Jose’s Helllyer Park Velodrome is resuming Wednesday night racing next week.

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The Metro board has approved plans for the North Hollywood to Pasadena bus rapid transit line.

The approved option, based on the community designed Beautiful Boulevard plan, calls for dedicated bus lanes, protected bike lanes, on-street parking, and a single car lane in each direction.

The 18-mile long route drew widespread community support, despite very vocal opposition accusing Metro of “trying to manufacture gridlock.”

Meanwhile, a writer for City Watch calls it an unnecessary boondoggle, while attacking the board and the Measure M sales tax funding the project, and accusing supporters of being “bought and paid for.”

In that case, I’d sure as hell like to know who is passing out those checks, because I’m still waiting for mine.

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Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson is one of us, riding his bike to play in the decisive game five against the Denver Nuggets.

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

No bias here. A piece originally written for — and firewalled by — the Denver Post takes a clearheaded look at bike law, and the rights and responsibilities of bike riders in the wake of Colorado’s adoption of the Idaho Stop Law. But frames it by saying the law is creating animosity between motorists and bicyclists.

A man in Edinburg, Scotland apparently took issue with a woman riding her bike on a shared use path, and pushed her into the river.

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

………

Local

The crowdfunding campaign to help send fallen cyclist and pastry chef Leonidas Accip Serech back home for burial in Guatemala, and benefit his brother and family, has now raised almost $17,000 of the $20,000 goal. Serech was riding to work with his brother when he was killed by a driver trying to escape another man in Koreatown.

Culver City News reposted a piece on bike safety written for State Farm Insurance, without crediting the source. And without bothering to use any paragraphs.

 

State 

Longtime transportation equity advocate and Antioch University professor Dr. Adonia Lugo has been appointed to a position on the California Transportation Commission, though she still needs confirmation by the state senate.

The Pacific Beach Planning Group recommends that San Diego continue plans to make the Slow Street on Diamond Street permanent, after the city cancelled an earlier effort after running into vocal opposition.

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria says he’s committed to improving the city’s bike lane network, even when those projects face vocal opposition — despite the recent controversy that resulted in the removal of new advisory lanes in the Mira Mesa neighborhood, with the mayor going door-to-door to apologize.

A new documentary follows a Palo Alto ultracyclist as he rides 3,000 miles across the US in the Race Across America, aka RAAM, to raise money for cancer research.

Congratulations to Rich City Rides co-op founder Najari Smith on being named a 2022 Bike Champion of the Year for Contra Costa County. Couldn’t have happened to a more deserving and inspiring person. 

 

National

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is asking for comments on a proposed rating system for vehicle impacts on pedestrians. And by extension, bike riders. Let’s tell them that any vehicle that rates less than three on the five point scale should be banned from the roads. Starting with oversized pickups and SUVs with high, flat grills designed to kill.

A crowdfunding page for a 13-year old Utah boy killed by a hit-and-run driver has raised over $33,000 of the $36,000 goal in a single day; he was just one block from his home when he was killed.

Unbelievable. An Iowa man charged with killing a bike-riding woman while driving distracted walked when the judge dismissed the case, agreeing with the defense that there wasn’t enough evidence for a conviction.

Houston, Texas is continuing to improve the city’s disjointed bike network, with plans for new bike lanes to connect several existing segments.

The Boston Globe says the best way to visit Maine’s Acadia National Park is by bicycle, whether you’re an experienced rider or just a beginner. Then again, that’s true just for about every other national park, too. Hint: Stop the page as soon as it loads to get past the paper’s paywall. 

Streetsblog says the NYPD’s supposed crackdown on drivers who failed to yield to pedestrians is anything but that.

About damn time. A group of New York councilmembers are calling for the Department of Education to add bicycling to the curriculum, and teach bike safety in every school.

New York’s annual TD Five Boro Bike Tour returns to full strength this weekend, with 32,000 riders registered for the 40-mile bike tour through each of the city’s five boroughs.

 

International

A questionable new British study claims e-scooters are five times safer than riding a bicycle, and pose much less risk to pedestrians than assumed.

An English man was collateral damage in a road rage dispute between two drivers, one of whom has denied responsibility for his death in court.

Mail carriers in New Zealand will deliver the mail by foot or on a bicycle, after the entire fleet of electric mail buggies were taken off the road due to a maintenance issue.

 

Competitive Cycling

The popular Over The Hump mountain bike race series kicks things off on Tuesday at Lakeview Park at Irvine Lake, in Santiago, CA.

Finally some good news about Dutch pro Amy Pieters, who regained consciousness following four months in a medically induced coma, after suffering severe brain damage in a training crash; however, doctors are unsure how much of her previous abilities she’ll eventually recover.

  

Finally…

That feeling when a former pro cyclist, soldier, CEO, lawyer, author, academic, hostage responder, weapons instructor and Strava KOM king isn’t. If you lose an arm in a collision while riding your bike, just build a new one.

And before you get carried away celebrating your victory, make sure you really won.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Metro votes on NoHo to Pasadena BRT plan today, bike & ped bill passes senate committee, and gun-toting Sac trail driver

Let’s start with a quick reminder about today’s Metro Board meeting.

The board will give a final hearing for the North Hollywood to Pasadena bus rapid transit line, which includes plans for lane reductions, protected bike lanes and a more livable street on currently car-centric Colorado Blvd, based on the Beautiful Boulevard plan developed by Eagle Rock residents. .

Streets For All offers these tips for making a comment during the 10 am meeting.

  • Use these Talking Points put together by the Beautiful Boulevard Coalition (some are specific to Eagle Rock)
  • In order to make comments by phone, you will need to call in using the number and code above. When the item comes up, click #2 (pound-two) to request to comment.
  • You will only have 1 minute for your comment. (It may be helpful to write your comment down and read it aloud to maximize use of your comment time)
  • If you are watching online, please note that the video feed is delayed by 30 seconds and that you will need to mute your video stream when you speak to avoid background noise.

If you can’t call in, they recommend using this email tool from the Beautiful Boulevard coalition to submit your comments to the Metro Board.

I have another commitment, so I’m counting on you to call in for me.

Meanwhile, a writer for the Boulevard Sentinel suggests that only a small group of advocates support the plan, which he says received no opposition because opponents didn’t know about it.

Evidently, they somehow missed all those public meetings where it was discussed, along with the website promoting it.

But other than that, it was a total secret.

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Glendale state Senator Anthony Portantino’s bill requiring cities to bake bike and pedestrian safety into their community plans is headed to the senate floor after passing both the Transportation and Governance and Finance committees.

SB 932 would force cities to take action to improve safety on the most dangerous corridors; otherwise, anyone injured there would have the right to sue.

Never mind that Los Angeles hasn’t updated its community plan since Ronald Reagan was in the White House.

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Megan Lynch forwards a horrifying story from Sacramento, where a former San Diego County sheriff’s deputy has allegedly been brandishing a gun while threatening homeless people.

Rich Eaton, who now operates a business in the city, was named by victims in three police reports, in one case reportedly growling “I should put a bullet in the back of your head.”

And he apparently doesn’t let a little thing like a bike trail stop him.

The same victim claimed he saw Eaton brandishing a gun at another homeless man a few days earlier.

“Richard was in his vehicle on the bike trail at the top of the levee and I could see him pointing a gun out of the vehicle window,” the report says.

