Sunday, December 29, 2013

My Bikes: Colossi Time Machine

All I want for Christmas is some fluorescent green handlebar tape. Or something. Welcome to the family my track only Colossi Time Machine / Paul Smith Kashimax special.

Frame: Colossi Custom Time Machine
Fork: Colossi carbon oversized
Headset: VP integrated
Stem: Thomson
Bars: C-Unit 31.6
Tape: Cinelli
Post: Thomson
Saddle: Kashimax Paul Smith
Collar: Thomson
Cranks: Miche w/ 50t
Pedals: Shimano
Chain: Izumi Gold
Sprocket: Halo 15t
Wheels: Corima 4 spoke
Tires: Schwalbe Ultremo

Friday, December 27, 2013

Catenary Ski Jump

My festive building related activities have primarily consisted of folding some stainless steel to make a scale Pompidou centre on Christmas Day. However, during our especially cultural Christmas Eve visit to the ballet, I did take time to look up and marvel at the concrete catenary structure in the roof of the TST Cultural Ski Jump Centre. It's a marvel primarily in so far as I've no idea why you'd put a windowless tile clad mass on possibly the best site in Hong Kong. But also because I'm not sure why you'd build what is quite a nice concrete double curvature structural ceiling grid that expresses some of the admittedly memorable form, then forget any sky lights. As much as I try, this is a hard building to love... Let's hope the new Cultural District does a little better.

Monday, December 23, 2013


So, if Abercrombie & Fitch pay $7 million HKD / month for their retail space off Pedder St, then how much are The Gap paying for this sparkly high rise>? And how much should the little old ladies be paying for their patch of pavement>? And who said there was no retail diversity in Central??? Nice patterns in the sky though- how often do they look up?

Monday, December 16, 2013


Around 4 years ago, I did a post on 'Power without Power', using the example of the annual SIRPeak TT to demonstrate how it is possible to estimate your watts without a power meter using SportTracks. Since then, Strava has entered the equation and largely superseded SportTracks as the data swallowing software of choice for most bike nuts. During the same time, I've largely got older and slower, and I've never bettered that time of 20:35 (ST estimate 350 watts) set in December 2009, despite riding that hill at least once a week for the past 6 years (estimate 400 times up and down over the past 6 years?!?). 

So, it was a pleasant surprise to clock a new PB this weekend past of 20:15 (Strava estimate 335 watts). Not enough for the win on the day, but good enough for 3rd place in a much increased field over 2009, and more importantly, proof that 1./ power estimatation is just that- an estimate, and 2./ it is possible to push yourself harder than you thought possible and break new barriers long considered closed. 

The only problem is that I'm now tantalizing close to the 'sub-20' club, a rather elite group of around 5 Hong Kong cyclists who have broken this magical barrier on a weekend in December. I cast my mind back to this taxi here, that extra 1% of effort I could have put there. But the reality is it's a case of 'less wine and chocolate' this week, last week and well, for enough time to lose those last few kilos. And maybe another 600 times up the Peak?

Thanks to SIR Peter and SIR James for the photos. Full results below:

Fred C 18.38
Damien B 20.00
Ed C 20.15
Dave Mc 20.55
Steve D 21.15
Aron A 21.22
Henrik P 21.32
James K 22.39
Mike M 23.04
Jason K 24.00
Reid 24.12
Mark C 24.20
Matt K 24.23
Peter D 24.23
Zach 24.39
Peter L 24.39
Rudi 24.40
Mark Mc 25.10
Dave O 25.26
JC 26.10
Simon P 26.14
Marc 26.25
Jon A 27.12
Doug O 28.40
Paul S 29.17
Tony N 30.49

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Drive Thru

Hong Kong might be famed for its tall buildings, but every now again it surprises you with little alternative gems like this concrete monolith straddling two sides of an elevated highway in Yau Ma Tei, Deepest Kowloon. It's not every day you get to drive right through a building in quite such a manner. Bonkers Hongkers at its best.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Drawings: Hong Kong Velodrome

Today was a somewhat momentous occasion in the history of Hong Kong cycling, as a group of 40 riders registered with HKCA managed to become the first public riders to grace the boards of the new Hong Kong Velodrome. One of which was me! A strict 'no photos' policy was in place, given the track doesn't open officially until another few weeks. But they didn't say 'no drawings'. A new track era has begun!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Langley Wind Tunnel

They are like out-takes from German expressionist cinema or a classic film by Orson Welles: pathetically out-scaled humans, stranded amidst huge mechanical environments, scifi prisons they seem to barely understand.