Thursday, 6 November 2008

I'm spartacus, no, I'm spartacus, no, I'm spartacus

Mars Bars, do they make a good crash hat?

The UK government has announced that the pilot schemes for the national identity cards will be carried out with staff at 2 major airports.
However there is a good case for it to be tested on the GB cycling team. The introduction of ID cards would certainly be welcomed by Chris Hoy. In recent months there has been a queue of young sprinters all lining up to claim to be Chris Hoy. As yet there's notthing to worry about as you can still tell them apart, but if I was Chris I'd start checking their kit bags when they turn up for training, just to make sure there are no blond wigs in there.

Now, what's the most popular helmet down at your local Velodrome? Well in the UK it's certainly not the Casco Wrap, but at Velodromes around the world they are catching on big time.
The reason for this is of course Hoy and Pendelton, a couple of years ago Chris n Vicky were almost the only riders on the block with them. No big deal but as soon as they started winning the population of the Wrap soared. Turn up at any velodrome form Melbourne to Carson and you'll see a fair few on offer. So do they offer any advantage over a 'standard' helmet? Well if GB riders are using them you know there have been hours of testing in wind tunnels and on the track, but are they going to make a difference to the average track league rider? I've no idea, certainly I could wear six of them and I'd still ride like a Muppet.
I suspect that there's a big element of fashion here, if Chris and Vicky had turned up at the worlds a few years ago with three Mars Bars taped to their heads there'd be a queue round the confectionery counters at your local track.

Go fast, but not too fast please.

I'd forgotten about this, until just now, but haven't the UCI banned skinsuits from downhill racing?
So how does that work then? Stupid me, I thought the purpose of a downhill race was, like all races, to win.
So why have they been banned? And do they make a difference? Well a skinsuit is going to make some sort of difference in terms of aerodynamics, but how much on a downhill course is open to question, fractions of a second no doubt, maybe even a second or two. So enough to make a difference in a close finish, yes, of course. But why ban them? A rider can wear what they want, so if they chose a skinsuit good luck to them. In my view it shows thought and determination. But in the eyes of the UCI it obviously shows something else, too much determination, too much preperation, going too fast, that's not good is it?

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