Road Cycling Digest: A Wheel-Destroying Parrot, Tech Through Time, Match Fixing & More

Dec 3, 2021 at 18:02
by Sarah Moore  

What's going on in the curly bar world? Road Cycling Digest showcases articles from our sister sites, CyclingTips, VeloNews and Peloton Magazine. In each installment, you might find endurance coverage, power-to-weight ratios, gravel bike tech and, of course, lycra.

Parrot Gets Peckish, Destroys Wheel
By: Iain Treloar / CyclingTips

There’s a full spectrum of ways for bike parts to be destroyed – crashing, driving into a garage, simple neglect. But it’s safe to say we’ve never heard of a parrot writing off a high-end wheel with its beak. Until now.

In a post to a local buy/swap/sell group, a Queensland cyclist called Vanessa asked for a lead on a new front wheel, with a surprising story behind the request.

(Read more.)

Behold: Campagnolo’s Revolutionary New Gearing System
By: Ronan Mc Laughlin / CyclingTips

Here follows an announcement of extraordinary implications, something we should have spotted in 1946. We must have missed it.

This here exposé is intended to transport us back neigh on 80 years to the mid-1940s and give one of the most important technological advancements in cycling history the global announcement it deserved. Exact facts and dates are hard to pinpoint and there is a hefty portion of speculation but this is to be enjoyed and imagined, not taken for fact. Read with a speedy wartime radio advert voice.

(Read more.)

10 Products I Loved In 2021: Dave Rome
By: Dave Rome / CyclingTips

How the heck am I writing one of these again? Where did the year go?

With just a small handful of adventures away from home, the past year has seen my riding return to exploring local suburbs for hidden trail treasures. Knobby tyres very obviously took preference over slicks, and baggy shorts over lycra. A three-month lockdown that only recently ended saw riding become my prominent form of social escape, and with that, social activities such as afternoon drinks were merged with bikes.

Off the bike I found myself spinning wrenches even more than usual. I’ve really had to restrain myself with the number of tools included in this round-up.

Below is a list of products that have left the biggest impression on me over the past year (or beyond). And just like in previous editions of our “10 products” series, the items covered here are those that I see myself recommending and using for years to come.

(Read more.)

2022 Giant Revolt Advanced Bucks The Trend, Going Longer, Lower, And Steeper
By: James Huang / CyclingTips

It’s been interesting to watch the evolution of mainstream gravel bikes over the past few years – which is a funny thing to say in and of itself given gravel has only been “mainstream” for a few years as it is. Giant’s first carbon gravel bike, the Revolt Advanced, debuted barely three years ago, but there’s now a second-generation version that incorporates some of what Giant has learned about this rapidly evolving segment since then.

Not surprisingly, Giant has extended the reach of the new Revolt Advanced, but not by any extreme amount. It stretches just 5-8 mm depending on size, although it’s worth noting the previous version was already on the longer side for the time, and Giant has never been known to be terribly progressive (often for the better).

(Read more.)

Does Road Cycling Have A Problem With Match Fixing?
By: Matt De Neef / CyclingTips

On April 25, 2010, on the final climb of that year’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Alexandre Vinokouorov punched away from Alexandr Kolobnev and opened up a gap. The controversial Kazakh rider maintained his lead all the way to the line to take his first big win since returning from a blood doping ban. ‘Vino’ was back.

Late the following year, Swiss magazine L’Illustre alleged that Vinokourov had paid Kolobnev €100,000 to let him win the Belgian Monument. The magazine went on to publish emails between Vinokourov and Kolobnev that seemingly confirmed the deal.

(Read more.)

How I Became The Internet’s Most Notorious Bike Thief
By: Iain Treloar / CyclingTips

The year: 2013. My jeans were tight, my hair was long, I was in the gory core of my 20s, and I was trying to make my way in life.

After several aeons of diligent study and many more working at a bike shop while trying to get a job as a writer, I’d finally landed a gig at a cycling magazine for an advocacy organisation. Things were looking up. In those days my heart sometimes whispered a quiet dream to my brain, that maybe one day I’d make a mark on the world. Who knows? Melbourne’s a big city, but I had big dreams.

