The Tour de France is Nearly Upon Us

With just over a week to go until the biggest event on the cycling calendar, the Tour de France, we thought it would be a good idea to give you some details

The tour starts in Normandy on the 2nd of July, with the Grand Depart starting from picturesque Mont St Michel. Riders will then progress to the Norman beaches on which the allies landed during the liberation of France, before eventually heading south.

This year’s tour doesn’t include the cobbles of the previous two, which may disappoint some, but the legendary Mont Ventoux is returning to the tour.

Despite being the first tour for two years to start in France, this year’s route takes riders outside of France on three occasions. First to Andorra, and then briefly to Spain, before visiting Switzerland for stages 16 and 17.

Chris Froome- who won the 2013 and 2015 editions- will be attempting to be the first rider to successfully defend a Tour de France title since 1995, supported by the Welsh riders Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe. From the look of the route, he has a decent chance.

We’ll find out who wins when the riders head down the Champs-Élysées on the 24th of July, and can watch the action on ITV.

If the Tour de France has inspired you to take up cycling and you need equipment or maintenance, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

How to keep your bike secure

Cycling Weekly recently interviewed a former London bike thief. It exposes how bike thieves operate, which bikes they target and which areas they work in. The interview highlighted a few blind spots most bike owners have:

  1. CCTV or large crowds don’t make your high value bike any safer. I know, it feels as though no thief would strike when they know they’re being watched, but that’s not how bike thieves operate. They often wear full face motorcycle helmets to escape identification, and the general public rarely question thieves. In fact, some specifically target busy and highly monitored areas under the belief that’s where the most valuable bikes are.
  2. Locks. Always use a bike lock. If your bike is worth more than £200, you need to be a bit specific about your bike lock; chains are too easy to cut with bolt cutters. Best practice is to use two small D-locks on the front and back wheels of your bike, making sure there’s no play and neither can be moved around otherwise a bolt cutter can fit around it.
  3. Insurance. If your bike is worth a lot of money, it might be worth insuring it. Bike insurance can be quite cheap these days, and covers theft. If theft is a serious worry, it could be a good idea to insure your bike for your own piece of mind.
  4. Make sure there’s something distinctive about your bike and if your bike is stolen, get straight to Gumtree. Most, but not all, stolen bikes are eventually sold through Gumtree relatively near to the area they were stolen. Some are sold off to dodgy shops, and some are sold in other ends of the country, but the majority will end up listed on Gumtree nearby. If there’s something distinctive about your bike, you’ll be able to spot it.
  5. Trackers are worth having, but won’t always catch criminals. Having a tracker fitted to your bike adds an extra layer of security; if your bike is stolen, you may be able to find it again. However they don’t always work, and thieves tend to leave stolen bikes on the road so any trackers don’t lead back to them.
  6. Serial numbers are effectively useless, you need smart water. Luckily we already use smart water on all of our bikes, and it is vital in this day and age in bike security. Serial numbers can be scratched off or painted over without much hassle. Smart water can’t be seen by the naked eye and is virtually impossible to get rid of.

If this has inspired you to take up cycling or buy new cycle equipment, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

Make your commute useful!

The average Briton spends 52-55 minutes commuting to and from work every day. This is skewed by 3 million who spend 2 or more hours every day travelling to and from work.  Clearly this means the average Briton does a lot of sitting down in trains, buses and cars every day.

Commuting isn’t fun, we know that. It’s also a wasted opportunity: it’s an age sat down inactive, unable to do anything useful or fun. But need this be the case?

If your commute is a little shorter, you have more options. Cycling to work certainly wakes you up in the morning, and is a lot more enjoyable than sitting lifeless in a train, bus or car.

Commuting by bike is also incredibly good for you. No matter your ability or experience, it makes exercise a part of your daily routine (at times you would have otherwise largely wasted).  The best way to get healthier is to make exercise regular.

