I know I keep on harping on about how good it is to ride in the Adelaide hills, and there’s good reason for that – it’s bloody brilliant, and bloody accessible.
Last Saturday morning I was keen to give the new gravel bike – a GT Grade Carbon – a decent workout in the hills, so aimed for a few roads and tracks up behind Norton and Marble Hill, specifically I was aiming for a fire track that I found a few years back but wasn’t brave enough to explore with a bike I was trialling – an ASTIR titanium bike.
I found the track, which was everything I expected and some. I haven’t ever had a need to jump off a bike going downhill, but this time I did – the track, which in this location is part of the Heyson Trail, was graded dirt, extremely steep and not exactly smooth or packed, and dropping the bike at an uncontrollable speed on the dirt was definitely on the cards if I attempted to ride it to the bottom.
This track took me down to Corkscrew Road.
I was toying around with the idea of looping back home, but was curious about a road (Batchelor Road ) in Castanbull off Gorge Road that led up into the hills behind Kangaroo Creek Dam, so decided to investigate. The gravel climb up Batchelor Road is remarkably steep, but the road is well made and maintained as it is the main entrance for the contractors working on the Kangaroo Creek Dam upgrade. Dodging cement mixers and semi trailers on my short steep climb, the road continues on up past the dam entrance and takes you up over the ridge line up towards Lenswood. The tracks are effectively fire tracks, relatively well looked after, but rugged and in parts very steep.
The track is a very well known ad established Mountain Bike region, predominantly accessible from Lenswood – Croft Road.
There were more than a few times I had to jump off the bike on some of the steep loose climbs, and by the time i got home, what was going to be a few hour ride turned into a gruelling 4 hour ride, with over 1,800 m climbing in 68 km, but was a fantastic days ride and one I will look to get back to.
Adelaide cyclists are incredibly spoilt, and perhaps autumn is the most striking example of this. But the joy and creativity of cycling can be interrupted by niggling odd-bits of pain. Without an understanding of what is happening it is easy to retire for a period of rest thinking that the painful part needs time. But in most cases rest is not required, and an intelligent strength program plus a few simple adjustments can keep you pedalling pain free, out in the crunch of autumn leaves.
We treat a lot of cyclists and the most common complaint is knee pain. A quick goggle will incriminate all sorts of structures, but a more detailed literature review will illuminate the poor quality of diagnostic tests and point to the benefits of a simple exclusionary diagnosis. That is, rule out the bad things and receive a green light to move. Although it is tempting to label your pain with a ‘this’ or ‘that’, the reality is shades of grey, and many common bicycling complains are probably best described in terms of non-specific cycling related pain.
If your cleats are forcing you to ride in a position of ‘heel in’ or ‘heel out’ that does not match your lower limb alignment then the increase in load could plausibly lead to a cascade events ending in pain. Likewise, if your seat is significantly too low or too high then this may be related to your pain. We can generally resolve fit-related problems quickly in an initial appointment – if you are interested in this then please let us know before your session.
For most people, a gym-based strength program will improve or resolve cycling-related knee pain. The high load of lifting triggers positive adaptations in muscle and tendon and can help settle a sensitive pain system. Many people are cautious of heavy strength training, but once you get started the fear generally resolves quickly and the benefits can become addictive. Have a read over our first article in this series or be in touch for more information.
No matter how it feels, pain is one hundred percent of the time produced by your capable and protective nervous system. Your pain system learns over time, and generally becomes more sensitive the longer you have had pain. Developing an understanding of the basic workings of your pain system will help you to better direct treatment decisions and has been shown to reduce pain as a stand alone treatment. Science has been interested in this for a few decades now but the clinical world is only really cottoning on, so if this seems new then you are quite normal. To find out more visit Tame the Beast, Body in Mind, Noi group, Pain Revolution or give us a call.
Although knee pain can be disruptive it is generally safe. Stopping cycling is probably not the best solution. Instead, address any obvious contributing factors, learn about your pain and get strong. If you would like direction in this process then please give us a call.
Dave Moen, 0403786778
FORM Physiotherapy | 177 Gilles St, Adelaide SA 5000.
Deepest condolences to the family, friends and team mates of the young Belgian professional Michael Goolaerts, who died late on Sunday night suffering a cardiac arrest riding his first Paris-Roubaix race.
The Verandas Willems-Crelan confirmed the news, saying: “It is with great unimaginable sadness that we have to communicate the passing of our rider and friend Michael Goolaerts. He passed away Sunday evening at 22:40 in Lille hospital in the presence of his family members and loves ones, who we keep in our thoughts. He died of cardiac arrest, all medical assistance was to no avail.”
Goolaerts was born in July 1994 in Lier, a town in East Flanders 20 kilometres south-east of Antwerp. He won medals at junior level in the Belgian national championships, including gold in the team sprint in 2012.
On the road he was a regional time trial champion, and in the summer of 2012 placed on the podium at the Sint-Martinusprijs Kontich followed by eighth place at the junior Tour of Flanders.
Studying accountancy and trying to become a professional cyclist was difficult, and something finally gave when he was awarded a stagiaire position at the Verandas Willems team in 2013 which turned that into a full-time contract for 2014. He dropped his study.
He earned a placement with the Lotto Soudal’s development team, but it didn’t materialise into a contract, however he did turn professional in 2017 when he returned back to the Verandas Willems as they entered their first season as a Professional Continental team.
Goolaerts was regularly to be found in breakaways t some of the biggest races, and at the Tour of Flanders, his first Monument, he made it into the early break and spent more than 200 kilometres at the front of the race.
“200 kilometres on the attack in Flanders’ most beautiful race,” he wrote on social media. “Goose bumps all day! A day I won’t forget in a hurry.
Goolaerts kicked off his 2018 campaign with three top-10 stage finishes.
He didn’t finish the Tour of Flanders, and a week later he took to the start line of his first Paris-Roubaix, the morning seemingly rife with possibility. So it was for his life and career but, tragically, we will never know what Michael Goolaerts would go on to do, achieve, or be.
The weeks leading up to the race has the organisers repairing segments of road where the cobbles were getting too smooth.
