Riding Up Kilimanjaro

Pro mountain biker, Rebecca Rusch, and adventurer, Patrick Sweeney, rode up African’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro… and then rode down.

Okay, rode up is not quite true. They rode as much as they could, and dragged their bikes and gear over the really tough parts.

The rough terrain and steep incline are only part of the problem. At over 19,000 ft, your lungs will be burning and you’ll be gasping for air like a guppy out of water.

The pair did the ride in support of World Bicycle Relief, an organization dedicated to mobilizing people by providing bicycles to people without transport.

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Bicycle Maintenance Repair Videos

From Novice to Pro, Bicycle Upgrade, Maintenance and Repair Instruction You Can Trust

Whether you want to learn more about your bike, feel confident on the road, save money, or you're considering becoming a pro bike mechanic, this bicycle repair course has got you covered.

Taught by pro bike mechanics and packed with insider shortcuts and tips, it covers everything from minor repairs to the heavy stuff... and makes it easy to follow along, step-by-step, so you're never confused or wondering what to do next.

If you want to have an entire video encyclopedia of bicycle repairs at your fingertips, that covers you in every situation, then this package is worth a close look.

"Much easier to follow than a book, comprehensive, and loaded with insider tips and shortcuts... these DVDs belong on every cyclist's bookshelf." -Velo Logic

Learn more about the DIY Bike Repair Course

 

The Craziest Thing I Ever Did: Track Cycling in the 70s

by Peter Schurman

Peter Schurman shares his memories of racing track in San Jose, Encino, Portland, Northbrook, Kenosha, Detroit, Mexico City, Montreal, from 1973-1976.

A recent Velo Logic article reminds me of the the USA Six-Days. They were before my time, but there were tracks, indoors and outdoors, all over the country!

The Madison: Carefully Choreographed Chaos

The style of racing is called Madison Racing: 2-man teams, one man racing, hell bent, along the pole line, the other racer riding up on the rail, catching his breath and gauging when to dive down the bank, getting slung by the team-mate into the race, sprinting for points!

It was carefully choreographed chaos and the craziest thing I ever did!

I have an old black & white photo from a Clement tire advertisement from the 30s or 40s, showing Madison Square Garden, packed to the rafters with people. The infield was jammed with people, wearing big, old topcoats and floppy fedoras!

The racers were just a blur on the banked oval.

I’ve heard it said that Madison Style racing was so popular, that a venue had to be built to hold the races… it was called Madison Square Garden.

Madison Square Garden, NY, 1910

But there was a growing problem: gambling. The odds were played and the payoffs were huge. Human nature prevailed, and some teams were “on the take”.

Doping was a problem then, too; not too surprising. Problems grew exponentially. It became a scandal and the powers that be squashed the Six Days.But Madison Style racing continued where ever there were velodromes.

The sanctioning body for bicycle racers and racing events became the Amateur Bicycle League. And they meant amateur. No cash money awarded, no professional affiliation.

Track Cycling in the 70s

In the early 1970’s, I was chasing my dream. I loved bicycle racing; I ate and slept bicycle racing. 

I had always been a big guy, and I found my niche on the velodrome. My home track was in San Jose, and in those years, the legend Jack Disney was a fixture at the track.

In the late summer of 1974, Jack suggested I pair up with another rider, Larry Swantner. The way Jack saw it, we would make a great combo for Madison racing, a regular event which closed out the weekly races.

That year, at the National Track Championships at the Northbrook Velodrome, Larry had finished seventh in the Kilo, and I had finished seventh in the Pursuit.

Jack worked with us during the week, always pushing us faster and harder. And later that week at the Saturday meet, I can remember hearing Jack shouting “Don’t slow down!” as I was high on the bank, about to dive into the fray! I kept my speed and yes, Larry and I won that afternoon. I can also recall hearing the yelling and cheering from the crowd watching in the bleachers. It was the best!

As I recall, Larry and I each won a gift certificate from a local bike shop for $25.00. Amateurs don’t get prize money!

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Giro d’Italia Video Highlights Stages 1-9

One week into the Giro and it’s worth recapping how we got here and sharing some highlights from the battle so far.

The Giro d’Italia 2016 Stage Highlights

Here’s the stages covered so far.

