Category: Bikes

Bike Hero #3 continued

Heroes are people who inspire and make your jaw drop.

Mark Cavendish does that. He continues to win stages of major races  the hard way (see the report below)

Mark Cavendish outclasses field to win stage 13 of the Giro d’Italia

One can only admire his grit and determination to get to that finish line first. He still has time to raise his hand to show how many stage wins he has chalked up on this race so far.

How tight is that?

You get some right tight-fisted people out there. Here is an example of how mean spirited people can be.

I have started to have a bit of a clear out. Not in the biological sense I may hasten to add, but a bit of a Spring clean of the shed and attic. Hence I have set up the following advert on e-bay:


Wheelset no longer needed after upgrade on a town/hybrid bike.


They still run ok and have not got many miles on the clock, but have the wear and tear from the potholes and bumps on today’s roads.


Good enough to have been kept as spares they are going out after a Spring clean the shed. They are too good to be binned, but too bulky to be kept as spares, as I am becoming a fair weather cyclist and now also have another bike.




Rims: ETRTO 622×20 6061-T6 700c


Cassette: Shimano MF-TZ31 14-34T SUPER-LOW MegaRange


Hubs: Standard issue GIANT with Quick Release Skewers


Please note that these are collection only.


Now the bidding has been set to start at 1 pence and there is a big banner showing the charity logo for Red Nose Day saying that 100% of the proceeds of the sale go to the Red Nose Day appeal, yet one person out of the 11 people that have viewed these wheels so far has put it on their Watch list!

Whaaaaat? There is some tightwad out there somewhere who is waiting to jump in last minute and get a penny bargain? Listen up whoever you may be. They are a cheap pair of wheels and a good deal if you can get them for a few of quid, even if you just salvage them for spares. However that is not the point. Get into the spirit of the auction will you please!

Bike Hero #3 revisited Mark Cavendish

What with the fantastic results that the British Olympic track cyclists achieved and Bradley Wiggins winning le Tour along with further Gold in the Olympic time trial, Mark Cavendish has faded away from the public gaze of late. To me he is still a “Bike Hero” nevertheless.

The stage win in the video came after huge effort from his team to drag him to a point where he could strike. This final sprint of his is truly heroic. Notice the guys at the front that Cavendish catches with about 50 metres to go just watch him go past, as they know that they have no answers to his raw pace.

The commentators clearly enjoyed watching the race reach its climax – “…and here comes the Missile!” shouts Phil Liggett.

The video might need watching a second time when one can focus on where Cavendish comes from.

The Papershopcruiser



I got the Old Papershopcruiser out of the shed the other day and also found an unpublished video which is also posted. Seems ages ago that I made it.

Just Click the Link!

Next goal wins laaaaaaads!

After hours of tinkering, trawling the internet for parts that fit that wretched Raleigh frame and consulting Sheldon Brown, the ultimate bike mechanic’s guru, the bike is now built.

Check it….


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Bike heroes #4

Mario Cipollini

This lad was best described as a “Dandy” – one of his many nicknames was The Lion King, which helped paint the picture of this very self confident athlete with his mane of curly hair and wrap around shades. He oozed sauve style, posessed a real sense of arrogance and was a natural team leader.

Cipollini was a sprinter, a man who loved to be greeted by his adoring fans on the winner’s podium at the end of the race whilst looking like he had not even been down the paper shop and back on his bike. He was that good that he would turn up at the Tour de France win a few flat stages in the first week or so, and then give up and abandon the race when things got serious in the mountain stages. He would jump off his bike at the first sight of the Pyrenees or Alps and be down on the beach in Rimini quicker than you could say “lazy, arrogant, spineless superstar”

All in all he was a great athlete and a bit of a bully if truth be told. Still he made the Italian cycling fans proud in 2002 in a brutal finish to the World Championships…….

Bike Hero #3

Mark Cavendish

is my bike hero #3.

I have never seen anything like the way in which he finished up the Champs Elysees to win the final stage of the Tour de France in 2010.

I was lucky enough to be in France when I saw this finish in Paris and to do so all I had to do was walk in out of the garden of the holiday home we were renting and flick on the TV and it was there on TF1, the French equivalent of BBC1.

Now back in his homeland you could only see this amazing finish to the world’s biggest bike race if you had satellite television.  In France he would be treated like a God, a true hero, as cycling is in the French psyche and is part of the national culture. Whereas he could walk into any public place in the UK and be pretty sure that nobody would recognise him. Even if he wore a t-shirt printed with the phrase “I am Mark Cavendish” he is hardly going to get mobbed.

In cycling terms this man is a one off, so much so that he dictates the way the event organisers plan the route and finishes of stages in the Tour de France. The Tour de France is the World’s greatest cycling competition has been forced to consider how to set out the course that the race takes, as if the race stage is a flat one with a straight finish, there is only going to be one winner.

You only have to watch the final 200m of this race and you can see that this man is head and shoulders above his peers, who themselves are at the pinnacle of their sport.

Further Reading