And in the days leading up to the Paris-Roubaix, the riders were left to ponder what lay in wait for them as they recon’d the route and experienced rain, mud, puddles and potholes – it wasn’t looking too flash.
Fortunately Sunday turned out to be dry, the roads dried up quickly and little evidence of the horrendous cobbles they rode the days before.
I wasn’t expecting to get excite by the Commonwealth games, and generally that has been true, but the track cycling was brilliant tv. Some stunning individual and team performances from the Australian team, with some world records broken on the super fast Anna Meares Superdrome.
Katrin Garfoot – gold medal in the women’s individual time trial
Cameron Meyer – gold medal in the men’s individual time trial
Steele Von Hoff*
Ashlee Ankudinoff – gold medal in the team pursuit
Amy Cure – gold medal in the team pursuit
Annette Edmondson – bronze in the women’s individual pursuit, gold medal in the team pursuit
Alexandra Manly* – gold medal in the team pursuit
Rebecca Wiasak* – silver in the women’s individual pursuit,
Leigh Howard* – – gold medal in the 4000m team pursuit + world record 3 minutes 49.804 seconds, shaving nearly half a second off the record
Kelland O’Brien* – gold medal in the 4000m team pursuit + world record 3 minutes 49.804 seconds, shaving nearly half a second off the record
Alexander Porter* – gold medal in the 4000m team pursuit + world record 3 minutes 49.804 seconds, shaving nearly half a second off the record
Samuel Welsford* – – gold medal in the 4000m team pursuit + world record 3 minutes 49.804 seconds, shaving nearly half a second off the record
Kaarle McCulloch – gold medal in the women’s time trial, bronze medal in the women’s sprint, gold in the team sprint final
Stephanie Morton – bronze medal in the women’s time trial, gold medal in the women’s sprint, gold in the team sprint final
Patrick Constable* – bronze in the men’s team sprint.
Matthew Glaetzer – gold in the men’s scratch race (the first sub 3:50 ride in history), bronze in the team sprint, gold in the Keirin , bronze in the men’s team sprint.
Nathan Hart – bronze in the men’s team sprint.
Jacob Schmid* – bronze in the men’s sprint , bronze in the men’s team sprint.
PARA TRACK (TANDEMS,
Jessica Gallagher* / Madison Janssen* – Pilot. Gold medal and world record in the Tandem women’s sprint flying 200m.
Bradley Henderson* / Thomas Clarke – Pilot – Bronze in the B&VI 1000m time trial
The notification that specific e-bike imports into Australia must pay a 5 percent surcharge took the nation’s bicycle industry by surprise. And no wonder. The official notification, issued Feb. 14, was buried at the bottom of the last page of a 14-page government document — underneath new tariff considerations for tools used in the slaughter of goats.
The tariff will mean a price increase on e-bikes made in Taiwan, Europe and India. Countries with existing free-trade agreements with Australia — China, Cambodia, Indonesia and the U.S. — would be exempt from the additional tax.
An unknown company has also filed a request to slap the 5 percent tariff on regular bicycle imports, including frames and framesets, but it has yet to take effect.
Bont Cycling launches new road shoe with innovative closure design
Bont Cycling’s new Helix road shoe has a new cable closure system that wraps around the shoe, through the carbon chassis and back around the other side of the upper. The system uses a single BOA dial for closure and adjustment.
“The system, in combination with an overlapping upper, allows for more adjustment and volume control. The continuous wiring spreads the load for a secure hold without localized pressure points,” the company said.
“The cable integration system has allowed us to keep the weight low, while adding even more to the concept of custom fit. Working with BOA and taking the wire completely around the shoe, we are able to ultimately fine-tune the fit and control the volume adjustment.”
The Helix also features Bont’s unidirectional monocoque carbon sole, a TPU ventilated toe protector, and a lightweight Durolite upper and tongue. The upper is designed to be anti-stretch so the fit does not change over time.
Stelvio comes to Adelaide
I saw the ad on the back of the latest SA Life saying the new Alfa Stelvio was now available and ready for a test drive, so up i popped to the local Alfa dealership to see if they would allow little ol’ me to take it for a drive. Alas no, the marketing people had jumped the gun and the Stelvio wasn’t due for another 3 weeks.
But that was 3 weeks ago, so I popped around last Saturday and took the Stelvio for a test drive – up the old Mt Barker Road, around devils elbow, up past the Eagle on the Hill, left up towards Mt Lofty Summit Road, with a little detour up Blackburn Drive, which is a steep prick of a road that was in last years dirty dozen (#adamisajerk), across to Greenhill road and back down to the showroom.
The drive had Mrs Wednesday in the back, with unfortunately, but understandable, one of the salesman sitting in the front seat. But Long was good. He was the new salesman in charge wigth Gordon over in Melbourne at the GP because of Alfas return after 30 years to Formula 1 as the new engine supplier for the Sauber team.
Mrs Wednesday decided to come along at the last minute, which was a little concern because whenever we have driven on the hills previously I’m told to slow down, and the Alfa test drive wasn’t going to be an occasion to slow down.
The Stelvio is a sports car masquerading as an SUV, thankfully, because the thought of a sports marquee succumbing to the financial temptations of the rampant SUV segment was a little disturbing.
“The first SUV by Alfa Romeo draws inspiration from the legendary Stelvio Pass. A road with over 75 hairpin bends that is widely seen as the greatest driving road in the world”
We drove the new petrol Stelvio first edition, a 2.0 litre turbocharged petrol engine delivering 148kW/330Nm. The Stelvio is an all-wheel drive car with an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Some stuff off the interwebby thing:
8-Speaker Sound System
Blind Spot Monitoring
Dual Zone Climate Control
Rear Back-Up Camera with Dynamic Gridlines
Lane Departure Warning
Front Seats with Electrical Adjustment
35W Bi-Xenon Headlamps
AlfaTM DNA Drive Mode System
Autonomous Emergency Braking
Front & Rear Parking Sensors
Hill Descent Control
Leather Upholstered Seats
Leather Steering Wheel
Rear View Mirror Autodimming
Tyre Pressure Monitoring System
7-Inch Colour Instrument Cluster
In addition to the above, the First edition includes:
Exclusive 19” First Edition wheels
14 Speaker 900W Harman Kardon Premium Audio System
Privacy Glass – Rear Side and Rear Windows
Sport Steering Wheel
Front and Rear Frequency Selective Damping Suspension by KONI®
Aluminium Sports Pedals
Gloss Black Side Window Surround
Ambient Interior Lighting
Sports Leather front seats with heating function
Heated Steering Wheel
Aluminium Interior Trim
Red Brake Calipers
Gloss Black Painted Roof Bar
OK, by now, after 4 years or so of writing this blog, you’ve probably realised I’m no Jeremy Clarkson, so I’m just going to say the following.
