Archive for the PezCycling News Category

CYCLING ADDICTION Prevalence and Risks

01/18/2022 12:02

TOOLBOX: We know very well that exercise and an active lifestyle provides huge benefits to our overall health. But even something as positive as exercise can become addictive and take over our lives for the worse. What are the risk and risk factors for exercise addiction in recreational cyclists?

Do you really need to go out?

Exercise is Good
There is no question that exercise brings us many physical and mental benefits. Studies abound with the overwhelming consensus that regular and moderate physical activity significantly improves overall health. This includes both reducing the risk of mortality (death) along with morbidity (debilitating diseases or illnesses). Two of the main leading causes of death – heart disease and cancer – are greatly decreased in those with a history of moderate exercise.

Overall, an active lifestyle also tends to prolong a healthy lifespan and quality of life, extending the number of years in which we are free from significant health issues at the end of life along with compressing the amount of time of greatly decreased health capacity prior to death.

For both mental functioning and mental health, exercise is also a huge positive. In general cognitive function is maintained for a longer period of the lifespan and regular exercisers. The support network and social interaction on a group ride or within a cycling club is also an important component of overall strong mental health.

Too much can take its toll

The Downsides of Exercise
While overwhelmingly positive, as with anything else, moderation is key and more is not always necessarily better. Beyond the risk of physical overtraining and burnout along with overuse injuries, an equally important consideration is the mental aspects of exercise addiction.

Exercise addiction can be described as “a morbid pattern of behaviour in which the habitually exercising individual loses control over his or her exercise habits and acts compulsively, exhibits dependence and experiences negative consequences to health as well as in his or her social and professional life.” (Szabo et al. 2015)

While researching to this field is relatively new and emerging, and beset by several methodological issues such as the consistent terminology, the concept of exercise addiction is becoming recognized as falling into the general overall umbrella of behavioural addictions.

Cycling, along with other endurance sports, is a prime candidate for exercise addiction because of its solitary nature, emphasis on high volumes of training, and also a tendency towards perfectionism and comparison to others.

Mayloas-Pi et al. 2017
In a recent issue of the Journal of Behavioral Addictions, a Spanish research group set out to survey the prevalence of exercise addiction and amateur cyclists, along with comparing different characteristics across the two groups to get a handle on physical and mental factors that may contribute or result from exercise addiction (Mayolas-Pi et al. 2017).

• Invitation to participate was sent out to 3,426 cycling clubs within the Spanish Cycling Federation, capturing 62,856 male and 2,483 female amateur cyclists officially registered in Spain. Ultimately 751 males and 108 females participated.

• As a control group, 307 males and 411 females classified as inactive were recruited.

• Risk of Exercise Addiction (REA) was assessed using a self-administered questionnaire, the Spanish version of the Exercise Addiction Index (EAI). This involved six questions rated from 0 to 5.

• Additional questions included ones on social demographic status, training and cycling history, and different questions on physical and mental health status.

• The cycling group was classified into two groups based on their response to the EAI (high = 24-30; low = 0-23).

Merelbeke, Ronde van Vlaanderen, foto Cor Vos ©2000 van Petergem op de top van de Paterberg
Peter Van Petegem was addicted to the Spring classics

Dissection Exercise Addiction
Here are some of the main findings from this survey:

• Of the 859 cyclists, 17% (125 cyclists) were classified as high REA, with an average score of 25.9/30. The low RVA group averaged 17.9/30 on the EAI questionnaire.

• While the percentage of males and females with high REA were similar, males averaged an overall higher EAI of 19.2 compared to females at 18.3.

• REA in the cyclists did not demonstrate any effective age, training, competition distance or performance, or social demographic status.

• No differences were observed in the REA and low REA groups in physical quality of life and cardio metabolic risks. However, mental quality of life indices was worse in the REA group. This included lower quality of sleep and higher anxiety.

• Both the REA and low REA groups had better physical and mental quality-of-life indices compared to the control group.

The 17% prevalence of REA in this study seemed to match previous prevalence findings among ultramarathoners and triathletes, and also seems to be higher than what has been found among the general exercising population.

Interestingly, this study found that training volume was not a predictor for REA. In contrast, half Ironman triathletes reported higher EAI values than Olympic and Sprint distance triathletes. One explanation for this discrepancy may be the overall training load across different studies such that, above a certain training volume, the magnitude of risk does not increase further.

It is also interesting that this study did not find any differences across genders in REA prevalence or risk factors, despite the likely differences in both how different genders are motivated to exercise and also how society perceives exercise across genders.

Too easy to get addicted

This paper is an interesting first exploration of exercise addiction in cyclists. It appears that cycling is similar to other endurance sports and having a higher REA than among the general exercising population, but the risk factors remain elusive. From the current data, the effects of exercise addiction appears to be more on mental health than on physical health.

Overall, it appears that moderation and a healthy perspective of how cycling fits into your life is an important part of cyclist’s life. As with any other addiction, exercise addiction can be hard to diagnose and recognize especially in yourself. One interesting angle to pursue in further research that seems to be missing in this survey is the motivation for these cyclists, along with the support network they may or may not have in their pursuit of cycling.

Have fun and ride fast!

Mayolas-Pi C, Simón-Grima J, Peñarrubia-Lozano C, et al (2017) Exercise addiction risk and health in male and female amateur endurance cyclists. J Behav Addict 6:74–83. doi: 10.1556/2006.6.2017.018
Szabo A, Griffiths MD, de La Vega Marcos R, et al (2015) Methodological and Conceptual Limitations in Exercise Addiction Research. Yale J Biol Med 88:303–308.

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Categories:PezCycling News

BREAKDOWN: Why Quick-Step Has Sidelined Mark Cavendish For The 2022 Tour

01/18/2022 0:02

Five Cavendish Tour Takeaways: It’s complicated, the battle between good PR and winning stages in the biggest race on the planet – Should Mark Cavendish start the 2022 Tour de France, or is Fabio Jakobsen a safer bet for stage success? Spencer Martin gives us his thoughts on the Quick-Step – Alpha Vinyl quandary.

– This article is an excerpt from the Beyond the Peloton newsletter. Sign up here for full access. –

The big Cavendish come-back in 2021

I might have cautioned against taking any race schedule announcements too seriously and to take everything we hear from team training camp press sessions with a grain of salt just earlier this week, but a particular team camp announcement from Quick-Step – Alpha Vinyl (formerly Deceuninck – Quick-Step) really caught my attention.

Quick-Step’s top sprinter Fabio Jakobsen

According to the Belgian team, they are already planning on bringing Fabio Jakobsen as their designated sprinter to the Tour de France while leaving Mark Cavendish, who is only a single stage win away from surpassing Eddy Merckx as the all-time stage win leader, at home.

Equal on Tour stage wins

From a sporting point of view, this decision makes perfect sense. Cavendish might be the greatest sprinter of all time, but in their current form, Jakobsen is simply the better rider and gives the team a higher chance at generating Tour victories. This might seem reductive, but winning is what Quick-Step does and team principal Patrick Lefevere is never one to let emotion get in the way of roster selection.

Patrick Lefevere knows what he’s doing

But from a PR perspective, this is a somewhat shocking announcement. Mark Cavendish is one of the biggest cycling stars in the world and at least in Britain, a bonafide celebrity. Leaving the world’s most famous cyclist at home during the sport’s biggest event is a very big deal. And when we factor in Cavendish’s importance to team bike, and de facto co-owner, Specialized, the decision to announce selection so unnecessarily early appears all the more strange.

To help us understand what exactly is going on here, let’s dive into why this decision was made, and most interestingly, why Cavendish still had a good chance at lining up to contest the 2022 Tour de France.

Will it be this easy in 2022?

Five Reasons Quick-Step Made This Decision… And Why Cavendish Still Has a Chance At Tour Glory

1) Despite Cavendish’s incredible 2021 Tour de France performance, Jakobsen is the better sprinter of the two, and it isn’t even close.

  • If we look at the win profile of the two riders over the past four seasons, this becomes even more clear.
  • Jakobsen has won 25 races to Cavendish’s 11.
  • When we distill it down to just WorldTour races, the total is 11 for Jakobsen to 4 for Cavendish.
  • This becomes even more impressive when we consider Jakobsen was in a coma following a brutal crash in 2020 and suffered through a 12-month recovery process before returning to competition in August of 2021.


2) While it can look good on paper, Quick-Step is extremely unlikely to take both Cavendish and Jakobsen to the Tour de France.

  • Despite calls to the contrary, the double-sprinter model almost always causes more problems than it solves. This is why HTC-Colombia never sent both André Greipel and Mark Cavendish to the Tour while the two best sprinters in the world were teammates.
  • Even in the best of times, this arrangement can cause issues. For example, Alpecin-Fenix brought both Tim Merlier and Jasper Philipsen to the 2021 Tour de France and had the two sprinters switch in and out of sprinter/lead-out roles. But, after Merlier won stage 3, the team failed to win another stage after changing their backing to Philipsen. By attempting to balance sprinting duties, a team can easily miss precious chances to convert wins.

