Jens Voigt will attempt the Cycling Hour Record this Thursday 18th September. It’s exciting times for the Hour with Bradley Wiggins and Fabian Cancellara lined up to also have a go at the record presumably right after they compete in the World Championships. They are keeping quiet but i’m sure Jens won’t hold onto the record for long, sadly. The UCI changed the rules this year to allow current endurance track bikes to be used and this is the Trek bike Jens will be using. The wheels have clock numbers on and there are two Jens specific graphics on the tubes reading: “Jens Voigt can beat the 1 Hour Record in under 60 minutes” and “Jens Voigt doesn’t normally ride in velodromes because he doesn’t like to lap himself. Brilliant. Eurosport will be broadcasting the event live. For more on the Hour, Jens and details of the bike i recommend this site and this one.
Donhou Bicycles launches Signature Steel, a series of handbuilt bicycles designed and built by Tom Donhou. We’ve been waiting to see what Tom has been cooking up for Signature Steel and the DSS1 Performance Disc Road is the first model on offer. All Signature Steel bikes will be available in stock sizes, paintwork and geometry with super neat TIG welding as apposed to fillet brazing seen on the custom bikes.
Having built the Rapha Continental bike a few years ago with disc brakes and plenty more since it’s no surprise to see them on the DSS1. Tom has put his knowledge of the Rapha Continental build he created into the DSS1 to produce a frame that is comfortable for all day riding.
Built from oversized Reynolds 853 Pro Team Tubing, the best regular steel they produce it has been TIG welded creating a light weight frame that comes with an ENVE Disc Road carbon fork and Chris King headset. Available for £2295 the Donhou Bicycles DSS1 comes in three sizes with options for Di2 cable routing. It’s painted in house in granite grey with pink and lime pearl fade and classic Donhou logo and headbadge. What a frame. You can order them from the Donhou Bicycles website.
Engineered Bikes just sent over a sneak peak of their freshly painted Donder in custom green. It’s looking great. Can’t wait to see this one up close. You can see the details like the stripe that runs underneath the down tube and up the back of the seat tube or is that the other way around? I think this is a good looking frame and it’s had a few updates since the version shown at Bespoked earlier this year. Most noticeable is the smooth welding that looks like a filed fillet braze on a steel frame. This frame is aluminium and is created for Criterium racing with a lively and aggressive ride and available in custom colours as an option. Here’s the regular Donder finish, head to Engineered Bikes for the full details.
Raymond Poulidor was called the eternal second. His rivalry with Jacques Anquetil is legendary. He was a tough rider for sure and didn’t have the style of Anquetil or as some say the souplesse. But what he did have was a character and the French public adored him. Whenever he came second to Jaques they loved him even more. I think outside of France we don’t refer to him much. That is a shame. He was an incredible rider and even though he was nicknamed the eternal second because he never won the tour he did win many races. Even so he never really thought that highly of himself, he was humble in his racing ability. He had this to say in an interview when asked if he was distracted (Velo Magazine France).
“It was true. I thought what was happening to me was already marvellous enough. I never thought of winning. Never, ever, did I get up in the morning with the idea of winning!”
Raymond never really got the same chances in life as Jacques so it’s not surprising he never truly beat him at the Tour when is mattered but, Jacques was always frustrated by Raymond, more so his popularity. I like to think Raymond was a clean rider, I say this as he was the first person to be drug tested at the Tour. Whilst the peloton objected to these tests Raymond was not bothered. To not be bothered is telling perhaps? Given the time and place at least.
Later on in life, after the racing, Anquetil and Poulidor became good friends. This again shows the character of Raymond but, also Jacques;
“For a long time, I detested him. In the criteriums we were obliged to get on but we never ate at the same table. It was often Jeanine [Anquetil's wife] who acted as an intermediary. But later we got on. When he died, I had the feeling that I had lost a friend.”
There is a lot to say about Raymond Poulidor, too much for one post, I urge you to visit the wiki page on the man. This photo below is probably the best known photo of Poulidor and really sums up his era of racing and to us, I think it’s a romantic image of what the Tour used to be like. Today, it’s way more clinical and seeing this sort of emotional racing is much less.
