Top riders have hit out at TV chef James Martin after he proclaimed his hatred of cyclists and described how he caused a group to crash after sneaking up behind them in an electric sportscar.
In his column in the Mail on Sunday, Martin, star of the BBC’s Saturday Kitchen, complained about London cyclists who have a holier-than-thou attitude, saying: “God, I hate those cyclists. Every last herbal tea-drinking, Harriet Harman-voting one of them.
“That’s one of the reasons I live in the countryside, where birds tweet, horses roam, pigs grunt and Lycra-clad buttocks are miles away.”
He went on to review the Tesla Roadstar, an all-electric supercar, but soon returned to the anti-cycling theme, saying: “Twenty minutes into my test drive I pulled round a leafy bend, enjoying the birdsong – and spotted those damned Spider-Man cyclists.
“Knowing they wouldn’t hear me coming, I stepped on the gas, waited until the split second before I overtook them, then gave them an almighty blast on the horn at the exact same time I passed them at speed.
“The look of sheer terror as they tottered into the hedge was the best thing I’ve ever seen in my rear-view mirror. I think this could be the car for me.”
Professional cyclists were quick to respond, with Bradley Wiggins and Robbie McEwen posting (unprintable) comments on their Twitter pages.
Meanwhile, Cycling Plus editor Rob Spedding accused him of “third-rate, me-too Clarksonism”. A Facebook page called “I hate James Martin” has been set up and his Wikipedia page was sabotaged.