Reasons to be cheerful in Melbourne…at last

Dear Rouleurs,

Whilst winter has been utterly dreary with no trips to the MCG and in last 2 months serious restrictions on movement, both due to stage 4 lock down, Team MMT’s mood has significantly improved. October has brought warmer weather and daylight savings has kicked in producing pleasant evenings to boot. But its two major events that have occurred this week that that has put a literal spring in MMT’s step.

The first occurred on Friday night, with MMT’s beloved Tigers went toe to toe with a hostile Port Adelaide on their home ground in front of a full house of Port supporters and …won…unf#%kbelievable. Even if the Cats roll the Tiges next Saturday, that game and the mental strength it took to win will be long remembered by Tiges fans everwhere. So here is it the MMT appropriated AFL graphic of the path to the Finals.

Its been a very weird year…period but this result is bewildering. Both Grand Finalists have:

=>been playing away from home for over 100 days in their respective hubs.

=>lost their initial Qualifying Final.

=>beaten the hometown team on their own ground in front of their supporters.

That is very odd, even in a year when lots of bad and odd things have been occurring. Which brings MMT to the other wonderful event of this week, today’s easing of Stage 4 Restrictions, in particular the one that was starting to drive MMT a bit nuts, the 5km radius restriction. MMT wrote about this a while back and has done some where upwards of 500km in his 5km radius.

So when this changed from this….

MMT’s Tour de 5km Radius. When daily exercise was set at 1 hour this meant tooling around Albert Park Lake. When this was lifted to 2 hours it meant he could ride to Williamstown. Alas MMT is yet to fugure out how to ride his beloved Trek Domane on water.

To this…

Hallelujah!!! MMT can ride to Mordialloc, Altona and Meadow Heights again with no daytime exercise time restrictions…woo hoo. I’m so looking forward to a cruise to Blackrock tomorrow.

Damn, normal road cycling has resumed in Melbourne for MMT. Unfortunately the same can not be said for cycling in European where COVID-19 is rampaging in devastating second wave. In seems unlikley that the Giro d’Italia 2020 will finish in Milan, and the classics have taken hit with both the Paris-Roubaix and Amstel Gold being cancelled. Let’s hope a vaccine is close to being released to the world’s population. This year has just been awful.

Until next time, ride safe and Go Tiges

MMT

And we are back………TDF 2020 – a.k.a the Tasmanian Edition

Dear Rouleurs,

MMT’s life is not his own at the moment. The combination of Stage 4 lockdown, ridiculous bollcks in his remote working life and 2 small kids, has just started wear thin. Whilst MMT can ride a bit further in his 5 km radius, care of stage 4 exercise time being increased to 2 hours, he’s thoroughly sick of his usual routes in the Tour de 5km Radius. About the only respite to this enervating scenario has been this year’s wonderful edition of the Tour De France, his beloved Tigers coming good at the end of the most peculiar season in AFL history and regular Zwifting on the pseudo France and Paris parcours.

So to the Tour De France 2020, all MMT can say is Tadej PogaÄŤar is Poga-star. A bad pun, but seriously his performance this year has been nothing short of astonishing. The Tadej Pogacar/Primoz Roglic time trial shoot out on stage 20 was incredible. It was most riveting time trial since the Benard Hinault/Greg Le Monde in TDF 1986. It just goes to show that someone can win the TDF, without a ‘skytrain’, 60 million Euro worth of funding and superstar domestique backup in the mountains. Take a bow, Tadej.

Speakin of bows, Richie Porte and Caleb Ewan, as the only Australian’s competing this year, what superb performances. Porte’s 3rd at the age of 35 is a testement to perservence. I’m sure his newly born daughter Eloise will forgive him, in the years to come, for not being there. Richie we love you because your a Tasmanian….

Ewan’s performance to win 2 stages in middle of the Bennett/Sagan malliot verte shootout was a excellent result. However, for MMT to see the guy haul his ass over ridiculously sprinter unfriendly mountain ranges and avoid the broom wagon, was the personificaiton of mental toughness.

So just to show how close the top 3 finishers were, MMT has liberated this wonderful infographic from Cycling News. No doubt the threating letter from their lawyers will be on its way soon.

