We Need You !

Hi all

Rollapaluza are entering their busy summer period and are looking for casual crew for our events. 

A willingness to engage with members of the public from all backgrounds and enthusiasm for cycling and the event helps! Work varies but is in general is reasonably physical with most events within and around the London area.
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The events themselves range from corporate events (promo and internal usually) to school and community work. 

Rates start at £8.80/h with a minimum 6 hours per event. If you are 21 or over and have held a full driving licence for more than a year there is potential to earn more in a Team Leader role.

If you are interested, please email: jacob@rollapaluza.com

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International Women’s Day

To celebrate ‘International Women’s Day’ we headed down to York Hall, Bethnal Green for an event arranged by Tower Hamlets #forthegirls a women’s and girl’s sports initiative, inspiring women to become involved and play sport.

Jade Johnson

Jade Johnson

We were extremely privileged to have Olympian ‘Jade Johnson’ in attendance, Jade’s specialist event is the long jump,surprisingly she is allergic to sand, which must prove difficult.
Rollapaluza International Womens Week 2015-44

In 2009 Jade partnered Ian Waite on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ unfortunately having to pull out of the competition after injuring her knee.

Great Time 24.30

Great Time 24.30

We did persuade Jade to race on our rigs in York Hall and she recorded a very respectable time 24.30, faster than GB cyclist Lizzie Armitstead.

For The Girls

For The Girls

For more information check out Twitter @forthegirlsLDN

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Laura Trott Matrix-Pro-Cycling At Revolution London

It was Laura Trott’s first outing for the new Matrix-Pro-Cycling team at the 5th Round of the Revolution Series in London and we went along to have a chat with her about her new team.

Laura won the elimination race with relative ease from Emily Kay and Spanish rider Leire Olaberria, to rapturous applause, there is no doubt she is the golden girl of British Cycling.

Good way to start your career with Matrix-Pro-Cycling Laura.

” Yeah not bad also first race on my new Rourke bike as well, it handles a bit differently so took a bit of getting used too, the first few little sprints I was like Wooo! but once I got settled it was nice”

Getting the set up right on the Rourke

Getting the set up right on the Rourke


It was a pretty straight forward win for you ?

” Yes it was nice, good I liked it, the younger girls are coming through now Emily Kay was pretty impressive in that race, she is so strong”
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How do you feel about riding for matrix-Pro-Cycling?

” Oh yeah I really like it, this team are looking to develop women’s cycling in the long term, for a start Matrix sponsor the women’s Tour Series, the biggest series in this country, joining this team gives me a chance to give something back to the sport, I had so many people who influenced my career when I was growing up, I just want to do that for the new kids coming through and for me Matrix are the best team for me that want to achieve that, also being based in the UK helps my track programme. Stefan Wyman just wants British Cycling to grow especially women’s cycling, and I just want to be a part of it with him”
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It must also be a help that Elinor Barker came over as well.

” Yes because I actually made the decision to leave Wiggle/Honda and she was a bit indecisive, but when she made her mind up it was nice because its always good to have a friendly face, someone you know, we train together and travel to lots of meeting so it helps to have a close friend”
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Have you many road races in your calendar?

” No not really, obviously I want to do my bit for the team, I would like to do as much as I can, but it does make me a bit nervous though, I always say I don’t enjoy its but its not that… it just freeks the hell out of me, from 24 people on the track to 240 on the road its completely different, and I just don’t want to put my life in that many peoples hands”

It must be great for Lucy Shaw to have an experienced rider like you in the team.

” Well yes but I’m only 22 myself so I don’t want to call myself a mentor as such, but anything I can do to help her or any of the younger riders then yes I want to help, I had that myself, I was fortunate that I had my sister Emma turn professional before I did so I had the opportunity to speak with her”
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You say you’re only 22 but thats the sort of age when women riders have to make the decision whether to continue in this career or not.

