Isabelle Clement, Wheels for Wellbeing, and their work helping disabled people cycle more

Isabelle Clement is the director of Wheels for Well-Being, a charity dedicate to helping disabled people cycle more, through both their sessions giving people in London with a hug range of disabilities try a massive range of bikes, and through their national campaigning work.  She told me all about these aspects of her work, and talks about barriers to disabled people cycling, both physical, in terms of infrastructure, and emotional, as well as the charity’s successes, plans for the future, and what we can all do to help support disabled people’s cycling.

Listen here, or download on Soundcloud.

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Watch these films of Isabelle riding her wheelchair cycle around London and read her article from the Guardian last year about disabled people’s cycling.

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Follow and watch the 2017 Para-cycling Track World Championships

2nd-5th March 2017

It’s a real shame that the 2017 Para-cycling Track World Championships was announced with only eight weeks’ notice, because it meant that a lot of important riders and teams just weren’t able to race – whether for budget or preparation reasons.  It should have been a great move, actually having a Para Track Worlds (not something the UCI prioritises), and running it alongside the able-bodied Track World Cup could be a step towards integrating the Para and Able-bodied Track events, which is something a lot of people have been calling for, for a long time.

But now it’s here, it’s time to focus on the positives!

The racing is in the Los Angeles velodrome, which last weekend hosted the first Track World Cup in the USA for 10 years.  The last session is going to have a livestream on the UCI website, on Sunday 5th March, at 1pm USA PDT (4pm EDT; 9pm UK GMT; 22:00 European CET; 8am Monday Australian AEST)

But how can we follow the racing until the livestream?

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Three women’s cycling crowdfunders

One of the things that’s both frustrating and inspiring is pro athletes having to crowdfund to compete in their sport.  Frustrating, for obvious reasons, but inspiring because the fan community really helps them.  There are three very different ones running fro British women cyclists right now – Para-cycling, MTB and road racing, and here’s how you can help.

Hannah Dines’ Crowdfunder for a new racing trike

Hannah Dines is a Scottish Para-cyclist, who competed in the 2016 Paralympics in the tricycle road races.  She’s having a hard time right now – she recently lost her UK Sport funding, and on top of that, has had her racing trike destroyed, when her car was stolen and set on fire, with the trike inside it. As you can imagine, these both put a large dent in her goal of medaling at the 2010 Paralympics.

Her insurance won’t cover the cost of a new trike, so she’s raising the money herself – and anything she raises over her goal of £7,454 will be donated to the Neil’s Wheels bike shop, so that other disabled people can get their own specialised sports equipment.  The

Read more about her crowdfunder, and please do donate, if you can.  Follow Hannah on twitter, find out more about her in this articles by the Herald, read her blog about why ride a trike, and in this video about Rio, which also was crowd-funded, by handcyclist Karen Darke:

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Bex Baraona’s raffle to fund her racing the 2017 Enduro World Series

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Presents for women’s cycling fans 2016: Part 3 – things that help everyday women’s cycling

An annual tradition I’ve got is to pull together ideas of presents for Christmas/Hanukkah/Solstice/holiday/birthdays etc for women’s cycling fans, and women who love bikes – but part 3 is especially aimed at everyone.

Part 1 of the 2016 guide was a book list, Part 2 was things we can buy or do to support professional women cyclists and teams, and now Part 3 is about things we can do to support organisations that are working to help increase “everyday cycling” for women.

It includes some gorgeous things that just happen to have proceeds going to good works – and ways to help women in developing countries, as well as the UK, USA, Canada and Australia.  I’ve included ways to donate to all of these, either in your own name, or as a gift on behalf of someone else.

I love all these organisations, and it’s really helping my 2016 blues to think about the great work that’s going on.  Like always, if you think of organisations I’ve forgotten, please do let me a comment, or tweet me, and I’ll edit it in – I’m especially interested in organisations working in non-English-speaking countries.

Things we can buy to support everyday cycling

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Black Girls Do Bike

Black Girls Do Bike is a fantastic USA organisation, set up with a pretty self-explanatory purpose:

“…growing and supporting a community of women of color who share a passion for cycling. We champion efforts to introduce the joy of cycling to all women, but especially, black women and girls.”

They run rides, meet-ups, skill-sharing sessions and more, and do a great job sharing positive imagery that proves that despite what the average portrayal of everyday cycling in the media, black girls do bike.

There’s lots more information on their website, including how to join in, and how women can start their own chapters, and some interviews with founder Monica Garrison on Bicycling.com and on Bike Radar – and we can all support them by donating directly to them, or through their online shop.