The other victim said Eaton pointed the gun directly at him as he tried confronting Eaton about driving on a path intended for bikes and pedestrians.

“I could see him holding the guns in his hand with the barrel sticking out the window pointing at me,” the second victim said. “He pulled the gun back and said ‘pussy.’”

Eaton is suing the city for failure to enforce its own laws by allowing homeless people to remain on his property, claiming significant damage and a loss in property value.

Even though the writer for Newsbreak says the value of the property has increased $2.3 million in just the last five years.

According to the story, police dropped the investigation into the incidents, at the discretion of the sergeant.

Maybe they could at least tell him to keep his car the hell off bike and pedestrian paths.

Correction: In the first reference to Rich Eaton, I somehow wrote his last name as Williams, for reasons that will forever escape me. Thanks to Andy Stow for the catch.

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

No bias here. The headline on this story from San Diego’s CBS8 isn’t the least bit misleading, suggesting that the city apologized to Rancho Peñasquitos residents for the new bike lanes on Azuaga Street, when the San Diego director of transportation actually apologized for a lack of effective outreach before they were installed. And yes, that was sarcasm.

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

Police in Charlotte, North Carolina announced a crackdown on aggressive young bike riders they accuse of wrecking havoc in the city by riding recklessly and endangering drivers and pedestrians; one is accused of punching a driver in the back of the head, and later shooting into his car, leaving the man paralyzed.

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Local

This is the cost of traffic violence. Relatives of Monique Munoz, the  32-year-old woman killed by a 17-year old boy in West LA, who slammed into her car after running a red light at over 100 mph in his Lamborghini SUV, have settled a wrongful death lawsuit against his family for a whopping $18.8 million. Which barely seems like enough under the circumstances.

Los Angeles Magazine lists beach cruisers as one of the 60 ways the city has changed the world, placing them between The Beach Boys and breast implants; they were invented by in 1976 by a 21-year old mechanic in his dad’s bike shop. The bikes, that is, not The Beach Boys. Or the breast implants.

Beverly Hills is installing a network of green sharrows on South Santa Monica Boulevard, North Doheny Drive and South Beverly Drive. Apparently in an effort to thin the herd and help drivers improve their aim.

626 Golden Streets returns this weekend with five miles of carfree streets connecting the historic San Gabriel and South Pasadena Mission Districts with downtown Alhambra.

 

State 

Volunteers removed a half ton of overgrown weeds and dry brush from a La Jolla bike path.

The curator of a museum in San Diego’s University Height neighborhood says he doesn’t think it can survive plans for a parking protected bike lane and fewer parking spaces on Park Boulevard. Because evidently, people who ride bicycles never, ever visit museums. Especially not if they’re safer and easier to get to.

Caltrans will reduce PCH to a single lane between Deer Creek Road and Sycamore Canyon Road in Ventura County for road work today; bicyclists will be allowed to mix it up with cars in the single traffic lane, though you may have to wait for traffic moving in the other direction.

 

National

Is anyone really surprised that ebike sales are outpacing sales of electric cars in the US? Ebikes are booming, while sales of electric cars have been lagging. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

Forbes rates their picks for the best bikes to ride anywhere for all kinds of riders. And for once, I can’t argue with their choices.

Charge your ebike while you ride with a hardshell backpack with a built-in solar panel.

Once again, authorities have managed to keep a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Utah man with four previous DUI convictions faces charges for killing a 13 year old boy when he right hooked the boy’s bike, before fleeing the scene with the kid’s bike still jammed under his truck; police said they could smell the alcohol on his breath when he was arrested at his home later. He should have lost his license permanently after the second conviction.

A new Utah mountain bike trail is bringing glamping to bike touring, with a series of six fully furnished huts capable of housing up to 14 people strategically located along the 190-mile path.

Smart move. An Illinois teacher uses bicycles as a reward for good work and to keep her students attentive and motivated; she hopes to send each one home with a new bike at the end of the year.

NBC News correspondent Stephanie Gosk writes that she took up road cycling during the pandemic, until a violent face plant resulting from a New Jersey pothole took her down hard. But she insists she’s not going to let that stop her.

 

International

Two new high tech, retro styled bike headlamps are raising funds on Kickstarter.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. A British taxi driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider after his lawyer argued that the victim’s lack of hi-viz and flashing lights made him hard to see — even though he had steady front and rear lights and reflectors on his bike.

An 18-year old Indian man has developed the country’s first artificial inteligence-powered bike counter, complete with AI-sensor camera and a machine learning-based algorithm

 

Competitive Cycling

The 13th Annual Redlands PossAbilities Para-cycle stage race rolled alongside the Redlands Classic last week, using the same courses for the four stage race; national paracycling time trial and road cycling champ national Owen Daniels dominated the series, finishing first in the paraplegic category.

  

Finally…

Now you can be the proud owner of Elliot’s milk crate-basket bicycle from E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, although you’ll have to supply your own homesick alien. Maybe once you become mayor, you should stop punching teenage constituents in the back of the head.

Just a suggestion.

And you know you’re a bicyclist when you see a picture of a young Ann-Margret, and stare at her bike.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Metro EIR blesses Eagle Rock Beautiful Blvd plan, and Taylor Yard bike bridge bountifully blessed with corgis

A quick note before we start. 

I’ve received a guest post from frequent Munich correspondent Ralph Durham for when I’m out next week following my hand surgery. 

If anyone else wants to share your thoughts next week, just send it to the email address on the About BikinginLA page above. 

Write about anything you want, as long as it’s bike related. The only restrictions are to avoid personal attacks or being needlessly offensive. 

Which means it’s okay to be necessarily offensive, evidently.

And no, this is not an invitation for SEO marketing or Native Advertising. Sorry. 

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It looks like Metro is finally onboard with Eagle Rock’s resident-driven Beautiful Boulevard plan.

An email from the Beautiful Boulevard Coalition reports that Metro’s final Environmental Impact Report for the NoHo to Pasadena bus rapid transit project adopts most elements of the plan, including dedicated bus lanes on Colorado Boulevard, and new family-friendly protected bike lanes.

It also includes a lane reduction to improve safety in downtown Eagle Rock, with a single traffic lane in both directions, along with bus and bike lanes.

The next steps include working with CD12 Councilmember and mayoral candidate Kevin de León to make adjustments to the plan, such as enabling al fresco dining and keeping cut-through traffic from disrupting residential neighborhoods.

And getting de León to sign off on the plan, after he’s done significant waffling on the project since taking office.

………

Nice surprise from my friend Jonathan Weiss, who forwards photos from a recent ride to check out the new Taylor Yard Bridge.

And stumbled across an apparent corgi meetup.

Better yet, my wife instantly recognized the blue merle corgi staring off into the distance as one she knows from meetups with her corgi Instagram group.

Face it. It’s a corgi world, and we just live in it.

………

Nothing like jamming on the brakes to avoid getting hit head-on by a wrong-way driver.

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

No bias here. Miami city commissioners voted to require developers to include more parking in their projects, with one saying “This is not a pedestrian and bicycle city.” And with that attitude, it never will be.

No bias here, either. A Twitter account claims bicyclists “injury and maim” (sic) thousands of people in the UK every year. Which comes as a surprise, since there were only a little more than 600 collisions reported between bikes and pedestrians in 2020.

