Cyclists of a certain age may remember the good old days, when cycling was a real sport and bikes were bikes, etc

1. Checking your post-ride stats meant looking at the mechanical odometer down by your front fork drop-out. Or by how much your legs hurt.

2. It was totally okay to wear a shiny cycle jersey that included every colour and pattern known to the human race, and some that weren’t.

3. Carbon was the stuff Han Solo was frozen in, not what your frame was made of.

4. You knew exactly what people meant when they said “I were right about that saddle though”.

5. Your posh mate had a Merckx bike, but most people couldn’t pronounce it.

6. Clip-on aero bars were the height of aerodynamic technology.

7. You spent a while deciding whether to make the switch from clips and straps to new-fangled clipless pedals.

Adrian Timmis's ANC Halfords Peugeot 1987 TDF Bike_Campag pedal Christophe toestraps_edit

8. Your sports nutrition consisted of jelly babies and jam sandwiches (white bread, naturally).

9. Your helmet – if you owned one – had a cloth cover.

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10. Brake levers were for brakes, not changing gear.

11. Cycling/Cycling Weekly magazine was the only way you could find out who won what and where.


12. £20 was an insane amount to spend on any item of cycle clothing.

13. You never heard of any positive drug tests. No one took drugs, obviously.

14. A mobile phone consisted of a 10p piece and a wildly optimistic hope that there was a phone box within five miles.


1980s style

15. Aluminium bikes were for show offs.

16. Specialized, Trek and Cannondale were ‘mountain bike manufacturers’.

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17. Milk and Kelloggs were bike races, not just what you had for breakfast.

18. Greg LeMond was the only American to have won the Tour de France. Some things don’t change…

What else you you remember about cycling in the 80s? Tell us in the comment box below.