” I was lucky because I came through the track programme, but in terms of the road girls its a time when you have either made it or you haven’t, and you may decide to give up and pursue another career, but I think its a lot better now there are more teams out there who are bringing on the young girls and funding the people at that age, when they are at their limit and don’t if to quit or not, bit like Lucy Martin she didn’t know where to go, I was so glad she joined Matrix, I done a few races with her when I was younger out in Belgium and she was just so nice and welcoming, it was great to have that so its nice we are back together again”

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Matrix Pro Cycling Team Launch 2015

This year Stefan Wyman and his British based team are joining the Pro-Ranks and competing against the best in Europe, this is a massive step for the team and women’s cycling in this country, I attended the team launch and got some reactions from Stefan and the riders apart from Laura Trott who seemed so rushed off her feet, with all the attention so I thought I wouldn’t add to it.
There was a very special guest at the launch ‘Shut Up legs’ Jens Voigt and the Jensie selfie was very popular.
Team

Stefan Wyman (Director Sportive)

“ This is a very exciting step up for us, we have been dipping into pro races for the past years, a few one day races and a couple of stage races, but to be constantly going to these events is huge for us, when you look at our schedule for February and March its quite daunting really. The first few weeks though we just want to develop as a team and find our feet, but hope to be going well by the end of March/April, I think the first big challenge for us will be the ‘Women’s Tour’ then hopefully helping Laura defend her British title on the Lincoln course, We are lucky to have riders like Lucy Martin and Laura Trott on the team, and I’m sure Lucy’s experience will help some of the less experienced riders on the team, but I want her getting back to stepping up onto the podium and I know she can be a consistently good rider on the world scene. The team have a fantastic set of supportive sponsors Matrix, Miltag, Vulpine, Skoda and some new ones Hollywood Monster, Yellow Jersey and Trek whose bikes are absolutely fantastic, and we hope to do everyone proud”

I asked the riders what they felt about joining Matrixprocycling for the 2015/16 season

Lucy Martin

Lucy Martin

Lucy Martin

“ I’m now one of the oldest and most experienced riders on this team, which feels quite weird, I stared speaking to Stefan at the end of the year and when he said he was putting together a British UCI team, I thought why not, I have been on so many different European teams coming back to a British one with British sponsors was a opportunity I couldn’t let go , and its great to be back here and just remember what its like to be British again, its just great. Stefan has been so supportive and I feel I already owe him, I had an awful year in 2014 and I just didn’t enjoy my cycling, even found myself questioning why am I doing this? Stefan hasn’t put any pressure on me he just wants for me to get back to where I was, it might be a slow progress but having that support and being part of a strong team is just what I need right now”
Jessie Walker & Mel Lowther

Jessie Walker

“ I’m really excited about the season, i’ve been racing for four years now and feel i’ve developed and ready to take the next step up any earlier or any later would be the wrong time for me so this is perfect, like I said earlier I’ve been with the team a long time so that make’s the progression a lot smoother into the pro ranks, I hope to gain a lot of experience from the early season and be on form for the ‘Women’s Tour’ but all in all this year will be a great experience so I just want to take it all in”

Harriet Owen

Harriet Owen


Harriet Owen

“ I feel like I have been in the right place at the right time as regard Matrix, all this was quite unexpected, I have to take this year as it comes and enjoy the experience, last season was a big change for me being paid to ride my bike, so this is another step up the ladder, Its great to just doing you training and go home although now I have just began a ‘Open University’ course so I have something else to focus on.
I’ve done a rece of our first race ‘Omloop Het Nieuwsblad’ on Saturday and feeling just a bit nervous after seeing what is facing us , although there is no pressure on the team so it will be just a case of getting our name out there”

Lucy Shaw

“ This is a big step up for me as a junior but there is no pressure on me and the opportunity to ride with Matrixprocycling is very exciting, I can learn from all the other girls, they have so much more experience than me, once I finish my ‘A’ levels I hope to get out to France and Belgium to race there and build on my knowledge , but my aim for the season is to perform well in the Women’s Series”

Team Selfie

Team Selfie


Penny Rowson

“ I have already had a great time with this team, 2012 was fantastic, then I had a period away when I didn’t ride too much, but rejoining the team has been fantastic Stefan has shown a lot of belief in me and got me back to where I am now, last year riding the ‘Women’s Tour’ with Matrix was really special everyone coming to England and the crowds of support, its kind of where I got my love for cycling back, I then thought this is my job and passion, now this year I have a new coach and he has given me the tools and opportunity to be the best I can without putting me under too much pressure, its up to me now and could be a make or break year, It was great to meet ‘Jensie’ today and he told me to enjoy the racing and the atmosphere, but also to explore all the places we visit and take in the culture and the different surroundings, basically to enjoy the experience”

Laura & Mel

Laura & Mel

Molly Weaver

“ This is massively exciting prospect moving up to UCI level with the team, Stef has set up a great structure for us and I think it should be very good, having a long term plan is fantastic we are all young riders and it will give us a chance to grow as a team, there comes a point when you need to take a plunge and fully commit to your sport and now is a great time to do that in women’s cycling and hopefully as a team we can grow with it and it will pay off in the long run, this whole season is going to be a big learning curve and hopefully it will set us up for things to come”