It’s very easy to get involved in cycling. Whether you have to buy yourself a new bike, or get maintenance for an old one, you’ll also find it surprisingly inexpensive. So long as your commute isn’t unreasonably long, give it a try. You never know how much better your day will be.

If this has inspired you to take up cycling and you need equipment or maintenance, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

Cycling Can Tackle the Obesity Crisis

A report published recently suggests the global obesity crisis has reached new excesses, with there now being more obese people in the world than underweight and obesity tripling among men and doubling among women since 1974. The UK has the third highest obesity levels in Europe, and Cannock’s obesity rate is significantly higher than the national average.

30% of adults in Cannock are now considered to be obese. A shocking figure, 7 percentage points higher than the national average. Cycling is the best way to tackle these rising figures.

Writing in Cycling Weekly, Matthew Haines, senior lecturer in health and wellbeing at the University of Huddersfield, said that “recreational cycling is low-impact and requires a high rate of energy expenditure over a relatively long duration”.

Different forms of exercise and diet work for different people, it must be said. However, cycling provides an enjoyable, useful and highly effective way for people to keep healthy.

 

If this has inspired you to take up cycling and you need equipment or maintenance, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

2016 British Cycling MTB Cross-country Series Cannock Dates Announced

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The dates for the 2016 British Cycling Mountain Biking Cross-Country Championships have been announced and Cannock Chase is round five, on the 6-7 August.

This is one of the cornerstones of the calendar of this brilliant cross country championship, and we’re happy to see Cannock’s cycling community achieve the recognition it deserves.

If the British Cycling Mountain Bike Cross Country Championships have inspired you to take up cycling and you need equipment, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

Plans to turn Cannock’s abandoned railway routes into cycle routes

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There are a lot of disused railway lines in Cannock. Most of them were abandoned when the coal board didn’t need them anymore, others were laid during World War One.

There currently aren’t a lot of cycle routes tailored towards the more casual cyclist or disabled cyclists to the North West of Cannock. Proposed new routes, from Stafford to Hednesford and from Milford to Marquis drive via the German Cemetery, look to fill this gap in Cannock’s cycle market. They cover the right area, and neither has any steep inclines- meaning they are potentially accessible for all.

Russ Taylor, one of our trustees, told the Cannock Murcury that:

“The general  bed is still there as is the solid base [from the railway routes]. Another thing in our favour is that any inclines are only 1/100 which means that they would offer easy access for all abilities.

“What we would hope for is a tarmac surface that would be sustainable for the next 20-25 years. This would be in order to try and stop them deteriorating so quickly.”

 

If this has inspired you to take up cycling and you need equipment, call Cycle-R on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

Electric Bikes

Do you want an electric bike or a professional electric bike conversion? We’re your team.

Electric bikes come in all shapes and sizes; putting an electric motor in your bike can turn it into a (very low powered) moped or just give you a modest boost, but they all have one thing in common: pedals. Electric bikes are still bikes, they just make your commute a lot easier!

Cycle-R is a dealer for Cyclotricity, one of the best electric bike manufacturers around. Their parts are made in Britain, provide no rolling resistance, and are of the very highest quality. We also do bike conversions, which allow you to customise the finished product.

If you want to know more, call us on 01543 523606 or pop in store at 16-17 New hall, High Green Court, Cannock, WS11 1GR 

Rozone Parts Washer

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Say Hello (yes we know you can’t actually see it but we promise its here!) to our new industrial parts washer! This inventive new product ensures that no nook and cranny goes un-scrubbed! It works by using a specialist, ecologically friendly bacteria based cleaning solution. Using no harsh chemicals, with no fire risk and you don’t need specialist equipment to use it!

It is with great thanks and appreciation that we received a grant from Councillors Christine Mitchell and Alison Spicer from Staffordshire County Council in order to secure this equipment.So what shall we do with it you ask?The obvious being we will clean bicycles for ourselves and our fantastic customers! but more importantly we can clean recycled parts in a more more ecologically friendly manner enabling that the recycle parts are used to their full potential!

Come and see what we can offer you!!!