Cavendish needed the Quick-Step train, especially Mørkøv

3) The 2021 Tour de France sprinter field was extremely diluted, which makes it incredibly difficult for Cavendish to prove his

  • For a confluence of factors outside Cavendish’s control, his crowning modern achievement, four Tour stage wins in 2021, wasn’t against the world’s best.
  • Pre-race injuries to Sam Bennett and Fabio Jakobsen, the stage 3 crash which took out Caleb Ewan, the stage 9 abandonment of Tim Merlier and Wout van Aert, potentially the best sprinter in the race, working double-duty as GC domestique for his Jumbo-Visma team, means that even though Cavendish won four stages, it is difficult for him to prove he can win consistently against the world’s elite sprinter set.

Can Jakobsen Tour stage win like he did in la Vuelta?

4) Quick Step boss Patrick Lefevere has signaled over the past year that, just as the stats above show, Jakobsen has a much higher upside and would prefer to back him over Cavendish.

  • Jakobsen stated in his interview that Lefevere had already extended his contract prior to his return to form at 2021 Vuelta a España, while he didn’t come to an agreement with Cavendish until the end of December.
  • These contrasting contract timelines represent not only Lefevere’s belief but also caused a logistical issue since Jakobsen had likely already been given assurance that he would be heading to the Tour before Cavendish re-signed with the team.

Jakobsen has his eyes on the Tour

5) Taking all of this into account, it begs the question of why Cavendish chose to return to Quick-Step for the 2022 season, especially considering that the main goal remaining in his career is the Tour stage win record.

  • While Cavendish almost certainly could have signed with another that was able to guarantee his presence at the Tour, his decision to return to Quick-Step signals that he recognizes the extremely high level of skill across the board and well-drilled leadout present at QuickStep is critical to delivering Tour sprint stage wins.
  • And with a start at the Giro d’Italia assured, Cavendish still has the ability to ride his way onto the Tour team by running off a series of wins at the Italian grand tour and hoping that Jakobsen struggles in early-season sprints.
  • Lefevere might have already told Jakobsen he was the team’s sprinter for the Tour, but, as Cavendish is well aware of, there is no one in the sport more ruthless than the Quick-Step boss. This means that even as things currently stand, Cavendish’s chance at the all-time Tour stage win record, and in turn, his destiny, still lies almost solely in his own hands.

Will Cavendish be laughing in July?

# Spencer Martin is the author of the cycling-analysis newsletter Beyond the Peloton that breaks down the nuances of each race and answers big picture questions surrounding team and rider performance. Sign up now to get full access to all the available content and race breakdowns. #


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Categories:PezCycling News

Readers’ Rigs: Jamie’s Roxo Racing Time Alpe D’Huez 01

01/15/2022 12:03

Readers’ Rig: Many of us dream of owning a team issue bike, well Jaime Larmer in Fort Worth has a Roxo Racing Time Alpe d’Huez built up with Shimano Dura-Ace components and wheels. A real race bred beauty.


Name: Jaime Larmer
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Bike: Time, model Alpe d’Huez 01
Groupset: Shimano D/A 9200 12 speed
Wheels: Shimano
Pedals: Shimano
Saddle: Prologo Scratch
Other: Arundel Grypto cages, Pro bar and stem
Weight: 16.9 lbs.


When did you buy it?
It’s a Team Issue bike of Roxo Racing, sponsored by Time Bicycles.


What made you choose this bike?
It chose me!


Have you done any modifications/additions to it?
Soon to change to 52×36 gearing.


How many miles/kilometers do you do a year?
Just over 10,000 miles in 2021.


What do you love about this bike?
The clear finish is amazing since you can see every detail of the construction. Plus, it’s a very smooth and stable ride.


Favorite riding area?
North Texas is crisscrossed by many small roads so while it’s not exactly Italy, it’s not bad!


Favorite riding experience on your bike?
Can I circle back at the end of 2022? But first rides are always memorable and exciting.


Future upgrades?
That’s a toughie. Hard to upgrade over D/A 9200.


Last words?
My DS made me promise to take good care of my new team bike, or else.


Photos by


About Roxo Racing
Roxo Energy, the primary sponsor of Roxo Racing, returns as title sponsor for 2022, with presenting sponsors Erdoes PC, and Oklahoma City law firm, and Scott Dennett Construction, a Fort Worth, TX commercial construction company. Industry sponsors include Castelli Cycling, suppliers of custom team kit, Shimano shoes and equipment, Lazer helmets, Arundel accessories and Velotoze accessories.

Follow Roxo via:, and

Roxo Sponsors:,,,,,, and

More info on Time Bikes at:


Thanks to Jamie for sharing his ride with us. Got a bike that you walk into the room just to stare at? Well how about sharing it with fellow PEZ fans and getting it featured in Readers’ Rigs so we can all stare at it! Contact and your bike could be featured in all its glory here on the pages of PEZ.

The post Readers’ Rigs: Jamie’s Roxo Racing Time Alpe D’Huez 01 appeared first on PezCycling News.

Categories:PezCycling News

From Another Sport to Cycling!

01/15/2022 0:02
other sports

Cycling – Their second sport: Recently we ran a piece about riders who had transitioned from track to road – or in the case of Theo Bos, back to track, again. But what about riders who have come in to bike racing from an entirely different sport? Currently we have three shining examples of this radical change of direction, let’s start with youth.

Remco Evenepoel – Dropped the ball for the wheel

Remco Evenepoel played for both PSV Eindhoven and Anderlecht soccer clubs as a youngster and was selected for the Belgian national youth teams. But he made the transition to bike racing at the start of season 2017. Within 18 months he was junior champion of the world in the road race and time trial. The World Tour teams ears pricked up; but his dream was to ride for QuickStep – his dad was a friend of Patrick Lefevere, the rest is history.

lombardia20-evenepoel ravine
Will Evenepoel’s crash affect his career?

How far can he go?
Season 2020 prior to his horror crash in Lombardy, he rode four stage races – The Vuelta a San Juan, Volta ao Algarve, Vuelta a Burgos and Tour de Pologne and won every one of them. No further questions, m’Lord. Season 2021 has seen him win the national tours of Belgium and Denmark; the Druivenkoers Overijse, the Brussels Cycling Classic and the Coppa Bernocchi not to mention podium finishes in the European road race and time trial championships and Worlds time trial. But perhaps the most significant result this season was a DNF – in the Giro d’Italia – that would have placed his feet firmly back on the ground and caused him to realise that a Grand Tour is a different ball game altogether. But we smack our lips about Remco 2022.

From down to up – Primoz Roglič

I’ve always wondered what it must go through your mind that first time all the gym drills are done with and you have to sit on that narrow bench look down that ramp and then launch on your first ski jump? I must ask Primoz Roglič one of these days.

Ski jumper Roglič

I’ve borrowed from Wikipedia on this one: Roglič started to compete in ski jumping in 2003, and was the Junior World Team event champion in 2007. He has two Continental Cup wins, the second level of international ski jumping. He set his personal best at a distance of 185 metres (607 feet) in Planica. In 2011, Roglič performed his last international competition in Szczyrk and officially ended his ski jumping career in summer 2012. He started out with the Slovenian Adria Mobil continental team before Lotto Jumbo, as was, now Jumbo Visma saw his ‘numbers’ and snapped him up. Two each Vuelta, Basque Country and Romandie wins, a Tirreno victory, Giro and Tour podiums confirm he’s not a bad stage race rider. On the single day front he’s won Liege-Bastogne-Liege and a clutch of Italian semi-classics. Then there’s his time testing where he’s Olympic Champion, small wonder the Dutch team have signed him until 2025.

Michael Woods was fast on his feet

Michael Woods (Israel Start-Up Nation & Canada) has come a long way in a short time. Originally a runner to international standard with a sub four minute mile to his credit, Woods turned to the bike when he couldn’t shake off persistent injuries incurred with his running. The results were startling; in 2014 with the 5 Hour Energy squad he was top six in the notoriously tough Tour de Beauce in Canada. Optum-Kelly grabbed him for season 2015; he didn’t let them down, wins in the Challenge Loule in Portugal, a stage in Gila, a stage in Utah and third overall in the UCI Americas Tour meant the World Tour teams would come a calling. Cannondale Drapac which became EF was his team for five seasons before he joined the Israel team for this season. His lack of a sprint and ‘generous’ riding mean that he’s perhaps not won as many races as he might have if his style was more conservative but there are two Vuelta stage wins, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Worlds podiums on his score sheet as well as the Italian semi-classic, Milano-Torino. He’s a very consistent rider, he took a stage and GC podium in the Tour du Alpes Maritime et du Var back in February and in October grabbed three top 10 finishes in the big, late season Italian races. A big win in 2022? It has to be coming.

