King of the Mountain

Thomas Voeckler’s stage-winning ride in the Pyrennes this year is the stuff of legends. The Frenchman crested each major climb at the head of the field, and when he crossed the finish line for the stage win, he reclaimed the King of the Mountains jersey.

This Limited Edition Thomas Voeckler polka dot C59 Team Edition frames will allow you to relive the moment. Only 135 will be made!

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Fun Facts about The Tour de France

With the Tour de France over with the win by Bradley Wiggins, it’s time for some (perhaps this is a little too late) cool fun facts about the Tour that most people probably didn’t know about!

A rider will burn nearly 124,000 calories over the course of the tour. Excluding the ceremonial prologue, that works out to be roughly 6,526 calories per day of energy expended. If riders ate fast food, they’d need to suck down 12 Big Macs per day.

An average rider will wear out three chains over the course of the event. Lance Armstrong in his prime wore out one chain per week.

The largest winning margin was 28 minutes and 27 seconds, racked up by Fausto Coppi over Stan Ockers in 1952. Funny, but no one accused Coppi of doping.

Lance Armstrong averaged 25.026 miles per hour over the entire race in 1999, claiming the fastest average speed in a Tour de France.

The derailleur wasn’t used in the Tour de France until 1937. Prior to the introduction of lever actuated gear changes, riders had to stop and rotate their rear wheel to modify gear ratios. One side of the rear wheel had a “climbing” gear, while the other had a “downhill” gear.

Greg Lemond was the first American to win a Tour de France, and racked up victories in 1986, 1989 and 1990. Lemond was accidentally shot by his brother-in-law while turkey hunting two months before the 1987 race.

Despite Tour legends about riders pushing until their hearts exploded, only one rider (Tom Simpson in 1967) has died on an ascent. Simpson’s death was later attributed to heat stroke, but amphetamines were found in his blood, leading to the Tour’s first doping scandal. Two riders (Francisco Cepeda in 1935 and Fabio Casartelli in 1995) have died in crashes while descending mountain stages.

Although bicycle frames and components have gotten light enough to build road bikes below 10 pounds, the Tour mandates a minimum weight of 14.998 pounds for bicycles used in stages other than time trials. This baseline ensures that all riders are competing on similar equipment.

More than almost any other sporting event, the Tour is steeped in tradition. The main pack, called the peloton, stops en masse when a group consensus determines it’s time for a bio break, so no riders are receive an advantage for holding it in. Regardless of how much you may hate your team leader, if he’s wearing the yellow jersey, it’s your job to protect his lead. Even faster riders dare not attack a teammate in yellow, as it would be the end of your professional cycling career.

Source: Ridelust

Bike Adventures!

Today I have a feature of a friend of mine who recently went for a special project in Siem Reap, Cambodia, under the Welfare Services Club of Nanyang Technological University.

The aim of the camp is to bring the hearing-impaired overseas to let them have this experience of overcoming challenging activities. (Great job guys!)

Anyway they incorporated cycling as part of the itinerary as they felt that that the difficult terrain and distance would be a challenging enough but achievable activity.

As you can see, there is a stark difference in the cycling terrain here as compared to when I cycled in Siem Reap (you can read about that other post here) so I bet it was a real challenging ride!

I hear that there were some mishaps with people falling off their bikes due to potholes and overall bumpiness but everyone completed the ride at the end; had fun; and enjoyed themselves thoroughly.

What a heartwarming biking experience =)

Thanks Wilfred for sharing your bike adventure!

The Unbreakable Cycling Record

This guy here, my friends, is Tommy Godwin. He has set what has been deemed an unbreakable record by cycling 122,415km (76,065 miles) in a single year. That’s equivalent to cycling round the world three times in a single year! This is known as the Year Record but today it has unfortunately fallen out of fashion and is not as coveted as it used to be.

In fact, being the ‘hard as nails’ man as his daughter described him to be, after securing the Year Record, Godwin went on to set the record for the fastest ever 100,000 miles cycled.

And all this was done on a heavy steel bike with only 4 gears!

Godwin had to actually learn how to walk again and uncurl his hands when he completed the challenge. Weeks later he was serving in the British Air Force.

It was also reported that “sometimes he survived on four hours’ sleep and there were probably days when he didn’t even bother and just carried on and kipped in a field for an hour. He pushed it [the record] beyond the limit of any mere mortal.”

Anyone looking to set a new record?

Source: BBC