Oh, and if you haven’t seen it yet, you HAVE to take a look at Danny MacAskill’s latest video. File it under ‘things you should never do with a kid’s bike trailer!’
Rockshox Pike Ultimate fork
The Pike Ultimate is looking very handsome for 2020 in this silver finishMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
The Pike is a benchmark for trail forks and every year it gets a little bit more refined. The 2020 Pike Ultimate features the latest Charge 2.1 damper which is designed to offer a host of improvements including more comfortable high-speed damping, better low-speed support, reduced seal friction and more.
dhb’s Aero Ultra kit offers a premium feel at a relatively sensible price
dhb has upped its game in recent years, offering kit that rivals expensive name brands at comparatively tempting prices.
The Aeron Ultra kit is aimed at long-distance riding, which is exactly what young Felix is planning to use it for — he’s tackling the The TransAtlanticWay this year, a 2,500km unsupported ride across Ireland.
The jersey features handy side pockets, one of which is zipperedMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
The Aeron Ultra jersey has two useful side pockets — one of which is zippered — in addition to the usual three at the back.
It’s made from a combination of lightweight fabrics, including sections of Coldblack, which is designed to heat up less than conventional materials, even in direct sunlight.
The shorts have a pocket tooMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
The bib shorts are similarly practical, with a leg pocket and soft fabric designed for long distance comfort.
The Cyclo 405 is a fully featured GPS computer with a 4-inch colour touchscreenMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
Garmin has been the default brand for bike GPSs for a while, but more and more potentially viable competitors are hitting the market these days. The Mio Cyclo 405 is a heavy duty do-it-all computer in a similar vein to the Garmin Edge 1030.
It offers OpenStreetMap based navigation, all the usual performance metrics and connectivity you’re likely to want.
The Mio is quite a substantial objectMio Cyclo 405 GPS
It’s quite a chunky unit at 187g (plus mount) and it’s not small at roughly 130×72×20mm, but if it lives up to its claimed 15 hour battery life then it could be an appealing option for long-distance riding.
If your mountain bike kit preference is lairy, loud and Lycra, look away now. If, however, you favour earthy tones, loose fit jerseys and shorts, and of course the compulsory check shirt, Dakine has kit that’ll catch your eye. And it’s all rather reasonably priced too.
While Dakine might have started out life in Hawaii in the 1970s with a focus on surf products, then moving to windsurfing and snow sports, it then shifted its base to Oregon where it was perfectly placed for the explosion of the riding scene around the Hood River. So, naturally, it started to develop riding bags and clothing.
The forest and night-sky inspired Stargazer colourway means you can mix and match between the baggy shorts, loose-fitting Noella shirt and practical windbreaker, though there are of course other (brighter) colourways available.
We love the stealth wolf image on the gloves and Xena jersey, the latter of which has a generous fit and length (tall women rejoice!), and although it’s made from a four-way stretch polyester fabric, it has the handfeel of a soft, stretchy cotton T-shirt.
The fit seems generous on all the garments and the sizes range from XS to XL. We’ve had a quick try of the size XL kit and it fits with room to spare on a size UK16 / US12 person.
Chances are we’ll be wearing some of this kit off the bike as well as on it.
Grab a cuppa and settle down for a good read that’ll motivate you to get on the bike
Sometimes a book comes along that brings those early, joyful, childhood bike rides right back into the front of your mind. The sheer exhileration of riding a bike, the sense of freedom, the friendships made, the adventures shared. Back in the Frame by Jools Walker is just such a book.
Walker might be more familiar to you by her online moniker Lady Vélo, a well-known writer, blogger and all-round trailblazer in the UK cycling scene (and if you aren’t familiar with her we strongly suggest you go check out VeloCityGirl).
Part memoir, part guiding hand, Back in the Frame charts Walker’s childhood riding antics and the influence on her older siblings through to her rediscovery of cycling in her late 20s and how it’s helped her manage depression and her recovery from a mini-stroke.
Along the way, Walker has met many other women who each add their experience, views and passions to the rich mixture; racers, advocates, activists, explorers and general bad-asses, the full gamut.
Walker is inspirational in the truest sense of the word. She conveys the joy of cycling in its simplest, purest form and reminds us that it doesn’t matter what kind of bike we ride, where we ride it, or how fast we go, at its core the important thing is that we ride.
Whisky’s No.9 fork looks very tidyMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
This simple yet practical fork by Whisky Parts Co. is designed around a 12mm×100mm axle, and although this model is called No.9 CX Disc, it would also suit more endurance focused road bikes with frame clearance for tyres up to 700c×42mm or 650b×50mm.
The No.9 is a full carbon fork with a smart matt finish and a lovely subtle Whisky logo on the inside leg.
There are bosses to accept mudguard mounts at the dropoutsMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
It has mounts for proper mudguards (or rather, threads to accept eyelets) and it takes a flat-mount caliper for maximum neatness.
On our scales, it weighs 485g with its axle and an un-cut steerer.
The World’s Fastest Man, The Extraordinary Life of Cyclist Major Taylor by Michael Kranish
Major Taylor might be the fastest cyclist you’ve never heard ofMatthew Allen / Immediate Media
At the end of the 19th century, when the Southern US was still deeply segregated under the Jim Crow laws, African American rider Marshall “Major” Taylor rose to prominence as one of the greatest riders of his generation, winning the 1899 track sprint world championship title and setting multiple world records.
This biography by investigative journalist Michael Kranish charts his rise to fame in the face of considerable adversity, his career as a racer and his death in poverty at the age of just 53 in 1932.
It doesn’t sound like the cheeriest of tales, but it’s an important one from an era of cycling that’s largely been forgotten.
Oli’s new whip is spacious, frugal and utterly forgettable
It’s common among riders to have a car that’s worth only a fraction as much as their bike(s) and BikeRadar’s Oli Woodman is not bucking that trend. That’s thanks to an all-new arrival in the form of this Mk4 VW Golf Estate.
Snapped up for a modest sum from the classifieds only a few miles from his home in Bristol, it’s fair to say the black wagon hasn’t had the easiest of lives since its creation in 2004.
The spacious boot area is not only ideal for bike transportation but is currently embedded with years of accumulated spaniel hair and general grossness. The ongoing clean-up operation for this has already involved two vacuum cleaners and one entire roll of masking tape.
Still, with a full year’s MOT and all the oily bits having been looked after, the Golf looks set to provide many happy miles. At least that’s the plan.
Matthew is an expert on bike tech and a lover of practical, beautifully-engineered things. Originally a roadie, he dabbles in all disciplines and has tested a huge variety of bikes and gear over the years.