Your tailgate just got MacGyvered: Gear Gate Cycling Comp

Long has the tailgate pad been a mainstay in transporting mountain bikes in the bed of a pickup truck, and although there are other options out there, it has been the best way to get your bikes from A to B. Until now.

The Hoodworks Gear Gate Cycling Comp is an aftermarket tailgate that brings a near-Bear Grylls level of preparedness to transporting your ride.

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The Gear Gate accepts both thru-axles and open dropout forks

First and foremost the Gear Gate utilizes what it’s creator is calling the ‘Universal Bike (UB) Shaft for Open Dropout and Thru-Axle Bikes.’ Hoodworks says its UB mounting system can handle hub spacing up to 150mm, meaning it’s fat bike friendly, and can transport up to three bikes. There are no real specifics as to how it works, nor what thru-axle standards the UB system accepts, though it appears it only secures one dropout – which doesn’t seem ideal.

Heavy duty

To deter hoodlums who’d like to steal your ride while you grab a breakfast burrito, the Gear Gait comes with a heavy duty chain, made in the Pewag facility in Pueblo, Colorado, which is anchored by a tactical grade U-bolt hidden inside the tailgate. As a testament to the chain’s durability and strength, according to Hoodworks, the US armed forces use these same chains as snow gear on their tactical vehicles.

Lights, camera, action

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Doper turned anti-doping advocate Millar to mentor British Cycling academy programme

Former professional cyclist David Millar, famously a former doper and now anti-doping advocate, is to mentor the British Cycling men’s endurance academy programme on a voluntary basis, it has been announced. 

Millar, who was banned for doping in 2004 but subsequently became one of cycling’s leading anti-doping campaigners, will be available to offer advice to the young riders on the academy programme based on his experience. His racing palmares include several stage victories at all three of the Grand Tours, 2010 Commonwealth time-trial champion and silver at the UCI Time Trial World Championships. He also captained Mark Cavendish’ world championship victory in 2011, and prior to his retirement rode for and part-owned the Garmin Slipstream team, known for its anti-doping stance. 

Related: David Walsh says mechanical doping could spell the end of pro cycling

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Shane Sutton, technical director for the Great Britain cycling team, views Millar’s involvement with the programme not only as an opportunity to help inform and reinforce British Cycling’s staunchly anti-doping culture, but also to share his knowledge of tactics and training. 

“Having someone of David’s calibre on board to support us in this education process is invaluable; he is readily available to share his well-rounded experiences as a professional cyclist to the young riders who aspire to succeed in their careers,” he said. “In addition to his mentor work, David brings with him a massive amount of training and tactical knowledge which will support the work of the coaches, and he’s become a well-respected figure in cycling which will help us to open doors when it comes to fielding young talent into professional road teams.

“David will work with the squad on a voluntary basis until the end of the month with a view to subsequently joining the team in a more official capacity,” he added. 

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Specialized S-Works 6 shoes

Specialized has revamped its top-end road shoes yet again, retaining the previous version’s pared-down approach but with a more refined fit and – at least in our opinion – a more pleasing and classic aesthetic. BikeRadar’s international crew has been testing the new S-Works 6 model on two continents (on opposite sides of the equator!) and, while there are a few minor quirks, we’ve found them exceptionally good overall.

Shoehorn not included

As good as the new shoes are, there’s a good chance your first impression of the new S-Works 6 shoes won’t be a positive one. Thanks to a newly aggressive external heel counter that pinches down around your Achilles’ tendon, grippy material inside the heel cup itself, and the lack of a quick-release function on the minimalist Boa S2 Snap cable reels, these suckers are certainly a little harder to put on than most other cycling shoes we’ve sampled. A shoehorn proves handy.

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The new external heel counter is very aggressively shaped, tapering sharply inward up top for a very secure heel hold

Once you get them on and start riding, however, it’s even more likely that any negative opinions will quickly change.

The fit is fantastic, with a reassuringly snug and shrink-wrapped feel around the middle of your foot and an almost ludicrously secure hold on your heel. Despite having essentially no padding on the tongue, the Boa cables don’t dig into the tops of your feet at all, even when cranked down far more than necessary. And while those Boa reels don’t have a quick-release function (the open-backed cable guides do help, however), the upside is a very small footprint that creates none of the pressure points that ones with a bigger base are sometimes prone to.

