This year saw dubious and outlandish marketing claims, brilliant bits of trickle-down engineering, and trends that will change the face of the bike industry forever. What was the best tech of 2017? What about the worst? Caley Fretz, James Huang, and Dave Rome hand out the first annual CyclingTips Tech Awards (working title — help us come up with a better one in the comments).
As the holidays swirl around us and the calendar ticks over, it's time to sit back, relax, and enjoy the first annual CyclingTips Podcast Awards.
Caley Fretz, Neal Rogers, Shane Stokes, and Anne-Marije Rook look back at a season that had a bit of everything — incredible victories, deplorable acts, above-average intrigue — and award the best and worst of the 2017 pro cycling season.
Everesting noun. An endurance test in which a cyclist rides up and down a climb until he or she reaches the elevation gain of Mount Everest.
What if someone Everested on Mount Everest? CyclingTips own Andy Van Bergen gave it a shot, and he's on the podcast to chat about preparation, altitude sickness, and the emotion that builds behind any massive endeavour.
Lance Armstrong has been invited to the Tour of Flanders. What does he get out of it? What does Flanders get? What do we get?
USA Cycling is borrowing from the British cycling model with its new National Team. Neal brings us a report on the changes.
There isn't much left to say about Chris Froome's salbutamol situation. We decided to give the topic five minutes. Neal starts a timer and Caley provides a brief update.
James loves a good e-bike, and he thinks the e-bike discussion is focused on the wrong bikes.
Chris Froome has tested positive. A sample from the Vuelta a Espana was found to contain double the legal limit of the asthma drug Salbutamol. What does this mean for Froome? What exactly is Salbutamol? What does it do? Caley Fretz and Shane Stokes dig into the breaking news.
In this episode, your hosts chat with Peter Flax about his recent feature on American racing mainstay Bill Elliston, then call up Enve and Mavic to ask them about safety concerns with carbon clincher wheels. Finally, after eight positive tests at the Vuelta a Colombia, can we trust the best performances of Colombian cycling? Klaus Bellon, a writer born in Bogota and now living in the U.S., gives us a reason to believe.
What happens when a pro doesn't like his or her bike? Well, sometimes they switch teams. For time trialists in particular, following the fastest equipment is a well-honed path to success. News Editor Shane Stokes caught up with Ryan Mullen to chat about the time he thinks he'll gain with a move to Trek-Segafredo, and Neal Rogers and James Huang dig into a rift between 'cross star Wout Van Aert and his team's bike sponsor.
Ever tried bunny hopping a patriarchy? Ellen Noble does it, pretty much every weekend. Ella editor Anne-Marije Rook brings us a story about empowerment through airtime.
And yes, we were wrong about Chris Froome going to the Giro. But now that we know he's going, what does it mean? Caley Fretz thinks he may not win any more Tours de France as a result.
The Giro d'Italia is going to Israel, and Chris Froome might be going to the Giro. Can we separate sport and politics in the most politically charged city on earth? Will Froome risk missing out on his fifth Tour de France and aim for the maglia rosa?
Caley Fretz, Neal Rogers, and James Huang open this week's episode with a look at the news and controversy swirling around the Giro d'Italia. Then, James goes public with his bold attempt to make a rim brake bike stop as well as a disc brake bike and Ella editor Anne-Marije Rook chats with America's first cannabis sponsored cyclist.
This episode of the CyclingTips Podcast is brought to you by Stages Cycling.
The controversy dates back to 2011, when a mysterious medical package was flown from Manchester to the French Alps near the end of the Criterium du Dauphine. Last week, UK Anti-Doping dropped its investigation into Bradley Wiggins and the jiffy bag, and then Wiggins released a statement extolling his exoneration.
But is he, really? We chat with the reporter who broke key details of the Wiggins story, Matt Lawton, and then look into Wiggins' changing public statements on doping and dopers with CyclingTips News Editor Shane Stokes.
Then, a look at the health — or lack thereof — of elite athletes. A recent SHecret Pro column dug into the topic, and Ella editor Anne-Marije Rook went looking for answers. Are elite athletes actually healthy?
Welcome to new CyclingTips Podcast, a revamped weekly show with hosts Caley Fretz, Neal Rogers, James Huang, and CyclingTips editors from around the globe. Every week, we'll bring you big, beautiful, emotional stories, insider tech knowledge and tips, unique interviews, and much more.
