The joys of the van/bike interface

A morning commute enlivened

I have to admit I've been feeling a bit of a fraud since joining CPlus. In my first four weeks on the team I managed a grand total of zero miles on the bike.

I blame it on a combination of laziness, a new job 100-miles away from home, laziness, living in hotels and laziness.

Today, though, I feel like a cyclist again and it's all thanks to my commute. Okay, the commute itself wouldn't make anybody feel like a cyclist - it's 2.5 miles at best - but I've rediscovered one of the many joys that comes with riding a bike. This morning I called a van driver a...well, you can probably guess. It was a typical van/bike interface incident. I'm riding along...van revs engine behind...van overtakes...van sees oncoming car...van swerves into me...I swerve into bushes at side of road.

Obviously, I'm not going to take this lying down so I chase said van man down, swearing heartily. As I skid rather clumsily alongside him I fully expect one of the swearing contests that were virtually daily occurences between van drivers and me when I rode in London. Then a funny thing happened - the man in the van apologised. And I felt guilty for turning the air blue. Well, a little bit guilty. Cycling 1 - Vans O!

Rob Spedding

Editor-in-Chief, Cycling Plus, Cycling Plus Magazine
Editor-in-chief Rob has been pedalling Cycling Plus since 2007. His first proper road bikes were a Raleigh Sprint in the early 1980s and then a Trek 1000 in 1999. A former competitive runner, Rob has repeatedly threatened to become a competitive cyclist in every discipline from time-trailling to hill climbing to bike polo. We're still waiting.
  • Discipline: Road. Mainly commuting but with the occasional mountainous sportive that he'll complain about/fail to complete. Enjoys cake stops. Will never, ever do another triathlon after a bad experience in open water.
  • Preferred Terrain: Gently undulated roads – he's more of a rouleur. Likes gravel.
  • Current Bikes: BMC Alpenchallenge, Viner Perfecta, BMC Granfondo GF0, anything shiny that Warren Rossiter will allow him to ride
  • Dream Bike: Bianchi Specialissima, Raleigh Banana
  • Beer of Choice: Innis and Gunn Original
  • Location: Bath, UK
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