More on the Guardian’s Bike Coverage

I’ve long been a fan of The Guardian, so when they launched a bike blog over the summer that collates all their cycling coverage, I signed up to receive updates. So far, I’ve not been disappointed. It covers a broad range of cycling culture and news.

There are women contributors who write about everything from harassment to riding in a skirt. The show’s current podcast, second in what’s to be a monthly series, included an interview with cyclist and Olympic medal winner Victoria Pendleton, who said that while she enjoys racing and can’t wait for London 2012, she looks forward “to the day when I don’t have an agenda [while riding]” and can “just toodle” around with her friends. Perhaps she was imagining that while posing for this picture.

Pendelton with a Pashley Poppy, from the Daily Mail via Cyclechic.co.uk

Pendelton with a Pashley Poppy, from the Daily Mail via Cyclechic.co.uk

Also featured were reviews of the new Trek Soho (described as “stately” yet “slightly chunky”) and the Sirrus Elite (the “boy racer” of hybrid bikes), and an inside look at Pashley (not only is business up, they’re opening a new distribution center . . . in Taiwan!).

A recent piece on Denmark’s bike culture included this fascinating tidbit:

A few, here, still bother with those wriggly centipede locks, and D-locks, and chain their bikes to trees or the plethora of stands (there’s even a stand at the airport, filled with 150 bikes): far, far more users simply rely on the so-called O-lock, the fixment the size of a small hand which swings down from behind the saddle and slots in half a second between spokes on the rear wheel. Fast and cleanly efficient, and most of those I spoke to say bike thefts had gone down in recent years: partly, they say, because everybody now has one. Even if they were stolen in the first place.

How convenient. Wish I felt secure enough to just use the O-lock with my Bat. Does anyone out there (outside of Denmark) do this? Not to mention, everyone has a bike? Sometimes I wonder if Copenhagen could possibly live up to the cycling paradise that articles like this have led me to envision. I do remember scads of bikes on the road when I was there in 2002, but since I wasn’t riding then, I didn’t notice details.

Also featured this week was this article on the breadth of cycling today. Unlike the recent NYT piece on the subject, it featured photos of real people, from naked riders to businesspeople with folders to moms on trikes to the girls of cyclechic.co.uk. (In a classic “great minds think alike” example, Dottie was publishing a post on this article while I was writing this one! See her more in-depth reaction here.)

A Batavus takes a naked ride!

A Batavus takes a naked ride!

Definitely a blog to check out, whether you’re in the UK or not.

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10 thoughts on “More on the Guardian’s Bike Coverage

  1. [...] original here: More on the Guardian’s Bike Coverage article, bikes, friends, girls, guardian, media, Picture, podcast, taiwan, this-article [...]

  2. Dean Peddle says:

    Yes….I have an O-Lock (actually I thought is was U-Lock) on my Breezer and I use it ONLY all the time and I live in Toronto Canada Area. I’ve had it for 2+ years with no problems. I figure its safe for 2 reasons. The first is if someone wants to carry my 50 lbs beast (bike seats, paniers) off then good luck to them. Also, they are not normal here in North America so my thought process is someone will try to ride the bike and it will stop, they will get frustrated and just drop it as they don’t know what to do. I really feel safe when the kids trailer is attached to it cause then there is no way they can carry it! I love them and purchased a couple extras while I was in Holland. I’ve attached one to my wife’s hybrid using a special bracket that attaches to the V brakes. She also uses it all the time. I’m also thinking of putting the other one on my cyclocross commuter bike but this bike is very light so I won’t be able to count on the 50 lbs trick :(

  3. dottie says:

    I really want a petticoat – at least as much as you want a romper. That’s bad, isn’t it??

  4. Most bikes in Japan are equipped with O-Locks as well. And others have very flimsy cable or chain locks. I think the amount of people that ride bikes is actually very high, but they don’t go very far on them. Mostly in close proximity of where they live, so infrastructure needed to ride further is a bit lacking.

  5. That’s so great that an Olympic racer rides a Pashley Poppy! Nice colour, too.

    I never use just the O-lock on my Pashey… Though with it being so heavy, I can hardly imagine thieves motivated to lift it into a truck in the 90-degree heat!

  6. Trisha says:

    I always use my O-Lock, but in conjunction with a cable lock. The Batavus is heavy, but I can carry it up a flight of stairs so someone really determined could take it away. However, on a quick run into a coffee shop or something, I might give the O-Lock only a try — especially if the bike stays within my sight. Seeing a person carrying a bike away would, I hope, provoke bystanders to know something was up!

  7. Christa says:

    I’m planning to get a Batavus soon. I first heard of the bicycle through your blog. I recently tested a friends Batavus and loved it!

    I used the O-lock while traveling Europe. It felt safe and had no problems. It’s great! I think the Denmark critique is right – the O-lock works if a large percent of people use them.

    Now that I’m planning to get a Batavus, I’ve been wondering about the O-lock’s utility and application in the US. I imagine most American’s don’t know about O-locks.

    Thanks for the link to the Guardian article. Those new cycle chic boutiques in London are a great idea. I want to start one – seems like a lot of fun. :)

  8. sara says:

    Of course, I got all excited about the section of the Guardian’s article about the mama cyclist and her Trikidoo. It’s exciting to learn about all the family bike options out there and there seem to be more & more every day. The mama interviewed is so right on about how folks love to smile and wave and the “carnival feel’ about her family bike. We tend to get similar reactions when out in our bakfiets. My boys have perfected their ‘royal waves’ as we cruise along and they respond to folks who call out. It really IS a delightful way to travel.

  9. coolbreezecyclery says:

    Thanks for the wonderful link I’ll be adding that blog to my links

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