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

Police in El Cajon are looking for a Hispanic man who rode off on a beach cruiser after stabbing another man in the abdomen at a Del Taco drive-thru.

Similar story in Edinburgh, Scotland, where police are looking for a pair of bike-riding men who assaulted and robbed a man walking along a bike path late at night.

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Local

The Archinect News site says LA’s new bike and pedestrian-friendly 6th Street Viaduct is about to change common perspectives on public urban space. Although you’ll have to earn the bike crossing with a steep climb to get there.

Streetsblog is looking for a part-time journalist and podcaster to cover the San Gabriel Valley beat.

 

State 

Armed only with a baseball bat, a San Diego man stole back the bike that was stolen from him the day he bought it. Although he was successful, you’re always better off getting the police involved if you can; taking back a stolen bike can be very dangerous.

A 61-year old San Diego man was seriously injured when he was run down by an alleged drunk driver on Mountain View Drive in the city’s Adams North neighborhood on Sunday; fortunately, his injuries are not considered life-threatening.

Berkeley bicyclists are backing a plan for protected bike lanes and pedestrian improvements on deadly Hopkins Street, while preserving most curbside parking in front of local businesses.

Sad news from Yuba County, where a 21-year old woman was arrested for the allegedly drunken rear-end crash that killed a 36-year old man riding a bicycle; she faces charges of DUI and 2nd degree murder, which suggests this isn’t her first DUI.

 

National

A writer for CleanTechnica offers advice on how to defend yourself from criminal attackers out to get your ebike. Even though she’s a firearms instructor who rides with a gun, she agrees with me that no bike is worth risking your life, or taking another.

Mountain Bike Action considers the pros and cons of buying an e-mountain bike.

Kindhearted Ohio cops gave a new bicycle to a man whose bike was destroyed by a hit-and-run driver; he escaped with a few minor scrapes, but the bike he used as his only form of transportation wasn’t so lucky.

 

International

Bike Biz considers the month’s hottest new bike products, including new urban cross ebikes and a new Cannondale Synapse roadie with an intelligent light and radar system.

The CEO of international insurance giant Lloyd’s of London is one of us. Although he might want to make sure he’s covered, after he was injured in a bike crash over the weekend.

Tragic story from Wales, where a factory worker was killed riding his bike home from work when he grabbed hold of a coworker’s car to talk as the other man drove alongside his bike, then was thrown from his bike after his handlebars hit the side of the car.

Drivers and motorcyclists are up in arms over a new 40 mph speed limit intended to save lives on a deadly Welsh pass, amid fears they’ll just go somewhere else where higher speeds are allowed. But bicyclists are entitled, right?

 

Competitive Cycling

Former Tour de France champ and Olympic cycling star Bradley Wiggins says the best way for Britain’s Ineos team to win the Tour is to buy the contract of two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar, and send him to the Giro, instead.

Belgium’s Alpecin-Fenix team blamed their failure at the one-day Gent-Wevelgem race on other teams not doing their part to chase down the lead group. Seriously, if your strategy relies on other teams to help you win, you’ve already lost.

 

Finally…

Build your own ebike with whatever scraps you happen to have lying around. You may never win an Olympic cycling medal, but now you can buy one.

And a rock god with a whole lotta love for riding a bike.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

A bike rider’s rant about bad drivers, rethinking traffic enforcement, and Bonin signs on to LA’s 25×25

Let’s start with an email I received earlier this week, which succinctly  captures what too many of us are feeling these days.

Here’s what Steven had to say.

Pardon my rant, but it’s just infuriating out there! While I agree with you that being seen is VITALLY important. Every “encounter” I have had with a car or truck has been with someone that definitely saw me or had no excuse for not seeing me! I am paranoidedly cautious doing my best to anticipate possible situations. I have lights, steady and blinking, I wear bright, colorful clothes, I ride the bike lane where I can and fully take the lane when there is no bike lane.  I have been ‘right hooked’ so many times I can’t count! So far the worst result of a right hook has been some minor scrapes to my bike and some minor ‘road rash’. (However, I did dent the passenger door of a car once!)  There have been a few that I have yelled at and they responded — the most common was “You were going faster than I thought” or just “Sorry” and one woman unbelievably said “Didn’t you see my turn indicator?” The only time I got sent to the hospital was when I was clipped by a side mirror and thanks be to God, released the same day with some major hematoma! The guy, to his credit, did stop. But he did say that “I thought I had enough room” AND THAT IS ON THE POLICE REPORT!!!! It’s getting to the point that I feel like I should start randomly swing a baseball bat and justify it by saying “Well, I didn’t hit anybody”

And just for completeness, I have been left hooked, brake checked, purposely cut off (both from the left and the right!), and have had things thrown at me. The urge to physically fight back is almost overwhelming!

I know that feeling all too well, when the urge to smash someone’s windshield — if not their face — becomes overwhelming.

It’s a natural, and perfectly understandable, reaction to having your life needlessly threatened.

But not exactly helpful.

I have a mantra I save for such situations, repeating over and over The world will not conform to my expectations, until the rage finally passes.

Because, too often, it won’t.

People will continue drive dangerously, despite my expectations that they should drive in a safe and responsible manner. Yet they will somehow blame me for almost getting killed. Or just for being on the road.

Or maybe the planet.

Meanwhile, bad street designs and poor maintenance can be aggravating at best, life threatening at worst. And too often the latter.

And I can’t do a damn thing about any of that.

All I can do is try to control my own reaction to it, and not let the jerks of the world ruin a good ride.

………

Cal Berkeley grad student Ethan Ebinger was honored by the university for his paper on rethinking traffic enforcement, offering a number of interesting proposals challenging current orthodoxy, including —

  • Decriminalize violations unrelated to traffic safety
  • Ban stops of non-vehicular road users
  • Rely on automated technologies
  • Improve data collection of crashes and stops, test for disparities
  • Balance downstream effects
  • Reframe traffic enforcement within Vision Zero
  • Move traffic enforcement operations to the transportation department

Whether or not you agree with him, it’s worth taking a few minutes to read the full paper to challenge your own beliefs, and maybe even start to see it in a whole new way.

https://twitter.com/BerkeleyITS/status/1481730718321446915

………

Two down, 13 to go.

Although you can probably add whoever gets elected in CD5, where all of the announced candidates have endorsed the LA 25×25 plan.

LA 25×25 is an “aspirational yet actionable vision” to return 25% of LA’s street space to human uses, rather than motor vehicles, by 2025, and endorsed by a wide range of advocacy and public service groups .

Not surprisingly, while many progressive challengers have signed on to support it, most of the sitting councilmembers up for re-election this year have failed to respond, as have most of the leading candidates for mayor.

CD3’s Bob Blumenfield is a no, as is current city attorney and mayoral candidate Michael Feuer.

………

Bike lanes are coming to Yosemite Drive in Eagle Rock.

https://twitter.com/walkeaglerock/status/1479694058087870468

………

It looks like the host of SiriusXM’s The Stephanie Miller Show is one of us.

………

That feeling when riding a bike is a bad idea because of all the other people out there who don’t.