Runner to cyclist – Michael Woods

Speed Skating is a sport which at first glance may not seem to have much in common with the bike but many skaters use cycling in their ‘cross’ training. Going back to Lake Placid, USA 1980 and the XIII Winter Olympics. The Man of the Games? With his 32” waist and 27” thighs clad in that famous gold suit, the very epitome of power and grace there could only be one. Eric Heiden. The man from Madison Wisconsin won all five gold medals in the long track speed skating over distances from 500 meters to 10,000 meters setting five Olympic and one world record in the process. That 10,000 meters record was just one of 15 he set during his speed skating career, not to mention seven senior world championships. And he wasn’t a bad cyclist either as taking up a new challenge as part of the now legendary red white and green of the 7-Eleven team. Taking the first US PRO Championship and riding the Worlds, Giro and Tour.

Eric Heiden – Speed skater to cyclist

Sheila Young was also a speed skater but remarkably, she competed in both sports at the very highest levels during the same period of time, as a sprinter. She won three world titles in each sport, twice in the same year, 1973 and 1976. In 1976, she also became the first American athlete to win three medals at one Winter Olympics. Her career on the bike extended over a decade, winning the US national sprint title from Sue Novara-Reber in 1971 and taking silver at the ’82 Worlds in Leicester to Connie Paraskevin.

Sheila Young
Sheila Young – Skate and cycle

Another winter sport which has produced cycling champions is skiing, in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics the favourite for the individual pursuit was Germany’s Rolf ‘Turbo’ Golz. But few had considered an ex-downhill skier called Steve Hegg who Golz couldn’t match in the final. US downhill champion in 1982 he read a book by his skiing hero, Jean-Claude Killy where the great Frenchman suggested cycling as a means of strengthening the thighs. Skiing’s loss was cycling’s gain. Hegg also took silver at those ’84 Olympics in the team pursuit then enjoyed a 10 year career as a professional, winning three US national time trial championships along the way.

Steve Hegg – World beater

Cross country skiing makes huge demands on the cardio-vascular system and is a terrific endurance building exercise. Maria Canins was 15 times Italian Champion in this tough sport and also a multiple Italian Road Race and Time Trial Champion. She had a huge engine but at the expense of a sprint, accounting for her four World road race championships podiums but no gold medal. On the way to her two Tour de France GC wins she won 15 stages and also won the Giro and Coors Classic.

Maria Canins
Maria Canins – Tour de France winner and ski multi-champion

And whilst I managed to forget about Greg Lemond in my ‘come backs’ piece, Editor Al reminded me that the three time Tour de France and double Worlds winner was another who started off skiing, using the bike for ‘cross’ training before going on to be Junior World Road Race Champion in 1979.

Greg Lemond used to ski, before…

Rowing is another sport which makes big demands upon the heart and lungs, Britain’s Rebecca Romero won silver in the quadruple sculls at the 2004 Olympics, turned to cycling and four years later was crowned as Olympic individual and team pursuit champion, in addition to winning the world individual pursuit championship.

Rowing to cycling – Rebecca Romero

In more recent times Hamish Bond of New Zealand is another rowing devotee made good on the bike. A multiple world and Olympic champion in the coxless pairs his foray into cycling yielded New Zealand championships in the individual time trial and pursuit not to mention a bronze medal in the 2018 Commonwealth Games time trial behind Cameron Meyer and Harry Tanfield. That same year he took third in the prestigious Chrono Champenois in France behind Danish big hitters, Martin Toft Hansen and Mikel Bjerg.

Hamish Bond from water to the road

And now for something completely different, Dan Bigham who recently broke Bradley Wiggins former World, but still British hour record on the boards of the Grenchen Velodrome – where he was not too shy of Victor Campenaerts world record 55.089 kilometres with 54.723 kilometres – was a rugby player before turning to cycling. He’s won multiple British track and time trial championships and is one of the world’s leading authorities on the science of aerodynamics as it relates to cycling. Primoz Roglič, Wout Van Aert and the Danish team pursuit squad have all benefited from his wisdom.

Dan Bigham – GB Hour Record holder previously in the scrum

And to close, perhaps the most unlikely of them all, Scotsman Wilson Renwick was a professional jockey, riding some 400 winners, when I asked him how he got into cycling, he told me; “Liverpool University did a study on jockey’s fitness and how we go about managing our weight. One of the tests was VO2 max (VO2 max is a measure of the maximum volume of oxygen that an athlete can use. It is measured in millilitres per kilogram of body weight per minute (ml/kg/min, ed.) and I scored 90, which was the highest that George Wilson the doctor conducting the test had ever seen – he couldn’t believe it. (The highest VO2 max scores are the preserve of the world’s best cross country skiers and professional cyclists; Norwegian Nordic skiing legend Bjorn Daehle is on 96; Greg Lemond was 92.5; Miguel Indurain 88; Thor Hushovd 86 and Lance Armstrong 84 – a figure which had Lemond questioning the Texan’s performances well before the storm finally broke for Big Tex, ed.). He said that I should take up an endurance sport like running or cycling – I’ve done my ankles in knees in with accidents so running wasn’t an option so I bought a bike.”

Wilson Renwick
Jockey to cyclist – Wilson Renwick

Renwick has won a Scottish title against the watch and rode for continental team, Java Partizan in races as diverse as the Tours of Rhodes, Senegal and Quanzhou Bay in China.

Wilson Renwick
Wilson Renwick could ride a winner

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Categories:PezCycling News

Gear Break: Primal New Collection, UDOG Shoes, MAAP, G4 Sale, Time Perfection & Old Man Winter Virtual Options

01/14/2022 12:02
gear break

Gear Break: See what’s new in our everything Primal collection, UDOG debuts with Tensione road shoes, MAAP transit apparel – Made for movement, G4: Limited pop art collection – Last pieces available and winter sale, TIME Bicycles – Perfection in every strand and Old Man Winter rally adds virtual options.

See What’s New In Our Everything Primal Collection!


UDOG Debuts with Tensione Road Shoes
TENSIONE is the first ever cycling shoe that wraps the rider’s foot from bottom to top, improving both comfort and support for the entire ride.


UDOG, the bold new direct-to-consumer Italian brand, reveals its first footwear product called TENSIONE. Incorporating an innovative new Tension Wrap System (TWS), TENSIONE is the first ever cycling shoe that wraps the rider’s feet from bottom to top, improving both comfort and support.


The new shoe was carefully designed and produced by the team at UDOG – the new company founded in Veneto, Italy, by Alberto Fonte. Fonte is a highly respected cycling industry professional, with more than fifteen years’ experience working for major brands. UDOG – have used Fonte’s extensive performance footwear expertise and knowledge to develop an extremely high quality road cycling shoe that meets very exacting design and production requirements.

The new TENSIONE shoes incorporate a patented dynamic system that hugs the metatarsal area of your feet from the instep to the bridge for an optimum fit called Tension Wrap System (TWS). It features a dynamic system of TPU laminated straps that wrap the insole from one side of the shoe to the other. The hybrid lace-up closure system provides 18 points of contact between the foot and the shoe upper holding your foot for complete support during the entire pedal stroke.


The shoe has been developed with comfort in mind. TENSIONE is shaped to offer a generous toe box and a deep heel cup. The design is also intentionally minimalist, eliminating all plastic and metal hardware which typically create pressure points. The hybrid lace-up closure system allows UDOG to use upper materials that are softer and more comfortable when compared to standard cycling shoes while minimizing stitching. The upper is made of innovative 3D technical mesh, that produces a material that is light, soft and breathable.


UDOG opt for the lace-up closure system for three reasons: laces create more even distribution of pressure, they offer a more understated and stripped aesthetic, they are critically more comfortable and lighter. TENSIONE laces have been carefully selected and tested to identify the ideal material for a high-performance cycling shoe. Traditional laces tend to loosen while pedaling, TENSIONE uses proprietary laces that are a flatter construction which creates a better knot and guarantees the best fitting shoe from the most demanding crit races to the longest endurance rides.


TENSIONE comes with a composite carbon-nylon outsole developed with a directional ventilation channel, integrated rubber heel and toe caps. The outsole features a large metatarsal platform for easy cleat engagement, and generous fore/aft bolts adjustments for precise fitting.


Key features of UDOG Tensione:

  • Hybrid lace-up closure system
  • Tension Wrap System – TWS
  • Generous toe box & deep heel cup
  • Composite carbon-nylon outsole
  • Minimalist design less material less weight
  • Lightweight 245gr in size 42
  • 15 sizes from 38 to 46 full sizes gender neutral

Pricing and availability:

  • Tensione comes in two colors: Pure Black and Arctic White
  • The price is set at 150 euro – 130£ – 200USD
  • Available to purchase in limited quantities from today at; shipping starts from March 15th 2022.