Stage 1: Apeldoorn (ITT), 9.8km

Stage 2: Arnhem – Nijmegen, 190 km

Stage 3: Nijmegen – Arnhem, 190 km

Stage 4: Catanzaro – Praia a Mare, 200 km

Stage 5: Praia a Mare – Benevento, 233 km

Stage 6: Ponte – Roccaraso, 157 km

Stage 7: Sulmona – Foligno 211 km

Stage 8: Foligno – Arezzo,186 km

Stage 9: Chianti (ITT), 40.5 km

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The Fat Tire eBike: Moto Parilla’s Carbon eBike Oozes Style

Moto Parilla has a Kickstarter campaign going for its sexy Carbon eBike. Moto Parilla calls it an SUV eBike, highlighting its strength as a fun, off-road vehicle.

It’s not fast, top speed is only 35 km/h, but it does pack a punch. The 500 watt version has 70 Nm of torque and can propel you to 35 km/h in a few seconds.

You can get the 250 watt version for$1,940, and the 500 watt version for $2,280. Seems like a no-brainer!

Specifications 250w and 500w

  • COLOR – BLACK
  • FRAME – CARBON/ALUMINUM ALLOY
  • FRONT FORK – CARBON/CNC ALUMINIUM GIRDER FORK
  • FRONT BRAKE – HYDRAULIC DISK BRAKE (400mm DISK)
  • REAR BRAKE – HYDRAULIC DISK BRAKE (210 mm)
  • GEAR – GEAR 8 SPEED
  • SUSPENSION – GAS SHOCK ADSORBER
  • DRIVE – CHAIN
  • WHEELS – ALLOY RIM WITH STAINLESS SPOKES
  • TIRES – 26X4,80 BALLON SIZE
  • WEIGHT – WITHOUT BATTERY 62 lb (28,5 Kg)
  • MOTOR DRIVE SYSTEM – BRUSHLESS MOTOR. PEDAL ASSISTED DRIVE WITH TORQUE SENSOR INSIDE PEDAL AXLE
  • BATTERY PACK – 36V 12Ah LITHIUM ION INSIDE
  • BATTERY CHARGE TIME – 6-8 HOURS
  • BATTERY AVERAGE LIFE – 1000 CHARGE CYCLE
  • AUTONOMY – 49 mi (80 Km)
  • MAX SPEED – 15.5 mph (25 Km/h) 250w VERSION,  18.0 mph (30 Km/h) 500w VERSION

Learn more at the Kickstarter Campaign Site.

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Danny MacAskill Trick Riding in Aviemore Spring

Danny MacAskill gets back to his roots, taking his trials bike to Aviemore Spring, in Scotland for some jaw-dropping trick riding.

Be sure to check out Danny’s other videos:

Who is Danny MacAskill?

Daniel “Danny” MacAskill is a Scottish trials cyclist, from Dunvegan on the Isle of Skye. He works professionally as a street trials pro rider for Inspired Bicycles Ltd

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Gino Bartali’s Heroic Rides to Save Lives

Here’s a brief glimpse into Gino Bartali’s secret rides in defiance of the Nazis during World War II.

It follows an Israeli pro cycling team on a very special ride. The riders ignored their specific intense training routine and took on a 200km journey through the heart of Tuscany – starting in Florence and finishing at world heritage city of Assisi – copying the exact same route Bartali use to ride by himself.

The course, that started in Bartali’s house in Florence and ended in Assisi, took the riders along the route that Bartali rode through, while delivering fake documents for Italian Jews.

It was later discovered that Bartali did a lot more than just deliver documents.  If this topic interests you I highly recommend the movie My Italian Secret. which goes into detail on Bartali’s secret life helping the Italian Resistance.

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Benefits of Beetroot

Beetroot has been gaining popularity as a super food and with good reason. Recent studies suggest it improves blood flow and lowers blood pressure, leading to improved athletic performance.

I happen to love beetroot, in all its forms. I regularly eat it on salad and have beetroot soup. Now I have another… make that about half a dozen reasons to eat and drink more beetroot.

MedicalNewsToday.com reports:

“Beetroot juice supplementation has been shown to improve muscle oxygenation during exercise, suggesting that increased dietary nitrate intake has the potential to enhance exercise tolerance during long-term endurance exercise.”

Source: Beetroot: Health Benefits and Nutritional Information

Cycling Performance and Beetroot

What does this mean for us cyclists?

In scientific tests carried out by Cermak, Gibala and van Loon, and reported in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition Exercise Metab., cyclists were able to improve their time trial performance significantly.