This week, Caley, Neal, and James dig into the spat between Phil Gaimon and Fabian Cancellara, which could be headed for a court room. We found a lawyer of our own to find out whether Gaimon is truly in hot water over a passage in his book that says Cancellara "probably did have a motor."
Then, we hear from Neal and Mathieu van der Poel. One of them is writing a big feature, the other is an unbelievable, once-in-a-generation talent.
Finally, James does the math on 1x drivetrains following the news that pro team Aqua Blue will ride without front derailleurs at the highest level of pro racing next year.
For the documentary Icarus, lifelong cyclist Bryan Fogel set out to experience the effects of performance-enhancing drugs, and to see just how easy it might be to beat anti-doping tests. With the help of Russian scientist Grigory Rodchenkov, Fogel used EPO, testosterone, and Human Growth Hormone as he trained for the 2015 Haute Route. Along the way, however, he inadvertently became entrenched in Rodchenkov’s clandestine world of helping Russian athletes dope for the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games. For this podcast, Editor Neal Rogers spoke with Fogel about the original mission for the project, focusing on everything that ended up on the cutting-room floor after his documentary took an unexpected, and unimaginable, turn.
In our "retirement" miniseries, we talked to several cyclists about their retirement, and what their lives are now. You’ll hear that while some have moved away from cycling and onto to non-cycling related jobs, others are finding retirement quite difficult.
In this episode, we talked to cycling couple Will and Shoshauna Routely. At the end of 2016, they both retired at the same time --albeit not entirely by choice -- and they've started a new business together. Away from the cycling industry, the Routely are now brewing Kambucha in Canada.
It has never been a more challenging time to run an independent brick-and-mortar bicycle shop, what with decreasing profit margins, a more knowledgeable and demanding clientele, and the impossible situation of trying to compete head-to-head with gargantuan online retailers who not only have everything in stock, but also sell it cheaper. The road ahead is undoubtedly rocky, but there is a path forward — which is a good thing, since every cyclist will need the help of a good bike shop sooner or later.
Adam Hansen is the Energizer of the pro cycling world. With more than 380 days of racing over the 19 past grand tours, he just can't seem to be stopped. CyclingTips roving report David Everette talks with Adam about his persistence and his remarkable energy and efficiency: in addition to being a pro cyclist, Adam makes time for software development, a cycling shoe company, and more.
The active career of a professional cyclist is a relatively short one. While there certainly are some exceptions, most pros retire in their early thirties.
As an athlete, their whole life revolves around the next training session, the next race, the next goal and the next season. Their lives are filled with travel and their social circles tend to consists of other cyclists with the same lifestyle.
And so, being a professional cyclist is so much more than a job. For most, it’s an identity and a way of life. Losing that when retirement comes, can be a very difficult thing and each athlete copes with it differently.
In this miniseries, we talked to four cyclists about their retirement, and what their lives are now. You’ll hear that while some have moved away from cycling and onto to non-cycling related jobs, others are finding retirement quite difficult.
In this first instalment, we chatted with American Phil Gaimon (who last rode for Cannondale) and his self-proclaimed “worst retirement ever.”
Come back later for chats with Swedish rider Emma Johannson and cycling couple Will and Shoshauna Routley.
On the road, pedal-assist eBikes make a certain amount of sense for certain applications. But what about on singletrack, where skill level often develops in tandem with fitness — and where access is ongoing challenge for mountain bikers? For this podcast, editor Neal Rogers spoke with a wide variety of stakeholders, including eMTB manufacturers, mountain-bike racers, and representatives from the International Mountain Bike Association, who find themselves in the middle, torn between widening their base and disenfranchising those who have fought for trail access since the advent of the sport.
In this episode of the CyclingTips podcast, roving reporter David Everett asks the hard questions. Specifically, he asks pros what it's like to ride in the Tour de France grupetto. With stories from Andres Greipel, Sky DS Servais Knaven, Quick Step Floors DS Brian Holm and more, and finds out -- among other things -- that if you want to avoid losing a body part, you'd better do as the Bus Driver says.
The Tour de France is plenty difficult and dangerous even considering the things racers can control. Safer bikes and courses help with danger; better training and equipment helps with chances of success.
But that still leaves a lot of factors that are out of racers' control. How do riders in the Tour de France deal with those things? Sometimes with luck, ritual, and superstition.