For one edition of the (now defunct) magazine a colleague had written an article about her bike being stolen, and we needed a feature image. All the bike thieves in our stock photo archive looked a bit shit, but we had a bike, a camera, a big bolt-cutter, and a can-do attitude.

(Read more.)

Silca’s $85 3D-printed MTB Cleats: 90 Kg Saving Per Leg?
By: Ronan Mc Laughlin / CyclingTips

Silca seems to find a marginal gain in almost anything. Hot off the heels of its aero socks, Silca has announced 3D-printed titanium mountain bike cleats.

Why, you ask? Well, unfortunately, there are no aero or drivetrain friction gains to report here; rather, this marginal gain is actually a marginal loss. That’s because the new 3D printed cleats are said to be 25-30 g (including hardware) lighter than stock mild steel offerings from most brands. Despite this weight reduction, Silca claims an internal lattice structure (called a gyroid) in the 3D printed titanium ensures the cleats retain the stiffness and strength of a regular cleat.

As we often hear, though, marginal gains accumulate into massive savings. Silca provided a calculation of what that 25 g might mean for a rider: “25 gm reduction x 100 rpm = 180 kg of mass not lifted per hour of riding, 90 kg per leg!”

(Read more.)

OneUp EDC Lite Steerer-based Multi-tool Review
By: Dave Rome / CyclingTips

OneUp is a Canadian-based accessory and component company with a focus on the mountain bike world. The brand got its start doing 1x conversion kits and chainrings when many mountain bikes still had front derailleurs, and the company has since pivoted into offering impressively well-thought-out dropper posts and cleverly stash-able multi-tools, among other things.

OneUp’s 100cc high-volume mini pump was the clear winner in its category in my previous mini pump shootout. Designed to fill mountain bike tyres and therefore great for gravel bikes, it offers an enormously efficient inflation rate. The head can be removed from the pump to be used as a CO2 inflator, and the pump can be used as a storage vessel for OneUp’s own multi-tool and/or a CO2 cartridge. It’s a strong example of OneUp’s genius.

(Read more.)

The Headset That Won’t Die? CeramicSpeed Rolls Out SLT Bearings
By: Ronan Mc Laughlin / CyclingTips

CeramicSpeed has quietly rolled out what could be a significant update for headset and suspension pivot bearings. SLT (Solid Lubrication Technology) bearings are said to offer staggering levels of durability, potentially offering some light at the end of the tunnel for painful headset replacements on frames with internally routed wires/cables and hoses.

The Danish brand has already partnered with Factor (and several other manufacturers yet to be announced) to include its SLT headset bearings as standard for some models.

(Read more.)

How Continuous Glucose Monitors Are Poised To Reshape Pro Racing
By: Jim Cotton / Velonews

Forget power meters and heart rate monitors – glucose monitors are poised to change pro cycling forever. Here's a look at how the new tech could push the peloton forward.

(Read more.)

Peter Sagan Fined For Injuring Police Officer After Breaching A Covid-19 Curfew
By: Velonews

Peter Sagan has been fined €5,000 ($5,600) by a Monaco court for injuring a police officer in an altercation in April after the car he was traveling in was pulled over for breaching a COVID-19 curfew, according to media reports.

Sagan was fined an additional €100 euros for breaking the curfew, and must also pay €1,500 ($1,700) in compensation to the officer.

(Read more.)

Danish Rider Retiring At 21 Calls Use Of Pills In Pro Racing ‘grotesque’
By: Velonews

A Danish rider, who has announced his retirement aged just 21, has called out the use of pills in pro racing.

Ludvig Wacker, a former member of the Sunweb development team, decided to pull the plug on his career this year citing a big crash that made him scared in the bunch, and mental exhaustion, behind his decision to step away from the sport.

In an interview with the Danish website, Wacker described the blatant use of pills in cycling as “grotesque”. He added that he believed young riders would obtain the pills themselves without any action from their teams.

(Read more.)