MAAP Transit Apparel – Made for Movement


Introducing MTA: MAAP Transit Apparel. It’s made for movement and constantly in flux. It’s M.A.A.P goes from A to B, or wherever it takes you. It’s technical for the ride and, with progressive color blocked design and unisex fit, styled for the inside.


Four-way stretch provides a full range of movement with no adjustments necessary, while reflective details provide extra visibility for city riding. Lightweight, waterproof, windproof and DWR fabrications provide the ultimate warmth to weight ratio when the weather turns, while the Roam Jacket’s new Cohaesive® hood adjuster system keeps the rain at bay whilst preserving visibility with the press of a button, or two.


“The MAAP Transit Apparel collection was made by cyclists for cyclists. This collection is crafted from materials that are breathable, highly sweat wicking and antimicrobial. We’ve partnered with innovative product performance specialists like Primaloft®, Polartec® and Drirelease® on new fabrics to remove the guesswork from commuting, empowering riders to get from home to work and everywhere in between with confidence in their clothing choice”, said Darren Tabone, VP Product at MAAP.


By swapping vehicle transportation for cycling, we can collectively take a conscious step towards an environmentally sustainable future that is also friendly on the budget. According to the non-profit Adventure Cycling Association, a moderate increase in cycling, even for short trips, could reduce between 6 and 14 million tons of CO2 from reaching the atmosphere and 2.6 to 6 billion liters of fuel annually (1). So it’s no surprise to see more environmentally conscious cyclists making the choice to commute daily.


Available now via or your local MAAP dealer.
(1) Adventure Cycling Association, Environmental Impact


Collection List:

  • Equip Primaloft Down Jacket: $345 USD
  • Motion Pant: $150 USD
  • Motion Short: $130 USD
  • Motion Shirt: $130 USD
  • Repreve Rib Beanie: $35 USD
  • Roam Jacket: $295 USD
  • Shift Dry Tee: $85 USD
  • Shift Dry Long Sleeve Tee: $95 USD
  • Team Hi-Loft Hoodie: $210 USD

G4: Limited Pop Art Collection – Last Pieces Available and Winter Sale!


It’s official ! You now have access to the last 5 available pieces of our limited, numbered and collector POP ART collection!

It is now time to treat yourself with a unique outfit created from scratch by Geoffroy Lequatre and Les Cycles des Mille Etangs!

A simple and accomplished objective: to create something new, something never seen before in cycling and to have fun!

Immerse yourself in the world of POP ART and free your mind on the bike.
A jersey and bib-shorts that are a pleasure to wear, that break the habits and codes of cycling!


Only 5 issues left, hurry up to get YOUR POP ART outfit with its offbeat, avant garde and futuristic style!



From January 12, take advantage of our WINTER SALES, and this until February 08!
Stay tuned, exceptional discounts are waiting for you on your best G4 items!


TIME Bicycles – Perfection in Every Strand


For decades, TIME Bicycles have been producing some of the world’s finest carbon bikes. The processes at TIME are unique in the bicycle industry and we’re constantly refining them to ensure there is perfection in every strand of carbon.


We’ve captured the beauty of the process and distilled it into a mesmerizing short film. The film unpacks how a TIME bike is made, from the initial weaving of individual carbon fibre strands during the Braided Carbon Structures (BCS) stage to the unique Resin Transfer Molding (RTM) process, right the way through to the sanding, painting and finishing.


  • More info at:

  • Old Man Winter Rally Adds Virtual Options
    Runners and cyclists can opt to compete on Colorado’s iconic mixed terrain courses with Strava.

    old man winter

    Adventure Fit Events announces the addition of a virtual option for this year’s Old Man Winter Rally in February. Known throughout the cycling and running community as an annual “epic winter adventure,” the event has been attracting a wide variety of athletes, from novice racers to world-class professional athletes, since its inception in 2015. Offering a virtual version for the second year in a row is one more effort to enable participation while being accommodating to athletes and the communities involved.

    The last few years of the COVID pandemic have hit the event industry hard but have also spurned creativity and innovation. Last year, the team at Adventure Fit Events and county officials worked together to offer a modified event where participants could “race” the OMW Rally course at a chosen day/time during a 9-day window. After racing the courses, participants used an app to upload their data and see their rankings.

    old man winter

    “Last year’s event was a unique experience where we really just wanted to give athletes the opportunity to participate in a safe fashion,” said Josh Kravetz, founder of Adventure Fit. “As we continue to navigate COVID it just makes sense to offer a virtual version of our event for 2022. It’s an extra option for those who may not be ready to jump back into a big group or if you have a scheduling conflict with family or work. We know a lot of folks liked the virtual format last year so we wanted to create something similar. This year athletes simply choose their course, run or ride it February 1st-5th, record it on Strava and send us the link,” added Kravetz.

    The Old Man Winter Rally will offer the following virtual options for 2022:

    Though this year’s virtual options won’t include on-course support or a shot at the $3K prize purse (or that delicious post-event meal and beer), each participant will receive a custom Old Man Winter neck gaiter, a custom Old Man Winter hydration flask, and results listed on the official 2022 results for potential OMW Rally bragging rights.

    All Old Man Winter Rally athletes (virtual or IRL on the 6th) are encouraged to take advantage of the free training events leading up to event week. Adventure Fit offers a series of free “Adventure Training Rides and Runs”. These are socially distanced checkpoint training events that bring together the running and cycling community in a variety of Front Range cities. The series has already kicked off, but there are plenty more to choose from.

    • Thursday, Jan. 13th – Run Training: Shoes and Brews Longmont
    • Saturday, Jan. 15th – Gravel: Endurance Specialized Boulder
    • Saturday, Jan. 22nd – Gravel: Hills Rapha Boulder
    • Thursday, Jan. 29th – Gravel Tempo OR Run Training: Ft. Collins
    • Saturday, Feb. 5 – Gravel Shake out Ride: Specialized Boulder
    • Sunday, Feb. 6th – Old Man Winter Rally: Lyons

    *Remember: For every Old Man Winter registration through midnight tonight, Adventure Fit Events will donate $20 to the Boulder County Wildfire Fund. Learn more, register, or volunteer at

    old man winter

    Join the OMW Rally Rider and Runner Gear Donation Facebook Group!

    About Adventure Fit: Adventure Fit is an Experiential Event Marketing and Production company that specializes in Active Entertainment productions. Their deep understanding of the active marketplace allows them to develop creative events and results-driven solutions for their clients and communities involved. Adventure Fit has produced some of the country’s most popular events, such as the New Belgium Urban Assault Ride, Burning Can Fest at the Lyons Outdoor Games, and the Shape Diva Dash.

    old man winter
    Follow Old Man Winter on Facebook and IG. You never know who else will be there.

    Note: PEZCyclingNews ask that you contact the manufacturers before using any products you see here. Only the manufacturer can provide accurate and complete information on proper / safe use, handling, maintenance and or installation of products as well as any conditional information or product limitations.

    The post Gear Break: Primal New Collection, UDOG Shoes, MAAP, G4 Sale, Time Perfection & Old Man Winter Virtual Options appeared first on PezCycling News.

    Categories:PezCycling News

    The PEZ Top Heroes of All Time!

    01/14/2022 0:03
    coppi alfa

    The PEZ Heroes: When we were younger we all had heroes, but as the years pass that changes to an admiration of a person’s style, personality and in this case, cycling ability. Ed Hood has taken a poll of his chums and the PEZ crew to find the ‘Top Cycling Heroes of All Time’ (in our humble opinion).

    ‘We could be heroes’ – David Bowie

    What was it David Bowie said? ‘We could be Heroes, just for one day?’ But it’s not like that. Your heroes are your heroes, as David added; ‘forever and ever.’ Mine haven’t changed over some 50 years – but more of that another time. Not for the first time it was my mentor and Cycling’s answer to Nostradamus, Vik who gave me the idea for this piece. He was pleased to see one of his Heroes, Guido Bontempi featured in our, ‘trackmen who transitioned to the road’ piece.

    He told me that Big Guido was number two on his list of three Heroes – all Italians, with not a Belgian in sight – let’s start with number three:

    ‘Cipo’ larger than life

    Mario Cipollini: Big, loud, brash, full of himself, politically incorrect – how could you not love the man? There were the crazy outfits, both on and off the bike, the colour matched machines, endless UCi fines – but what a showman and what a sprinter, 192 or is it 201 wins? I have to agree with Vik that the sport misses the big guys from Lucca.