In this episode of the CyclingTips Podcast, News Editor Shane Stokes talks with Cadel Evans, Greg Lemond, Taylor Phinney, Sean Kelly, and many more former and current racers about how they work to control the uncontrollable in the Tour de France.
25% of the racers in this year's Tour de France are racing it for the first time. For many of these racers, it's a dream come true...until suddenly it's not. For this episode of the podcast, the editors of CyclingTips caught up with several TdF debutants before the race to learn about their hopes and expectations, and then again during the race to find out what the reality is like. The results span from incredible—white and polka-dot jerseys—to heartbreaking: serious and painful accidents. This is a can't-miss episode of the CyclingTips podcast including pre- and during-race interviews with Taylor Phinney, Paddy Bevin, Stefan Kung, as well as pre-race interviews with Damien Howsen and Jay McCarthy.
CyclingTips' Matt de Neef and Shane Stokes are on the ground in Dusseldorf, Germany with an insider's look at what you can expect from this year's course, the favorites for all the important battles, and predictions for the critical first week stages. Featuring clips from Peter Sagan, Cadel Evans, Matt White, and Dan Martin, this is the deep-dive TdF pre-race episode you should not miss.
For years Specialized has been beating the drum of women’s specific bikes, but when it comes to the 2018 line of bikes, Specialized is diverting from that approach. The 2018 Tarmacs and Diverges feature a unisex frame with gender-specific touch points. Ella Editor Anne-Marije Rook sat down with Specialized’s road product manager, Stephanie Kaplan, to talk about what led to Specialized’s 180-degree turn on gender-specific geometries.
Road bikes are often evaluated on a linear scale: if a light bike is good, a lighter one is better; likewise for aerodynamics, stiffness, and rolling resistance. But while the effects of weight, aerodynamic efficiency, and rolling resistance are easy to measure and simple to correlate to real-world riding, the influence of frame stiffness isn’t as clear. Is stiffer better? Maybe — but maybe not.
Mobile bike repair vans are gaining a lot of traction among busy cyclists who don't want to load half a dozen bikes and cart them to the bike shop, wait two weeks, and then come back to pick them up. And companies like VeloFix and Beeline Bikes cater to cyclists who might feel intimidated by the traditional bike shop "insiders-only" vibe. But with this Amazon.com-ification of services, what happens to the culture of cycling, often centered around well-known, deeply-stocked stores like Vecchios and The Bicycle Trip? Editor-in-Chief Neal Rogers talks with all these people to see how mobile shops and brick-and-mortar shops compete...and how they can work together.
The cycling world is full of marketing hyperbole, and when it comes to power meters, there's no more important claim than accuracy. Almost without fail, every power meter currently available supposedly produces data that is within +/-2% of the actual value. But is that actually the case? According to US technical editor James Huang and a three-person panel of experts who discuss the topic on this week's CyclingTips podcast, not everything may be what it seems.
For most cyclists, riding their bike is more than a hobby. It’s a way of life. The bike can represent many things to many people — endorphins, fitness, identity, freedom, fresh air, therapy, a social network. What happens when, for one reason or another, this is removed from their lives, indefinitely? We spoke with three hardcore cyclists — Levi Leipheimer, Georgia Gould, and Kenny Jones — who are all currently adapting to life off the bike.
Following her mother’s motto of ‘be tough but still be a lady’, pro cyclist Breanne Nalder won’t leave the house until she’s properly put together, even if she’s going out for a training ride. So much so that she has permanent eyeliner tattoed on her. Her teammate Jen Luebcke meanwhile matches her earrings to her kit, Mandy Heintz likes to have her nails done for special races while Clare Rose goes au natural, letting her legs do all the talking. As a female pro athlete, does it matter what you look like?
Ella Editor Anne-Marije Rook talked to five riders from the Visit Dallas DNA Pro Cycling team about the importance and pressures of appearance in women’s cycling.
There are good reasons why carbon fiber has emerged as the king of structural material. It's supremely light, can be incredibly stiff and strong, and it can also be formed into wild shapes that simple aren't possible with metals. But it's also a multi-layered material, and only the outer surface is visible. What's underneath there? And should we care? US technical editor James Huang peels back the proverbial onion with HIA Velo senior composites engineer Chris Meertens and Australian carbon fiber repair and inspection guru Raoul Luescher to see what's really inside.