Power Analysis: Comparing Cycling’s Three Grand Tours
By: Zach Nehr / Velonews

It can be easy to forget that Jasper Stuyven won Milano-Sanremo this year, that Kasper Asgreen won the Tour of Flanders, and that Damiano Caruso won Italian hearts and nearly the Giro by finishing second in 2021. The road cycling season has come and gone in the blink of an eye, but there will always be a few highlights to remember this year. Mathieu Van Der Poel’s sprint at Strade Bianche was one of the best attacks of the year, while Tadej Pogačar’s romping at the Tour de France was a dominating statement.

In this article, we’re going to dissect the three Grand Tours of cycling – the Giro d’Italia, Tour de France, and Vuelta a España – to see how different they really are. They say that everyone tries to peak for the Tour, but do the numbers reflect that? The cold Giro mountain passes are a lot different from the melting Spanish pavement in the Vuelta, while Italy in May is a lot different than France in July.

(Read more.)

Tech Through Time: 7 Bikes
By: John Wilcockson / Peloton Magazine

The sport of cycling is fortunate that its history is being preserved by dedicated museums all over the world, often supplied by collectors who sometimes restore iconic bicycles to their original form. That’s the case with the machines depicted in these pages, several of them currently on display at the KOERS cycling museum in Roeselare, Belgium, while others come from riders’ personal collections. What’s most surprising is that the diamond-shaped frame used in the first Tour de France 118 years ago remains the basic shape today, even though the material has changed from heavy steel to ultralight carbon fiber. What has changed most of all is the equipment—from a bike with a single fixed gear and no brakes in 1903 to one with 22 electronically controlled gears and hydraulic disc brakes in 2020.

(Read more.)

Cycling in Black and White
By: Paul Maunder / Peloton Magazine

Summer holidays in the Dordogne, cycling with my family when I was 11 years old. Hot, empty roads. Cruising ahead, I imagined winning a stage of the Tour de France; stopping to wait for the others, I was perfecting my ever-so-professional insouciance. Already, my career path was set. I would become famous. Even the French motorists seemed to be acknowledging this fact by giving me an encouraging beep. Not quite sure how to react, I responded with a shy English schoolboy smile and prayed that they didn’t stop to ask a question.

(Read more.)

A Giant Of His Times: François Faber
By: John Wilcockson / Peloton Magazine

To understand the impact François Faber would make on France (where he was born and raised), Luxembourg (his father’s country) and the sport of cycling, we first need to see what life was like when he was growing up in the 1890s. France had suffered a series of economic, political and military setbacks in the previous decades and was hoping for a brighter future. The so-called Golden Age of Cycling was in full progress, and the first gas-powered automobiles were appearing on the streets of Paris alongside bicycles and the ubiquitous horse-drawn vehicles. Longer-distance travel was via steam-powered trains and ships. Telephone service was in its infancy, radio broadcasts and film entertainment were still decades away, and the only way that people knew what was going on in the world was through newspapers, magazines and word-of-mouth.

(Read more.)

The Music of Lisbon
By: Clive Pursehousen / Peloton Magazine

It took me about 15 minutes to fall in love with Lisbon. I didn’t really want to, but this colorful city by the sea gets to you in a hurry. I had come from spending a week in Évora, due east, 90 minutes on the train. The cycling in Évora was my reason for being in Portugal but I booked two extra nights to explore Lisbon. On my way to the train station in Évora one of the wheels on my suitcase gave up the ghost and I arrived in the city dragging its maimed carcass down the twisting cobbled streets of the Mouraria neighborhood cursing under my breath. It was an irritating introduction.

(Read more.)