Coming over from an 8 year old Subaru Forester, which has a 4 speed automatic, driving the 8 speed auto Stelvio was always, always going to be a massive step up. Now, don’t get me wrong, the Forester is a very good workhorse, it’s been very reliable and has served the Wednesdays very well. It’s gotten me to 3 Peaks twice, through the fabulous Flinders Ranges and around the streets of Adelaide with nary a problem. But, it does tend to roll like a pregnant whale in our hills, and it does go searching for a gear on the South Eastern Freeway.
So, when given the opportunity to take a sports marquee up through the Adelaide hills, albeit on a short brief test drive, it is good. On the sweeping bends up heading up towards Mt Lofty, the body roll is tightly controlled providing a stable platform to enjoy the ride. The grip is plentiful and response from the twin turbo engine bay, with only a tiny delay before the turbo kick in, is quite stunning. For an SUV, its packs a decent punch, the change up and down through the gears is silky smooth, and Mrs Wednesday in the back there wasn’t complaining about any body roll and sea sickness like symptoms like she would have in the back of the Subaru. Of note is the Carbon Fibre drive shaft – doesn’t mean much to me other than the fact it therefore has something in common with my bike. The internal seating is very comfortable, with excellent thigh support to hold you in place as you take on the sweeping bends, and the front seats have small seat extensions to provide support for the longer legged species.
The Q4 all wheel drive system sends 100% of the engine’s power to the rear wheels in normal conditions, but will split the power 50/50 between the front and rear axles when things get a little slippery.
Outside, the styling is classical Italian flair, all the curves are in the right place and a sweeping roofline. The new larger triangle-centered Alfa grill on the front clearly marks it as something special. From the front quarter view, the lines are stunning. Unfortunately it is hard to make the back of an SVU sexy, but Alfa have produced something a little better than its competitors.
So, all up, it was an enjoyable car to drive and would be something that I would love to have in the garage. Even Mrs Wednesday was happy with it and suggested as we crossed Glen Osmond road walking back to the Forester, that if I mentioned that if I wanted that car, she would struggle to say no. That’s a ringing endorsement in anyone’s books.
Get in now to Solitaire
A week ago, in a country town far far away from Adelaide…..
It is a morning of great expectation. In excess of 200 cyclists of all varieties, striking out from Mt Torrens Oval, nervously looking in the sky for signs of the great winds that were forecast to hit later that morning, remembering the gale force winds that howled down on and through the brave cyclists the last time Gravelaide struck out from Mt Torrens.
During the first stages of the battle, where the cyclists headed South before looping around North before dropping down on the Murray Plains, the threat of what was to beset them was ever present, a cross wind hear, a tail wind there, all the time knowing full well the benefits of the howling winds would eventually turn nasty.
There would be no secret weapons to overcome the evil winds, it would take gritted teeth and mindful determination to turn the corner around 60 kms into the ride and head straight back into the beasts teeth.
Hats off to the three Gravelaide Amigos – Graeme, Russel and Peter, who have put such a lot of time and effort into delivering an absolutely awesome gravel route, again. I knew the gravel roads East of the Mt Lofty Ranges were superb, but these guys have introduced me to gravel roads I would never have found by myself, and have given me inspiration to strike out further from my traditional bitumen roads in the Adelaide hills, much as I love them, but there is just so much more out there to discover. look, those who know me know I am not an evangelist, but let me just say this – Do yourself a favour, make your +1 bike a gravel bike, and get out and explore. Apart from the stunning vistas and the many varied road surfaces you will discover, the road traffic is far far FAR less than what you would encounter on the bitumen roads. Don’t quote me, but I can only recall around 10 cars passing me, in either direction, over the 5 1/2 hours to complete the 102km ride. That to me is such a great, stress free ride. Almost zero aggravation to me and the drivers. Brilliant.
Just have a look at the photos below, taken from a GoPro on the front of my bike during the ride. How could you not get excited about Gravel roads.
Video of the Week
What else but Gravelaide3
Its a long video that has been stitched together from 10-20 seconds bursts taken at various points around the 102km route.
Do yourself a favour, grab a cold one, bring it up on your smart tv, sit back and enjoy the ride.
Then jump onto Facebook, like/follow Gravelaide Facebook site, and make sure you get yourself a ticket to the next Gravelaide.
Kangaroo Creek Dam
You will have noticed the works being undertaken at Kangaroo Creek Dam. The works being managed by SA Water will make sure it complies with ANCOLD (Australian National Committee on Large Dams) standards. The upgrade will widen the spillway, raise the wall and strengthen the wall. These upgrades will help manage major floods and also increase the dam’s ability to withstand earthquakes. The works are due to finish by the end of 2019
The dam is has been slowly drained over summer, and is now effectively empty, at less than 1% capacity.
This means some of the old roads and bridges are now exposed.
Rock to strengthen the walls is be being removed from the other side of the dam, it’d be a shame to see these gravel roads disappear once the works are completed.
Thinking differently about bike fit
This week we have a second instalment from Dave Moen, Musculoskeletal and sports physiotherapist at FORM Physiotherapy, Adelaide
This article is an invitation to think differently. It might take a bit of effort to hear it all clearly, but the argument offers a massive upside if you take the time to read it well. To find out more, visit www.tamethebeast.org. Or if you’re a sceptical science mind, look at The Lancet’s recent series on back pain.
To understand comfortable cycling it is important to understand comfort and cycling
Comfort is a feeling. Cycling, as I mean it here, is the human mechanics of the task
It is possible to have terrible mechanics and still feel comfortable. But you can’t have comfortable cycling if you’re feeling uncomfortable
For me, a bike fit is comfortable when my awareness of the bike disappears. For you it might be a feeling that things are in their right place, or an absence of pain.
