It may only be January, but the professional cycling season is already underway thanks to the Tour Down Under and the Tour de San Luis.
The Australian race saw an all-home podium, with Rohan Dennis coming out on top. However, arguably the bigger talking point was Jeremy Roy’s uncanny ability to be right in the thick of any major crashes, while staying upright and riding away unscathed.
The Tour de San Luis was British sprinter Mark Cavendish‘s first outing of the year, but it took him until the third time of asking to get the better of young Colombian Fernando Gaviria.
SRAM’s wireless electronic groupset
This innovation had long been rumoured, but it looks as if SRAM’s wireless groupset is getting closer to production. This video was made by a chap called ‘Gravel Cyclist’ who managed to catch an AG2R mechanic working on a team bike.
The system was raced at the Tour Down Under, and we’re eagerly awaiting an official launch. “It’s still in the development phase,” a SRAM spokesman told Cycling Weekly.
Cav’s unusual analogy (warning: contains explicit language)
Clearly not in the mood for a question he must have been asked a thousand times, the Manx rider uses a rather novel analogy to put the questioner on the spot. Asked if he can be “100 per cent sure” that the riders he competes against aren’t doping, Cav asks if the journalist can be 100 per cent sure that one of his colleagues isn’t being, erm, over-friendly with his wife.
The best bit is Michal Kwiatkowski’s “did-he-really-just-say-that?!” expression as Cav makes his point.
Taiwan rider’s lucky escape
Trying to avoid being part of a hefty-looking traffic jam, this utility cyclist (or you might just call her a person who happens to be using a bike) shows incredible balance and poise when her bike is swept from under her by an errant motorist.
Jeremy Roy rides his luck
This spectacular crash at the finish of stage four in the Tour Down Under was caught by the on-board camera of FDJ rider Jeremy Roy. If there’s any doubt about the ferocity of the pile-up, keep an eye on the fork of the Canyon that flies across the shot.
Bristol riders get slippy
Complete with live commentary, the treacherous conditions of the popular Bristol-Bath cycle route are shown in stark reality as people crash hard on their way to work. Let’s hope we’re past the worst of the ice for this winter.
Fernando Gaviria goes (very) early to take sprint win
It was a challenging start to the season for Mark Cavendish, thanks to 20-year-old Fernando Gaviria twice coming out on top in sprint finishes at the Tour de San Luis to claim his first ever pro wins on the road.
The Colombian’s second win was the most spectacular. He goes very early, disregarding any notion of a lead out and opens up a significant gap to leave the Manxman a distant second. Fair play to Cavendish, though — not only did he have the last laugh with a win on the final stage, but he was gracious enough to tweet compliments to his new rival at the end of stage three.