………

Local

Leah Shahum, the founder and executive director of the Vision Zero Network, writes to the LA Times to say Los Angeles, and the entire nation, needs to move past the outdated “Five E’s” approach to Vision Zero, and have the political will to create an effective and equitable Vision Zero effort built on proactive strategies such as designing streets and managing speeds for safety. Let’s hope the mayor reads it while he’s packing for India. Or the new interim mayor, anyway. 

The good news is, Metro Bike is expanding their docked bikeshare system in North Hollywood. The bad, they’ll be shutting NoHo Metro Bike locations down during the upgrade work, starting Monday.

Santa Monica has unveiled new bollard-protected bike lanes on 23rd Street. And for a change, they’re the kind of substantial bollards that might actually keep someone out, as opposed to the flimsy, car-tickler plastic bendy posts usually used in LA.

 

State

This is the cost of traffic violence. The Fresno Bee remembers the much-loved, 61-year old retired high school English teacher who was killed by a truck driver while riding his recumbent Wednesday afternoon.

A San Francisco paper says the debate over the city’s Slow Streets and street closures have become a political minefield.

 

National

Denver demonstrates what a city can do with a little commitment, as they reach the halfway point in a five year, 125-mile bike lane building program, with 73% of city residents now within a quarter mile of a protected bike lane.

A writer for D Magazine applauds the new Vision Zero plan for Dallas, Texas, but questions whether it will actually save lives. Only if the city’s leaders have the political courage to make substantial changes to the streets, unlike the spineless wonders in charge of a certain Left Coast megalopolis we could name.

Northwest Arkansas is upping their offer to recruit tech workers to move to the area, providing recruits with a new bicycle and $10,000 in Bitcoin. Which will probably be $6,000 before you can get around to spending it.

What the hell is wrong with some people? A pair of Chicago gang members face murder charges for fatally shooting a mentally disabled man as he rode his bicycle last May, for no apparent reason; a third man was allegedly involved, but not charged.

 

International

Strava will now show points of interest within the app, including local landmarks, bike shops, cafes, start points and photo spots, as well as to get fresh water or a toilet break.

Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter discusses how to dress for winter ebike rides. You know, for people who live in places where that matters.

Good question. Cycling Weekly writes that 1,100 bicycles are stolen in the UK every day, so why isn’t bike theft a higher priority? I’d like to hear an answer to that one here, as well.

On a related note, a new bike sculpture was installed outside a London train station, made with parts from 45 different bicycles — the average number of bikes stolen in the country every hour.

A judge told a 76-year old Scottish driver to expect a “substantial” prison sentence next month, after he was convicted of killing a popular primary school teacher while attempting to pass two large vehicles at once, hitting the teacher’s bike head-on. Let’s just hope the judge meant what he said.

A news site names a 29-year old woman as the best mountain bike mechanic Lesotho, in case you find your self in need in the mountainous South African country.

 

Finally…

Now we’ll have to worry about getting buzzed by drivers from above, too. More evidence ‘cross is really hard.

And that feeling when your bicycle apparently goes out into the street of its own volition, and gets struck by a car that doesn’t seem to have a driver.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

LA deputies harass Latino bike riders, paranoid anti-bike Eagle Rock screed, and Cedillo keeps Temple Street deadly

Call it biking while brown in LA County.

The Los Angeles Times released a major investigative story Thursday on the harassment Latinos face riding a bicycle Los Angeles County.

Something we’ve been warning about for over a decade now.

Both Los Angeles police and LA County sheriff’s deputies have long used the simplest pretexts to stop and search bike riders of color, often handcuffing the riders or placing them in the back of a patrol car while rifling through their belongings for what amounts to minor traffic infractions or fix-it tickets, such as riding without lights after dark.

In fact, that was one of the primary reasons the LA city council canceled the city’s mandatory bike licensing program over a decade ago.

But while the problem continues for both Black and Brown riders in the City of Angels, it’s apparently much worse outside the city where the sheriff’s department has jurisdiction.

Especially for Latino men.

A Los Angeles Times investigation found deputies search 85% of bike riders they stop even though they often have no reason to suspect they’ll find something illegal. Most bicyclists were held in the backseat of patrol cars while deputies rummaged through their belongings or checked for arrest warrants.

The Times’ analysis of more than 44,000 bike stops logged by the Sheriff’s Department since 2017 found that 7 of every 10 stops involve Latino cyclists, and bike riders in poorer communities with large nonwhite populations are stopped and searched far more often than those in more affluent, whiter parts of the county.

For all the stops and searches, deputies rarely catch criminals. During searches, they find illegal items just 8% of the time, The Times’ analysis shows. Weapons were seized just 164 times — less than half a percent of all searches.

And the stops can go far beyond embarrassment or inconvenience.

Some cyclists shrugged off the encounters as an inconvenience that comes with living in high-crime neighborhoods. Others felt deeply harassed, targeted because they fit the vague description of a crime suspect deputies claimed to be searching for, usually because they were the same race.

Being stopped was even more disruptive for some riders interviewed. One white bicyclist in Norwalk said he lost his job because he was two hours late to work after he was held in the backseat of a patrol car while deputies searched his belongings and questioned him about who in the neighborhood was dealing drugs and carrying guns. A Latino rider in East L.A. said deputies took him to jail after they found a pipe in a bag of recyclables he planned to redeem for cash. A Black rider said a deputy confronted him at gunpoint and ordered him to stop while he was riding home from Lueders Park in Compton and doesn’t understand why.

Sometimes the confrontations can turn deadly, as it did for Black bicyclist Dijon Kizzee in South LA last year, when he was fatally shot by deputies in what began as a traffic stop for riding salmon, a common practice in the area.

Seriously, take a few minutes to read the entire thing.

We’ll wait.

Because everyone deserves the right to feel safe on the streets, whether the risk comes from drivers or sheriff’s deputies.

And we’ll never get people out of the cars if a large segment of the population has to worry about getting stopped by cops just for who they are, or where they ride.

Meanwhile, the paper offers a behind-the-scenes look at how they uncovered the facts and reported the story.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

In a truly bizarre City Watch screed, a self-described Eastside community activist purports to speak for the Eagle Rock Chamber of Commerce in accusing Metro, two current and former LA councilmembers, a county supervisor and the former mayor of Glendale of conspiring with bike advocates to destroy businesses on Colorado Blvd, in order to claim business owner’s real estate development rights.

No, really.

Someplace along the line it became clear that there is a small coalition of players who are ramming the ‘road diet’ version of the Colorado Blvd piece of the Glendale to Pasadena BRT route. Politically, it’s the combination of Jose Huizar (until he was busted), Hilda Solis from the County Board of Supervisors, and now the Councilmember for CD 14 (and Candidate for Mayor) Kevin De Leon. The Mayor of Glendale was also involved until he ceased to be Mayor.

To be direct, I don’t think any of them give a rats ass about the local businesses that are going to get wiped out during the construction process.  I guess they are more interested in the land use opportunities for developers than actual businesses which have been around for years, providing the backbone of Eagle Rock.

The ex Mayor of Glendale got what he wanted; he owns property in the construction area, and senses opportunity. I guess Hilda Solis got what she wanted. According to folks in the know she left Congress so she could come to LA County, become a Supervisor, and retire after she termed out. Nice pensions.  Her machinations at the Metro Board would be consistent with this analysis.

But wait, there’s more.

