Sunday, February 28, 2010

IFC vs. Aqua Luna

A nice shot taken from the 'Aqua Luna'- a fun junk trip we did last night.

Hard Tailing

Yesterday was my first mtb race back on 'Specky'- my S-Works hard tail. And only my second mtb ride this year... not good! I had a feeling that getting a bike together this quickly was going to be a recipe for disaster and before the start I had a feeling this race had 'mechanical' written all over it. The night before is not the time to be re-adjusting gears, brakes and changing tubeless tyres. But when your bike shop is as sh*t as the one here in Wan Chai, and your week has been as busy as mine, such is life.

The start was good, and I was top 5 going into the first singletrack. However, soon enough, yes, mechanical struck. Brakes and gears were fine but my bars were rotating in the stem going over any major rocks. Stupidly I'd forgotten to stuff a multi-tool in the back pocket and I quickly slipped back down the field as I struggled to control the bike in anything technical. Luckily for me a spectator on the trail managed to dig a 4mm allen key out of his rucksack and I was on my way again, on a mission to move back up.

I finished the first lap after 45mins and soon hit the tarmac climbs. I knew that seeing as I wasn't used to the bike (especially when I've been used to 5 1/2" travel), and my technical skills were 'rusty' this was my best chance to make use of the road training I've been doing. I managed to move back up to the rider in 6th place, a great adventure racer called Ryan, who somehow managed to put about 10 secs into me with his running skills down some steps, and I never saw him again! Real proof that mtb'ing in HK requires more than just powerful biking legs. 

Another minor mechanical with the gears and I almost lost my placing once again(!), but I held on to come through in 1hr30- a good time, but put into perspective by the course record 1hr20 set by the winner- Jaw (a Chinese full timer who was Asian games champ a few years ago). My time was only good enough for 4th place in Cat. but given who showed up and what happened with the bike I think the result was OK. At least I didn't clothes line my head on a tree and knock myself out like my friend Lewis!!! A fun day out and good to get back on the mtb!

Leeps warming up


Ladies winner Hillary before the start.

The reservoir.



Friday, February 26, 2010

Jan Kole


A nice article on our sponser for the new bike club- Jan Kole of Colossi. One thing it doesn't mention is that Jan is able to hang in on UCI Div.2 races despite being in his 50's and smoking roll ups. I guess compared to Le Tour it's easy! Class act.

(Thanks to TJ for the link)

Thursday, February 25, 2010


My poor other half frequntly visits the ar*e end of nowhere in China- a town called 'Weihai'. This sounds a bit like a Busta Ryhmes song if you say it enough times... but it is also home to one cool thing:- a public picture frame on the beach. Nice idea.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Scooter Bike

This has to go down as the most imaginative pre-race transport I've seen in a while. Not at all toilet.


Moving away from pointy hats and coming 3rd in a race, here a pretty snazzy all in one.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Team Time Trialists

Our team from Sunday's Hong Kong Championship Team Time Trial. A bronze not bad for a new club and some consolation for getting up at 4.15am on a Sunday! The things we do... Full report up now on:

Oh, and quite amusingly, I just showed the missus the YouTube clips and she told me my pointy hat was sticking up too much. Great to get aerodynamics advice from someone who got out of bed just at the same time I got home from the event.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

More Pointy Hat Chat

I know f*ck all about skelton racing, but seeing as I now own a pointy hat, I quite enjoyed reading the following:

The US had claimed ridges on Williams' helmet gave her an illegal aerodynamic advantage.
International Bobsleigh and Tobogganing Federation (FIBT) jury president Wolfgang Strauss said the helmet's manufacturer confirmed the ridges, or spoilers, "are an integral part of the helmet". Canada then lodged a second complaint after Williams' winning run on Friday but that too was thrown out. Williams' gold is Britain's first at a Winter Olympics since Scot Rhona Martin led the curling team to victory in 2002, and the nation's ninth gold in total. 


I've posted before about how sceptical I am about on-site renewable energy sources, but I confess to quite liking this Chicago roof top.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Top 10: Household Items for Cyclists

Cotton Buds
Perfect for getting grime out of jockey wheels. Steal from bathroom.

Makes a good mild abrasive for getting out minor scratches. Steal from British Airways.

Talcum Powder
Regular readers will know I don't 'do' inner tubes, but if I have to I'll be sure to use some talc. Steal from chemist.

Hair Spray
Great for sticking on mtb grips. Steal from the missus.

Clear Nail Varnish
Works well as a touch up for chipped carbon. Buy your own & make sure it's hidden from the missus.

Washing Up Liquid
Goes well with degreaser for a potent bike cleaning mix. Also of use for mouting tubeless mtb tyres. Steal from the kitchen.

A much cheaper alternative to Assos chamois crème. Steal from your baby / buy your own & pretend you have a baby.

