Twitter

Peter Sagan — the Best Tour de France Rider Since Eddy Merckx?

Peter Sagan has 12 Tour de France stage wins to his credit, and has won a record seven sprinter’s green jerseys. But despite these other-worldly results, his metronomic consistency at the Tour is almost criminally underrated. Despite “only” being ranked 16th on the list of Tour de France stages won with 12 stage wins, the three-time world champion holds an astonishingly high “podium rate” in mass-start stages of 33 percent, with 45 individual podium finishes. This means that for every one in three times Sagan lines up at a (non-time trial) Tour de France stage, he lands himself somewhere on the podium. This is even more impressive when we recall that he has never finished on the podium in a mountain stage – which can make up about a third of the event’s overall stages. This raw figure is obviously impressive, but to put it into perspective, Alejandro Valverde, Mr....

The Outer Line: Introducing the “Retrospectives” Podcast : Episode 1 – A Talk with Kevin Livingston

(The Outer Line, in conjunction with KOM Sports Marketing, a long-time sports event organizer and marketing agency, is pleased to announce the new “Retrospectives” podcast, featuring talks with key historical cycling personalities and newsmakers. In this initial episode, KOM’s President Steve Brunner, interviews former pro racer Kevin Livingston, a key lieutenant for Lance Armstrong in his first two wins at the Tour de France. Future “where are they now” oriented episodes will include discussions with a wide variety of other cycling luminaries and notables from past years. – Steve Maxwell) At his peak, during the years around the turn of the 21st century, Kevin Livingston was perhaps the very definition of a “super-domestique.” Although he took few personal victories, he was a powerful rider and one of the top climbers in the peloton. And he played a key support role in the early years...

PeopleForBikes Is Changing With the Industry

Most people around the American cycling scene are at least vaguely aware of PeopleForBikes (PFB). We see the PFB logo on a tee shirt or cap or a bike jersey here and there. We hear the name in the cycling press now and then – usually about some sort of broader community effort or political initiative. But many people don’t really understand exactly what PeopleForBikes is – what the organization consists of, and what it actually does to help us, as either enthusiasts or serious cyclists? Below, we explore the mission and activities of PFB against the broader backdrop of changes going on in cycling today. We also ask what we as cyclists can do to help the organization? PeopleForBikes is an industry coalition made up of 280 cycling-industry members, and some 1,000 Ride Spot retailer members, along with a cycling community of almost 1.4 million individual riders. It was founded...

Predicting How the New Wada Code Will Impact Cycling

Anti-doping is both simple and complex. The simple perspective is this: don’t take any banned drugs or use any banned methods, make yourself available for testing when requested, get any TUEs in advance, avoid contaminated supplements and medicines, and you’ll be fine. The complex perspective, on the other hand, is illustrated by the new World Anti-Doping Code – 180 pages, 27 Articles with six associated international standards. The 2021 code will be the fourth one, with the previous codes being issued in 2003, 2009 and 2015. While it may be advisable that athletes become familiar with these documents, it is easy to understand why that is a very challenging prospect. This article outlines some of the key changes which will come into force on January 1, 2021, and which could potentially affect cyclists. The new code: Much of it remains the same, notably the four-year ban for a...

The Kittie Knox Award – for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Cycling

(The League of American Bicyclists recently presented its first annual Kittie Knox award, which recognizes a champion of equity, diversity, and inclusion. Although it went unnoticed in the cycling media, Ayesha McGowan, the nation’s first Black woman pro racer, won the award – for her competitive example and accomplishments, and her voice for more inclusion in bicycling. Ayesha’s initiatives and story have been chronicled elsewhere, but we also wondered: Who was Kittie Knox, and what made her a model for racial inclusion in bicycling? We contacted Dr. Lorenz Finison, Boston historian and author of Boston’s Cycling Craze, 1880-1900: A Story of Race, Sport, and Society, who told us the story of Kittie Knox. – Steve Maxwell) Kittie Knox was born in 1874, to a Black father from Philadelphia and a white mother from Maine. She grew up in...

Returning to cycling after a COVID-19 infection

Elite cycling emerged from hibernation on May 21, 2020, when Andreas Leknessund won the Klatrekongen Fuel of Norway race, the first professional bike race since the European coronavirus lockdown, and an eternity since Colombian sprinter Fernando Gaviria earned the distinction of being the first notable professional rider to test positive for COVID-19 some three months earlier. While many areas of the world are still being battered by COVID-19, European professional racing is starting to delicately navigate the ever-changing conditions of this global pandemic, hopefully, en-route to a dizzying array of late summer events, culminating with the grand tours later in the fall. Ultimately, these plans will hinge on meticulous rider and team testing, and testing will almost surely disclose more cases of COVID-19 within the peloton. This will become a new fact of life; indeed, the situation is...