Two other groups also personally benefit by this plan. TERA,The Eagle Rock Association, has a leader who is a rabid bicycle advocate, and has choreographed the bike movement ‘take no hostages’ road diet vision to get rid of all those nasty cars that people use to get around in.   Then there is another ‘leader’ on the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council who personally gained an architectural contract with Metro concerning the BRT, and has also shut down any gainsayers.

You know, to get to work and and even buy things at the local businesses.

Personally, I find them loud, inflexible, and nasty.  Nasty like attacking anyone who does not agree with them. And I have to wonder exactly how many of the bicycle crowd actually live in Eagle Rock, as opposed to all of the residents and others who use their cars to shop with the local businesses.

He goes on to accuse supporters of bus rapid transit and a Complete Streets makeover on Colorado Blvd of bullying and threatening opponents.

And he says he has the receipts to prove it.

Or not.

More objective observers have reported the exact opposite, with advocates being shouted down in meetings and confronted outside, and both threatened and doxed on social media.

But as proof of the bad behavior on the part of bike and transit advocates, he points to a Google Drive where he has saved hundreds of tweets from those supposed bullies.

Admittedly, I haven’t had time to read all of them, which would literally take hours. But all the ones I’ve seen have been pretty damn innocuous.

Like this, under the heading of Alissa Walker Bullying.

Full disclosure, I know Alissa Walker, she’s one of the least threatening people I know.

Then there’s this, under the heading Bullying Boulevard Sentinel, a local Eastside newspaper that has often opposed bike lanes and Complete Streets.

It would seem to be extremely paranoid to consider any of that threatening or bullying in any way.

Granted, there may be something more egregious somewhere in that vast collection of archived tweets.

But I sure as hell haven’t seen it yet.

……..

It’s truly heartbreaking how hard some of our elected officials have worked to keep our streets dangerous.

In this case, CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo teamed with CD13’s Mitch O’Farrell to cancel a shovel-ready road diet on one of the city’s most dangerous corridors.

With predictable results.

………

They get it.

The SF Gate asks why Gov. Newsom vetoed a bill that would have allowed people on bicycles to treat stop signs as yields.

And why a practice most bike riders — and drivers, for that matter — do on a daily basis remains illegal.

This Bay Area rider sums it up pretty well.

“They’re getting in the way of making it legal to be safe,” said Alex Lantsberg, a San Francisco cyclist.

Lantsberg said stopping at stop signs is in fact more dangerous for cyclists, who become “sitting ducks” in the face of “a 4,000-pound death machine.”

“You don’t want to lose the momentum of moving through a stop sign. It’ll turn people off from cycling,” he said. “I also think it’s safer for cyclists to maintain momentum and get away from cars.”

“A flesh and blood human on a 20-pound rolling triangle is much more at risk than a person in a steel-encased La-Z-Boy,” he added.

………

It’s hard for me to ask others to give when I’m not in a position to do it myself.

But if you’ve got a few extra bucks lying around, donate some of it to L39ion of Los Angeles to help put more bikes in schools.

The crowdfunding campaign has been stuck around $12,000 for several days. And it’s hard to imagine a gift that could do more long-lasting good.

………

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

Police in Honolulu are looking for a bike-riding hit-and-run suspect who allegedly fled the scene after darting out in front of a motorcyclist, leaving the man lying injured in the street. Although a description of 100 to 200 pounds doesn’t exactly narrow the suspect list. 

………

Local

Another writer for City Watch asks if anyone at LA City Hall got the memo from  the COP26 climate conference. Probably not. And if they did, they’re not likely to actually do anything about it.

Happy birthday to LA’s Griffith Park, which turns 125 this year.

 

State

Bakersfield bike riders are about to get a shiny new seven-mile bike lane, the missing link in a continuous 30 mile trail from Lake Ming to Buena Vista Lake.

Berkeley is facing the usual fight over preserving parking spaces, or improving safety for everyone on the road by installing bike lanes.

A New Hampshire couple calls biking across the Golden Gate Bridge the highlight of their visit to San Francisco.

A Sausalito driver faces multiple DUI, drug and weapons charges after allegedly running down not one, but two people riding their bikes Halloween evening; a search of his car revealed fentanyl and an illegal weapon, as well as a wooden billy club.

 

National

Bicycling offers a look at how a man recovered his life after a painful mountain biking crash led to a dependence on painkillers. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Bicycling also warns against seven technologies and standards to avoid when buying a used bike. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available on Yahoo, so you’re SOL if you don’t subscribe to the magazine.

A writer for Reader’s Digest — which apparently still exists — swaps her car for an ebike for a week, and finds she doesn’t need it after all. Although the story comes off more as a long-form ad for the ebike she used than anything remotely objective.

Portland considers establishing e-cargo bike micro delivery hubs to help reduce truck and van traffic.

A Denver weekly talks with elite-level cyclist Andrew “Bernie” Bernstein, after the hit-and-run driver who nearly killed him was sentenced to just two years behind bars.

The Massachusetts man killed by a speeding driver on a cross-country ride with five other bicyclists foretold his death by noting Texas had the worst drivers they’d encountered so far; one of the two women injured in the crash was his fiancé.

Tragic news from New York, where a man started riding a bike to work over fears of using transit during the pandemic, only to lose his life at the hands of an unlicensed truck driver.

Philly residents describe just how dangerous it is to ride a bicycle in the City of Brotherly Love.

Tragic news from St. Petersburg, Florida, where authorities are trying to identify an elderly woman who suffered life-threatening injuries when she crashed her bike with an e-scooter rider; she arrived at the hospital without ID, and no identifying features. Yet another reminder to always carry identification with you when you ride. And preferably something that won’t get stolen if you’re incapacitated.

 

International

At last, a new indoor trainer that allows you to lean into turns.

Halloween is over, so it’s time for the holiday gift guides. Bike Rumor is off to an early start with their gift-giving guide for people on two wheels. Meanwhile, Pink Bike recommends 21 new bike tools for the coming year.

The Department of DIY strikes in the UK, as a local councilor fumes when “ignorant” vandals repainted their own bike lane, after their first attempt had been removed. So instead of removing it again, maybe they should just make it permanent.

A Dublin man and his backpack-riding Westie won’t be riding anytime soon, after thieves stole his racing bike, then took the ebike he borrowed the next day.

Canadian Cycling Magazine goes riding at rush hour in newly bike-friendly Paris, and calls it a dream.

Bike riders in Cyprus could soon be required to wear a bike helmet if a draft bill in the legislature passes. Similar measures elsewhere have been found to be counterproductive, while depressing ridership. 

Wellington, New Zealand is considering a plan to cut crosstown traffic by dividing the city into cells, which would allow drivers to get in and out, but not move freely from one to another.

A university lecturer in New Zealand says it’s parking that kills businesses, not bikes or buses.

 

Competitive Cycling

Florida ultracyclist Amanda Coker didn’t just set a new 24-hour record by breaking the 500-mile barrier, she also set 10 other Guinness World Records in the attempt.

Meanwhile, British pro Alex Dowsett came up short on his effort to reclaim the hour record, saying the biggest failure would have been to never try.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can own your very own vowel-free, no-frills e-cruiser bike for about a grand. If you can’t trust your bike-riding neighborhood drug dealer, who can you trust?

