Fit a new derailleur or some fancy cranks and the dollars spent probably won’t make a startling difference to your ride. Suspension however is one of the things that can make a night and day improvement. With this thought in mind, let’s take a look at the latest gear that’ll be hitting the market for 2014.
So, you fancy a European cycling vacation. You’ve heard that Tuscany and the Dolomites in Italy are stunning, the French Alps challenging, the Rheine and Mosel Rivers in Germany gorgeous, the Loire and Burgundy Regions in France beautiful. Well, in all of these impressions you would be right. But what about Spain? Roger Cull journeys to set the record straight about cycling in Europe’s fifth largest, but one of its lesser visited and probably lesser understood cycling destinations.
Any punter of the peloton serious about the power of the pedal has sacrificed personal glory and comfort for the greater good at some point in time. There are very few amongst true lovers of lycra who have not crunched the cranks for cancer research or sat down with the bunch to seriously consider riding mono-cycles across the Simpson Desert to raise money for some young tacker with Tourette’s from Tumbarumba who plays the harmonica and wants nothing more than to enter the ‘effing’ busker’s competition at the Tamworth Country Music Festival.
With much attention paid to what we should be eating for recovery or in preparation for a big ride, daily meals such as breakfast and lunch can fall by the wayside. While preparation and recovery meals are a crucial component of any cyclist’s nutrition program, if you train in the afternoon or are committed to more than an hour of intense training each day, ensuring that your three to five key meals are nutritionally balanced gives the foundation to a strong nutrition platform.
We all know riders who relish it when the road begins to tilt skyward. They may not necessarily be built like whippets, and in some cases they may not even be that great at climbing, but they seem to enjoy it nonetheless. Wouldn’t that be nice – to surge forward with anticipation when a brutal climb lurks around the next bend instead of clinging desperately to the bars and praying that it won’t last forever?
They have been the stalwarts of the domestic cycling scene in Australia for the best part of the past 10 years, and more recently become very real contenders on the more competitive UCI Asia Tour. But Drapac Professional Cycling are setting lofty goals, with an invite to the upcoming Tour Down Under all but confirmed and ambitions to ride the Tour de France in 2016.
The JetBlack 24 Hour mountain bike endurance race was held at the iconic Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan last weekend. More than 500 racers were at the start of the 100th race hosted by organisers Rocky Trail Entertainment. Brett Bellchambers from Canberra took out the Solo Elite victory ahead of local Jonathan Battle from Campbelltown and Ben Jacka from Newcastle.
For the last few years, the sport of cycling has been thrown countless curve balls and had a thousand and one spanners thrown into its works. It has had its core foundations rocked by myriad of scandals – some justified and some not - but regardless of all that, I feel more and more that the future of cycling is looking promising.
Nowadays, if you’re an A-grade club rider you may have your work cut out to even figure in the finish, let alone win it. Unless of course you’re part of one of the growing number of sponsored racing teams gracing the criterium and road-racing circuits of Australia each weekend.
From ardent fan, to once bitten, twice shy sceptic – and now hardened cynic, unwilling to believe anything. Is this what aficionados of professional cycling have been reduced to? Rather than cast a pall of suspicion over everyone, Anthony Tan offers a unique solution: create your own amnesty.