Another hot tip from the baby crew- this detergent will freshen up stinky kit. Steal from the maid (hmmm).

Will get rid of any nasty build ups in your Camelbak. Steal from your Mum.

Great value all in one bike polish / lubricant for moving parts. Not up to scratch for chains, and not as good as GT85 but a good reserve item easily found around the world. Steal from Dad.

Ginseng Chicken

Thanks to my friend Felix for sending through the link for these Korean / NYC Architects. Nice philosophy, even if they're probably not the first guys you'd pick out of the phone book!

While chicken is considered one of the most common and generic food materials available, preparing it properly with the right ingredients can yield a fine and delectable cuisine such as Ginseng Chicken Soup, an historically revered Korean dish that many consider not only an exceptional culinary treat but also a cure and preventive measure for everyday ailments of the body and soul. The architecture firm, GinsengChicken was founded by its three design partners with the belief that unique and thoughtfully executed design has the power to turn a collection of common, everyday materials into an affordable architectural product of exceptional value, both aesthetically and functionally.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Team Sky


Must say I'm very impressed with the Team Sky website- they always seem to have classy photos up (even if I can't pinch them), they're synced with facebook (and twitter no doubt) and their rider blogs are actually worth reading. It's nice to see a cycling team really embrace 21st Century media, and though I guess it's all quite predictable given who's behind it, I also hope it makes the other team raise their game. Same goes for team kit. Go Twiggo!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Rounded off the Chinese New Year last night with a visit to the Peak with our Scottish visitor who seems to have bought the weather with her. At least the cloud line lifted. Took the proper camera along and got some nice shots! Full CNY photo album up now on facebook.

Bicycle Culture in China

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

CNY Fireworks


View from the office for the CNY fireworks last night. Apparently Year of the Tiger is a bad year because it sounds like 'bitter'. This is quite an interesting read also:

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Kung Hei Fat Choy!

A rocking giant tiger in Elements mall today.

Colossi Kit


Has arrived & it looks good! Team photo to follow.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Pedalling Clocks

Been a bit short on bike chat this week so thought I'd post this link to an interesting Pharmstrong article on pedalling clocks. Nice diagram.


The view from RED bar at the bottom of IFC taken with iPhone. Needed to let off some steam after a crazy week at work on lifts. This baby has 88 floors and 62 lifts according to wikipedia. Could be worse.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A Bit Post Apocalyptic

This morning coming down the Peak just below the cloud line. That's the highest church in the world there on the 75th floor in the middle of shot.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Worship Location

View Hong Kong bikesandbuildings in a larger map

I'm not a religious man but more churches should be on the 75th floor, since we're in the 21st Century:

We meet each Sunday at 11am on the top floor of Central Plaza in Wan Chai. When you arrive at Central Plaza, please follow the signs and ask an usher if you need any assistance.
Worship Location:
75/F (Apex), Central Plaza,
18 Harbour Road,
Hong Kong

Friday, February 5, 2010

42 in 1

42 Bromptons in 1 parking space. I'm not a big foldie fan myself but this is a great image. How many Harrys in a Helipad?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Upper House

A lovely dinner at The Upper House last night. Decked out by interiors wizzkid Andre Fu this place certainly lived up to expectations. Recommended.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Pointy Hat

The prospect of attempting to keep up with a ColinR led 'Team Colossi' in the upcoming Hong Kong Team Time Trial Champs has done some funny things to my brain. Oh my days, I've gone and bought myself a pointy hat!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Pro Bike Pron: Pantani's Bianchi

I'm very pleased cyclingnews have run this a storey on il Pirate's Bianchi circa 1998. Check out the link for more but a definate highlight is the a 44x23 lowest gear- that's the equivalent of a 39x21 for the toughest the Tour can throw at you. Guess at the speeds he went up the hills it wasn't an issue!

On a more personal level, this bike reminds me of the first serious road bike I bought back in 2001- a Pantani replica Bianchi frame 2nd hand off a guy in Cambridge. I didn't really know what I was buying but I'd driven so far to get it I thought I may as well buy it. Turned out I'd unearthed a real cracker of a bike that I thoroughly enjoyed building up into something that resembled the above to a remarkable degree. I still think it's the best handling road bike that I've owned. I wrote it off a few years later but that's another story. Maybe I'll do a post on that bike one day.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Japan is Mental

N Building from Alexander Reeder on Vimeo.

This building is officially mental. After the revelation that new apps for iPhones can read barcodes and tell you information about the product, how about buildings that act as barcodes that you can read on your iPhone? Only in Japan.

Lego Architecture

As if all Architect's weren't Lego obsessed enough already, someone has cottoned onto this vulnerability and worked out how to make some money out of this universal professional obsession (as opposed to Architects wasting money on Lego models that take 5 weeks to build ).