Elinor Barker

“ Stefs understanding of my track program and the priorities I have have been fantastic and that means a great deal to me, I think he is one of the rare DS’s where he is very hands on but all his priorities are in the right place and wants to promote women’s cycling, but doesn’t forget about the racing in the process because ultimately thats why we are all here”

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Sports Journalist Association Question Time

SJA Question Time

Clive Efford MP Labour
Helen Grant MP Conservative
John Leech MP Liberal
Chair… David Walker SJA

We were invited to a question time type debate with the above mentioned MP’s in the Wilson Room, Portcullis House, Rollapaluza did submit a question put forward by Jason Falconer, unfortunately it was the final question and never got answered, apart from in a roundabout way via another question.
Portcullis House is the first addition this century to the Parliamentary Estate, the complex of buildings centred on the Palace of Westminster which provide a working space and facilities for members of both Houses of Parliament and their staff, the building was opened in 2001 by Her majesty the Queen.

L to R Clive Efford, Helen Grant, David Walker, John Leach

L to R Clive Efford, Helen Grant, David Walker, John Leach

As you would expect with politicians never give too much away, but here is a selection of Q&A’s from the evening.

(Q) Will you maintain the same ratio of money invested in grass roots and elite sports in the next government?

JL; “ Its a slightly unfair question before we publish our manifesto, sports funding is incredibly important to us, grass roots and elite, there has to be more commitment from the likes of the Premier League to put money back into grass roots sport. I think too much time is spent on statistics, the main thing is keeping people fit and active, the biggest problem we have is inactivity”

HG; “ I will always,always champion investment in sport because its not just about health and fitness but the confidence and self esteem it can give people, life lessons …team work, leadership, discipline and respect “

CE; “ I think yes from the areas that come from the lottery but I can’t sit here and say or know what money I will get from Ed Balls if he becomes chancellor, but I would commit to fighting for investment because there is a growing concern for inactivity, that needs to be addressed so if your looking long term there will be consequences for the economy and health services. The elite level has a role to play stimulating interest in sport and as the Olympics showed it can be an economic driver as well, but we need to get cross government co-operation to maximise the funding we’ve got”

Portcullis House (Left)

Portcullis House (Left)

DW; Were you alarmed in the post Olympics that we are seeing sports like swimming having fewer people participating at grass roots level?

CE; “ Well yes I think participation has flatlined, there is a lot more we can do I think it was an absolutely dreadful decision by the government to take the 162million out of Schools Sports Partnerships, it sent everything into reverse at a key moment when we should have been building on the momentum , Hugh Robinson said himself that he would build on schools partnerships but his legs were taken out from under him by a non co-ordinated government in my opinion, so it is tragic whats happening in areas like swimming, one in three children leaving primary school unable to swim 25m , there are things we can do around that, for instance a survey by the ASA a few years ago showed that the down time for swimming baths is the period straight after school finish times, so it doesn’t take much to work out if we want more children to swim why don’t we try and fill that time, it just needs better co-ordination and I don’t think this government has shown any will to do that”

HG; “ Two issues there, swimming and participation figures, first of all swimming I have met very recently with the ASA (Amateur Swimming Association ) and Sport England, the ASA Know they need to step things up, I was disappointed with the figures, swimming is a great sport and as a country we are good at it, its affordable for most and there are plenty of pools near where people live, I am confident we will see improvement on the swimming figures. On the point of participation generally I think we have a really good news story to tell here, since the Olympics we have 6million more people doing more sports 650,000 more women 240,000 people with disabilities thats good, but it certainly isn’t flatlining we are also seeing more 16-25 year olds doing sport record numbers, so I don’t accept what Clive has to say”

(Q) Has there been enough to be done to tackle racism in sport football in particular ?