And how drunk do you have to be to ride a bike home from a night out, only to discover the next morning it wasn’t yours.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Hit-and-run driver severely injures e-scooter rider, support Eagle Rock One Lane plan, and Nobel laureate on a bike

The LAPD is looking for a hit-and-run driver who left-crossed a man on an e-scooter in Huntington Park, then fled the scene dragging the dangling rear bumper of her car behind her.

As always, there is a $25,000 standing reward in the City of Los Angeles for any hit-and-run resulting in serious injury.

But be warned before you click on the video.

It clearly shows the crash from multiple angles, and could be very hard to watch.

And you can’t unsee it if you do.

Handcuff photo by Kindel Media from Pexels. Let’s help fit this driver for a pair. 

………

Eagle Rock Forward needs your help to make one last push to get Metro to adopt the livable, Complete Streets option for bus rapid transit on Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock.

Metro’s “One Lane” option is an evolution of the Beautiful Boulevard plan. It is the ONLY option that:

  • Provides a green street by preserving & enhance existing landscaped medians
  • Supports local businesses by maintaining on-street parking & space for Al Fresco dining
  • Protects school kids by providing additional & safer crosswalks
  • Makes a safer street by reducing speeding on Colorado Boulevard
  • Reduces cut-through driving on residential streets by maintaining space on Colorado for pick-up & drop-off zones
  • Upgrades existing bike lanes to be family-friendly protected bike lanes
  • Provides transit service for Eagle Rock that is attractive and dependable to support existing bus riders and attract new transit riders

………

If I found out a Nobel laureate read this site, I’d probably promote the hell out of it, too.

………

GCN considers how it’s possible for every new bike to be the lightest, stiffest, fastest or most aero.

Or not.

………

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

No bias here. A proposal before the Massachusetts legislature would “improve” bike safety by fining bike riders as much as motorists for traffic violations, even though bicycles pose a fraction of the risk to others.

No bias here, either. DC’s conservative newspaper suggests the bike lobby is running the city, and forcing anti-car tactics on the unsuspecting driving public by reducing speed limits and improving safety on high risk corridors. And insists some crashes are caused by medical emergencies rather than reckless drivers, and sometimes bike riders might even be at fault. But unlike drivers, reckless bike riders hardly ever kill anyone.

A road-raging farmer in the UK was convicted of attacking a bike rider who followed him home to confront him after a punishment pass, because the man on the bike was riding in the roadway instead of on a separated bike path next to it; he was fined the equivalent of a whopping $146I know as well as anyone how tempting it is to follow a driver who threatens your safety. But seriously, don’t. Just let it go and get on with your life.

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

London bike riders are caught on dashcam video “recklessly” jumping a red light, even though there wasn’t any cross street, and after waiting for pedestrians to cross.

………

Local

LA Times columnist George Skelton’s windshield bias is showing, as he says Gov. Newsom was right to veto bills that would have legalized jaywalking and stop as yield, calling them nutty bills that would allow people to harass drivers. Nothing like demonstrating you don’t understand the problem before criticizing the solution.

 

State

Santa Maria unveiled a new $900,000 road diet project with protected bike lanes, complete with curbs and car tickler plastic bendie posts.

Bike theft continues to be a major problem at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where students have lost faith in relying on the police for help.

Tragic news from Santa Rosa, where a 47-year old man faces a slim chance of survival after he was hit head-on by an allegedly stoned driver while riding his bicycle outside town; he was already considered disabled from a previous collision 25 year earlier.

Campus police at Chico State University caught a bike thief in action and busted him as he tried to ride away, then returned the purloined bicycle to its owner. Meanwhile, a “super bike cop officer” with the Chico Police Department is on a mission to recover stolen bikes.

 

National

Great idea. An Albuquerque microbrewery is collecting bike parts for a local community bike shop by offering a discount for each part you bring in — or a free draft for a complete bike.

Several bike companies in New Mexico have joined forces to create a one-of-a-kind bicycle that will be raffled off to benefit an organization that supports transgender rights.

A Colorado bike rider describes a driver making an unsafe pass on the wrong side of the road, nearly hitting him head-on, and well within the state’s three-foot passing distance. And tells the driver to never do that again, because “We don’t need more Ghost Bikes…”

The current owner of a San Antonio, Texas bike shop once owned by a fallen bicyclist struggles to accept the slap on the wrist given the drunk driver who killed him. Cases like this send a clear message that driving drunk and killing another human being is really no big deal. And the lives of people on bicycles don’t matter.

A Dallas writer tries out an Italian robotic bike fit machine, and concludes that a real human can do a much better job.

The New York Daily News takes the outgoing mayor to task for the carnage on the streets and the failure of the city’s Vision Zero, as traffic deaths have risen to the highest level since the program was adopted in 2014.

Frank Ocean is one of us, proudly riding his Van Moof ebike through the streets of New York.

A alleged Pittsburgh bike thief died after police tased him at least five times because he kept getting up to plead that he didn’t do anything. There’s no excuse for stealing a bike. But it shouldn’t call for the death penalty.

A kindhearted Florida cop gave a 13-year old boy his first bicycle, after learning the kid had to walk miles every day to get to and from school. And his mother walked twice as far after walking each way with him, and returning home on her own.

 

International

Cycling News explains the different types of bikes, and offers advice on how to pick the right one for you.

An English man was the victim of a violent bike theft when a group of young thieves attacked him with a metal pipe as he rode along a towpath, stealing his $4,800 Trek mountain bike and leaving him with multiple injuries to his arm, wrist and back.

You’ve got to be kidding. A court in the UK absolved a driver with a long history of speeding tickets of her latest speeding charge, after accepting her claim that she had no choice but to speed to pass a nearly invisible bike rider, whose helmet was the only thing she could see. Because evidently, slowing down until it was safe to pass just wasn’t an option. Never mind waiting until you can actually see who you’re trying to pass. 

A 60-year old British man pled guilty to killing two men riding their bikes when he plowed into them on a straight road with a 60 mph speed limit; the victims owned a company that put on sportives and charity rides.

A writer in Brussels takes advantage of the pandemic to overcome his fears and start riding a bike after 20 years in the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

Prosecutors call for a slap in the wrist for the woman who allegedly caused a mass crash by holding up a sign in the first stage of the Tour de France, asking the court for just a four month suspended sentence.

Podium Cafe looks back to when legendary chanteuse Josephine Baker “sprinkled her stardust” on the pre-war Tour de France. Baker also acted as an Allied spy during the Nazi occupation of France.

Thirty-year old Katie Keough unexpectedly called it a career after more than a dozen years as a pro ‘cross cyclist, most recently competing as a guest rider for LA-based L39ION of Los Angeles.

The first-ever edition of L39ION of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams’ new Into the Lion’s Den cycling race, scheduled for Sacramento at the end of this month, will feature a new format with teams competing for their home cities.

 

Finally…

Nothing like helping a stranger fix his handlebars, only to realize it’s your own stolen bike. How to make your own DIY airless bike tires.

And that feeling when you get in over your head — almost literally — and lose your bike in the process.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

$50,000 reward in Venice hit-and-run death, man killed on 4,000 mile charity ride, and Eagle Rock wants one lane

Imagine someone you love traveling across the country to follow her faith and feed the hungry.

Now imagine getting a call from an LAPD detective telling you she’s been murdered by a hit-and-run driver.

Although they probably didn’t use that word.