    Guido Bontempi
    Guido Bontempi – ‘The Buffalo’

    Aforementioned Guido Bontempi, aka ‘The Buffalo’ was indeed a beast of a boy on a bike, not only did he transition from track to road he also re-invented himself as a winner from the breakaway when his sprint prowess began to decline – as they inevitably do for all riders. Few riders have looked more impressive when in full flight than this man.

    Vittorio Adorni

    Vik’s top choice lies at the other end of the personality scale from Cipo, one of the sport’s gentlemen but also Italian, tall and very classy – Sen. Vittorio Adorni. We could have included him in our transition piece, he was Italian Pursuit Champion in 1958 but he’s best remembered as the 1965 Giro winner and 1968 World Professional Road Race Champion at Imola where the rising star, Eddy Merckx didn’t give chase to solo escapee Adorni. Adorni was Merckx’s mentor at Faema, teaching him about preparation, diet and race craft. The last time I saw Sen. Adorni at the Giro he looked a million dollars, he could have been a visiting movie star.

    Adorni – Looking like a million dollars

    But what of my other cycling friends?
    I went all the way to Japan to get the choices of Nakata Takashi, a man with whom I’ve collaborated on interviews with the likes of Masahiko Mifune, Damien Monier and Masatoshi Ichikawa.

    Winner Masatoshi Ichikawa

    Nakata’s man in third spot is aforementioned Masatoshi Ichikawa, an understandable choice as a true pioneer and Japan’s first Grand Tour finisher, in the 1990 Giro d’Italia, his full story can be read in the interview, HERE.

    Chris Horner – Vuelta’13

    His second choice is Chris Horner, the oldest ever winner of a Grand Tour by a considerable margin, the 2013 Vuelta at a remarkable 41 years and 328 days, he continued to race into his late 40’s after a pro career which lasted more than two decades.

    World champion Bernard Hinault on the road to Roubaix

    His main man is a name which is sure to crop up again, Bernard Hinault the feisty Breton. ‘Le Blaireau’ is second only to Eddy Merckx in terms of Grand Tour wins, 10 in total, five Tours de France, three Giros and two Vueltas; Baron Eduoard has 11 notches. Hinault won the Tour of Lombardy, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and the Flèche Wallonne twice each as well as five Grand Prix des Nations – and wasn’t averse to a scrap if he didn’t like what the roadside fans were getting up to. . .

    The ‘Badger’ was tough

    Jakob Hansen-Schwartz is ‘my man’ in Denmark, I’ve missed seeing him beside the boards at Copenhagen these last couple of years due to the kind offices of Mr. Covid. But I hope to catch up with him at le Tour, this year.

    Jan Ullrich – A flawed diamond

    His third choice is flawed diamond, Jan Ullrich; World Champion on the road at 19, Worlds iTT medallist a year later, beating the likes of Erik Breukink and Abraham Olano, two years after that he was second in le Tour to team mate Bjarne Riis, riding a dazzling final time trial beating no less figures than Miguel Indurain and Abraham Olano.
    His ’97 Tour win seemed inevitable and looked like the start of a new reign as King of the Tour. But another four second places followed; Pantani then ‘Big Tex’ denying him what had looked like his for the taking. There was a Vuelta, an Olympic Road Race title and two world individual time trial championships before it all started to go wrong. Nonetheless, a very human and simpatico man.

    Bartali was a real hero

    A wee bit before even my time, Gino Bartali does qualify for the ‘legend’ label, four Primaveras, three Tours of Lombardy, three Giri and two Tours with the second one credited with greatly easing civil strife in his native Italy. He’s revered in Israel for the Resistance work his did during the Second World War, aiding persecuted Jews. Legend indeed.

    A Spaniard in pink – Alberto Contador

    Jakob is an Alberto Contador fan to the core; the man from Pinto, the geographic centre of Spain divides opinion – the greatest stage race rider of his generation or forever ‘tainted’ by the ‘clenbuterol affair.’ I go with the former definition, personally, he won all three Grand Tours and between 2007 and 2011 he won six consecutive Grand Tours that he entered. And he deserves respect too for refusing to have the dreaded. ‘one season too many,’ which so many stars subject themselves and their fans too – going out in great style with a win on the fearsome Angliru on his second last day as a competitor.

    Etna - Italie - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Giro D’Italia 2011 - 9e etappe Messina > Etna - Alberto Contador (Saxobank) - foto Cor Vos ©2011
    Contador on Etna Giro’11

    The man I answer to at the Six Days, soigneur Kris has the man who ended Eddy Merckx’s reign as ‘Roi de le Tour,’ France’s Bernard Thevenet as his third choice. Despite his ‘legend’ status in France, two time Tour winner Thevenet remains a very humble, approachable and friendly individual; he was the man who ran the Grenoble Six Day for many years, the very opposite of the dictatorial Six Day ‘Tsars’ of the North. There was also a Tour podium in addition to his two wins, two Dauphines, Romandie and Catalunya. And an epic Worlds ride in 1974 was thwarted by winner, Merckx with the Frenchman ‘man of the match’ in fifth place.

    Bernard Thevenet – The man who beat Eddy Merckx

    His second choice is the man he looked after during the 1981 Tour de France, Belgium’s enigmatic Freddy Maertens, written off by many, Freddy won five stages and the green jersey in that Tour with the cherry on top of that season the world road race title in Prague. After that? Slow decline but on his day in the mid to late 70’s – a force of nature.

    flanders 77
    Maertens in the race he should have won – Flanders’77

    As a man of the sixes it’s perhaps no surprise that Kris should choose a track rider as his numero uno. Denmark’s Hans-Henrik Øerstedt came off a bronze medal at the 1980 Moscow Olympics in the 4,000 metres pursuit to win a medal at every professional pursuit World championship from 1980 to 1987 – three golds, three silvers and two bronze medals. A perfectionist, a stylist, a pursuit legend.

    Hans-Henrik Oerstedt
    Øerstedt in Rotterdam ‘6 Days’

    Finally, my Amigo, Dave Chapman, veteran of many a Tour and Giro de PEZ. His third choice – the man whose 2005 Worlds win and Classics successes boosted Belgian Cycling Federations ‘novices’ membership levels to unprecedented levels – as every boy in Belgium wanted to be like Tommeke. Tom Boonen, four Paris-Roubaix, three Tours of Flanders, three Gent-Wevelgems, five GP E3, two each Paris-Brussels and Scheldeprijs plus more stage wins than a stick can be shaken. Charismatic, simpatico and sorely missed.

    roubaix boonen
    ‘Tommeke’ – Tom Boonen

    His second choice is a man in the Adorni mould, Italian, immaculate, classy, a Worlds and Tour winner, like Adorni; but also a Primavera, Lombardy, Roubaix, Tour and Vuelta winner. The late, great Felice Gimondi.

    Gimondi – Italian class

    And to close the Capo di Capo, the man who by any measure is the greatest ever, Eddy Merckx. The winner of every Grand Tour; every Monument, including Liege five time and Sanremo seven times and a final total in excess of 500 wins. It’s all been said. . .

    What didn’t ‘Big Ted’ win

    I asked some of my Amigos about who their cycling Heroes are but I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t check out with our very own PEZ CREW who their Heroes are.

    The PEZ Staff Heroes:

    We start with the Capo di Capo, Richard Pestes himself:

    Hinault in Paris-Roubaix

    Bernard Hinault: He was at the top of his game when I came into cycling as a fan. Always seemed tough as nails, that determined grimace on his face – winning Liège in a snow storm, then vowing to never race it again – “badgering” LeMond into his first Tour win in ’86. Legend. When I finally saw him at a Tour stage as a reporter, I was afraid to approach him.

    fignon tt
    The Prof – Fignon

    Laurent Fignon: I loved the wire framed glasses, blond hair and pony tail – so cool and with such a French (could care less) attitude. Such a stylish rider, fluid, relaxed, confident. I wish he’d won more and wish we’d interviewed him before he was gone.

    Contador on the attack in la Vuelta’16

    Alberto Contador: He proved his mettle when he not only stood up to, but beat Lance at his own Machiavellian games by winning the ’09 Tour. No one in the peloton had the guts, brains or talent to take on The Boss, but Bert did it – and with such humble style – He showed us how winning with class was supposed to be done.

    Etna - Italie - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Giro D’Italia 2011 - 9e etappe Messina > Etna - Alberto Contador (Saxobank) - foto Cor Vos ©2011
    Giro’11 action for Contador

    As we’d expect from our Literary Editor, his choices are considered ones – over to you, Leslie Reissner:

    Okay, cycling heroes. This is tricky given all the history I have read but I figure that it will be necessary to name an Italian, a Belgian and a Wild Card selection. Here they are:

    coppi gravel
    Coppi leading Koblet and Bartali

    1. Italian: Fausto Coppi – Grand Tours, Monuments, the One Hour Record riding around bomb craters at the Vigorelli. Someone who used modern training methods. Total style on the bike (how can you miss with a Bianchi anyway?) and off the bike. “A man, alone, in the lead, whose jersey is white and blue…”

    Gilbert – He never gives up

    2. Belgian: Philippe Gilbert – He probably won’t win Milan-San Remo to round out his palmarès with each of the Monuments but a great record of wins anyway, from the Worlds to Classics to Grand Tour stages. A rider who never gives up, as shown by going over a wall at the Tour and smashing his knee and still finishing the stage. Or a week after winning Flanders he was in the leading group at Amstel Gold, crashed out, got back on and even with a torn kidney caught up to the others and won the race. I was present for a Philippe Gilbert Fan Club ride and he was really happy to hang out with the kids.