JL: “I think we have made massive in roads and the difference in level of racism from 30 years ago is much improved but we must continue to keep our efforts going,there just a small minority of idiots in and outside grounds ruining things for everyone”
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CE; “I think there is danger in criticising all chelsea fans for a few, I would say you would be hard pressed to find any other organisation than football that challenge’s racism in our communities I don’t see a time when we can stop challenging it, I don’t think we have enough black football managers/coaches or boardroom members in this country and this needs to change, there are only two black managers at the moment so that needs looking at to reflect the amount of black players on the pitch, Football or any other sport doesn’t make people racist its something society has to challenge and I think football has done an awful lot .The people on the paris metro let us all down, even our country”

HG; “I would echo what Clive said I was disgusted at the images, its inexcusable I can not tell you the damage it does, we need zero tolerance, the seniors from the club were distraught they moved swiftly. We are not there yet, some would say that the lack of black managers/coaches could be seen as racism I think this is really important, I have heard of some good practice in the past years and some black coaches and women intact are coming through the system”

(Q) DW; In America they have the ‘Rooney Rule’ which insists that a percentage of black/ethnic candidates for coaching or management are shortlisted, would you all support that in British sport?

CE; “ I would hope British sport could deal with it themselves if not you would have to look at something like the Rooney Rule if sport is refusing to shift, but I wouldn’t rule it out if there was no progress”

HG; “ I also believe we need balance in society and we need people from all backgrounds knocking at the door for all top jobs, not just in football and actually getting the jobs, but if these programs don’t work then maybe we do need some legislation”

JL; “ Yes I would support it “

(Q) Should the next government criminalise doping in sport

JL ; “They should consider it sport is big business and you have to discourage the cheating that has gone on”

CE; “ Easy said, but hard to apply in law, its how you make it stick and it looks like it could be difficult but the principal is right, we need to be at the cutting edge of catching these people, its how you prove the crime, its a complex thing to get into law”

HG; “ I think the integrity of sport is paramount it goes to the heart of sport , cheats need to know they will be punished ,I don’t think legislation is the best way forward we need a multi agency approach and more athlete information and education”

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Rollapaluza’s 2014

As usual its been a busy and exciting year, there were too many events in 2014 for us to reflect on them all so here is a small selection.

We started of our year by providing the competition for the Matrix-Vulpine team launch at ‘Pop Up Bikes’ Manchester, it was a fantastic evening with some fierce racing, but it was Harriet Owen “Baz’ who came out on top.

Nick Hussey, Harriet Owen and Stefan Wyman

Nick Hussey, Harriet Owen and Stefan Wyman

Next us for us was the Hartford Schools Finals held in conjunction with Sustrans, where over several weeks we traveled the Cheshire area to find the fastest boys and girls and invited them to St Nicholas School for the finals.

Emma Robinson and Olivia Andrew

Emma Robinson and Olivia Andrew


We were privileged to be at Paris Roubaix this year in the Arenberg Forest with Oakley, where we witnessed Niki Terpstra winning and dancing girls in front of our rigs “Those crazy Belgians”
Roubaix Dancing Girls

Roubaix Dancing Girls


May…and we got to put Guy Martins record breaking Rourke bike on our rigs for a special speed bike challenge at Look Mum No Hands. We had sprinter Craig MacLean push the bike to its limits, Craig cranked the bike up to 225kph on the massive 400inch gear on which one revolution would take you 30m, he then became the fastest man over 500m in a time of 11.30 a massive 158kph.
Craig macLean

Craig MacLean


June saw Grant Young of our long time bike sponsors ‘Condor’ awarded the freedom of the City Of London, a fitting award for such an iconic London bike shop and cycling family.
Grant Young Condor Cycles

Grant Young Condor Cycles


Our Keirin held in Manchester was a great success and was a culmination of a lot of hard work from all involved, we saw a fine display of sprinting in both the women’s and men’s competitions, Sophie Capewell was crowned the women’s winner with Damian Zielinski taking the spoils in the men’s race.
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The sun and a new Condor bike saw our top MC ‘Jake’ get back on his bike, and enjoy riding the road again, when he had any spare time, that was!
Jake (left)
It was back to Herne Hill for our second Keirin event of the year, again it was a great success and we were also blessed with fine weather and big crowds, for the first time we used electric dernys, something the UCI have implemented now.
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It was a big year for Scotland and we were part of it bringing rollapaluzaracing to the Quay as part of the BBC’s ‘Get Inspired’ at the Commonwealth Games
The Navy 'Get Inspired'

The Navy ‘Get Inspired’


October we were at ‘Parkour Ride’ Tobacco Dock, basically a down hill race in a multistory car park, with road bikes,MTB’s and BMX, it was World Champion Liam Phillips (BMX) and Manon Carpenter (MTB) that came out on top in their respective competitions.
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We continued with the BMX theme at Peckham BMX where we premiered our new BMX rigs with ‘Haro bikes’
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These are just a small selection of our events, its safe to say we have had a lot of fun travelling around the country this year making lots of new friends, and catching up with some old ones, we are looking forward to a lot more ‘Rollapaluzaracing’ in 2015.
Happy New Year
Rollapaluza

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Alec Briggs – Bike Test – Malcolm Custom

Rollapaluza DJ Alec ( Pedeler) Briggs has been out and about testing the Malcolm Custom Bike and here is the outcome.