  • 132 4
 Press F for Sarah Moore who has to create this copy paste article. You deserve better IMO !
  • 56 6
 I'm just glad that she's still around, as I haven't seen her featured in anything lately. She's one of my favourite writers, presenters and podcast guests. Her positive attitude and personality are refreshing.
  • 5 0
  • 84 16
 Well I guess the time has really come to switch to Vital...
  • 3 1
 Enjoy the 5.10 music
  • 9 1
 The stage is set for a giant revolt
  • 25 1
 everyone keeps saying that but their forums and comments sections are still dead
  • 4 5
 Why is this article even on Pinkbike? Surely, there must be another video of Aaron Gwin boasting about himself…those are always hilarious!
  • 10 0
 @grizwald: I heard he can throw a pig skin a quarter mile. Probably throw it over them mountains.
  • 7 0
 @usedbikestuff: could have won state
  • 53 2
 A young man named John received a parrot as a gift.
The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary.
Every word out of the bird's' mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity.
John tried and tried to change the bird's attitude by consistently saying only polite words,
playing soft music and anything else he could think of to 'clean up' the bird's vocabulary.
Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot.
The parrot yelled back.
John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even more rude.
John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer.
For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed.
Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute.
Fearing that he'd hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer.
The parrot calmly stepped out onto John's outstretched arms and said
"I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions.
I'm sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions
and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior."
John was stunned at the change in the bird's attitude.
As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior,
the bird spoke-up, very softly,
"May I ask what the turkey did?"
  • 2 1
 lel, sucks to be that parrot
  • 2 0
 , thanks for that!
  • 1 0
 I can't believe this. As a Kid I used to tell a joke that was very similar. The difference is John was a one-eyed dude and the parrot kept calling him one-eyed jerk, so he finally puts him in the freezer. When he pulls him out the parrot is frozen solid and has one wing over one of his eyes and the other one shaped into a middle finger. That was the punch line.
  • 51 7
 As someone who likes bikes I find this sort of content great. I'm not wanting to be a gatekeeper. Bikes are cool. I prefer mountain bikes, but if you really are a bike person it's better to be across all disciplines.
  • 17 4
 Well said lots of people on this site can get really negative biking is biking lets just have fun and be nice.
  • 8 5
 Agree - if you are on a bike we have a connection. Some mountain bike thing road bikes are rubbish. What do you ride to work if it’s more than a few miles away?
A commuter based road bike usually is the quickest best bet. If you answer your silly Tacoma then you are part of the problem.
  • 4 1
 You know what they say about guys that pick on gay men a bit too often: They might be interested. Same goes for mountainbikers picking on roadies ;-).

