BICYCLE FILM FESTIVAL RETURNS TO LONDON

Since its inception in 2001, the annual Bicycle Film Festival has attracted thousands of attendees from wherever the festival stops around the globe.

After a tour of America, the festival will begin its European leg beginning in London on October 1. After London, the event will continue on to Vienna, Zurich, Paris, Milan and then on to Australia.

Screenings for members of the public begin on October 2; renowned for acting as a showcase for emerging filmmaking talent, there will be a diverse range of films on offer from DKNY?s controversial bike-ad campaign, to a Japanese stage race in Burkina Faso.

However, the British premiere of the Road to Roubaix, a film which captures the agony and the ecstasy of the one of the world?s toughest races, will undoubtedly be the highlight of the festival.

Other attractions during the festival include the BIKES ROCK party on October 2, a night of roller racing on October 3 and the annual festival bike polo championships at the Islington Youth Centre.

This event is certainly not one to miss. More details can be found at www.bicyclefilmfestival.com

Screenings will be held at the Barbican Cinema (www.barbican.org.uk)

RIDE FOR AFRICA

Seasoned cycling enthusiasts will already be well aware of the classic Lands End to John O?Groats ride, but a charity called ?Shine? is organising a ride to raise money to build a school for orphans in a disadvantaged town in Zambia in southern Africa.

Five volunteers will be riding the length of Britain (over 1,000 miles) in 13 days, beginning on Sunday September 14.

Shine is looking for individuals and organisations to sponsor the five riders on their journey. Please see www.shinecharity.org for more details.

HELLO ROMERO!

Olympic gold medal-winner Rebecca Romero has followed in the footsteps of compatriot Nicole Cooke, first in sporting terms, and now by following her into the pages of Hello magazine.

Romero is pictured on a sofa in a gold dress, in a rather Romanesque pose, but looks decidely uncomfortable.

Romero made headlines recently when she posed nude for an energy drinks advert. It’s all in a day’s work for the Olympian.

MORE BRITISH SUCCESS

Britain?s cycling success on the world stage in 2008 has thus far been relentless and shows no sign of letting up just yet.

Britain?s athletes claimed two golds at the recent masters mountain biking World Championships in Praloup, France. Lee Bertram won the men?s downhill event for 30-34 year-olds, whilst Lynda Davies took the women?s over 40s downhill. Meanwhile, Paul Fench and Nina Davies took silvers in the men?s 40-44 downhill and women?s 30-34 cross-country respectively.

Meanwhile, on the road Britain’s Julia Shaw recently took the women’s time trial at the master’s road World Championships in Austria. The 42-year old who is the current open women’s 10 and 25-mile time trial champion, was also a strong fifth in the road race. She will also be riding the open pursuit and the upcoming national track championships.

BRITS IN BELGIUM

Britons Roger Hammond (Columbia) and Ian Stannard (Landbouwkrediet) were in action again on Wednesday at the 1.1 Memorial Rik van Steenbergen in Belgium.

The race was won in a bunch sprint by Quickstep?s Gert Steegmans, ahead of Stefan Van Dijk (Mitsubishi Jartazi) and Belgian champion, Jürgen Roelandts (Silence-Lotto). Hammond finished in a group of riders, 12 seconds down in 40th place. Stannard came in a further 1:40 down in 58th.

After a rather disappointing showing at the Beijing Olympics, Hammond will not be riding the upcoming World Championships in Italy. The Columbia rider has been linked to the new Cervélo trade team and Bouygues Telecom for next season. Meanwhile, Stannard will make his first appearance in the men?s elite team at the forthcoming Worlds.

SCHOOL WITH A DIFFERENCE

Olympic team pursuit champion Paul Manning gave a Q&A session yesterday to children from Beckton Primary School at the engineering firm ISG, which Manning will soon be joining as an assistant construction manager after retiring from cycling.

Manning talked to the young cycling enthusiasts about his career on two wheels before opening the floor to questions. Speaking of the day?s event, Paul said, ?my infatuation with cycling started when I was very young so it was great to see the same kind of enthusiasm from the younger generation although I wasn?t sure if the questions would ever end!?

Paul Manning Ed Clancy Olympic gold medal schoolTOUR OF BRITAIN ADDITION

Not technically ?British news? but there has been a last-minute alteration to the Topsport Vlaanderen team ahead of Sunday?s Tour of Britain, with Koen Barbe replacing Nikolas Maes.