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Recently I’ve had the honour of riding and racing the Malcolm Custom road frame. I’ve done my best to put it to the test on some of the toughest race circuits and training rides I’m local to, and it’s safe to say, I’m impressed! 

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 First impressions…I was amazed by how comfortable it was on the road, even on the bumpy and uneven country tracks, I was enjoying long training rides for the first time in years. Also it may seem strange but the bike felt fast, all the power I was putting out was being directly transferred to the road.    

After getting a feel for the bike on a couple of steady rides, and the fact that Philip Glowinski kept nagging me to start racing again ( Cheers I owe you for the encouragement) I decided it was time to put me and the bike through our paces in competition, where better to do this than in a critirium on a tight circuit with plenty of fast and tight bends.

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I raced the bike at the narrow and technical Hove Park, the sweeping bends of Hillingdon and Velo Park, and pushed it too its limits on the corner riddled Crystal Palace possibly my Favourite circuit. Cornering is my favourite thing to do on a bike, and I would like to think I am one of the quicker riders at cornering in the bunch, and I found the front end very stable although the short wheelbase means the bike is very agile.

Out of the saddle the bike felt really stable, and the power transfer was nothing short of excellent when getting on the power out of corners and at the foot of climbs. The paint job is nothing less than outstanding with the blue paint work shining and sparkling making it very pleasing to the eye, a real head turner. 

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The weight of the frame definitely suits a smooth riding style with the bike handling smoothly when put under pressure. All in all I have been more than impressed with the ‘Malcolm Road Frame’ The comfort on long rides is exquisite despite the weight of the steel tubes, it came up to scratch in the crits with its handling and stability.

I’m feeling quiet upset to be giving this test bike back, and I can’t thank Ashley and Ian at ‘Malcolm Custom’ for giving me the opportunity to ride their bike and I hope I can pay them back and notch up a few wins on it in the new year.

Photos; Gavin Peacock

 

http://www.malcolmcustombicycles.com/

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Track World Cup Women’s Keirin – London

Well probably the most controversial thing about the Keirin at this World Cup was…the Electric Derny, which was not that new for us as we have used a electric derny in our Keirin at Herne Hill Velodrome, I’m sure there will be traditionalists who will hate it, but to be honest I never noticed any difference (asking for trouble now)

Electric Derny

Electric Derny

Jess Varnish

Jess Varnish

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Round Two – Race One; Pretty straight forward win for the World Cup Leader Gou Shuang (China) from Sze Wai Lee (Hong Kong) and Hyejin Lee (Korea)

Guo Wins

Guo Wins

Round Two – Race Two; All was going well until a big crash which amazingly only saw one girl come down French rider Olivia Montauban sliding past the photographers as they leapt out of the way, thankfully she was fine and walked away to battle again, Kristina Vogel (Germany) took the win with Tianshi Zhong (China) and Ekaterina Gnidenko (Russian) joining her in the final.

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Montauban Hit The Deck

Montauban Hit The Deck

Slide !

Slide !

Final Seven To Twelve; Cracking race with Montauban straight back into the action but no one could stop the sprint from Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) not even Anna Meares (Australia)

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 Final One To Six; Another close race but in the final straight the World Cup Leader Shuang Guo powered her way to the win.

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” My English is a bit better now, I love this place its the first time iI have been back since the Olympics the noise the crowd make is amazing, I think I was a bit lucky today but I’m very happy with the win”

Bang Another Win In London

Bang Another Win In London

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Kenny De Ketele – Track World Cup London

Just for something different we followed  ‘Gent 6’  winner Kenny De Ketele (Belgium) through the World Cup Points race in London, mainly with images but with quotes from Kenny.