Then imagine that the police won’t return your calls. And you have no idea what’s going on with a case that seems to be going nowhere, and doesn’t seem to be a priority.

You’ve just put yourself in the shoes of the entire family of fallen bike rider Prynsess Di’Amond Brazzle.

Don’t feel bad if you don’t recognize her name. I only recently learned it myself, confirmed by her relatives.

Brazzle was the woman who was killed by a heartless hit-and-run driver as she rode her bicycle around a Venice intersection this past August.

She’s one of 18 victims of hit-and-run drivers in Southern California this year. And yet another Black bike rider or pedestrian sacrificed on the mean streets of Los Angeles, where people of color die from traffic violence at a rate far disproportionate to their share of the population.

Never mind that Pacific Avenue, the street where she was killed, is on LA’s High Injury Network as one of the deadliest streets in the city. And was scheduled for bike lanes in the city’s long-forgotten mobility plan and 2010 bike plan.

Which could mean Los Angeles bears at least some legal responsibility for knowing about the dangers of the street, and failing to fix it.

Prynsess Brazzle had traveled from her family’s Pennsylvania home to Georgia, then west to Los Angeles, believing she had been called by God to feed the homeless.

Only to have her life taken by someone who didn’t have the basic human decency to stop their damn car after slamming another human being early in the morning of August 20th.

Unfortunately, since then, the trail appears to have gone cold.

The only information police have released is a blurry security cam video of a black, large-sized SUV, possibly a Chevrolet Suburban.

That’s despite a $50,000 reward from the City of Los Angeles for information “leading to the offender’s identification, apprehension, and conviction or resolution through a civil compromise.”

So let’s be honest.

Someone out there knows something. Maybe you’ve seen an SUV with a mangled front end. Or heard someone talk about an early morning crash in Venice, or acting strange the next day.

Maybe you’ve got video or other information the police missed.

And maybe you could use a cool 50 grand. Or just want justice for a young mother taken far too soon.

And yes, you can still get the money if you contact the police anonymously.

Meanwhile, a crowdfunding campaign to bring justice for Prynsess Brazzle has raised just $139 of the modest $5,000 goal.

We could easily top that today if everyone who reads this digs in to give what they can. And forwards this piece to anyone else who might be interested in helping.

And keeping their eyes open to bring her killer to justice.

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Sometimes I could just cry.

A Wisconsin man was killed while on a 4,000-mile ride to raise awareness of hunger on the Navajo reservation, and raise fund for a mountain biking scholarship.

Twenty-seven-year old Tyler Droeger was nearly 3,000 miles into the ride, when a driver drifted off the roadway and ran him down from behind as he rode on the shoulder of a Utah highway, knocking him into a ravine.

Chances are, he literally never knew what hit him.

It’s heartbreaking to think someone could be trying to do good for others, and still end up a needless victim of traffic violence.

Droeger wrote that, when he began his journey, he “wasn’t even aware of the inequality we have here in our homeland.” And he offered this advice:

“Be good to the strangers you meet. No matter their situation. it could just as easily have been you in those shoes.”

Needless to say, no charges have been filed.

Droeger’s crowdfunding campaign has continued to raise money despite, or maybe because, of his death.

When I first saw the news on Friday, he had raised a little more than double the $4,000 goal.  It’s now over $11,000.

If you have any extra money lying around after donating to Prynsess Brazzle, I can’t think of a better place to put it.

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Let’s hope CD14 Councilmember Kevin de León is paying attention.

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Great ebike ad from Specialized.

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The Department of DIY strikes again, even if it’s no match for drivers’ love of parking in bike lanes.

https://twitter.com/EntitledCycling/status/1444081188918870020

Maybe they should have just used a more seasonal barrier, like the people below.

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It’s hard to get past the Wall Street Journal’s draconian paywall.

So you’ll have to settle for this, courtesy of Orange County bike lawyer David Huntsman.

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A British kid can’t use the bike lane during Back to School Week, because it’s full of cars lined up to get gas during the country’s crippling fuel shortage.

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Maybe one day, we’ll finally get to the point where we don’t need ghost bikes anymore.

I only hope we all live long enough to see it.

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

An older Brooklyn man was knocked off his bicycle when he was sucker-punched by a young man, in what appears to be part of a series of similar attacks on elderly people.

A British driver decides if an easily-passed bike rider is going use the roadway, then he’ll drive on the separated bike lane.

Pettiness abounds from IdiotsInCars

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

Police are looking for a man on a purple bicycle who groped a woman on a University of Hawaii campus.

A valet at a Nashville hotel was shot by a bike-riding burglar; fortunately, he was not seriously injured.

Scotland Yard is looking for a bike-riding man wanted for a series of East London sexual assaults, exposing himself and masturbating in public.

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Local

Disappointing to see the weekly newsletter from CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin discuss what his office is doing to promote transit and safer streets, without a single mention of bike lanes. Let alone bicycles.

The Easy Reader says ebikes are revolutionizing transportation in the South Bay’s beach cities.

 

State

A rare genetic brain disease robbed a marathoner of her ability to run, but she will still take part in a 220-mile Santa Barbara-to-San Diego ride on her recumbent to raise funds for the Challenged Athletes Foundation’s Million Dollar Challenge fundraising ride.

A triathlete in San Luis Obispo County recalls the red light-running driver that left her with “two shattered collarbones, two broken ribs and horrific memories of the impact,” then fled the scene, leaving her bleeding in the street.

A Fresno bike rider was critically injured after allegedly running a red light; police also blamed him for riding outside the crosswalk, as if bicycles aren’t allowed in the street. Someone should tell the Fresno Bee that the victim didn’t collide with a vehicle, he was struck by a car, which had a driver.

The San Francisco Examiner looks at California’s most significant bicyclist safety initiatives. They may not be the best source, however, since they cite LA’s dusty, nearly forgotten Vision Zero and mobility plans.

Lafayette considers safety improvements for pedestrians and bicyclists after a school crossing guard was killed in a collision last month, but not before heroically pushing school kids in a crosswalk out of the way, sacrificing himself to save them. Thanks to Robert Leone for the link.

 

National

Popular Mechanics recommends the best cheap bikes for beginners. The real surprise isn’t the price of the bikes. It’s that Popular Mechanics is still around.

Las Vegas Raiders fans turn out on their custom, low rider bicycles to show their love for the team.

Good news from Kansas, where searchers found a 13-year old girl who had gone missing on a bike ride.

Shades of the Infamous Beachfront Bee Incident. A Nebraska man crashed his bicycle after a bee got in his bike helmet and began stinging him. Except in my case, they didn’t sting me. And I got hurt a lot worse.

Even in Oklahoma, speeding drivers get the blame for a jump in traffic fatalities.

Chicago finally gets around to installing a road diet and bike lanes on the deadly street where School of Rock drummer Kevin Clark was killed riding his bike, 13 years after another bike-riding man was killed at the same site. This is how Vision Zero is supposed to work, just not so slow.

A Columbus, Ohio newspaper recommends riding the area’s scenic bike paths.

After a man was killed in Mississippi on a cross-country fundraising bike ride from Dover, New Hampshire to San Diego three years ago, his mother is planning to finish the ride, picking up where he was killed; his ride raised over 12 times his original $10,000 goal to help children with cancer.