2012 Feb reports:

The authors tested the hypothesis that 6 d of nitrate ingestion would improve time-trial performance in trained cyclists. Using a double-blind, repeated-measures crossover design, 12 male cyclists (31±3 yr, VO2peak=58±2 ml·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹, maximal power [Wmax]=342±10 W) ingested 140 ml/d of concentrated beetroot (~8 mmol/d nitrate) juice (BEET) or a placebo (nitrate-depleted beetroot juice; PLAC) for 6 d, separated by a 14-d washout. After supplementation on Day 6, subjects performed 60 min of submaximal cycling (2×30 min at 45% and 65% Wmax, respectively), followed by a 10-km time trial.

Time-trial performance (953±18 vs. 965±18 s, p<.005) and power output (294±12 vs. 288±12 W, p<.05) improved after BEET compared with PLAC supplementation. Submaximal VO₂ was lower after BEET (45% Wmax=1.92±0.06 vs. 2.02±0.09 L/min, 65% Wmax 2.94±0.12 vs. 3.11±0.12 L/min) than with PLAC (main effect, p<.05).

Six days of nitrate supplementation reduced VO₂ during submaximal exercise and improved time-trial performance in trained cyclists.

Another study involving beetroot juice showed similar results, finding:

  • Beetroot juice increased plasma nitrate concentration from 293 ± 133 nM to 575 ± 199 nM (p < 0.05).  The placebo did not show an effect.
  • Beetroot juice significantly lowered systolic blood pressure (placebo = 131 ± 8 mmHg, beetroot juice = 125 ± 5 mmHg, p < 0.05).
  • Beetroot juice reduced the time it took for all subjects to complete the 4 km trial.  Average times were 6.43 ± 0.42 min at the familiarization trials and 6.27 ± 0.35 min with supplementation (p < 0.05).  The placebo did not have an effect (6.45 ± 0.42 min, p > 0.05).
  • Times were reduced for all subjects in the 16.1 km time trial with beetroot juice supplementation from 28.6 ± 2.4 min in the familiarization trial to 26.9 ± 1.8 min (p < 0.01).  The placebo had no effect (27.7 ± 2.1 min, p > 0.05).  This effect (mean time decrease of 2.8% in the 4-km trial and 2.7% in the 16-km trial) is much greater that the “smallest worthwhile change” (0.6%) proposed by another group of exercise scientists.
  • Beetroot juice increased power output 5% in the 4 km time trial and 6% in the 16.1 km time trial.
  • The power output: VO2 ratio was significantly elevated at the 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, and 4 km distances for the beetroot juice vs. placebo in the 4-km time trial. This ratio was also elevated above placebo (albeit not significantly) at distance measurement (taken every 2 km) during the 16-km time trial.

Roughly a 5-6% improvement in power just from drinking a juice, with no expensive aero helmets, skinsuits or trick wheels.

The good news doesn’t stop there.

MedicalNewsToday.com also reports other health benefits, beetroot counteracts inflammation, lowers glucose levels and oxygenates the brain helping fight dementia.

The Velo Logic store now stocks Beet IT Organic Shots . This bottled form provides a convenient way to get a performance and health boost anytime and anywhere.

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The Cardboard Bicycle

A cardboard bicycle? Yes. Cardboard Technologies says:

Recycled cardboard used for packaging is folded origami style to make it strong. It’s then treated to make it both waterproof, and fireproof.”

How it all began…

The Thinking Behind Cardboard Technologies

“We are not a bicycle company, we are a technology company. The bicycle is just our first implementation of the technology.”

Source: Cardboard Technologies

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The Red Hook Criterium in Brooklyn NY

Saturday April 30 was the 9th annual Red Hook Crit in Brooklyn. There was a huge crash caused by a motorcycle stopped in the middle of the course.

How the Red Hook Crit #9 Unfolded

“After two failed starts due to early first lap complications and crashes the race was shortened to twenty-two instead of twenty-six laps as originally scheduled. Mario Paz Duque (IRD Carerra) advanced from tenth on the grid to win his seventh Red Hook Crit Breakfast Prime. Aldo Ilesic (Allez-Allez Specialized) soon took control of the race sitting on the front with little objection from his competitors. Zawada started pushing the pace and the field was strung out, but on the third lap Zawada crashed clipping a pedal through a hairpin, and retired from the race. Ilesic still on the front looked to be riding easily though those around were struggling to match the pace…”

Read the full report

What’s the Red Hook Crit All About?

Originally the Red Hook Crit was an illegal race on streets of Brooklyn. It was founded as a birthday party for the founder’s friends. His friends were all racers and were always training, so in order to get them to attend his party he turned it into a crit.

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