 

End of a failed lap attempt

” I went into the race without a plan and just let my instincts take over”

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“In the first sprint I was in the breakaway, and felt I had good legs”

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” I knew if I wanted to win the race I needed to take a lap and I did with four others ”

Kenny and Edwin Vanegas Avila

Kenny and Edwin Vanegas Avila

“I felt really good in the break and felt the others were suffering, so I tried to go alone but when I made the bunch they slowed up and the others got the lap as well”

"Go Go Go"

“Go Go Go”

” The Spanish rider Eloy Rovira Teruel already took a lot of points and he was very strong and deserved the win, and I just concentrated on securing second place, and I did”

Kenny and Rovira Teruel

Kenny and Rovira Teruel

“I am happy with my season so far I had a medal at the Europeans and won the ‘Gent 6’ and finish off here with a silver, so now a little break then ‘Rotterdam 6 Day”


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De Ketele, Rovira Teruel, Sepulveda

De Ketele, Rovira Teruel, Sepulveda

“Winning the ‘Gent 6’ was massive for me and my team ( Topsport Vlaanderen) also I live in Gent so that was an extra bonus”

Sign off and home

Sign off and home

 

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BMX Rigs Burgess Park

As you know once we get our heads down at the hub anything can happen, so after MTBs, Bromptons and the original Condor’s the obvious progression in the rig building department had to be BMX, with some of our best times being set by BMX riders like Rob Reed and Liam Phillips.

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Like Herne Hill Velodrome, you get a real sense of community at the Peckham BMX track in Burgess park and the clubs journey there is one full of inspiration, from their former track on a bit of waste ground, to the purpose built track documented in the film ‘1 Way Up’ well worth looking up and watching. Equally inspirational are the coaches none more so than
‘CK’ and Alastair, also the riders that have come through the ranks of Peckham BMX, including Tre Whyte and Quinlan Isadore just to name two.

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So there was no better place for us to roll out our brand spanking new, ready for hire BMX rigs, running with some superb bikes from ‘ Haro’ including the Haro Pro & Pro XL.

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It would probably be a bit cruel to race these over the 500m standard distance so we set the bar at 150m

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The atmosphere at the park was electric with it being the clubs first evening race night, so our rigs got a good work out by the Peckham Pro,s and the racing looked even more spectacular in the dark.

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Below are some video links to the Rollapaluza BMX Racing

Rollapaluza BMX Rig – 1 from rollapaluza on Vimeo.

Rollapaluza BMX Rig – 2 from rollapaluza on Vimeo.

Rollapaluza BMX Rig – 3 from rollapaluza on Vimeo.

Photos Courtesy Of : Selim

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Parkour Ride – Tobbaco Dock

Not sure where the concept of a downhill race in a car park was thought out, but it was a brave decision and exciting concept for bike racing in London.

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Rollapaluza were proud to be involved in the inaugural Parkour Ride, we occupied the eighth level with our own form of entertainment 500m of full gas racing egged on by our MC Jim. with tunes from our DJ’s Caspar and Alec Briggs.

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Alec Briggs

The event saw both amateur and professional riders from MTB,BMX and Road go head to head with each other on a specially adapted course in the Tobbaco Dock car park, twenty amateur,s qualified for the evening heats where they got the chance to ride against World Champions, one example of this was a ‘CC London’ rider racing Manon Carpenter World Downhill Champion unfortunately he lost but it was a memorable experience for him.

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Manon Carpenter and CC London Rider

The course definitely favoured the BMX riders and former professional road man David Millar was promptly knocked out in the first round, the four outstanding riders of the evening were all from the world of BMX Rob Reed, who possibly had the loudest supporters and done the best wheelie down a car park ramp that I have ever seen, ‘ The Fresh Prince’ AKA Tre Whyte who I must say was a joy to talk to, Ryan Stack and World Supercross Champion Liam Phillips.

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Tre Whyte

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Liam Phillips

Phillips had a tough battle to make the best of three final beating Carpenter and Whyte on the way, before coming up against the young and fearless Ryan Stack, but Phillips fast start saw him through to become the first Parkour Ride winner beating Stack and setting a course record of 50.60 seconds a time that had got progressively faster through the evening.

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Ryan Stack

It was one of our busiest nights of the year with over 150 competitors and some fast times, possibly down to the music having the perfect RPM for spinning, and maybe people enjoying a few beers, the optimum amount by the way is two, but don’t hold us to that.

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Rob Reed

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Jacob Finds Inspiration From Condor

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February 2002 I bought my first road bike from Condor, Grays Inn road London. A Specialized Allez. Not too special, but as I wobbled my way home dodging the rain soaked man hole covers, feeling like I was about to swan dive over the handle bars, but this was a major upgrade in terms of kit compared to the Trek 2000 MTB with skinny tyres I had been using to get around.