Wise words, @Larkey1 but someone does not need to be a 'bike person' in my book. To each their own, but why one would comment on another discipline in a negative way is beyond me. I guess it's just a bit of a cliche to do that. On Pinkbike you can be sure there's a lot of trolling around for the fun of it, using exactly those cliches. If they really weren't interested they would not have clicked.
  • 46 0
 Could parrots be the solution to carbon fibre recycling?
  • 3 1
  • 7 0
 That wheel's aero faring is made of Blackcell(TM), and should be perfectly ridable still, as it is not load bearing.
  • 1 0
 @megatryn: 100%. The "wheel destroying" parrot is fake news.
  • 45 12
 I really like these digests Smile
  • 2 0
 Yeah, I will never road bike. But it’s free entertainment so I don’t know why people complain.
  • 21 0
 I thought that parrot destroying the wheel was fake how wrong was i lol
  • 2 0
 absolute same here ,Big Grin
  • 4 0
 I knew a guy who kept parrots and gave them free rein in his house. They totally trashed the place, unbelievably destructive.
  • 7 2
 Is it me, or does it look like foam? I wouldn't have expected carbon to look like that after a parrots been at it, Im not doubting the parrot, I'm doubting the wheel.
  • 7 0
 @inked-up-metalhead: it is a foam fairing
  • 1 0
 @Mattgc: yeah I learnt that after commenting. I didn't realise it was a done thing.
  • 3 0
 We have an African Grey and that things destroys almost everything it sets its peak to.
  • 1 0
 i got a bike very damaged by rats, except for the metal parts, i was wondering if rats could eat carbon fiber
  • 1 0
 Looks like the parrot got ideas from the old Jeffsy ad
  • 2 0
 @panchocampbell: rats can chew through copper cables and concrete. The only things on a bike they couldn't chew through are the chain, spokes and bearings/bolts. And even then they'd give it a good go.
  • 9 4
 Yet another reason aluminum rims are superior.
  • 3 1
 I had a small withe one many years ago,a Cockatiel according to Wikipedia. The bird was abandoned in the Vet and my mum take it at home when a regular dog care visit. It was old but she came out their cage when ever she wish.We tried every kind of lace you could imagine,even copper wires to lock the door but she would undo it in a few minutes. She bite me twice in the ass,she grab my pants and put made a big hole,so no joke...My old dog was very respectful with other pets in general,but that bird scary him a lot hahaha. It was a withe little devil to me
  • 2 0
 @mhoshal: That rim is aluminium with a Blackcell(TM) aero faring, which the parrot ate.
  • 2 0
 And parrots have long lifespans, decades long. That's why we can't have nice things.
  • 2 1
 It actually is fake to a degree... the wheel is perfectly fine and not destroyed as the article would have us believe. That's just a faux carbon fiber fairing designed to give cheap aluminum wheels some of the aerodynamic advantage of deep dish carbon fiber wheels. That fairing, which the parrot did in fact destroy, has nothing to do with the structural integrity of what is otherwise a basic aluminum wheelset. Fake news, really.
  • 1 0
 @Chadimac22: I see your point about it not exactly being clearly explained, but I wouldn’t necessarily Call it „fake news“. Of course you can still ride it, but you might also talk about a car being „destroyed“ even if all the damage is cosmetical. Imagine a car with an equivalent portion of its bodywork torn apart, one propably wouldn’t say „ahh, that’s just fine“.
  • 2 0
 @lejake: I too see your point. My chief complaint lays with the click-baity title and misrepresentation of facts. It needs a disclaimer: "No carbon wheels were destroyed in the making of this article."
  • 1 0
 @Chadimac22: Yeah, that‘d be good Big Grin
  • 1 0
 If it were Enve Id say Poly wanted a cracker
  • 16 1
 I have to subscribe CyclingTips to read the full article!
  • 2 3
 It's a metered paywall. The first few articles (resets each month) are free to view.
  • 8 2
 Of course, that’s the idea behind this “article”. Get your Outside+ subscription already…
  • 11 0
 @FuzzyL: it's always free if you use a VPN or open in a private browser.
  • 2 1
 @Larkey1: I’m aware of that. But somehow I can’t even be bothered. If that’s the way they want it, fine with me, I’ll just don’t read it then. This time of year, I often feel like I’m getting too old, I still remember the internet as a place where people were just excited to have the possibility to share their stories, content (and files…). Nobody thought it would ever be possible - or even kind of a prerequisite - that you could make a living out of that.
  • 2 0
 @DaveRome: We’re four days into December, and it hasn’t reset for me. I haven’t been able to read a single article since I hit what I thought was my November limit a couple weeks back. Any idea what’s up with that, Dave?
  • 17 3
 Boooo outside you suck
  • 11 0
 That's a wheelie bad parrot.
  • 7 0
 HAHAHAHA!!!! FYI.... My parrot has destroyed my grips,tires,seat and the little shit even punctured my brake hose. They look at your bike as a chew toy and boy do they take advantage of that.
  • 14 7
 pick a discipline, and be a dick about it
  • 32 26
 Thought Pinkbike covered mountain biking
  • 12 2
 You're thinking of
  • 8 1
  • 10 6
 Stay round your own end, Cycling Tips/Peloton/anything else Outside is bloodsucking
  • 16 11
 Wow that's some worthless content right there. Fluff and filler.
  • 8 2
 What’s road cycling?
  • 21 17
 Worthless content that doesnt spark any interest. I thought this was a MTB news website
  • 21 8
 To be fair they gave a decent warning in the title, if you don’t like the sound of it don’t click
  • 9 7
 Makes about as much sense as people clicking on an Ebike article then moaning it's about Ebikes...
  • 8 7
 and so I hit the PayPal, for you $0.75 USD per week, a rather poultry sum, I can access amazing content:

Find out the story behind the latest that are a carbon rim!

Learn more about products I already read about … wait, Outside wants me to pay them to read about products they’re advertising?

Oh hell no!