The New York Times examines the rising carnage on the city’s streets, despite outgoing Mayor De Blasio’s promise to reduce traffic deaths under Vision Zero.

A trio of kindhearted Florida deputies got a new bike for a man after the bike he used for his transportation was stolen.

Kindhearted Fort Lauderdale firefighters replaced a young boy’s bicycle after it was burned in a house fire.

 

International

A Welsh website says life has gotten crazy at local bike shops during the pandemic.

Sponsors are bailing from the UK’s Black Cyclists Network after allegations of bullying and harassment by the organization’s founder.

Even British drivers support a 10 mph speed limit and speed cams to improve traffic problems.

No bias here. As Paris shifts its transportation focus from cars to walking, biking and transit, all the New York Times can see is the “anarchy” of scofflaw bicyclists. Thanks to Andrew Goldstein for the heads-up.

There’s a special place in hell for a retired French police officer who confessed to being a serial killer and rapist in his suicide note; victims included a pair of 11-year old girls, with one victimized after being pulled off her bicycle.

An Indian paper asks if bicycling is safe for women in Chennai, concluding women on long rides face the lack of accessible and clean public toilets and the threat of harassment and discrimination as well as a lack of bike lanes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Italian pro Sonny Colbrelli was the surprise winner of Sunday’s Paris-Robaix on the rain-soaked cobbles; Colbrelli didn’t even expect to finish, let alone win.

Cycling Weekly offers talking points from the race.

Britain’s Lizzie Deignan overcame bloodied hands to win the inaugural women’s Paris-Robaix race, aka Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

Cycling Tips offers a photo essay revealing the “grit and glory” of the women’s Hell of the North, while Cycling News offers their conclusions from the first ever women’s Paris-Roubaix, 125 years after the first men’s race.

Bicycling talks with Ayesha McGowan about her successful fight to become the first Black woman in professional cycling, and her goals to make the sport more inclusive for everyone. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

Buy a kid a bike, get free tickets to Tom Brady’s homecoming game. A little skitching will get you a big fine.

And your next bike could be a two-wheel drive, hydraulic-driven, gas-powered bicycle.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

The cost of traffic violence, Metro unveils October bike calendar, and Colorado Blvd public meeting this weekend

This is the cost of traffic violence.

A 26-year old digital media staffer for the Los Angeles Clippers was killed when he pulled his car onto the shoulder of a highway Monday night, and was rear ended by another driver who drifted off the roadway.

But let’s be honest.

Any transportation system that accepts even a single death as a cost of simply getting from here to there is an abject failure.

Let alone over 38,000 deaths each year.

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

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Metro announced their calendar of classes and bike rides for October.

Only the Leimert Park Fix-A-Flat class and a pre-Halloween DTLA Taco Ride are in person, while the rest are online.

Classes

Rides

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The Beautiful Boulevard Coalition wants your help creating a safer, more livable and yes, more beautiful Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock.

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This is what a street looks like when it’s designed to serve everyone, not just the people in cars.

https://twitter.com/Derailluer/status/1443696873659789328

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Yes please. And start in my neighborhood.

https://twitter.com/grescoe/status/1443638526482989062

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GCN considers whether Colnago’s new blockchain technology will spell the end of bike theft.

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

A 25-year old Brazilian woman was knocked off her bike when a driver pulled up next to her so his passenger could reach out to grope her ass; fortunately, she wasn’t injured. Police stopped the driver, who is expected to face charges along with his groping friend. Schmucks.

A Queensland, Australia driver is behind bars for deliberately swerving into two bike riders in separate incidents, with one rider suffering “significant injuries.” Although he appears to be an equal opportunity offender, smashing his car into two other vehicles, as well.

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Local

Evidently, Long Beach wants you to stay in your lane. The city is installing bike lane markers on a portion of the city’s boardwalk. Correction: Once again, I’ve mistaken news from Long Beach, New York for Long Beach, California. We should make one of these change their name. Thanks to Steve White for the catch. 

 

State

San Mateo proposes building bike lanes and a bike boulevard that will necessitate the removal of 214 parking spaces, but promises to make up for it with additional parking nearby. Maybe Los Angeles could learn from their example.

 

National

Streetsblog looks at a pair of toxic car ads “that use the shiny gloss of white feminism to sell cars as a form of women’s empowerment.”

A writer for Outside defies convention and rides his bike shirtless. And the world doesn’t come to an end.

An Entrepreneur op-ed offers business lessons gained from eleven years and 38,000 miles on a bicycle. Although that works out to a relatively paltry 66 miles a week.

A Las Vegas woman did everything right by coming to a full stop at a stop sign before riding into an intersection. And was killed by a speeding driver who blew the stop.

Police in Missoula, Montana used their patrol car to shield a couple of young bike-riding kids from a driver fleeing from police while high on meth; the driver bailed out about 15 feet short of the children and attempted to flee on foot.

Sad news from Iowa, where human remains were found in a farm field matching the description of a young boy who disappeared four months ago, after going out for a bike ride just days before his 11th birthday. Although there’s no word yet on what may have happened to him.

The University of Cincinnati is calling for the removal of a popup protected bike lane near campus. But they swear they really do support bike lanes, just somewhere else.

 

International

A British Columbia court rejected a lawsuit from a consortium of Vancouver restaurant owners demanding the removal of a bike lane through a city park, evidently preferring the money of people who arrive on four wheels to those who do on two.

A pair of candidates for mayor of Montreal debate bike safety after a bike rider was killed by a hit-and-run truck driver, near the site of another bicycling death four years earlier.

Drivers in the UK will soon be required to use the Dutch Reach to open their cars doors, although the overwhelming majority of drivers apparently have no idea the law is about to change.

There may be hope in the battle against bike thieves. A new ceramic, graphene reinforced bike lock from Britain’s Hiplock stood up to a sustained attack with an axle grinder for over 20 minutes, defeating four grinder disks in the process. But it will cost you $270 on Kickstarter, before it goes up to $345.

A confederation of European ebike makers are working together to keep their customers from hacking their bikes to get more speed.

An Indian woman and her lovers face murder charges for hacking her husband to death, and tossing his bicycle into a canal.

Seriously? A Singapore panel charged with reviewing the rules for on-road bicycling has recommended the equivalent of a four and a half foot passing law — but also recommends a limit of five bikes in any group ride, and required to ride single file.

The Australian cycling community is mourning coaching legend Heiko Salzwedel, who died in his native Germany following a brief illness.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch cycling star Mathieu van der Poel likes his chances in Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix, predicting attacks will begin early.

In a big step forward for women’s cycling, twenty-two teams and 132 riders will line up for the first ever women’s Paris-Roubaix, complete with over 18 miles of cobbles.

Former pro Gracie Elvin explains why the inaugural Paris-Roubaix Femmes carries such symbolic weight after 125 years as a men’s-only event.

Congratulations to the new women’s hour record holder, with a distance of 30.077 miles.

https://twitter.com/GcnRacing/status/1443629636051689472

Finally…

Get your very own Key West branded spandex bike kit. No, distracted bike riding doesn’t work, either.

And while she’s happy there’s a new Metro Bike location in our Hollywood neighborhood, she does find the corgo carrier is just a tad cramped.

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Thanks again to Matthew R for his generous monthly donation to help keep this site coming your way every day; donations of any size and frequency are always welcome and appreciated.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

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