Fast forward 12 years I find myself on much the same bike with the addition of new wheels and break pads. Now truth be told most of those 12 years have seen the Allez wheels stationary, travelling more in the boot of my car as I took it with me ready for that ride I would definitely do……..tomorrow.

With my wife now an avid road rider and the miles beginning to pass slowly beneath my wheels again I found myself idly test riding a Giant Defy. Good fit, nice on the road and a lovely blue. But not quite the bike I would feel excited to walk up to and ride. So once again I found myself at the doors of Condor.

Acciaio. Bless you! And bless me, it is AWESOME!!

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I picked it up last Wednesday and it has already covered more miles than my Allez has this year and been cleaned more than my Allez has ever. The difference to the Allez is like that to the Trek. This time however I don’t feel like I am about to swan dive over the front. Whilst out on my maiden ride, marveling at how well the bike fitted, rode, responded, glided across the tarmac, I uttered a line that my wife will forever remind me, followed by her response “Bike Wanker”.

“I feel at one with my bike”

And that sums up how well Condor have come through creating my bike. It is fantastic and I have fallen back in love with riding again.
My wife and I completed the Mendip wiggle this weekend, through rain, mud, wind and many many hills and I smiled the whole way. The furthest I have ridden in one go and the first of many.

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Rollapaluza International Keirin London

After the security of having a roof over our heads at the Manchester Keirin the majority of the week prior to London was taken up by constant weather checks, but even the arrival at Heathrow of Paul (bringer of thunder) Churchill didn’t dampen the day, Herne Hill Velodrome looked resplendent in the sunshine and the Keirin jerseys from Miltag lit up the track, Herne Hill is a tough place to compete with when the weather is kind, you can almost feel its history in the atmosphere.
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This was Keirin racing in it purist form but with a twist electric bikes for derny’s, something that would have pleased the residents unlike the drone of the petrol motors, Team Hybrids bikes were well up to the task specially modified to reach speeds of 70kpm, and rider No1 didn’t get a lung full of fumes.

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Unlike the Olympic version of Keirin this was Japanese style with the derny only pulling off with 500m remaining, before that the excitement builds with the slow tolling of the bell as the speed is cranked up.

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As with all Rollapaluza events we try and involve everyone so as well as the elite race there were women’s and novice’s categories in all, over 70 riders, and some great prizes from Swrve. Not forgetting the selection of beers from the local Brixton Brewery.

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The Rollapaluza International Keirin was a real mix with riders from Holland,Czech Republic, Uganda and Brixton, all fighting hard for the points that would see them into the final.
There was a real mix of talent in the final and different tactics were played out, but it was the sheer power of Callum Skinner that triumphed in the end out sprinting Miles Stovold and the Dutchman Michael Veen with local rider Richard St Pierre beating Danish Champion William Rimkratt-Milkowski into fourth place.

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The Bon Velo Women’s Keirin was as competitive as the men’s with some exciting heats, the final its self was the closest finish of the day with Henrieta Colbourne just edging it from local rider Lesley Pinder in a photo finish with Kiera Mc Vitty taking third.

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The Malcolm Custom Novice’s Keirin was a real battle in every heat and is an important stepping stone to racing in senior Keirin’s, in fact the third place rider Karoly Markos finished last in 2013 so was understandably pleased with his result, but the two outstanding riders were Dutch junior Jeroen Van Goor and Jack Miller with Van Goor powering to victory in the final.

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Commonwealth Games & Rollapaluza

It’s been quite a successful games for previous Rollapaluza racers, with three out of the four gold medals won on the road going to riders that have competed on our rigs.
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First up it was Alex Dowsett (England) the Movistar rider had everyone holding their breath at the final time check, when he was five seconds down on the leader, but as he turned the corner into the home straight it was apparent that the Time Trial Gold was going to the boy from Essex, It was way back in 2010 when Alex turned up at a Rollalpaluza Winter League meeting and raced over the torturous distance of 1000m in a packed South London bar and put in a respectable time of 47.67

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This was Alex final race before crossing the Atlantic to join (Trek Livestrong) to begin his professional career. Alex’s time stood for quite a while that evening until Keirin London 2014 runner up Miles Stovold set a new kilo record of 44.58

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The women’s road race was won in a convincing manner by Lizzie Armitstead (England) after some tireless work from an emotional Emma Pooley to weaken the opposition. We met up with Lizzie in Yorkshire at the Movistar Time Trail Challenge at this years Tour de France, where the Boels Doleman rider stepped up and had a spin on our rigs.