Whats’ interesting about this graph is shows clearly, Poga-star recovered time lost in the cross winds on Stage 7 and in the time trial. Arguably if Porte’s Trek-Segafredo team hadn’t been asleep that day, he may have finished second. The graph also shows how little advantage Roglic gained in the mountain stages despite having all-star support from team mates Tony Martin on the flats and Tom Dumoulin in the mountains.

Oh yeah, one more thing…Team Ineos more like Team Invisible 🙂 except for stage 18. S

Well that’s all for now, until next time, ride safe, stay safe.

Marv

The Stage 4 Lockdown Blues

Dear Rouleurs,

It’s the second week of August and MMT is, to quote Shaun Micallef, ‘mad as hell’. Apparently, the Victorian version of overseas passenger quarantine was run by a bunch of muppets who didn’t brief or prepare their staff. Now all of Melbourne is in stage 4 lockdown and all of country Victoria is in stage 3 lockdown. Bummer…. The pic below shows The Age headline for the 3rd of August. In the end, the State Government didn’t have choice. The mounting mystery case list and sadly, deathtoll simply couldn’t be ignored.

The impact of that has meant has a drastic reduction in MMT’s time on the bike outdoors. People living in Melbourne are only allowed one hour of exercise a day and aren’t allowed to travel outside of a 5 kilometre radius of their home. The combination of those 2 restrictions has meant a lot of short, and some what frustrating rides inside the Red Circle of Boredom….

And there it is in all of its glory. The Red Circle of Boredom has meant a number of rides around Albert Park Lake and Fisherman’s Bend. If MMT had more than 1hour, he could have ridden to Williamstown and back. Being so close to the Bay has meant a large reduction in ride variety. Fortunately, MMT still has St Ali’s and Brother Bubba Budan in that zone so at least he has access to decent coffee when needed.

Now before MMT forgets the Red Circle of Boredom, is based on a rather heplful website, https://2kmfromhome.com/. The author is a fellow called David Bolger in the Republic of Ireland. You can find him here on Twitter: https://twitter.com/davebolger. It looks like his website received some serious interest from Melbourians judging by this tweet.

If MMT hadn’t seen this website on Strava, he may resorted to using a Melways (…remember those?? ;-), a pin, a piece of string and a pencil, to achieve the same end. Very old school geometry vs a new snappy website…the website wins. If you feel so inclined you can buy Dave a coffee here at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/devhaus. BTW, Coffee in Ireland must be seriously expensive at 5 Euro ie $8.23 AUD…ouch.

Any how, ride safe and stay safe

MMT in Stage 4 Lockdown

Melbourne is stage three lock down and someone at Garmin is having a very bad day…

Dear Rouleurs,

Of course it was too good to last. Back in May, Australia looked like it had dodged a COVID-19 bullet. Now that bloody virus gotten loose loose in Northern Melbourne and trigger this new stage 3, 6 week lockdown. Almost all the COVID-19 cases in Australian are in Victoria at present. About the only silver lining in this awful mess, is that road traffic around Melbourne has reduced significantly, which is great for cyclists. Who knows may be Melbournians will adopt the bike as their preferred mode of transport.


MMT took a snap shot of a great Mark Knight cartoon, that is in all honesty is bit rough on Victorian Preimer Dan Andrews. However it does capture the mood of frustration about how Victoria’s quaratine system was clearly being run by muppets. It appears that the Rydges on Swanston in Carlton and the Stamford Plaza in Melbourne’s city centre have been the epicentre for this new surge….WTF…. As the number of new cases keeps bounding along in the high 400’s, it will be interesting to see how the security company running fares in the recently announced inquiry.

Now speaking of stuff ups, something very odd is going on the Garmin Connect website. MMT has been trying to upload today’s ride around the Capital City trail when he encountered this error. Its been down for nearly 8 hours, which is seriously weird, given that its probably sitting on a Google or AWS cloud. MMT will be really f%#ked off if his 56 km ride disappears in into thin air. He finally navigated, clockwise the Capital City Trail, on the third attempt.

MMT checked a few social media groups and tried the website again tonight and its apparent something has gone wrong. Even an a UK newspaper, The Independant, has reported the outage. Someone at Garmin must be having a very bad day. In word…bugger..may be the website has caught COVID-19 or been done over by Chinese hackers…conspiracy theories run wild.

Until next time, ride safe and keep safe

Marv