Our feeling system, i.e. the collective anatomy that makes us feel sensory stuff, does not give us a true readout of tissue signals – there’s simply too much information coming in to surface it all. Instead, the system prioritises sensory information based on perceived importance. Important information is felt, and the other stuff disappears into the background.
If I tell you that while cycling your left knee rolls in and looks a bit off, your feeling system will become more interested in your left leg and effectively turn up the volume on that part. If there’s a good reason to do so your feeling system can even make a feeling – let’s say pain – without anything happening in the tissues. The feeling system is part of a wider protective system that aims to re-direct your attention and encourage you to take protective action against perceived threat.
How this relates to cycling.
1. If you feel that your bike fit is off you are likely to feel uncomfortable, irrespective of the biomechanical correctness of the fit
2. Focusing on small details can reduce comfort by making you more sensitive to small details
3. Aim to get your fit right and then forget about it, or review it at pre-planned intervals. I am confident that we can achieve this for you, but you can probably get it quite close using info from the web
4. Use strength training to make your body more robust and functional (read the previous post) so that you can better deal with the demands of the sport.
I’m delighted to present the first of a 5 part series of articles by Dave Moen from Form Physio.
Strength training for cyclists
Sitting to write this article I am struck by the overwhelming simplicity of my proposition: lift weights and you’ll ride stronger, feel better, get injured less and enjoy better health.
But we’ve found that for most people, strength training remains an untapped well of potential.
Heavy weights allow you to work your body in a very low rep range. This triggers specific adaptations that are unachievable with body weight or on-bike activities. The increase in maximal strength dilutes the significance of lower intensity tasks – so you work less hard (percentage max) for the same work rate. The collective metabolic, hormonal and musculoskeletal changes triggered by weight training are performance positive. A quick look at any serious national sports program makes this clear.
Why people avoid strength training
• Fear of injury
• Not knowing how
• A feeling that weights fatigue will impair sport specific training
• Perceived lack of time
• Distaste for gyms
• The generally erroneous conclusion of increasing body weight.
Let’s address the first three.
1. Fear of injury
Injuries from weights training are very uncommon, and are even less common when training is programmed intelligently and delivered with technique training. In fact, strength training is almost certainly protective of injury due to the positive adaptations in muscle, tendon and bone. It’s also important to dissociate training-related pain from injury. It is common and normal to feel sore after a training session, especially when you are starting a training block.
2. Not knowing how
We follow the adage simple things done well. For most people, basic exercises like deadlift and squat variations +/- lunges will be a good start. In the same way that training different combinations of intensity and time on the bike can trigger different performance outcomes in cycling, changing repetitions, sets and rest times can maintain a sufficient training stimulus even when the specific exercises stay the same.
Starting with slightly higher reps (8-12 reps for 4-5 sets) while learning technique will reduce injury risk. Performance improvements will increase when reps lower (say 3-5 reps for 4-5 sets) and weights increase.
3. Managing fatigue
Programming strength training around cycling session demands special attention. Generally it is best to lift weights after a cycling session and then have the greatest possible time between your weights session and the next ride. Heavy weights can cause a feeling of fatigue that can reduce short-term performance on the bike. Whereas the short, intense demands of weights sessions can often be achieved after a ride, even if you are a little tired from the bike. Of course there is a trade off, and the exact decision should reflect your immediate training goals. It is often ok to accept a period of reduced on-bike performance if the training block is likely to result in medium term gains.
Before forking out for weights I think it is best to complete a training block in the gym. There are lots of weights for sale on gumtree, which indicates the shifty motivation of budding weight lifters. It is good to employ a coach in some form or another to up-skill in technique, and to ensure that you are pushing sufficiently hard. As sports physiotherapists we are experts in movement, and can help you to problem solve any niggles that might have been putting you off weights in the past. With a bit of confidence, motivation and a plan, your ‘6-weeks-from-now’ self will thank you for the effort.
I had one of these nifty Phairo head ware units come into the Wednesday Legs labs mid January. Phairo is an Australian Designed and Australian Made cycling headwear designed to keep the sweat off your face while you ride. It was first designed in 2004.
The red one was passed onto a mate of mine who rides with a hearing aid, but often gets sweat dripping into his hearing aid, which causes it to either shut off, or blocks the tiny hearing vents (wets the fine fabric behind the vent which blocks out the sound).
The blue one was trialled by yours truly.
Having ridden with it for more than 4 weeks now, through some cool weather and long hot days, with the longest being a 7 hour ride down to Mclaren Vale a few weeks back, I feel i have put it through some good testing.
I have tried the Halos previously as a means to stop the sweat dripping down into my eyes, but found the silicon bead across the front cracks after a few years, so was keen to see how the phairo would go. The phairo is made from 100% polyester knit fabric. The bottom section of the phairo , the bit that fits across the forehead, is a folded back double thickness section that provides a good barrier to sweat, and rather than diverting, it wicks the sweat away.
It provided good protection from the sun through the massive helmet vents on my new Catlike helmet, and was pleased that the wicking fabric didn’t overheat.
So, would I recommend it, yes – it is one of my go to products when i head out now.
We believe every person matters. We believe its ok to look after your mental health Be authentic, be YOU!
Puka Up is a social enterprise founded by one of Australia’s leading mental health advocates, Wayne Schwass.
Having battled silently with his own mental health for much of his sporting career, Wayne is now a dedicated mental health advocate, committed to raising awareness about mental health, emotional wellbeing and suicide prevention. In the Hindi language, Pukka means ‘authentic and genuine’.
“Our vision is to create the environments for every person to have authentic and genuine conversations about mental health and emotional wellbeing”.
In 2016, 2,866 people tragically lost their lives to suicide in Australia. On average 7 people per day die by suicide in Australia and it is estimated a further 65,300 people attempt suicide every year, an estimated 30 attempts for every suicide.
In a few days time, 28 riders will be tackling a challenging eight-day, 1,433 kilometre event is an important opportunity to bring much needed attention to the issue of suicide, an issue that continues to impact families and communities across the country on a daily basis.