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Lizzie seemed to enjoy the challenge and stayed around for a long time chatting to her fans after the event, this gold medal will go along way to making up for the disappointment of the Olympic silver and is a fitting reward for her hard work this season.

Finally it was the turn of Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas (Wales) who battled through a gruelling race in the finest of Glasgow weather, even managing to change a front wheel puncture on the final lap and still hold off the two chasers.
Geraint Thomas (You Tube Link to GNC video)
It was a different story when he came up against boy wonder Atiba Quildan in the final at the GNC Store Covent Garden,with the Rollapaluza superstar beating the double Olympic Champion/Commonwealth Champion.

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To his credit Geraint was the fastest qualifier, and Atiba is a expert.
We feel extremely proud and privileged to have met and had these three gold medalists race on the Rollapaluza rigs.

BBC Get Inspired at the Quay

While the games were in full swing we were down at the Quay as part of BBC Get Inspired event, and Rollapaluzaracing was on the list of medal requirements

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We had all sorts of competitors including Minions and Sailors

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We also had a visit from Judo Gold Medalist, and Royal Marine Chris (Tasty) Sherrington

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Radio 2 payed us a visit and Lynne even had a little spin on the rollers .

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We found ourselves training up the local Glaswegian constabulary , keeping them on their toes.

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Rollalpaluza Keirin Manchester

I think we can say the first Keirin inside was a success, not taking anything away from outdoor velodromes but its nice not to have to worry about the great British weather, and to draw a big crowd into the National Cycling Centre makes us very proud.

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The colourful Keirin jerseys specially made by Miltag and the Sushi bar just added to the flavour of Japan, the racing also lived up to its name as well, fast and furious from the off, the mens competition was held over three heats with the top six riders from the heats progressing to the final, and for the women semi-finals,minor final and final.

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There were some outstanding performances in the heats, everyone being hard fought with different tactics being played out David Daniel trying every trick in the book to outsmart the more fancied riders,veteran Craig McLean( Dolan Bikes) looked confident and smooth in his heats and was probably seen as a real threat by his younger counterparts and a scalp they wanted, as well as being held in high regard by them.

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Pete Mitchell (Performance Cycle Coaching) John Paul ( City of Edinburgh RC) and local rider Matt Rotherham (Sport City Velo) all looked strong along with Dutchman Michael Veen ( AR&TV de Adelaar ) but undoubtedly it was the rider from Poland Damian Zielinski who was looking the strongest as the heats progressed.
The women’s race looked like it would be between Lauren Bate-Lowe (Sport City Velo) Sophie Capewell (Lichfield CCC) and Rachel James (Abergavenny RC)

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The racing was being soundtracked by none other than Rollapaluza’s resident DJ Alec Briggs, adding to the fantastic atmosphere, the large crowd were giving plenty of encouragement to all riders while enjoying some excellent commentary from Marty MacDonald
The women’s final sponsored by Yellow JerseyUK was a little bit of a shock with Sophie Capewell taking the victory in front of the more fancied Rachel James with Lauren Bate-Lowe in third, it was a well earned cheque for £1000 that Sophie received from Cassie Brady with price money down to eighth place.
Sophie said after ” Its been a fantastic event and I just love racing, we have sprinter leagues but no Keirin and I just love it, It would be great if this was a permanent fixture”

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Sophie Capewell
The mens final was a superb line up of sprint stars making it pretty much impossible to pick the winner until the final ten metres where the in form Damian Zielinski just got his wheel in front of the crowds favourite Matt Rotherham with Pete Mitchell in third to claim his £2000 first prize, then to collapse on the floor with exhaustion, once Damian got his breath back he told me ” I really enjoyed this, you have great spectators in England, I think you train them… they love to come to the cycling, I didn’t arrive here till late so I was a little bit surprised that I felt so good because I had very little sleep after travelling from Germany”

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Damian Zielinski
Craig McLean’s reflection on the event was ” It been such an enjoyable evening certainly for me anyway, theres a lot of new riders so its quite nice to feel the nerves again, specially leading into the Commonwealth Games and its nice to still be in amongst it. I think the the crowd were fantastic tonight and to get this many people along to watch a Keirin is a good sign, if you would have had this event ten years ago there would have been about ten people in the grandstand as opposed to 1300, so its great to see and lets hope Rollapaluza can host it again up here”

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This event wouldn’t have been possible without our presenting sponsors Brake Foods and partners Yellow JerseyUK, Gilby Electrical, Miltag & Marstons.

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