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Podcast 2016 Episode 30 – Cynical Like a Fox

Podcast logo We’re back after a small break due to illness and straight into a wealth of racing information with all of the main highlights from the Paralympics in Rio. Sarah’s collected a heap of information and as much video as possible, so do make sure to check it all out. We also have MTB worlds to cover, the Lotto Belgium Tour, The Madrid Challenge, and the Giro Toscana. In time-trial action there’s the Chronos de Champenois, and to top it all off cyclocross season is kicking off. Brace yourselves kids, this one’s a heck of a ride. (1:02:41 MIN / 57.40 MB)

Get free automated updates via the iTunes store here (vote us up!) or via our RSS feed here.

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Things we talked about this week included

Recent racing

Video collections from:

We loved this video from our friend Coreen Mazzochi, who made Giro Toscana highlights videos in the collection above, but also made this backstage video diary, showing what it’s like to cover the race:

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2016 European Road Cycling Championships, Plumelec

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Rio 2016 Paralympics – Road videos, media and more

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-21-21-37First, all my thoughts are with the family, friends, and team-mates of Iranian cyclist Bahman Golbarnezhad, who died during the men’s C4-5 road race.  So tragic, and a reminder that cycling is always a dangerous sport.  Articles about his death on the BBC and the Guardian – and about the tribute to Golbarnezhad at the Closing Ceremony.

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While the Rio 2016 Track Para-Cycling was almost all broadcast live, so we got a LOT of video, the Paralympic Road Racing wasn’t, so there’s less here – but I’ve got you some video, photos, articles, tweets and more.

Unfortunately, a lot of the videos are geo-restricted – some of the Paralympics YouTube clips are only available in countries without their own TV (but it’s hard to tell, so click each one to check – sorry), and the individual TV stations and often videos on news sites are often geo-retricted to their countries.  However, you can use VPN services like Hola or Betternet, to see them (if you don’t know about VPNs, INRNG explains them)

Please forgive that fact I’ve got a lot of British-based coverage – it’s because it’s really good, and obviously because I get to see it.  I’ve got coverage from other countries when I’ve seen it, but if you’ve seen good coverage from other countries that you want to share, please do let me know, and I’ll edit it in.

First, some general links and media – the Rio 2016 Road Cycling page, including all the schedule, results, and other general information about the courses.  Overall report of the whole Paralympics road cycling on the UCI’s website.

UK-based highlights on the Channel 4 Paralympics site.  USA video highlights on Team USA‘s website, but it’s all forbidden from my UK-based server.  There are lots of video highlights of the Australian Paralympics on the 7Two YouTube, and the New Zealand Paralympians on the Attitude Live YouTube – for example this video profile of Amanda Cameron.

Day 1 – the ITTs

 

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Meet some of the 2016 Paralympic Cycling women – Part 6, H1-3 handcyclists

screen-shot-2016-09-12-at-21-21-37Because the Rio 2016 Paralympic Road Cycling isn’t being televised, I’ve been writing about some of the women who’ll be contesting the races, because they are such fantastic athletes with great stories, with some real jaw-dropping achievements.  You can read about the H4 and H5 handcyclists here, and the final installment is all about the H1-3 riders.  I can absolutely guarantee you won’t be disappointed by these women!

I described handcycling a little bit in that other piece, and as a reminder, in Rio there are two combined-category Handcycling ITTs on Wednesday 14th September – H4-5 and H1-3, with 1 gold in each, while the road races are H1-4 and H5 on 15th – and the startlists and livetimings should be available via the racing schedule.

As always, I haven’t managed to get to all of the riders, so if I’ve missed any facts, or your favourites, please let me know in the comments, or on twitter, and I’ll edit the information in.  And after the riders, I’ll tell you a little bit more about the courses.

So who’s competing in the H1, H2 and H3 categories?

Justine Asher, H2, South Africa

She’s only on her fourth year handcycling, and has won two World Championships golds.  Finding funding is very difficult for her, as there isn’t much funding for cycling, let alone paracycling, in  South Africa, but she’s hoping to inspire other disabled South Africans to get involved in sports, and raise awareness – in in turn, funding!

She’s had an interesting life – a former fashion model, who sued a biotech company for fraudulent stem cell treatment, and seems to have won.  She says her husband and children’s support is what enables her to race – and you can find out more in this Video profile, and another one here, including her talking about becoming World Champion – follow her on twitter

You can also watch her swim with sharks…

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