Good bye PB, it was fun while it lasted.
  • 2 1
  • 7 0
 @mm732: maybe that was just a really good parrot pun.
  • 1 0
 @P00t: nah, it was just misstake
  • 1 0
 @P00t: That would have ruled.
  • 3 0
 THE ROBOTS enjoy these "Best of Cycling Tips" articles, and we will read anything by Dave Rome- especially if it's about improving the mechanical efficiency of chain drives.
  • 4 3
 My CDN $.02:

1) This site is Just because it's focused on mountain biking doesn't mean it has to parrot-hole itself.
2) Cross-promotion with partner products has been going on for forever. And at least since early-2021 here.
3) You have interest in someone but only when they're doing what you want?
4) As @mashrv1 mentioned, nice job taking the low road and taking jabs at someone doing a job on a public free website. You also know they have an editorial team and it's incredibly likely no one unilaterally publishes anything here.
5) You must have a hate on for Alaina's bmx background, his gravel bike comes up every second podcast.
  • 1 0
 Silca provided a calculation of what that 25 g might mean for a rider: “25 gm reduction x 100 rpm = 180 kg of mass not lifted per hour of riding, 90 kg per leg!”

This has to be the dumbest logic I've ever heard. Pedals are offset at 180 degrees so the weight cancels.
  • 1 0
 Yeah at first I thought the kg was a typo, meant to be just a g... Then I read on and instantly regretted it.
  • 8 4
 Roadbike content is perfect for the aging pinkbike consoomer.
  • 3 0
 Wacker sounds like a Wacker. "I quit because other people use legal supplements. I also crashed and now I'm scared."
  • 4 1
 That parrot doing gods work in removing another terrible Mavic product from circulation… Thank you based birb…
  • 2 0
 "A case of dastardly jiggery-pokery, or a verified improvement on the erstwhile fixed cog?"

Let's use this phrase moving forward.
  • 3 1
 Why does the wheel look like it's an aluminium rim with a load of foam stuck to it?
  • 9 1
 I'll answer myself: because that's exactly what it is lol
  • 5 6
 PB introduced news feed content filters a while back because the hate for Ebikes was pretty loud, how much noise has to be created for those filters to be extended to include off topic articles such as rally cars, road cycling and that slack random oddness?

For anyone planning a bland "don't like it don't click it" those filters are supposed to be a better solution
  • 3 0
 Hello Outside, where is the gravel digest?
  • 1 1
 Never in my mind I expected to read about portuguese music on a cycling article,but here we are.
My tip to people planing on riding road bikes over here is less population = better roads.
  • 3 0
 need to start making wheels out of parrot beaks
  • 6 6
 From Pinkbikes Facebook page - Pinkbike is the largest Mountain Bike community in the world.

Surely you understand your own demographic?
  • 1 0
 It's Outside now, not Pinkbike...
  • 2 0
 Just as coldplay was singing.. “parrot , parrot.. parrot dies”
  • 2 0
 What the hell I can't see the parrot article because of subscription?!?!
  • 1 0
 Headset bearings that last forever already exist, they are called Chris King
  • 1 0
 If I had a parrot destroying my carbon rims, I'd shoot that bird and then mount it onto my handlebars!
  • 3 1
 What on earth?
  • 3 1
 What is this babel?
  • 1 0
 I wonder if cyclingtips is under Pinkbike?
  • 1 0
 Bird repeats "that will buff out"
  • 1 0
 yuk you know what they say about curly bars
  • 1 2
 Oh my god lol, the amount of butthurt down here. Grow up. People other than yourselves exist, and many of them like to look at road bike stuff too.
  • 9 10
 I'm going over to Vital if this outside marketing gets any worse, FREE PINKBIKE
  • 6 6
 Im 100% mountainbiker, but I like to read whats goin on.
  • 2 1
 If there would just be some kind of dedicated road cycling website..
  • 1 2
 Road bikes...evolving at breakneck speed as always... Roadies always finding new ways to cheat...inspiring...
  • 3 3
 Road cycling on PB.... GTFO
  • 6 7
 Stop! Just stop! This is NOT relevant content. Period.
  • 3 4
 I don't like birds.
  • 8 3
 Why? They are pretty tasty, imo.
Processed chicken especially. Extremely versatile food. You can eat it every single day and still get to say how you're a vegetarian.
  • 7 0
 @pakleni: When they created the matrix, they couldn’t really decide what chicken should taste like…
  • 1 0
 @pakleni: Chicken and turkey are great. I don't like live birds. My stepbrother had a parakeet and all it did was make a mess, noisy, and poop all over. One day we all came home and the cat got it.
  • 1 2
 wtf is this BS?
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