Peter Sagan

The pro:files #4. Peter Sagan

When Peter Sagan burst onto the pro-cycling scene back in 2009 he was the next big thing. I was unconvinced. Apart from anything, he was born in the 1990’s. “Are you trying to tell me it’s got to the point where people born in the 1990’s are in charge…” I thought to myself, sounding worryingly…

Ugly
(Image: pixabay.com)

Cycling gets ugly

November. It comes every year, I shouldn’t be surprised. I wheel the winter bike out from hibernation and spruce it up as best I can. New bar tape is essential. Maybe a new chain, or at the very least the deepest of deep cleans. Whatever it takes to turn it into a bike I want…

Kenny Ellisonde

The pro:files #3. Kenny Ellisonde

For the last couple of decades, we cycling fans have witnessed a steady stream of ‘next big things’ in French cycling. This is largely because, as a nation, they haven’t won the Tour de France since the 1980’s, and they’re getting desperate. It’s only in recent years, however, that some of the ‘next big things’…

Bull

A cock and bull (and bike) story

Back in the 1980’s kids like me had to make our own fun, and when you have to make your own fun things…erm…happen. I kicked footballs through plate glass windows, fell from shed roofs, pedaled my BMX bike off the end of ever larger ramps and even, just once, climbed into a wooden barrel and…

Zdenek Stybar

The pro:files #2. Zdenek Stybar

By all accounts Czech cyclist Zdenek Stybar is a bit of a tough guy. He’s a rider whose name somehow suits his riding style – tough, uncompromising, and eastern European. It’s difficult to imagine a guy called Zdenek Stybar finding a role in life as a nurse, or a primary school teacher, for example. That’s…

(Image: ragtimecyclist.com)

Cyclist and herb murderer

I like cyclists. I don’t have much choice, considering I spend much of my spare time hanging around with them. And if I didn’t like them, this website would be a pretty bleak place. Having said this, I can understand why some people are less keen. I’m not talking about those shouty, unreasonable types, who…

Taylor Phinney

The pro:files #1. Taylor Phinney

Taylor Phinney was genetically programmed to be a pro cyclist. I first became aware of his family tree during a bike ride with a friend who was wearing a rather natty Rapha jersey: “the Davis Phinney” I was told. Which turns out to be Taylor’s dad. If Rapha are branding jerseys with your dad’s name,…

Cyclist

I don’t need a hobby, I’m a cyclist

I’m not sure what it is about the change from summer to autumn. Maybe it’s the lack of daylight, or a change in the air pressure. Or it could be the psychological effect of knowing that nature is about to curl up and bed down for a few months, leaving only we humans to continue…

Qatar Cycling

From Qatar heroes to Yorkshire 2019

Dutch pro-cyclist Tom Dumoulin called it “bleak”, all the other cyclists called it “hot”, and UK cycling fans are already describing it as “not as good as Yorkshire 2019 is gonna be…” I’m talking about the Road Cycling World Championships; usually held in countries where the sport of cycling is likely to draw a crowd,…

Team Sky

Poking the Team Sky Bear

In the world of corporate-speak there is a phrase: “I think it might be time for us to poke the bear.” In other words, that thing over there that we’ve avoided disturbing – we’ve reached the point where we’re gonna have to disturb it and see what happens. I, like most normal people, understand that…

cambridge

Higher, further, faster

Challenge, escapism, freedom – those of us who are hopelessly lost to cycling all have our reasons. I occasionally add up all the hours I spend in the saddle and wonder what I might do with that time instead. I guess that’s why people watch box sets. I have no plans to give up riding,…

Pizza, alpine style
(Image: www.ragtimecyclist.com)

Knock spots off dominos

Through my twenties I had pizza classified as the ultimate convenience food. Not only does it make an excellent meal, it works beautifully as a snack food too. Between meals. It’s worth noting that in my twenties my body resembled a resplendent steam train. Designed to rattle along majestically at a hundred miles an hour,…