    Cancellara – More than just a TT man

    3. Wild Card: Fabian Cancellara – another cycling style icon. A wonderful time triallist but also someone who could win a sprint at the Tour, astonishingly. A friend was riding at a sportif and Cancellara was participating, saying he was there, ‘so people could enjoy my presence.’ And they did, particularly when he stopped to help someone with a mechanical. To mix a metaphor, I think the Swiss have punched above their national weight in cycling and are always good value.

    But also a top TT man

    Mr. Chuck Pena our Technical Reviews Expert: If by “cycling heroes” you mean from the professional ranks:

    Coppi – The first big hero of pro cycling?

    Fausto Coppi – Because Coppi is Coppi. A legend. And when it comes to cycling, I’m an Italophile at heart.

    Lemond – The ‘only’ US Tour winner

    Greg LeMond – First (and only) American to win the Tour de France. His second two wins came after his being near to death. And those eight seconds – perhaps the greatest Tour finale ever? Plus I’ve actually met him and he’s a genuinely nice guy.


    Andy Hampsten – The first American to win on Alpe d’Huez. His bike set-up (STI rear shifter and downtube front shifter) was the inspiration for how I re-configured my Hollands in the 90s. Plus he’s also a genuinely nice guy.

    Giro D’Italia, foto Cor Vos ©1988 Andy Hampsten
    Giro winner and nice guy – Andy Hampsten

    PEZ man on the Iberian Peninsula and our Editor, Alastair Hamilton remains true to his North European roots but his first choice is an interesting one:

    ‘El Tarangu’

    José Manuel Fuente: Sadly, no longer with us, he was known as ‘El Tarangu’‘a word in the Asturian language for a man reputed for his strength and character,’ but can also be translated as, ‘the Tiger.’ A ‘pure’ climber, afraid of no one, not even Eddy Merckx with whom he fought a bitter battle in the 1972 Giro – eventually succumbing to the Belgian but not before causing some fraying to Eddy’s ‘cloak of invulnerability.’ He twice won the Vuelta, was four times King of the Mountains in the Giro and finished on the Tour podium in 1973. And he did like a cigarette.

    de vlaeminck roubaix
    Mr. Paris-Roubaix – Roger De Vlaeminck

    Roger De Vlaeminck: with Eddy Merckx and Rik Van Looy is the only winner of all five monuments. If you check the result of the 1969 world amateur cyclo-cross championships you’ll see that ‘Le Gitane’ – a name he didn’t like, as a true Flandrian he wasn’t a fan of the French – was second to countryman Rene De Clerq. Legend has it that Roger could have won that race, ‘with his fingers up his nose,’ as they say in Flanders BUT the rules of the day dictated that he had to remain amateur for another year if he took the rainbow jersey. He wanted to turn pro and start making money. His first pro race? Het Volk 1969. The winner. Roger De Vlaeminck. Legend.

    Double World champion – Freddy Maertens

    Freddy Maertens: Also selected by my amigo Kris in his ‘Heroes’ choices.

    The stats are remarkable:
    1972: 15 victories
    1973: 15 victories
    1974: 32 victories
    1975: 32 victories
    1976: 56 victories
    1977: 61 victories
    1978: 22 victories
    1979: 2 victories
    1980: 1 victory
    1981: 13 victories – including five Tour stages and the Worlds
    1982: 0 victories
    Difficult figures to explain but the man remains a Legend.

    Hoogvliet - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - archief - archive - stock - Freddy Maertens wint Gent - Wevelgem - foto /Cor Vos ©2008
    Freddy winning in Wevelgem

    What’s that?
    What about me?
    Ah, yes, right. . .

    Fastman against the clock – Alf Engers

    Not a pro or a name well known on the international stage but one of the coolest dudes I’ve ever known in our wonderful sport: Alf Engers the English track and time trial specialist, the first man to complete a 25 mile [40 kilometre] time trial inside 50 minutes – 30 miles per hour. His personality was as at least as big as his chain rings. . .

    Merckx on the Alpe

    Eddy Merckx: Martin and I had just dropped off the hire car in Sanremo having been working the Primavera. I stopped in my tracks as if hit by a lightning bolt; ‘Martin, see that guy walking towards us – it’s Eddy!’ Madame Merckx smiled tolerantly as another two grown men turned into little boys in the presence of her husband. The best, the coolest.

    1965 World champion Tom Simpson

    Tom Simpson: Harworth & Bircotes Sports and Social Club is an anonymous looking building, one of thousands of such places all over the UK. But inside there’s a shrine, a memorial to the man who’s ‘Cycling is my Life’ autobiography I’ve read and re-read so many times over the years. Ivan, Davie and I made the pilgrimage some years ago. The usual ‘inquisitive local’ asked us who we were and why we were there, upon explaining we were treated as prodigal sons and had to ‘pass’ on many offers of, ‘a pint.’ When Simpson took his savings out of the bank, left Harworth, crossed the Channel and settled in Brittany there was no Federation ‘Plan,’ no development team, no internet, no mobile phones and very little English spoken; there were only two ways it could go. Skulk home with tail between legs; or win, make a name, catch the eye of a pro team and sign on the dotted line. Simpson did the latter: Milan – Sanremo, the Tour of Flanders, The Tour of Lombardy, Bordeaux – Paris, the Worlds. No one better, braver or with more personality than this man. Always the greatest for me – my Hero.

    Simpson – A real gentleman

    The post The PEZ Top Heroes of All Time! appeared first on PezCycling News.

    Categories:PezCycling News

    SPORTFUL Total Comfort Jacket, Bibtights, & Winter Kit Review

    01/12/2022 12:03

    My full review of Sportful’s Total Comfort jacket & bibtights, BodyFit Pro long sleeve base layer, and cap (they call it a helmet liner).

    The Sportful line of cold weather cycling kit runs pretty deep – with more than enough model variations and choices to cover every riding condition I can think of.  The Italian brand’s roots are in cross-country ski gear, so they know a few things about cold weather performance clothing.  Italian’s pay attention to tailoring, style and fit like no one else, so you’re almost guaranteed to look good.  They also sponsor Peter Sagan’s TotalEnergies pro cycling team, and have  and have been a fixture on the Pro Tour stage for many years – so the cred is solid.

    Needless to say – I was excited about getting into this new SPORTFUL Winter Kit, and out into the some cool conditions.

    Total Comfort Jacket – $300US
    The signature item in the Sportful winter lineup this year – the Total Comfort jacket is all new, and to cut to the chase, and very nice piece of kit.

    I’ve worn and reviewed dozens of winter jackets over the years, and this is the first design of this kind that I’ve seen.  Thanks in part to advances in technical fabrics and new ways designers are using them, cold weather kit really does just keep getting better.

    Sportful has found a pretty sweet balance between warmth, breathability, protection from the elements, and weight.

    The collar is nice a tall, just like it should be, and the YYK  runs easily and smoothly even with long finger gloves – which makes it easy to open up on a climb where you want to let in a bit more air.

    The challenge with all winter jackets is to repel the elements, while still allowing enough breathability that you don’t overheat and drown in your own sweat.  The Total Comfort jacket tackles these key issues with construction using two of Polartec’s most innovative fabrics – Neoshell and Alpha Direct.

    The Neoshell is used on the outside, it’s windproof, and they claim “waterproof” as well, although in my tests I’d call it water resistant as I did experience some absorption in a heavy rain, even if I wasn’t out long enough for it to soak through.  The sleeves below the elbows, and the lower waist section of the body are treated to make water bead up and simply bounce off – you can see a clear demo of this in my video.

    Inside, the Alpha Direct fabric is like a loosely woven fleece – you can see the large piles of fabric attached to a mesh liner.  This really helps in moisture transfer – allowing heat to move away more efficiently from the body and begin evaporating because there’s just more space inside the jacket.  The kicker is that it’s done within the confines of a sleek body conscious design.  And it works.  I’ve found it to keep me nicely and warm, without getting as wet as some other jackets do from sweat build-up.

    The zippered side pocket is a nice place to keep keys, cards, and coffee cash.

    The sleeve cuffs and lower body are treated to really repel water – literally. 

