Tech of the Week: Strava hacks, British-built Raleighs, smart watches for cyclists, and more

The biggest tech stories from the last seven days

How to get even more out of Strava


This week we’ve seen a couple of smart ways for you to get even more out of everyone’s second favourite cycling website (after Cycling Weekly, of course). First up, the KOM club, a website for Strava addicts and KOM chasers, which places you in a worldwide league table based on the number of KOMs in your trophy cabinet.

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>>> Revealed: the 10 most popular Strava segments in the UK last year

The other neat little tool that we’ve come across is the StravistiX extension for Google Chrome. Designed by a French software engineer who found himself frustrated by the lack of data on offer, this extension allows you to delve even deeper into your ride data, and also has a neat trick of excluding the slowest 25 per cent of your ride from the average speed calculation, useful for riders whose stats have been ruined by slow sections getting in and out of towns.

Raleigh goes back to its roots

raleigh militis etap

You might be surprised to hear that Raleigh hasn’t assembled bikes in the UK since 2003, but that’s set to change with the new Militis eTap. The bad news is that the bike will be available in limited numbers and will come with a pretty hefy price-tag of £6,000.

>>> Bike of the Year 2016

One big reason for the cost is that the bike is equipped with SRAM Red eTap, making this the second British-branded bike to come with the new wireless groupset after Boardman announced its 2016 range back in November. This is hung on an 880g Militis frameset and matched with top-end Zipp 202 wheels and carbon finishing kit.

Is the Fitbit Blaze the smart watch that cyclists have been waiting for?

fitbit blaze

If you fancy splashing out on a smart watch, but want one that will also help you to ride your bike faster, then the recently unveiled Fitbit Blaze could be the one for you. Not only will it recognise what activity your doing, but it also features a heart rate monitor that is built into the strap and has the possibility of downloading pre-planned workouts.

>>> Garmin Vivoactive – a new fitness smartwatch (video)

There are however, a couple of small flaws. It lacks its own GPS, so you have to connect it to your phone in order to use GPS, while having to take your eyes off the road to look at your wrist if you want to see your stats is a problem shared with all cycling watches.

Lace-up shoes: form over function?

Giro empire lace up shoes

Our big tech question of the week was whether lace-up cycling shoes are here to stay. There was a time back in the day where lace-up shoes were the only option on the market, but over the last few decades we’ve seen Velcro straps, then ratchets, and finally dials take over.

>>> Buyer’s guide to road bike shoes

But with the launch of the Giro Empire shoes a few years ago, we’ve seen other lace-up options unveiled from the likes of Specialized and Bont, so are we going full circle when it comes to footwear fashion?

Forget 11-speed, how about an infinite choice of gears?


Finally, if having a choice of 22 gears isn’t quite enough for you, then you could well be interested in the new Wavetrans transmission system. Instead of having a rear derailleur, the system works by making the front chainring bigger and smaller.

>>> Do we need 12-speed gears?

Although the current system is a six-speed affair, in theory it could be further developed to give an infinite choice of gears. Unfortunately, as you can probably tell from the photo above, it’s still in the very early stages of development, so it could be a good few years before you see Wavetrans at your local bike shop.