The comfort factor

Ride-ready from the outset

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Felt Decree 2.0

Felt may not be the biggest name when it comes to full-suspension trail bikes. But some innovative suspension designs have certainly piqued our interest.

Like a few other bikes to be released lately, such as Orbea’s Occam or Cannondale’s Habit, the 150mm travel Felt Decree uses a flexible seatstay to facilitate the suspension’s movement, rather than a rear pivot. This saves the weight and servicing faff inherent with run-of-the-mill bearings, but adds a spring force as the seatstays flex.

Related: Felt Decree FRD

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Felt has moulded the carbon seatstays to rest in the sag position. This means they act to compress the shock when it’s at less than 30% travel, softening the initial stroke, yet they work with the shock beyond 30% travel, firming up the midstroke.

If this sounds familiar, it’s probably because RockShox’ DebonAir shocks use an oversized negative air chamber to achieve a similar effect. Felt has doubled up on the supple beginning-stroke goodness by speccing the DebonAir version of the RockShox Monarch Plus shock. You can’t have too much of a good thing, right?

Turn of speed

Jumping aboard the Decree, its turn of speed is striking. On flat ground, the fast rolling Schwalbe Nobby Nic treads and low weight (12.6kg in XL) allow it to really bowl along. It’s comfy too thanks to the genuinely supple suspension, which tracks chattery ground with sublime sensitivity.

Spot-on suspension

Component clashes

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Sweet spot training for cyclists

Sweet spot training is a great way to increase your power at threshold, so if you want to improve your time trial performance or hang with the fast group ride, sweet sport training is worth doing.

The term ‘sweet spot’ refers to an intensity of training that is hard enough to elicit substantial physiological benefit but not so hard as to be unsustainable. It lies at around 90 percent of threshold power. Functional threshold power, or FTP, is typically defined as the highest output you can sustain for an hour.

If you don’t have a power meter (see why power measurement is important), this roughly equates to 95 percent of your threshold heart rate. Note that your functional threshold heart rate is not your maximum heart rate; as with FTP power, your FTP heart rate is the highest that you could hold for an hour time trial.

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Related: Heart rate training zones explained

Training at this sweet spot is more sustainable than threshold work and less time consuming than endurance training, so cyclists can repeat it frequently and see real improvements. 

The video below shows a sweet spot training session that uses a turbo trainer. It was put together by James McCallum, and aims to help you improve your riding speed and burn fat.

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Cervélo Bigla will be wearing Endura for the 2016 race season

Scottish company Endura is the new clothing sponsor for Swiss women’s pro cycling team Cervélo Bigla, providing the team with kit for the 2016 season. 

Endura has an extensive catalogue of products, producing road, mountain bike, triathlon and custom kit, and pedigree when it comes to producing kit for professional teams. The company is also clothing sponsor for men’s pro-cycling team Movistar, and provided the aerosuit for Australian Bridie O’Donnell’s successful UCI Hour Record attempt. 

“We’re all really excited to partner with Cervélo Bigla. The project is an exciting one and it’s an exciting time for women’s cycling with the establishment of the UCI Women’s WorldTour and more exposure in the media for women’s racing,” said Endura founder Jim McFarlane. “We’ll be using the riders of Cervélo Bigla as an elite group of high mileage performance product testers to help build our range of market-leading performance wear for female riders.”

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Cervélo Bigla are currently ranked fifth in the world by the UCI, with the team lineup featuring riders like Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio, currently ranked sixth in the world, and former world time trial bronze medallist Carmen Small. 

Endura has introduced a range of new techniques throughout its clothing range as a result of designing products for pro teams and sponsored athletes. This includes using the Drag2Zero facility at the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 wind tunnel to improve aerodynamics, developing a new pad fitting system with German bike fitting experts gebioMized, and making use of climate chambers to test new fabrics on riders that will help them keep cool. 

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar

Top 5 roadie pro team kits of 2016

It’s the time of year when we cast our eyes into the beating heart of the peloton to pass judgement on the new team kits. Most of the time the changes are subtle, and this year is no exception, so with that in mind here are 5 of our favourites.

With colours ranging from bright green to vivid red, an assortment of patterns, and kit produced by companies such as Castelli and Rapha (hint!), there are some eye-catching and even, dare we say it, almost cuddly elements. The 2016 pro peloton will be awash with colour, that’s for sure.

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Reckon yourself a bit of a pro team kit expert? Take our quiz to see if you can guess the year from the team kit

You can read more at BikeRadar.com


Source: Bike Radar