A glimpse into racing scene promoted by Black Sheep Cycling in Brisbane. We love grassroots cycling and BSC seem to be a channeling a less crashy Red Hook Crit vibe. We're thinking SEGRO could do this on one of their estates?! SEGRO if you're reading this contact us.
We have always been fans of Podia.cc so when Colourburn Studio took on another project we awaited the final product with excitement. From podia.cc:
When Podia and Genesis started talking about a partnership for Roadventures, the first step was obvious – custom painted Podia Genesis Volare bikes.
On each Roadventure trip, two experienced ride leaders guide guests around the Tatra Mountains. These ride leaders are a representation of Podia and so we wanted them to look exceptional. Thanks to Genesis they will use two custom painted Genesis Volare bikes.
Built with the outstanding Campagnolo Chorus groupset and Bora ONE Wheelset, the bike has 25mm Challenge Elite clincher tyres along with a Brooks Cambium C13 saddle and Brooks Cambium rubber bar tape.
Custom paint was carried out by the talented Doktor Bobby of Colourburn Studio. Using the upcoming Podia Club Colours 2017 jersey for inspiration, Bobby created a paint scheme for the frame, fork and stem. The first outing of the bike will be Berliner Fahrradschau 3 – 5 March 2017.
A new feature where we will be showcasing some of our members bikes and builders behind them. With this being the first in the series, it was only fitting we opened with Simon Jordan's Hartley Cycles custom build. I was lucky enough to be asked by Simon to be involved in this build and Caren Hartley who worked her magic after the initial and very detailed briefing with Simon. The brief was a classic steel bike, but with some special features, with paint finish discussed at length.
The end result is simply spectacular. From the bi-laminate head tube, to the amazing lugged seat cluster detail and the finish as chosen by Simon, is a true work of art. There are many fine and subtle details on the build which are only really appreciated by true bike enthusiasts (nerds). It is this detail and and artistic flair which really sets Caren apart from the many of London's new and old frame builders and has got her the recognition and awards which are well deserved.
The frameset is a Reynolds stainless steel tube mix, donned with full Campy Athena and polished Campy Record hubs on H-Plus Son TB 14 and Vittoria Corsa Graphene+ tyres. The build is a definite classic with some modern twists. The finishing kit is Ritchey and Brooks, continuing the classic theme.
I hope Simon is over the moon with his new ride and if I was looking for a custom build I would definitely be sitting down with Caren to discuss over a cup of tea.
Prizes, beer and pizza!
Invites are out!
If you're a Bristol local, check out the new bicycle lifestyle store Forever Pedalling, stocking very cool bits from Mash SF, Giro, The Athletic and Ortlieb, to name just a few. If you're not local, they also sell online. Check out the website @ www.foreverpedalling.com
The benefits of yoga are pretty undervalued and possibly misunderstood in cycling world. Who needs yoga when you smash out 2,000 watts on Zwift and all you want to do is lie on the sofa and watch that True Detective box set. Well, the folks at Omnium.cc in conjuction with Jasyoga have put together a few short videos which will guide you through some basic yoga postures, (all pretty easy) which deal with post-ride stretching, upper and lower body, pre-ride routine to gently warm up your body ready for those EPIC Richmond Park laps. They have also produced a video demonstrating moves to help with on-bike flexibility, so you don’t have ride with a foot-long spacer stack. I’ve been incorporating these videos pre/post ride and even prior to bed in a bid to improve my pathetic recovery rate and I’m pleased to report it seems to be working. Woot! The latest Trainer Road blog agrees yoga could be an integral part of an athletes bed-time routine to help lock down those gainzzz - as everyone knows - gains are made when we recover and not when we train.
Check out their blog at www.weareomnium.cc and their web-store selling the freshest cycling apparel from new and emerging brands.
We held our first CPD session at Rapha Racing HQ in Kings Cross, expertly guided by Simon Jordan from Jump Studios who worked closely with Rapha's own design team and board to deliver a truly engaging employee experience and possibly the most cycle friendly workspaces we have ever seen (if you think you have a better one, contact us!). Simon explained that the foundation of any such project is the end-user experience and they aimed put riders first. With a RFID controlled glazed entrance doors and a ramp which allows employees to ride into their cycle parking spaces, shower, grab a (free) coffee from the coffee bar (the barista pulls shots from a Rocket espresso machine) next to the reception desk, before heading up to their desk, this was an office space like no other. Big thanks to Rapha and Simon for their time. If this looks like the sort of CPD you may like going forward, hit the contact page and drop us a line.
Big thanks to Pat Leahy for my new cyclocross fitting on their impressive Guru machine. The fitting was a very cool experience as minute tweaks in set-up actually happen whilst you are on the machine, giving the rider instant feedback on their pedalling efficiency and perceived impact on power. Thoroughly recommended fitting experience. Dept of Endurance are based on 739 Fulham Road and stock some impressive brands including Enigma, Cannondale, Milltag and Queen of the Mountains.
One of the most inspirational teams in this year's Le Tour has been team Dimension Data. The TdF line up has been nothing short of spectacular with Cavendish and Steve Cummings bagging some memorable stage victories this year. A perhaps less known aspect of the team is their partnership and work promoting Qubeka.