    Total Comfort Bibtights – $200US

    Bibtights – two words, when taken individually should really never be mentioned in the same sentence as your manliness… but put ’em together, get over yourself and you’ve got one of modern cycling’s best inventions – stretchy pants that bring a sort of super-hero vibe to the whole MAMIL genre.

    Sportful’s Total Comfort bibs are exactly what they claim – totally comfortable.

    Made from “heavyweight brushed stretch fabric with 4-needle stitching”, they’re a nice winter weight warmth without being bulky.  The multi-panel design fits well in the riding position, and overall fit was superb on my size Medium testers.  Pulling them on there’s the requisite “oh these are too tight” initial feeling, but a couple minutes inside and they all but disappeared from thought, while embracing my lower half in brushed fleecey warmth.

    While they’re not meant for wet days, (try the Fiandre or Fiandre No Rain bibs when it’s wet outside) the shin and calf are cut from Sportful’s No Rain fabric which does a decent job of repelling water splashed up from below.

    The bib straps are a nice mesh to allow lots of air flow (adding to the overall comfort), and are designed to not roll up, bunch up, or gutter.

    In case you still haven’t go it, that Total Comfort theme continues all the way to where your money lives – thanks to Sportful’s Total Comfort seat pad.  It uses muliti-density foam placed at strategic points between you and your saddle, and the skin side is a seamless, single piece of very soft fleece that feels amazing, and uses dimples to once again help moisture transfer so you won’t over heat.

    The ankles zip into place for a nice snug fit under, or over, booties.

    Bodyfit Pro Long Sleeve Base layer – $75US

    My cold weather cycling always hinges on how warm I am, so starting with the right base layer is essential. I once squeezed into 7 different winter base layers, for a video review – but all I really need is one good one.

    I like this Bodyfit Pro long sleeve base layer because it’s so light (my tester weighed only 103 grams), yet so warm, all at once.  Modern knitting technology has also brought big advances to how these garments can be made to fit around our unusual shapes.  Think of this a a tube-sock for your torso.

    The fabric itself is ribbed, which varies the thickness of the material, and therefore allows for much better moisture transfer and breathability than would a uniform thickness.   I wore this a few times as a single layer under the Total Comfort jacket, and really liked the results – yeah it kept me very comfortable.

    Helmet Liner – $45US
    Ah behold the humble cycling cap, no cold weather ride can happen without it, yet few things scream “private school lad” louder.  Few of us would be caught seen wearing one.  Such are the battles we grown men fight.

    Thankfully Sportful’s smart design makes choosing this one easy.  The peaked sleak silhouette fits nicely under my helmet, completely eliminating the dreaded “Jiffy-Pop” head, thanks to the front half being made from GORE-TEX INFINIUM™ which blocks wind & water from the outside, while the fleecey inside keeps up the warmth where your head meets the cold – right in front.

    The sides are made of ThermoDrytex – a vented fabric that allows sound through, while still providing a little bit of warmth.   I’ll be getting some more good wear from this to go with the good wear I’ve already got from it.

    Overall, this is top end kit with excellent detail to smart choices of technical fabrics, clever design ideas, and the kind of fit and finish I expect from an Italian brand.  The Total Comfort jacket is not cheap, nor should you expect it to be, but a good winter jacket can last 5 seasons or more, so it’s a long term purchase.

    Get the full rundown in my video – watch it here – and find more info and buy ’em online at


    The post SPORTFUL Total Comfort Jacket, Bibtights, & Winter Kit Review appeared first on PezCycling News.

    Categories:PezCycling News

    Can You Heat Adapt With Lots of Clothing Indoors?

    01/11/2022 12:02

    Endurance performance is impaired in the heat, and the best way to prepare is to heat adapt. We don’t all have access to heat chambers or saunas, but can we instead effectively acclimate on our indoor trainers by wearing lots of clothes?

    Doha - Qatar - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Amialiusik Alena (Belarus / Canyon Sram Racing) - Knetemann Roxane (Netherlands / Rabobank Liv Women Cycling Team) pictured during TTT women Team Time Trial of the UCI Road World Championships 2016 in Qatar. - photo Davy Rietbergen/Cor Vos © 2016

    Any of us who tuned into the Tokyo Olympics, or when Qatar hosted the World Athletics Championships in 2019 and the UCI Worlds in 2016, should hopefully know that heat can seriously impact not just performance but health. This is true for both athletes and workers. Studies tracking World Athletics Championships suggest that any track competition over 400-800 m, or about 1-2 minutes, are worse when done in the heat.

    There are lots of fancy things we can do to minimize heat impacts as athletes, including precooling, ice vests/socks, and ice slushie drinks. However, those are all marginal gains compared to systemic and progressive adaptation through gradual exposure to exercise in the heat.

    There are many modes of heat adaptation, but they require equipment like my fancy environmental temperature, or saunas or hot tubs. What about the simplest method of all, namely training indoors while bundling up with lots of clothes? That’s the focus of a new Scandinavian study featured in our video today.


    Lundby C, IS Svendsen, T Urianstad, J Hansen, B Rønnestad. Training wearing thermal clothing and training in hot ambient conditions are equally effective methods of heat acclimation. J Sci Med Sport. 24(8):763-767, 2021.

    Check out the video by clicking below!

    Full Transcript

    A specific plan of gradually adapting to heat is one of the best things that athletes can do to prepare for competing in hot environments. But what if you don’t have access to heat facilities?

    In today’s episode, we’ll explore a study testing heat adaptation through training indoors and wearing heavy clothing. Can it provide the same benefits as training in a hot environment?

    Exercising in the heat can be very challenging, with much lower performance compared to cooler temperatures. Indeed, lower performance is already seen in typical room temperatures that most of us would rate as comfortable when at rest. The best thing that athletes can do to prepare for hot weather competitions is to heat adapt through gradually exposing themselves to exercise in the heat over 2 weeks or more. Classic adaptations include lower heart rates and core temperatures at both rest and during exercise, increased sweating rates, decreased thermal and exercise discomfort, and ultimately greater power output. The challenge though is that not everyone has access to a heat chamber or the ability to go to hot-weather training camps. However, most of us have extra clothing that we can pile on while training. Can the use of clothing adapt us as well as heat training?

    A Scandinavian group tested this question with 34 trained competitive cyclists split into 3 groups. The HEAT group performed traditional heat training on an indoor bike, with 10 days of 50 min at an easy effort in a hot environment. The SUIT group did the same protocol, but in 19.5°C temperatures but wearing multiple layers of winter and impermeable clothing. The final group did the same training as the SUIT group, but added 30 minutes of hot water immersion afterwards to extend the heat stimulus. Importantly, the very easy effort meant that any changes over time were likely not due to a training stimulus but to heat adaptation instead.

    Before and after the 10 days of training, testing was performed in 35°C. First, the cyclists rode for 15 minutes at a steady submaximal effort, then they rode as hard as they could for 30 minutes. As expected, resting and exercise core temperatures and heart rates were lower after the 15 min submax ride, showing that heat adaptation did occur. Interestingly, the total amount of hemoglobin – the molecule for carrying oxygen in the blood – also increased. This was seen before by the same group in a very long heat training study of 5+ weeks, but has not been seen before with the more typical 2 week training study. In the time trial test, all three groups improved average power significantly and by about 9% after 10 days. Importantly, the improvement was the same with the SUIT and SUIT+ hot water group compared to the traditional HEAT group.

    So where does this leave us in terms of ways to heat adapt? The big insight from this study is that, in terms of both physiological and performance responses, training with heavy clothing may heat adapt us as well as with traditional exercise in hot environments. This makes intuitive sense in that the main goal of heat adaptation is to raise body temperature, and our body is agnostic about how that’s done. One caveat is that this finding may be specific to indoor training, as riding outdoors generate a lot more wind exposure and convective cooling, which may limit the heat stimulus even with heavy clothing on. Finally, it’s unclear why the extra hot water immersion had no extra benefit, as it has shown to be beneficial in several studies and it theoretically would have had the greatest overall thermal stimulus. One possibility is the highly trained nature of these participants, such that their ceiling for improvement has already maxxed out.

    Dr. Stephen Cheung in the lab with a ‘subject’ (his wife Debbie suffering for science)



    The post Can You Heat Adapt With Lots of Clothing Indoors? appeared first on PezCycling News.

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    BREAKDOWN: The Van Der Poel Effect!

    01/11/2022 0:03

    Van der Poel Takeaways: Dutch ‘boy-wonder’ Mathieu van der Poel has had to call a halt to his cyclo-cross season due to his back problems – How will this affect his spring Classic campaign and the future of his Alpecin-Fenix team? Spencer Martin gives us his Takeaways on the ‘Van der Poel effect’.

    – This article is an excerpt from the Beyond the Peloton newsletter. Sign up here for full access. –


    How Mathieu van der Poel’s Injury Affects The Spring Classics Betting Odds & 2023 WorldTour Qualifying.

