Yes, I know…I should know better by now. I really should. But there I was in Smiths, temporarily bereft of reading matter thanks to an unfortunate series of events involving my Kindle, a bench seat, and my son’s FAT ARSE!, when I spotted the latest issue of Cycling Weekly. Oh, go on then, I thought. It’ll keep me amused for a while.
And it did…if “a while” is defined as 10 minutes or fewer (or is it less? The grammar nazis have got me all confused now). Anyway, the latest issue is out and it’s pretty much as you’d expect. I don’t even have to say it, do I? You know…you just know.
On the cover we have Chris Froome, the well-known Kenyan baseball player. He must be a baseballist (or a chav) because he’s wearing a baseball cap. I think the new Editor missed a trick when he took over at CW. He should have emailed all the pro team PR people and told them that no photos of their riders would be published if they were wearing a baseball cap instead of a proper cycling cap. The cycling media owes us this.
The news pages kick off several pages of stating-the-feckin-obvious. We have ex-doper JV saying he wants the Cannondale team to be better in 2016, ex-doper JTL saying he can’t wait to get back to racing, probably-not-a-doper Jack Bobridge winning the Aussie Nationals, Cav saying he wants to win stuff, and Dan Martin saying he wants to do better this season. All absolutely fascinating, I can tell you.
But what really caught my eye was the story about delivery delays from Canyon. I have to say I did chuckle a bit at this. CW has leaped into action on behalf of frustrated Canyon customers, demanding to know when the hideously inefficient bosches are likely to deliver some bikes to their customers. It almost smacks of actual journalism. But what I don’t really understand is why it’s taken them four years to notice that Canyon’s delivery estimates are as reliable as an IAAF doping test. Look at the main cycling forums and you’ll find lots of complaints going back to 2012 concerning repeatedly revised delivery estimates. CW only got involved when Canyon themselves recently fessed up to the problems and blamed it on some kind of change in something a bit important at one or other of their factories. Or something. Glad that’s sorted out then.
The big feature (seven pages) this week is about Chris Froome. It’s not bad, as far as these things go. But there’s still nothing new that hasn’t already been said endless times since the Tour. And I really don’t care very much. He is horrible to behold on a bicycle, he doesn’t have any of the entertainment value of Wiggo, and I just don’t care. The next piece, about the snowy 2013 Milan-Sanremo, was far too short to really capture a flavour of that extraordinary day. Shame.
Next we get a look at Sagan’s metalflake monstrosity, his Venge, then a few pages of new products, and some product tests — an Enigma Elite in salmon pink (although in reality it’s hot orange), and five random rain jackets. The very short piece on roadcraft is so lightweight as to be barely worth the effort.
Next is another cracker asking the question: should your bike fit put your body first? WTF? Really? You mean there are bike fits that put your bike first? If your stem’s too short, do they suggest chopping 20mm out of your forearms? Saddle too high? Cycle in platform-shoes. What they’re actually talking about is the occasions when some riders have injury or a disability that requires a physio-led approach to bike fit. I just don’t understand why they didn’t say so in the first place. In itself, it’s a decent read.
The preview of the Kings of The Mountains sportive is quite a nice (too short) piece, the stuff about Thanet Road Club I didn’t bother with (who the hell designs all these hideous club kits?), and nor do I care about cyclocross races. Dr Hutch, on the other hand, is as good as ever. The classifieds, however, are a real let-down…not one hideous Frankenbike to be seen! Come on people, let’s see those hilarious seat angles, misplaced levers and tortured cable routing. It’s the only thing I look forward to in CW these days.