The UK and Ireland are in for a real treat this year for cycling fans with the two most iconic races of the calendar hosting their first stages on our shores. The perhaps better known Tour de France is starting in Yorkshire this July (see the climbs of stage 1 and stage 2 parts one and two!) but the arguably more glamorous and exciting Grand Tour will be travelling around the beautiful countryside of Northern Ireland and down to Dublin. The first stage is a 22km team time trial where each 9-man squad will attempt to make a choreographed blur of carbon and lycra through the streets of Belfast with the time being taken on the 5th rider across the line, but as always, it’s the hills which interest me the most as it is the key aspect of professional cycling that is open for all of us to easily try for ourselves on the roads used by the professionals themselves.
Posts By: Ben Lowe
I’m sure you lot don’t need any more motivation to clock up the miles with, as I type this, 132(!) of you already having completed the full distance and 3 of you having done double the distance! Well, with 10 days still to go here is a quick reminder of the prizes up for grabs from our partners on this challenge. Remember, the more Classics you cover off, the more chances you’ll have of winning as you’ll be in the draw for prizes for all the Classics you have completed. So what are you doing still reading this when you could be out on the bike!
VeloViewer has partnered up with 100 Greatest Cycling Climbs’ Simon Warren to provide an all-time leader board for the best climbs in Britain. If you’re not already an owner of these great books then you MUST get them on your next birthday wish list as they are fantastically inspirational and perfect for planning rides or even holidays. But who’s ridden the most and who is the fastest (ok, that’ll most likely be Tejvan)? Time to join the 100 Climbs Strava Club and see how you compare.
An image caught my eye in my Twitter timeline yesterday showing road orientation distributions (i.e. what directions the roads go in) for a number of US cities. Being British the idea of roads forming a nice, thought-out pattern is completely alien to me and takes all the fun out of trying to get lost but the visualisations intrigued me none the less. The calculations used by the author of the original image had a few limitations as the length of each street didn’t influence the plot and a twisty street would only register in single orientation rather than being split appropriately. So time to step up to the plate to see if I can find a more interactive and representative way of doing the same thing.
We all can watch the Pros smashing up the classic climbs on TV and wouldn’t it be great to have a go yourself! But unfortunately not many of us have the luxury of having any of those climbs on our own doorstep. However, what you can easily do using VeloViewer is to find which of your local climbs is the most like one of the classic climbs and then compare or attempt to match your time with that of the Pros. Here’s how to do it.
Do you want to view your Strava timeline on your wrist? Dish out Kudos with the push of a button? Then get yourself a Pebble smart watch and the VeloViewer app. View the last 30 activities of your friends, drill in to view more details and then dish out the Kudos.
The snowdrops are flowering which can mean only thing: the Vélobici Spring Classics Challenge is about to commence! With over £1000 of Vélobici kit up for grabs this is just the incentive you need to get yourself clocking up the miles in preparation for summer. The format is the same as last year with 50 days available for you to rack up as much distance as you can with a goal of completing the equivalent distance of as many of the Spring Classics as you can. The more classics you complete the better the prize you’ll have a chance to win. Many bonus prizes also available including furthest distance covered on a steel framed bike and also a separate country leaderboard to see which country has the most hard-core riders.
Most of you by now will have tried out the new activity details page on VeloViewer but in the depths of a northern hemisphere winter, here’s how you can use it to find your Functional Threshold Performance (FTP) in conjunction with The Sufferfest’s Rubber Glove video from the comfort of your own kitchen/garage/cellar/gym.
A few changes are coming to the Strava api over the next couple of weeks, the main details of which I’ll leave for their official announcement. There are however a couple of things in those changes that will affect VeloViewer to a limited extent so here’s some info on what that will mean.
Ever since I saw this visualisation of the 2013 Giro d’Italia route last year I’ve wanted to emulate that view, dynamically on my Strava data and luckily for you guys, let you use it too. Once I’d got my head around the maths for drawing the profiles on an arc then the rest quickly took shape. Isn’t maths fun!