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Cycling And Coffee: A Stimulating Study

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I love cycling, me. And I love coffee.

Coffee and cycling go together like monkeys and tennis rackets (“monkey tennis!”). Like Ginger Biscuits and Fred Astaire. Like Bert and Ernie. Like salt and caramel (or so they’ll have us believe).

As a committed coffee drinker and a somewhat less committed cyclist, at least right now (based on my Strava records) I thought I’d look into the mighty bean and the drink it produces, with a cycling bent.

And then write a post about it. Please to enjoy. [click to read more…]

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The Climbs of Velo Birmingham

Perhaps surprisingly, until recently there were just three closed road sportives in the UK: one in England (RideLondon) and one each in Scotland (Etape Caledonia) and Wales (Velothon Wales).

The RideLondon event is probably the best known and this race report will give you an idea of what it is like to cycle with thousands of other cyclists on closed roads.

Later this year, Velo Birmingham will become the fourth closed road sportive and having sold out within 4 days, it looks like there will be 15,000 happy cyclists on Sept 24.

Note from Monty: This is a guest post written by Mark from bikes.org.uk, a UK-based blog for cyclists of all disciplines.
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So you’ve decided to take the next step towards cyclo-service self sufficiency.

You need to take your cassette off the bike, either to clean it or to replace it. It is one of your core principles that you don’t knowingly elect to shred your fingers whilst undertaking bike maintenance.

You therefore need a chain whip and a lockring tool.

And in this post we’re going to find out what they are, who sells them and which is the best (or rather, which will do the job with the minimum fuss). [click to read more…]

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French Summer Cycling Routes – Our Top Picks

French summer cycling

When it comes to staying active and exploring a new area up-close and at your own pace, there are few options that are better than cycling holidays. If you love cycling then exploring new locations on two wheels should definitely be on your holiday wish-list. [click to read more…]

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For most of the last two centuries, the best place to buy a bike (whether that’s road bike or a vélocipède) has not been online. Once production moved out of the LB (local blacksmith), sales activity moved to the LBS (local bike shop).

In more recent years, LBS sales have come under threat from bike chains and from direct sales on the internet. But as we stand here in 2017 (or sit), where is the best place to buy a new bike (and do we have much choice anymore…?).

Your intrepid reporter, Le Mont of the Daily Velo, attempts to make sense of it all. (And fails. The End.) [click to read more…]

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The Ultimate Guide To Pedals For Sportive Cyclists 2017

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Well that’s a bold statement to start things off with – to suggest that I’ve identified the best road bike pedals out there.

(“Oi cock! This Grimper fella reckons ‘e’s got the ‘ultimate’ guide t’ pedals“, “Nah, tha’s collops mate.”)

Fair point. This post is unlikely to represent the last word written on the subject. But some of you people seem to like it when I write about things. So today I’m writing about pedals.

Anyway, it’s ‘ultimate’ as in Ultimate Warrior, who did not appear to be the ultimate wrestler, never mind warrior.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you introduce a post about pedals.

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Shimano Dura-Ace vs Ultegra: Clash Of The Groupset Titans

Judging by the popularity of my other posts comparing different rungs on the Shimano road gears product ladder, I thought it high time that I looked at the tippity top of the company’s groupset range, Shimano Dura-Ace, and how it compares to Ultegra.

So, behold, here are my considered musings (alright, ill-considered musings). [click to read more…]

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Guide To Cycling Leg Warmers (And A Review Of My GripGrabs)

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I’ve had something of a revelation. And it involves skin tight black stockings. Or ‘leg warmers’ as they seem to be called in cyclo-world.

The updating of my guide to cycling tights (never a more exciting post written) coincided with this year’s Black Friday sales.

Whilst perusing the Wiggle site, I saw that these leg warmers from GripGrab were available in the sale. So I plunged. And I also bought a pair of leg warmers.

Here are my (somewhat revelatory) thoughts.

Selected Products Mentioned In This Post

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My wife has a habit of buying me ‘experiences’ for Christmas and birthdays. I have a habit of not getting around to going on them.

I’m not sure mi amor has entirely forgiven me for not going to a driving track day that she bought me very early in our courtship. More recently I only got round to attending a sailing taster session (birthday present) a few hours before the voucher expired (i.e. my next birthday).

This ungrateful behaviour doesn’t seem to stop her.

And to be fair, she’d be forgiven for thinking that a voucher entitling me to a series of track sessions at the recently-built Derby velodrome, would be a Christmas gift I’d (i) be delighted to receive; and (ii) be motivated to book myself onto the session.

She was right about (i). Delighted.

The issue was (ii).

Time slips away. Derby City Council do not make it easy to find and book yourself onto a session. I finally got round to organising my first session in November.

And here is how I got on (spoiler alert: it was brilliant). [click to read more…]

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Last Minute Christmas Gifts For Cyclists

Eek!

’Twas the (fort)night before Christmas, and all through your head, no present ideas were stirring, not even a shed*.

I know. You’ve got every confidence in Amazon Prime, and its army of self-flying drones (this is a REAL thing people), to provide next day delivery right up til Christmas Eve.

But you really want to get your Christmas shopping sorted and this is the weekend you’re going to do it.

Mais what to buy? (Or to suggest that others buy you?)

Fear not. Monty has suggestions. He has a pret-a-manger Christmas list, which he (I) will share with you now.

So, on (your bike) Comet! On, Cupid! On, Donner and Blitzen!

Read on below and see what your mitzen.

(Ahem)

(*We literally just bought (and I built) a shed for our son’s 8th birthday… the photo is at the bottom of the post…)

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