DAY 1- March 16 – Brighton to Wollongong – 105.0km
DAY 2- March 17 -Wollongong to Goulburn – 178.2km
DAY 3- March 18 -Goulburn to Canberra – 110.6km
DAY 4- March 19 -Canberra to Wagga Wagga – 260.2km
DAY 5- March 20 -Wagga Wagga to Albury – 134.8km
DAY 6- March 21 -Albury to Shepparton – 183.9km
DAY 7- March 22 -Shepparton to Ballarat – 242.5km
DAY 8- March 23 -Ballarat to Geelong (Stage 1) / Geelong to Queenscliff (Stage 2) / Sorrento to Etihad Stadium (Stage 3) Finishing at Etihad Stadium at approximately 3:00pm- 217.8km
Do you or someone you know need help?
Life can be challenging at times and every one of us will have good and bad days and then there are those days when everything seems too much.
Asking for help is not a sign of weakness, in fact Puka Up BELIEVE it’s a sign of great strength to reach out when we need support to get through challenges times.
If you or someone you know is going through a challenging time, PLEASE reach out to one of the following organisations to get the help you DESERVE.
If you or someone you know are in an emergency, or at immediate risk of harm to yourself or others, please contact:
SUICIDE AND CRISIS SUPPORT: TO TALK TO SOMEONE RIGHT NOW CONTACT:
LIFELINE 13 11 14 Lifeline is a national charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services.
BEYOND BLUE SUPPORT SERVICES 1300 22 46 36 beyond blue provides information and support to help everyone in Australia achieve their best possible mental health, whatever their age and wherever they live.
MENSLINE 1300 78 99 78 MensLine Australia is a professional telephone and online support and information service for Australian men
KIDS HELP LINE 1800 55 1800 Kids Helpline is Australia’s only free, 24/7 phone and online counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25
SUICIDE CALL BACK SERVICE 1300 659 467 Suicide Call Back Service provides free phone, video & online counselling for anyone affected by suicide.
QLIFE 1800 18 45 27 QLife is Australia’s first nationally-oriented counselling and referral service for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and/or intersex (LGBTI).
After a week with snow and temperatures below zero, the temperatures climbed above the freezing point on race day for the women’s Strade-Bianche.
Anna van der Breggen rode to victory in ahead of last year’s winner Elisa Longo Borghini after attacking on the penultimate gravel sector, when Elisa dropped back due to a mechanical, Van der Breggen continued unabated, finishing ahead of Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) took up the chase, but it was too little too late with Katarzyna finishing as runner-up in Siena for the third time in a row and Elisa Longo Borghini rounded out the podium.
Some cold wet conditions at this years Strade-Bianche, not quite the dusty brilliant cnoditions we are used to seeing in this Tuscan Italian one day race.
The men’s route – which is 184km long – includes 11 gravel sectors, totalling over 60km. Most feature in the middle of the race, with sectors 5-8 lasting 11.9km, 8km, 9.5km and 11.5km respectively and all crammed in between 110km and 42km to the finish line.
At the end of 184 thrilling kilometres, Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal), dropped down into Siena’s Piazza del Campo to finish off a spectacular solo victory.
The young Belgian had his first professional win. Attacking from a large chasing group in the long stretch between the eighth and ninth sectors, Benoot made his way over to the leading duo of Romain Bardet and Wout van Aert.
He accelerated away on the final sector and kept Romain and Wouter at bay on the final hike through the streets of Siena.
Australian Robert Power had a good showing finishing 6th for Mitchelton Scott
1 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal 5:03:33
2 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:39
3 Wout Van Aert (Bel) Veranda’s Willems Crelan 0:00:58
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:25
5 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:01:27
6 Robert Power (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott 0:01:29
7 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step Floors 0:01:42
8 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:02:08
9 Pieter Serry (Bel) Quick-Step Floors 0:02:11
10 Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:02:16
A few of you might remember the old H’eroica, based on the Strade Bianche, the local version long since abandoned, rides the unsealed roads of the ‘Little Italy’ region of the Adelaide hills – Norton Summit to Lenswood.
I’ve recently ridden these roads as part of my traning for this weekends Gravelaide, and the roads are just stunning. Unlike the paved roads, which i still love, the gravel roads around here are very, very quiet. Over the two weekends, which would’ve included approx. 70kms gravel, i can recall only being passed by 3 cars, and encountering 4. On those numbers, I saw more Kangaroos than cars.
And here’s some photos from some of my recent rides around Cudlee Creek, Gumeracha, Mt Torrens and Birdwood, just a little further out from the H’eroica route.
Meanwhile, over in France, the race to the sun
Spanish young gun Marc Soler snatched a 4 second win on the last stage of the Paris-Nice ahead of Simon Yates by 4 seconds on the rain soaked roads of the Cote d’Azur.
Rider of the Week – David Rossi
What is your day time job?
IT Lead at a Systems Engineering firm in the city. I work with some extremely intelligent, hard working people, and they let me store bikes in the office and dry my smelly kit in the server room!
How long have you been cycling? What got you started in cycling?
I’ve been riding bikes since I was a little kid keeping up with my older sisters and younger brother. I grew up in the Adelaide foothills and a bike was my go-to way to get to my friend’s houses through school years.
During uni I realised that I was genuinely overweight, so decided to ride out to Mawson Lakes a few days a week (and cut down on the Nutella sandwiches made with Tim-Tams instead of bread).
When on a weekend ride with a uni mate we were passed by an old dude on a roadie like we were standing still, so we both rushed out to buy road bikes, and it all grew from there. Around that time I did the first TDU Breakaway Tour in 2004 (what is now the BUPA Challenge), but only the 83 km version, because I didn’t think I’d be able to finish the entire stage.
How many bikes do you own and what is your main go to bike?