    Mathieu van der Poel, the electric crossover star who has appeared to seamlessly jump between disciplines while winning major events in each with near ease, was recently forced to halt this year-round spinning-plates routine when he was sidelined with a back injury that will keep him out for, at the minimum, ‘months’ and almost certainly sideline him for this year’s Spring Classics, and possibly even the Tour de France.


    According to Van der Poel’s physiotherapist, the back injury, which stems from swelling on an intervertebral disc in his back, is linked to the efforts Van der Poel has made across so many different disciplines over the years, and even referenced the ‘attacks he has committed on his body’, and emphasized that only rest would solve it. This shows the dangers of the year-round grind that has become popular with a new generation of riders like Van der Poel, Wout van Aert, and Tom Pidcock.


    The news is obviously devastating for Van der Poel, his Alpecin-Fenix team, and fans of exciting racing and cobbled rivalries, but it also shows the dangers of burning the candle on both ends as an athlete in perpetuity. At the beginning of 2021, I got a lot of heat for suggesting that Wout van Aert and Mathieu van der Poel’s overloaded racing schedules could be shortening their road careers, but this recent incident should show that the bodies of even the most incredible athletes have limits and underline the importance of rest and recuperation between seasons.


    The debate over the cause of Van der Poel’s injury and if he stretched himself too thin with his overloaded race schedule and all-out long-range attacks at non-core races like BinckBank Tour and Tirreno-Adriatico will rage on for months, but a more pressing concern is the fate of his Alpecin-Fenix team.

    Does the Alpecin-Fenix team depend on only Van der Poel?

    The second-division squad has shot up through the ranks and out-performed teams with much larger budgets in recent seasons. This is partly due to their strategy of staying out of the WorldTour and focusing on winning one-day races and grand tour stages with heavier, powerful riders, which allows them to manage their costs by controlling their race schedule and roster construction. But, a key component of this strategy hinges on Van der Poel, who can both generate enough WorldTour points to keep the team in the auto-invite territory (the second-division team with the highest number of UCI points earns automatic invitations to every WorldTour race, meaning they get the benefits of a WorldTour license without having to contribute the cost and infrastructure of being a WorldTour team) and has the star power to generate wildcard invitations from every major race in the event that they aren’t able to finish as the top second-division team.


    However, a major risk of this strategy is that the entire program hinges on a healthy Van der Poel. If he is racing, he can both generate UCI points and race invitations, but, if for some reason he is unable to race, then the team, which was a rising force in the sport, could suddenly be on the outside looking in as early as 2023.


    This Complicates Alpecin’s 2023 WorldTour Plans
    In the short term, Alpecin has nothing to worry about, since its position as the top-ranked ProTeam (second-division) means they are guaranteed invites to every major race whether Van der Poel is racing or not. This is key not only for sponsor exposure but for their ability to get at-bats to generate UCI points which will likely allow them to finish as the top ProTeam again in 2022, along with qualifying for the WorldTour in 2023.

    As I’ve touched on in the past few weeks, 2022 will see an epic relegation battle, with teams finishing in the top-18 of UCI points generated between 2020-2022 qualifying for the 2023 WorldTour. Alpecin currently sits in 10th place, 4,342 points ahead of 19th placed Arkéa-Samsic.

    What does it mean to Barguil and the Arkéa-Samsic team?

    Current 2022 Relegation Standings


    Cumulative 2020-2022 Points Standings Difference

    • Alpecin Fenix- 10th – 13,039 points
    • Arkéa-Samsic- 19th – 8,697 points
      • To lose WT qualifying slot, Alpecin would have to lose more than 4,342 (or more) points to a team currently outside the qualifying zone (1st-18th)

    2021 UCI Points Alpecin-Fenix vs Arkéa

    • Alpecin Fenix-8,297 points
      • Mathieu van der Poel-2,467 points
    • Arkéa-Samsic-5,037 points
    • Gap between Alpecin w/out MvdP & Arkéa = 793

    The good news for Alpecin is that Van der Poel generated 2,467 UCI points in 2021 (30% of his teams’ total points), which means that even if he fails to race a single day in 2022, it would be nearly impossible for Alpecin to fall out of the climate 2020-2022 top-18 UCI point slots.

    However, since Arkéa finished 3,260 points behind Alpecin in 2022, which is reduced to only 793 points when Van der Poel is taken out of the equation, there is an outside chance that they or Peter Sagan’s TotalEnergies could finish ahead of a Van der Poel-less Alpecin in 2022 and take the invite-rich top ProTeam slot.

    This possibility, combined with the recent health scare of their star riders, is likely enough to convince Alpecin to accept WorldTour status in 2022 to cement future invites, which is something they have resisted so far due to their extremely advantageous position as the sport’s best ProTeam with one of the sport’s biggest stars.

    van der poel flanders

    How This Creates A Spring Classics Betting Opportunity
    While Van der Poel will almost certainly miss the Spring season (or, at best, enter the major races incredibly undertrained) due to his forced time off the bike, we can safely assume that he will be unable to seriously compete for the win at the first three Spring Monuments.

    But, cycling betting markets, which are famously slow and easily exploitable, haven’t caught up to this development and still list Van der Poel as a heavy favorite for both Flanders and Roubaix. Van der Poel’s back injury may be tragic, both for him personally and us as fans, but opportunistic sports bettors can capitalize on this lag by shifting money to the other top favorites, who in reality have a much greater chance of winning than these odds currently reflect due to the continued presence of Van der Poel on the odds boards.


    Current Spring Monuments Betting Odds & Implied Win Probability

    +450 Wout van Aert (18.2%)
    +650 Caleb Ewan (13.3%)
    +700 Julian Alaphilippe (12.5%)
    +1600 Mathieu van der Poel (5.9%)

    Tour of Flanders
    +500 Wout van Aert (16.7%)
    +500 Mathieu van der Poel (16.7%)
    +650 Kasper Asgreen (13.3%)
    +1200 Julian Alaphilippe (7.7%)

    +500 Wout van Aert (16.7%)
    +500 Mathieu van der Poel (16.7%)
    +1200 Sonny Colbrelli (7.7%)
    +1600 Kasper Asgreen (5.9%)


    # Spencer Martin is the author of the cycling-analysis newsletter Beyond the Peloton that breaks down the nuances of each race and answers big picture questions surrounding team and rider performance. Sign up now to get full access to all the available content and race breakdowns. #


    The post BREAKDOWN: The Van Der Poel Effect! appeared first on PezCycling News.

    Categories:PezCycling News

    Readers’ Rigs: LOOK 695 Light

    01/8/2022 12:03

    For today’s Readers’ Rigs we head north to Canada where we find one of France’s favorite machines, a LOOK 695 Light decked out in Dura-Ace Di2 and with Easton Carbon Clinchers on board. Not a new bike, but timeless in its looks, very rideable and could be right out of the box yesterday.


    Name: Ric Liang
    Location: North Vancouver, BC Canada
    Bike: Look 695 light
    Groupset: Shimano Dura-Ace 9000 Di2
    Wheels: Easton EC90 carbon clinchers
    Pedals: Look Blade 2 Ti
    Saddle: Specialized Toupe Expert
    Other: Planet Bike carbon bottle cage
    Weight: 6.5kg

    When did you buy it?
    Early in 2015.


    What made you choose this bike?
    Beautiful flowing lines, color, innovative technology (cranks, stem, seat post). A certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ that makes it pretty rare to see on the roads.


    What modifications/additions have you done?
    Just added some Zipp skewers (saved another 60 grams).


    What components are you running?
    I’m running Dura-Ace Di2, Easton EC90 Carbon clincher rims, Look Blade 2 Ti pedals, Specialized Toupe saddle…


    How many miles/kilometers do you do a year?
    I averaged around 10,000-12,000km total on the old bike. 4,000km in the first six month on the LOOK. It must be a lot by now.


    What do you love about this bike?
    Responsiveness, comfort.

    Favorite riding area?
    Sea-to-Sky Highway to/from Whistler.


    Favorite riding experience on your bike?
    Hammering to Whistler (125km), grabbing a pasta lunch, Coke, and 1/2 a loaf of bread, and riding home in time for a big dinner. 250km round-trip. 8.5 hours of ride time. Amazing views of Howe Sound and several hours of not answering emails and texts!

    Future upgrades?
    New Garmin.


    Last words?
    Just get out there and ride!

    Thanks to Ric for sharing his ride with us. Got a bike that you walk into the room just to stare at? Well how about sharing it with fellow PEZ fans and getting it featured in Readers’ Rigs so we can all stare at it! Contact and your bike could be featured in all its glory here on the pages of PEZ.

    The post Readers’ Rigs: LOOK 695 Light appeared first on PezCycling News.

    Categories:PezCycling News

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