Qhubeka is an Nguni word that means “to carry on”, “to progress”, “to move forward”. Qhubeka is World Bicycle Relief’s programme in South Africa. World Bicycle Relief is a global non-profit organisation dedicated to advancing education, health and economic opportunities by providing simple, sustainable transportation. Since World Bicycle Relief’s founding in 2005, it has delivered more than 250,000 specially designed, locally assembled bicycles to people in need.
Qhubeka helps people move forward and progress by giving bicycles in return for work done to improve communities, the environment or academic results. Having a bicycle changes lives by increasing the distance people can travel, what they can carry, where they can go and how fast they can get there.
"Our mission is to provide the kids of our supported African countries with the cycling apparel they need, not only will this enable the current cyclists to fulfil their full potential, dreams & ambitions but we hope we can also introduce some new faces into the world of cycling, a world that we love."
We will be meeting to cheer Froome, Quintana, Contador or Aru (?), on Bastille Day over stage 12 which will see the peleton take on one of the most iconic climbs of Le Tour, Mount Ventoux. From 13:00 at Rapha Cycle Club, Brewer Street.
If you are in Piccadilly, the newly opened Dover Street Market is well worth a visit. It has completely rejuvenated the old Burberry HQ on Haymarket which has stood empty and unloved for some time. More imporantly, Paul Smith have a very interesting cycling inspired display on the lower ground floor which is worth checking out. A well known bike obsessive (like us!), Paul Smith has released a Cycling Scrapbook which is a great insight into his passion for the sport.
The retail display boasts goods from Rapha and Condor Cycles who have commissioned a special one off Condor Leggero with full Campagnolo Super Record and a neat bronze finish. You can also grab the limited edition Paul Smith x Kask Protone helmet which is a thing of beauty itself.
It is interesting to see this area attracting some great brands, innovative retailers and turning into a cycle retail cluster, with Rapha London Cycle Club on Brewer Street, The Bike Rooms on Lower Regent Street, Bespoke Cycling on Jermyn Street and soon to be opened Assos flagship retail store in St. James's Market.
The only social media network we are on. Follow us @blacktop.rcc for up to date news and updates on our upcoming rides and events. We are cooking up some very exciting plans, so stay tuned and see you on the blacktop...
The bike industry is constantly innovating and there are some very exciting new products worth checking out. Here are some of our favorite pieces from 2015/16.
Rapha Racing merino neck warmer is really a top piece of kit and useful on those cooler rides, keeping your neck and face warm and comfortable. Anything "merino" by Rapha is a worthwhile investment as it is very high quality and a pleasure to wear. The second item is the awesome Lezyne Pressure Drive HP hand pump. Form and function in an easily stowable package.
Need to raise your sock game? Then look no further than The Athletic from Portland, Oregon. These guys continue to produce amazing designs in a proven sock made by Defeet. Their designs are fresh, uber-cool and comfortable to wear. Whilst we're talking about feet which is an important rider contact point, you may also want check out the new Giro Empire shoes. These are simply the coolest, most functional shoes at the moment. The lace-up system yearns back to old school days of cycling, but actually shaves an impressive amount of weight by dispensing of the ubiquitous buckle system. First impressions on the bike is exactly how light and stiff they are. A reflective version of the road shoe is also available which is super visible at night designed especially for the busy the urban environment (pictured above).
If you have some other products you'd like us to feature please drop us a note using the contact form.
See you on the blacktop...
One of the most iconic climbs and perhaps the most photographed, the Stelvio Pass is truly the stuff of legends. At 2,750m this is a punishing summit ascent, snowcapped for most of the year and with 48 hairpin bends on the eastern side of the pass (pictured above and our home page). It was climbed in the 1953 Giro by Fausto Coppi and bears his monument on top. In the 1965 Giro d'Italia it was the first summit where the Cima Coppi classification was introduced which was a doubling of mountain classification points for the first rider to the top, in honour of one of the most iconic riders of all time Il Campionissimo (the Champion of Champions). More information at the excellent INRNG.
It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to perhaps one of the club's best friends, the talented designer Wayne Peach, who passed away in late January 2016 at the age of 48. The entire London cycling community and the graphic design world was deeply saddened by the news and will continue to mourn such a significant loss. From a personal perspective, Wayne was instrumental in realising the BRCC club ethos, values and aims in the design, branding and the Blacktop RCC website, for which we cannot thank him enough.
The Blacktop RCC logo and graphic represents the way we have grown. Conceived by a single idea, which consequently evolved into something greater than the sum of its parts. As the club grows we strive to introduce new people to the beauty of road riding, but also other disciplines such as track racing or cyclocross. We also seek to educate and promote cycling outside our community, forging change in perceptions, attitudes and behaviours. The simple triangle suggests different directions, perspectives and the challenging climb to the top of the summit. The colours signify the changing seasons which we ride through. The name "Blacktop", undeniably, represents a love of the road and the miles yet to come shared in company of good friends, friends like Wayne Peach.