Lucky 7, or maybe 1 for each day of the week: Lekker Amsterdam Elite:
A replacement for a cheap second hand vintage single speed that was sadly stolen. This is a unique bike (bought from the friendly guys at Treadly) with a carbon belt drive, Continuously Variable Transmission internal hub gearing, hydraulic disc brakes, and internal LED lights. It’s an amazingly smooth and quiet ride, and while is overkill for a pub bike, I love it. I ride it to get food or shopping around the city, and when I go to things like footy at Adelaide Oval. Reid Granite 2.0
My summer commuter, trailer hauler, and adventure bike. This “gravel grinder” was donated to me by Reid Cycles as a bit of an experiment. It had only just been released when I approached Reid for help saying I was planning to ride across Europe but didn’t have a suitable bike. They gave me the bike in exchange for photos, feedback, and some blog posts. For something worth less than $1000, it’s amazing. It has been serviced only twice in 12,000km (once in Germany, and once by the friendly guys at Treadly), but just keeps rolling. Running Schwalbe Marathon Mondial tyres I’ve never had a single puncture on it, and it does its duty as my workhorse very well. It’s covered in stickers, most of which are donated by friends or collected during TDU. For the places it has taken me, it means a lot to me. Giant TCX Advanced Pro 2
I bought this with the intention of some more gravel adventures, and *maybe* some CX racing, but it turns out racing is super fun even if you suck at it! In a vain attempt to make myself faster I upgraded it with some Curve G4 Carbon Tubs (again from the friendly guys at Treadly), and chucked a monster cassette and fatter tyres on the stock wheels for adventures. Giant TCR 2
My old roadie, recently dusted off and restored to former glory. Strava says it’s done 10,000km, but Strava didn’t exist when I got it in 2004. It’s been through many sets of wheels, but with the latest set it rides better than ever. It wouldn’t be worth much to sell, but I have a soft spot for it. Giant Seek 0
My winter commuter and other trailer hauler; the kind of bike I’ll happily ride in torrential ride (and have many times). Hydraulic disc brakes, full length fenders, and an Alfine 8 internal hub are all perfectly suited to reliable commuting. Giant Trance Advanced 0
A dual suspension mountain bike that I use mostly for smashing around fire trails in Black Hill (just behind my house – you’re not meant to ride in there just yet but we’ll keep it a secret), Cleland, and Fox Creek. The suspension travel and range of gear ratios with SRAM Eagle is amazing, so takes me up and down trails I never thought possible. Giant TCR Advanced Pro Disc
My newish roadie, and a huge step up from my old one, with lots of carbon, Di2 and hydraulic discs. Shortly after getting this bike late 2016 is when I started to take cycling a bit more seriously, going faster and riding more hills, but only because I wanted to keep up with the strong riders in my groups.
Honourable mention to the WeeHoo iGo Turbo trailer:
After a couple of ALDI trailers, I now tow my 5 year old son in this trailer. He’s strapped in with a harness, can pedal (although the ratio is too low for him to really give any assistance), has pockets for a drink, snack, and toys, mini panniers for his wet weather gear, electro-luminescent wire lights, a Bluetooth speaker playing his favourite songs, and since I was yelled at more “child abuse” for riding in the rain (despite my son being in a rain coat and rain pants) I added the optional canopy.
What bike do you covet?
While I would absolutely love something like a Curve GXR, Firefly All-Road, or Allied Alfa Allroad,
none would really achieve E+1. It’s getting more difficult to tow my son in the trailer as he gets older, so I’ve been looking at e-Cargo Bikes, specifically the Yuba Spicy Curry, for school drop-offs and playground adventures. Travelling with my son in the trailer is a great way for us to share time and have adventures together, so I try to avoid using my car when I can.
Can you summarise some of your achievements in your cycling life so far?
The big ones would be riding the Great Ocean Road and back with my son in the trailer in 2015, a 3 month 7700km tour of Europe in 2016, and an Everesting (including HRS) in 2017. Smaller ones would be rides like Rapha Rising (4800vm in one day), the Dirty Dozen, Fleurieu 300, and The Furore (#adamisajerk).
Saying that, some of the hardest riding I’ve ever done is towing my son in his trailer up climbs like Corkscrew Rd, Greenhill Rd, the old Freeway, Mt Osmond, and the Lynton bike path (just for a carpark beer with mates in Belair, then straight home via Old Belair Rd). 15 minutes to the top of Corkscrew on a 50 kg rig isn’t too bad.
Do you have any cycling goals?
Other than getting the “Kintyre Killer” KOM, I want to win a CX race this year. I rode in most of last year’s PACC CX winter and summer seasons, sometimes competitively. Some of my best results were during the Nationals weekend (maybe I’m suited to slippery mud).
I was thrown in the deep end a little bit starting in B grade somewhat based on the results of my cycling buddies, but I’m slowing learning and improving, and having a great time doing it. I’ve done a couple of crits and intend to do more, so a win there would be great too. A bunch of mates have also entered a team in an upcoming 24 hour Team Time Trial. We’ll be aiming to break the state record, and I recently completed my longest ride ever at 466 km as a training ride.
Who has been the main influence on your cycling career?
My friends, many of whom have been featured on this blog too (Rob Greenwood – Benny JJ – Sam Jeffries – James Raison – Felicity Salkeld – Adam Williss (#adamisajerk) – Bria Smith – Ted Jennings). I used to ride with a great bunch of guys when I lived in Newcastle. We called ourselves the Craft Beer Cycling Club, just because our rides usually ended up at a mate’s craft beer cafe. We got some retro kit made up with the cafe as a sponsor, and it still get lots of comments. I usually race CX in it for a bit of a laugh (people love the beer sticking out of the back pocket) and as a shout-out to my mate who runs CX Newie and often races in the kit too.
Since moving back to Adelaide in 2016 and my life being tipped upside down a little, I’ve met too many awesome people to count, and have been made to feel part of a great community. My friends give me motivation and inspiration to ride (and usually plan the routes because even now I still don’t always know where I’m going in the hills).
What do you love about cycling?
The freedom and simplicity of travelling anywhere in the world under your own steam.
What are your fondest cycling memories?
The intention of my Europe tour was to visit the birthplaces of my parents. My mum made it easy by giving me the address of her old house near Liverpool in England, and I went there early in my trip.My dad gave me vague directions and a description of his former house in a little town in the mountains above Naples in Southern Italy.
Eventually I reached the town, and with the help of my local host, I found the house my father was born in, and some relatives still living there. After riding solo for months and thousands of km it was very emotional. In a way it felt like I found my own home. I’m not often brought to tears, but I was when I reached the “San Giovanni” sign.
Have you spent any time in hospital because of cycling? If so, how did you end up there?
