I was reading a recent article in Cycle Sport July 2015 edition, talking about the end of the ‘magic spanner’. Apart from terse warnings from the UCI Commissaries, the article was a showcase for a number of nostalgic photos demonstrating the bravery of team bicycle mechanics. Leaning out of vehicle traveling at 40 to 50 Km/h looks like an easy way to end up in hospital. Unfortunately there is no easy way of directing you to the article, as far as I can tell, there is no online copy…boo 🙁
For those of you that have no idea what the magic spanner or its close relative the ‘sticky bidon’ are, its occurs when a rider drops out of the peloton, on the pretence of requiring an adjustment to brakes, cleats, cables, whatever, and catches a presumably well earned rest hanging on the team car. Here’s an example of an intrepid FDJ mechanic braving life and limb. Impressive core strength, young man.
Its close cousin is where a rider seems take a very long time to secure their grip on a bidon ie 1 or 2 minutes, before taking a drink.
Neither of these ‘tactics’ should be confused with hanging on to a motorbike…
….which is just plain cheating.
Nor is Richie Porte’s ‘wheelgate’ fiasco, which basically cost him any chance of maglia rosa in 2015.
So, naughty, naughty, very naughty, which is no doubt why the UCI issued a reminder just before the 2015 Paris-Nice race and fined a couple of team a 1000 Swiss Francs. The article’s author seems to make great sport of team Sky who have a number of photos included in the article. Oh well…….
As the sole rider on Team Marv I have to say that I want one of these magic spanners. I’ve had 3 punctures in 6 weeks and having a Team Marv support vehicle would be just awesome. My personal pick would be the Team Sky jag that’s been going around in the ‘hot lap’ that’s been going round on SBS’s Bike Lane.
I’ll be passing the hat round shortly. Don’t be shy, chip in 🙂
Until then ride safely
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