We are big fans of bicycle inspired music at Headset Press. We previously posted about the band Me For Queen and their album, Iron Horse. On 17 September they will be having a video and Album launch. This will happen at Lee Valley Velo Park just outside London. You are all invited and the details are over on Facebook. The video is for the song White Bike and is well worth the listen.
Machines for Freedom have launched their Fall Collection consisting of the Dot Print Jersey, GeoFloral Jersey and Endurance bib shorts to go along with the great looking caps we featured. The jerseys are made from a Swiss fabric that’s breathable, moisture wicking, has an SPF of 50+ and uses COLDBLACK technology to keep you cool. The Endurance bib shorts have a leg band that has been designed to not squeeze thighs and create a bulge. The Italian Chamois is designed to be comfy with all sit bone widths and has a centre cushion for comfort when riding in the drops. Machines for Freedom worked with an LA textile designer to create original patterns. They look great. Head to Machines for Freedom for full details.
Beryl Burton is probably one of the most unsung stars of cycling. I’m not making a differentiation between women’s and men’s cycling here either. In case that’s in doubt, she set a women’s record for the 12-hour time-trial which exceeded the men’s record for two years. Enough said. Whilst there is nothing new in this story it should be heard more and often. If you have an interest in cycling history this is a little chapter you need to know.
That record she set, a new 12-hour time trial, was 277.25 miles. The story goes, that she caught up with Mike McNamara who was on his way to setting the men’s record at 276.52 miles, she then offered him liquorice allsort as she passed. Apparently, McNamara ate the sweet. I know I would take that sweet too. The list of records the Beryl achieved is incredible from domestic to world titles, road to time trial and on the track. What is more she was an average person, I don’t mean that in a disparaging way. She didn’t have any airs or graces, lived a modest life as a mother and wife. That is so removed from today’s attitude but, the performances are capable of standing good today. I remember hearing the news that she passed away on her bike at the your age of 59. She surely deserves more, at least to be better recognised as precursor to helping equalise the man women divide in sport. If you want to know more there is a great documentary available from Bromley Video.
I will be putting a few more of these out over the coming months you can find them by searching for heroes.
The Specialized 40th Anniversary Allez is limited to 74 frames worldwide and is available to order for one month only. Mark DiNucci was one of Specialized’s original frame builders when the company started 40 years ago. To celebrate Mark has built a new Allez frame from Reynolds 853. All frames are being built in the factory that where the first Stumpjumper was built. An interesting piece of history from one of the biggest bike companies in the world.
Included with every Specialized 40th Anniversary Allez will be a limited edition Merino wool sweater, winter and summer cycling caps, limited edition leather S-Works Toupe saddle, matching leather saddle bag and leather bar wrap.
All proceeds from the sales of the 74 Specialized 40th Anniversary Allez frames are being donated to World Bicycle Relief. Read more from Specialized or if you fancy it this is where you can buy the Specialized 40th Anniversary Allez.
To celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the modern Tour of Britain Condor Cycles have painted 15 Condor alumni riders to produce the Condor Cycles Top Trumps game. Ben Spurrier has drawn and painted each rider in water colour. The 15 riders have been selected from the last 5 decades and include John Herety and Bob Downs and there’s also a famous frontman in there. Each rider has been categorised by Panache, Sprinting, Climbing, Time Trial and Hardman Skiils. The Condor 1948 range is inspired by the jerseys worn by past riders, it’s a great looking kit. Download Top Trumps and read more about it on the Condor Cycles blog.
The Shimano Sport Camera on a mechanic is pretty awesome. I get that Shimano are pushing the heck out of these cameras and subsequent videos but, I do like what I see. This one is from the Vuelta which we’ve been quietly enjoying. Watching this video you appreciate the energy that goes in to being neutral support (well for Shimano riders). It’s funny to here them shouting and making gestures like they forgot the camera was there. Hard to imagine dashing about swapping wheels for three weeks, never mind the riders, I wonder how many calories these guys need. The camera itself does seem to be pretty cool, especially for cyclists and more so for those on Shimano, the website for the sport camera has the details. Hope to see more of these videos as it’s interesting to get in amongst the action rather than the typical distance shots of pro races.