Only once. During a CX race one of the other cyclists slipped while running up a steep climb and his chainring was pushed into my leg. I finished the race but I could feel the blood dripping down my calf. I went to the RAH afterwards and they cleaned it up. There were 9 punctures from the teeth of his chainring. I now have an awesome permanent Hubbard stamp, but on the wrong leg!
What is your favourite post ride coffee/tea spot, and what would you normally buy as a treat?
Although it has the “atmosphere of a truck stop in Tailem Bend”, and the coffee isn’t quite as good as somewhere like Coffylosphy or Red Berry Espresso, I default to Bici. It has big tables out the front, heaps of space for bikes, is really close to my work, coffee is free for Rapha Cycling Club members, and the food is great, especially the amazing cronuts. Plus they have Ergo in the back!
What cycling related thing would you like for your next birthday?
I like the new Cycliq Fly12 and 6 CE cameras. I see a lot of crazy stuff on the roads, especially commuting. It’s not all road rage worthy, but I’d like to have footage of the stuff going on around me just in case.
Is there a local cycling outfit/company/cycling club/cycling group/person that you would like to plug?
Do I have to pick one? I’d like to give a shoutout and thanks to Rapha Cycling Club Adelaide, Audax SA, Dirty Riders, PACC and Norwood CC, Gully Grinders, Redliners, Treadly, La Velocita (oh no a competing blog! – Eds note – No competition – LV are far more professional with them – and their local rep – James Raison, there is no way i can compete with a personality like that 🙂 ), Giant Glenelg, and Hells 500.
What is your non-cycling go-to place when Interstaters come to your town?
Cycling for me is sometimes just an excuse to eat, and I love pizza. Since returning from pizza-powered touring in Italy I’ve been on a mission to find the best authentic pizza in Adelaide, and I’m confident I’ve found it at Wood Oven Gourmet Pizza not far from my place in Campbeltown. It’s just like eating at Nonna’s house!
If you had 10 minutes with the incumbent State Premier, what would you tell them?
Cycling is a solution to many of our states problems; pollution, traffic, physical and mental health, and is just an awesome way to travel and have fun. SA has parts of the puzzle to be a great cycling state, but with more infrastructure, awareness, and resources it could be truly great, and we’d all be better for it. I’m always excited when someone starts riding, especially if it becomes a way for them to leave the car at home (or even better get rid of it altogether if possible). I know I don’t have all the answers, but there needs to be more discussion.
Is there anything else you feel like talking about?
This year was the first time I took the week of the TDU off work, and spent the whole week riding. Despite the heat I did 900km over 7 days and had a fantastic time with a few different groups, including friends from Rapha, Hells 500, Specialized, and MAAP. I started out planning my week a few days out and eventually had a list of every event I could find. When friends asked for a copy I decided to share it publicly (which is how I came to the attention of Wednesday Legs). After positive feedback I moved it to its own website at allthetdu.com.
It got a few thousand hits and made we a whopping $2.50 from the ad at the bottom (half the cost of the domain). People really seemed to find it useful, so I plan to do it again next year, possibly including a bit of a tour guide of local cyclist friendly cafes, maybe even try to get a sponsor for the site. All feedback appreciated.
Well, that turned into a bigger then Ben Hur posting.
If you enjoyed it, please forward it onto friends, colleagues and even people you mildly endure.
Road Raise is a 7 day bike ride from Adelaide to Melbourne which raises money and awareness for CanTeen to help support young people with cancer. This event aims to raise $200,000 which will fund 5,000 hours of support for young people living with cancer. This years ride will depart Adelaide on the April ?
Road Raise is fast becoming a highly-sought after event for like-minded professionals with a love of cycling, a sense of community and a desire to push their physical boundaries.
Thanks to the incredible efforts of those involved in Road Raise, CanTeen had raised over $300,000 in the past 2 years which has supported young people cope with cancer in their family, rebuild their foundations and connect with others in the same boat.
So, who’s riding.
And the valuable Support Team
Today’s message is brought to you by Steve Sanders, one of the many supporters behind Road Raise
I thought I would take this opportunity to thank those of you that have chipped in to aid my fundraising cause so far. A sincere thank you really!
There is 6 weeks to go before a team off 22 cyclists embark on a trip across the country and so far a collective sum of over $60,000 has been raised. This money goes to providing services and support for young people affected by cancer.
We all have a story and I guess mine is I am in a fortunate position to be able to help others. Hours spent riding in the hills recently means plenty of time to reflect on how lucky I have been with the riding experiences I have had and with what my family and friends have shared with me. One friend long gone would surely be amazed at where my bike has taken me and the opportunities cycling has afforded me.
It was in my photography days (pre 1998!) where my business partner introduced me to the sport.
The chap in the Toyota top, Don McLennan was my partner for ten years. He passed away in October 2007 from Cancer. I saw him and his family suffer.
We raced for a few years and even well into his illness he gave it a crack. He knew he was terminally ill and had a goal to have his name etched on a perpetual trophy for one of the races the Club raced. So whilst people attacked and tried to break the field we worked hard together and, after making no friends in that race got Don the win. His name is on the trophy.
It was a team effort and the hardest riding I have ever done but even after the tours and the travel, roads ridden all around the world, the growth of Redline into a small business this was my cycling high point. A 40 minute criterium at Regency Park is a more vivid memory than the cobbles of Belgium or the Alps of France. I still have one of Don’s drink cages on the bike that goes overseas when I travel.
As an aside the top he is wearing, whilst it is not clear has our name ‘Adelaide Freelance Photography’ on the shoulders – I still have mine and I love that jersey.
I have no doubt this will be another hard, tough but character building event – but the reality of it is it is nothing compared to cancer. It really does affect everyone and I feel sad when I see Don’s now adult children and grandchildren because of what they missed in life because of Dons death at only 53 years of age.
I would like to thank two Charlie’s – Jarman for her company on the road over her holidays at Xmas (we rode hundreds of kilometres, discussed many issues and solved so many problems!) and Walsh, for his company and conversation every Wednesday morning. 6 Olympics gives one some credibility and to have him riding with one of our riders yesterday was an honour.
