Author Archives: Marv

About Marv

I'm an avid amateur cyclist who regularly commutes to work, rides for exercise and completes the occasional long distance event. I have 3 bikes. My first ever mountain bike a 1996 Giant Sedona, which I use for for commuting, a 7 year old Canondale F3 with headshock and a 3 year old Wilier Lavaredo.

WTF just happened to the world?

Dear Rouleurs,

It’s been nearly 4 weeks since MMT put fingers to keyboard to write a blog and the world has irreparably changed in that time. The SARS COV-2 virus has taken the lives of over 40,000 people worldwide. Life as we know it has stopped. We are confined in our homes due to stage 3 restrictions. A very large portion of us will be without employment. When the health crisis passes, all of us will be facing a very uncertain economic future.

Through the selfish lense of a cyclist, MMT is horrified by the images and statistics coming from Italy, Spain, France and the UK. Its difficult to see how any of the remaining grand tours or monuments will be run. It beggars belief that the ASO group still think that it may be possible to conduct the 2020 Tour de France without crowds. It seems unlikely that any team based outside of France would attend, given restrictions on international movements.

Here in Australia, it seems that we have been spared the worst, so far. Our case count is relatively high but thankfully the death rate has been low. MMT has been keeping a watchful eye on the the https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/coronavirus-covid-19-daily-update

It’s these two graphs that he’s watching and hoping will get better, or rather as our medical experts explain flatter.

This one is for Victoria

This one is for Australia

The one he can’t bear to look at is this one, provided by John Hopkins University Global COVID-19 Cases. Its just too grim…

So for those of you out there, in self-isolation and practising social distancing, MMT wishes you ‘God Speed’ and that you and loved ones emerge from this catastrophe, alive and well.

MMT

Ode to Covid-19, the Italian Classics and hand hygiene

Dear Rouleurs,

It seems that professional cycling in Europe and quite possibly the Olympics in Japan are about to take a massive ‘haircut’. Unless you have have been living a cave in the Tarkine wilderness in Tasmania, you would know that a global pandemic is taking place. The so-called coronavirus Covid-19 is cutting a swath through China, Iran, South Korea and weirdly Italy.

Of these, its Italy that MMT is most disheartened by. The classics season was just about to start in Italy and country’s government has hit the ‘panic’ button. It has started implementing drastic measures to slow the spread of the virus. According to cyclingnews.com, it appears almost certain that men’s and women’s Strade Bianche (March 7), Tirreno-Adriatico (March 11-17), Milan-San Remo (March 8) and the Tour of Sicily (April 1-4), will all be cancelled.

This would be an unmitigated disaster for the races’ organiser, RCS Sport. MMT wonders whether RCS will survive these loss of high profile events this year. Closer to home, Australia’s Mitchelton-Scott team have announced that they were withdrawing from all races until the 22 March. A number of teams are already quarantined in Abu Dhabi UAE after four riders tested positive for the virus.

Here in Melbourne, there have been 6 reported cases and, fortunately to this time, no fatalities. As MMT has cycled and driven about Melbourne it does seem to be significantly quieter than usual. Overall, Australia has been relatively unscathed with 52 confirmed cases and 2 deaths. Quite frankly this is becoming quite grim, lets hope that this virus doesn’t get completely off the chain like Swine flu did in 2009/10.

So with that in mind MMT was delighted to see a little levity about this horrible situation by Will Dyson in today’s Age. Whilst its amusing it has a serious message, that all Melburians need to take to heart.

So until next time, ride safe and exercise good hand hygiene

Marv

Happy Valentine’s Day

Dear Rouleurs

MMT is in the good books with his wife, aka Directeur Sportif of Team MMT. MMT arranged for a dozen long stemmed roses to be delivered at her workplace, so that all her colleagues could admire them. Score several hundred brownie points.

However, MMT saw this picture on a cycling related Facebook group and wondered if one dozen was enough.

MMT has just finished his investigations of what new bike he was planning to bike. Perhaps another a few dozen roses would soften the message.

Until next time, ride safe and Happy Valentine’s Day

MMT

And we are back in 2020…. with Hope HB-T

Dear Rouleurs,

Its been a while since MMT put fingers to keyboard on this blog. So much has happened since December 2019, that MMT doesn’t even know where to start. So MMT is starting with a tangent…track bikes. Yep, those two words have never, ever been been put together in an MMT blog before. To cut a long story short, MMT has been listening to the Cycling Podcast and heard about the radically different track bike that some (MMT will use the quaint English term) boffins at Lotus and Hope Technologies have developed for Team GB.

Its called the HB-T and it looks amazing.

Here’s a whole bunch of photos MMT stole…err…requisitioned off the web.

Its the front on photo that hints at what these wide forks and back stays are for, optimized drag. Effectively the rider’s leg is sitting in line with forks and stays. MMT is guessing that laminar flow across the side of the bike, is vastly reduced.

MMT wonders if this kind of bike might cross over into professional peloton for time trials? If Team GB clean up the gold medals on offer for the indoor track events and thrash competition, that might happen. MMT can’t wait to see this machine in action at the Tokyo Olympics this year.

Hopefully MMT will start churning blogs on a more regular basis in the coming months.

Until next time, ride safe.

MMT