Dave Elmes (owner of the Watermark at Glenelg) – a generous supporter of our regular cycling group Redline joined our Wed ride and had some great one on one tuition as he readies himself for the Road Raise adventure.
The five oldest, longest and most prestigious one-day races in professional cycling are grouped together under the heading ‘Monuments’. All five are part of the UCI’s top-tier WorldTour race calendar, and as such they command a full field of the biggest teams and leading riders.
Milan-San Remo, the Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix, Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Il Lombardia.
Date: Saturday, March 17 2018
First edition: 1907
Also known as: La Primavera, The Sprinters’ Classic
Rider with most wins: Eddy Merckx (seven wins)
TV Broadcast Nup
The Tour of Flanders
Date: Sunday, April 1 2018
First edition: 1913
Also known as: De Ronde, Ronde van Vlaanderen
Rider with most wins: Tom Boonen, Fabian Cancellara, Johan Museeuw, Achiel Buysse, Fiorenzo Magni, Eric Leman (all three wins)
TV Broadcast SBS LIVE
Times and channel TBA
Date: Sunday, April 8 2018
First edition: 1896
Also known as: Hell of the North, Queen of the Classics, La Pascale
Rider with most wins: Roger De Vlaeminck, Tom Boonen (four wins)
TV Broadcast SBS LIVE
Date: Sunday, April 22 2018
First edition: 1892
Also known as: La Doyenne
Rider with most wins: Eddy Merckx (five wins)
TV Broadcast SBS LIVE
Times and channel TBA
Bring it on.
Date: Saturday, October 13 2018
First edition: 1892
Also known as: Giro di Lombardia, Tour of Lombardy, Race of the Falling Leaves
Rider with most wins: Fausto Coppi (five wins)
TV Broadcast – Nup
Just the other side of Little Italy lies a delightfull little bit of Bitumen that turns into a crazy beautiful section of dirt road that opens up all sors of delicious gravel riding oads heading towards Lenswood.
This is the descent from the gravel back down to Knotts Hill / Pound Road climb.
Rider of the Week
This weeks rider of the week is the Chief Cycologist, Director Sportif, Trail Therapist and Fashionista for Cycle FNQ – William Bird.
How long have you been cycling? What got you started in cycling?
Like many, I have been riding a bicycle for as long as I can remember. However, my formal baptism into the cycling congregation occurred in 2001 when I commenced work in Cairns. Within the office there were a number of cycling fanatics who exorcised my running demons and taught me the two-wheeled way.
How many bikes do you own and what is your main go to bike?
I work within the cycling industry, so the number of bicycles in my garage fluctuates throughout the year. Had you have asked me two weeks ago, the answer would have been one and a half (that’s another story). If you ask me next week, it will be four. Presently, there are only two bicycles at home.
My “go to” bike is a 2016 Norco Threshold cyclocross bike; it serves a multitude of purposes, and is so much fun to ride – it’s also the oldest bike I have owned in quite some time (simply because I cannot part with it).
What bike do you covet?
That would be the BMC Roadmachine 01 Two with SRAM Red eTAP … which strangely made its way into my garage last week.
You are involved with Cycle FNQ – What is it?
I founded Cycle FNQ in 2012 to promote and support cycling within Far North Queensland, over the years it’s evolved (and continues to do so today).
Through Cycle FNQ I have taught mountain bike skills locally and nationally, as well as organised events across all levels (local/national/international … including UCI Stage and UCI World Cup events).
In recent years Cycle FNQ has enabled me to ride and review bikes for national publications, and assist with bicycle travel articles to help promote my region around the globe.
Cycle FNQ also works with Blackchrome Sportswear to test, develop and design cycling apparel – I always wanted my own cycle clothing label and custom kits to match my bikes.
What do you love about cycling?
The variety of people I meet. The amazing places I visit. The experiences and memories I shall never forget. The freedom of being outside on a bicycle. The therapy/relaxation/stimulation/challenge/sanity it provides.
If you could have dinner with 3 people in the cycling world, who would they be, why and where would you take them to eat?
Not being much of a dinner person, it would have to be a post-ride breakfast with:
1) Warren Pike – my friend and the man who got me into this cycling mess to begin with
2) Jens Voigt – he’s a character on and off the bike.
3) Fredrika Ek – Who??? Check out her blog http://www.thebikeramble.com/ Her motivation and passion for life is inspiring.
The location would be Petit Cafe in Kuranda for authentic French crepes (an absolute must when visiting Cairns).
What are your fondest cycling memories?
In 2014 I helped organise a Fat Bike Tour of Cape York’s Western beaches, some 360km of sandy coastline.
A group of us flew up to the Tip of Australia, boarded a private boat and sailed down the Gulf of Carpentaria overnight. In the morning we assembled a fleet of brand new fat bikes aboard our mothership, then commenced beach-combing our way back up to the tip along remote beaches. We encountered crocodiles, dingoes, jabirus, mantarays, dolphins, and all manner of sea creatures. Washed-up along the shores we found Indonesian rafts (several being larger than a Toyota Landcruiser), a Papua New Guinean dug-out canoe, and a range of other treasures. We feasted on fresh seafood every night, and may have over-indulged in mudcrabs for lunch on at least one occasion. We played beach cricket, then toasted the sunset with cold drinks and hors d’oeuvre – we were very lucky to have a five star chef on-board who had temporarily escaped her regular gig serving gourmet dishes aboard Norwegian cruise ships.
Have you spent any time in hospital because of cycling? If so, how did you end up there?
At 1726hrs on Tuesday 05 October 2004 I had a brief encounter with a Ford Laser. I walked away.
What is the biggest cycling lie you have told your partner?
“This will be my last bike. Promise”.
What cycling related thing would you like for your next birthday?
A cycle trip to Japan to continue exploring where I left-off. The below is from a cycling tour I organised with a friend (Adam Cobain) who operates Ride Japan – bespoke cycling tours in Japan.
Is there a local cycling outfit/company/cycling club/cycling group/person that you would like to plug?
Blackchrome Sportswear – visit them online for all your custom clothing needs (cycling/work/leisure).
Thanks Wil, you have an enviable lifestyle, some stunning trips and adventures. Needless to say, me, and I’m sure many others, would be jealous.