RBR Newsletter

Bike Products from the Sublime to the Ridiculous

What follows is the equivalent of a beach book: a light diversion for your almost-summer enjoyment. We’ll provide a snapshot of three products we’ve seen lately, from the sublime to the ridiculous.

Boxer Rocket

First up is perhaps the coolest bike we’ve ever seen – at least the coolest bike made to carry kids. OK, it’s the coolest bike, period.

Made by a British company and selling for a smidge under 5,000 pounds (a little over $7,800), it’s the bike you might have dreamed of having when you were 5. It looks like its name: the Boxer Rocket, with seating for 4 young-uns who can buckle up with 5-point belts in the namesake front portion of the bike while the parental “engine” does the hard work (or at least part of the work) in back.

It’s hard to beat the company’s own description of the ride: “An ‘Art Deco’ Rocket design paired with a heavy duty unique 1930s airliner inspired girder frame. Its other unique features include a central headlight with high and low beam, turn signal indicators on its ‘wings’ and a beautiful rear tail/brake light. To alert traffic to your presence there is a very loud vehicle horn fitted to the underside of the chassis. All of these features are controlled from one single easy to use instrument ‘cluster’ on the handlebars.”

Of course, even that doesn’t come close to actually eyeballing this piece of rolling art. If you want more, check out:


Wide Path Camper Can be Towed by Bike

If you like to camp while touring by bike, but you prefer something a little more lux than a sleeping bag and a tent, you’ve got to check out the Wide Path Camper, the brainchild of Dane Karsten Justesen.

It’s a 45kg (100 pounds) mini-camper that can be towed by bike. It folds out to sleep 2 and includes a small foldaway table inside that can be configured for dining, among other cool touches. The basic unit – sadly, only available for preorder in select European countries – sells for Euro 2,000 (about $2,230).

The camper measures 99 x 130cm (39 x 51 inches) when being towed, or 99 x 260cm (39 x 102 inches) when folded into position for camping, which takes about three minutes. The interior height of the camper is 130cm (51 inches), and the bed measures 97 x 200cm (38 x 78 inches).

You can get more info on this pretty cool solution at the company website:


Why Look Forward When You Can Look Down Instead?

It’s safe to say that not every new bike product is as inspired as the Boxer Rocket and Wide Path Camper. We give you: Pedi-Scope - The periscope for your Bicycle.

Yes, if your neck kills you while you ride, and you’d prefer to just hammer out the miles while looking down instead of possibly sitting up to give your neck a rest, here’s a product designed for you.

If you check out the product’s Kickstarter page, you can see a video of the product in action. You can also see that it didn’t come close to meeting its modest fundraising goal.


Smart Training and Racing Produces Results!

Last Saturday Premium Member Jack McCombs (pictured), age 75, raced the Virginia state Senior Games championships and won two gold medals.

When Coach John Hughes got the text with the results he responded, “2 Golds! Awesome power numbers!”

On Jack’s way to a fast time in the 5K time trial he backed off slightly to save some power for the road race. Even riding the time trial conservatively, his power was only three watts lower than in the county games on April 21. His smart riding paid off.

In the road race he dropped his two age-group competitors within the first half mile as he took off with two riders in their 50s. One guy dropped from that group after nine miles. Jack and the second 50-something rider traded pulls for the next two miles, at which point Jack knew that if he pulled equally he wouldn’t have anything left for the sprint.

He didn’t pull through to take another turn on front, so the other rider slowed down, and they rode together. In the last 500 meters, as the other racer started to pull ahead, Jack powered up to 495 watts and caught him at the line to win by 1/4 of a wheel – while stille cranking out 347 watts at the finish. Way to go, Jack!

Phased Training Is the Key

How did Jack achieve his remarkable results? Coach John Hughes has him ride the right kind of miles in a progression of phases, rather than just more miles.

Even without a personal coach, you can get the benefits of this periodized approach to training with Coach Hughes’ new eArticle, Your Best Season Ever, Part 1: How to plan and get the most out of your training.The eArticle walks you through each step to develop your own specific, personalized plan that includes:

  • The right kinds of workouts,
  • At the right times,
  • In the right amounts,
  • To result in continuing progress.

A plan is only a piece of paper or a spreadsheet, though. As Coach Hughes points out, to have your best season ever you need to implement your plan by training effectively. In his eArticle he shows you how to:

  • Exercise at the right intensities for you,
  • Recover fully to allow progress,
  • Measure your progress, and then
  • Adjust the plan as necessary.

Your Best Season Ever, Part 1 is available today for only $4.99 ($4.24 for Premium Members after their 15% discount).

Peaking and Tapering Are Critical

Jack’s workouts between the county games and the Virginia state championships were carefully designed rides to simulate the state races. Then he took the week before the races off with only one very short hard ride on Friday so that he was fresh for the big day.

Part 1 of Coach Hughes’ 2-article Your Best Season Ever series will flow naturally into Part 2, which will take what you’ve learned in the first article and build on it to help you achieve your ultimate goal(s) for the season.

Your Best Season Ever, Part 2: Peaking for your event, will be published June 11. Stay tuned for more info leading up to that date.


Next Premium Prize

3T has agreed to provide a great combo prize of its ARX II Pro Stem and the new 3T Eye (pictured), the rugged miniature display that puts real-time data from smartphone training apps and ANT+™ power/ heart-rate cadence devices on handlebars, in the rider’s line of sight. (The winner can choose the appropriate stem size, of course.)

Any new or renewing Premium Members between May 1 (when we gave away our last great prize) and June 30 are eligible for the drawing. We’ll announce the winner in the July 2 RBR Newsletter.


New RBR Website On the Way

Many of our regular correspondents have heard me talking about this for a year now, because it’s been a very (excruciating so!) deliberate, extremely labor-intensive process. But I’m finally comfortable enough with the progress to let you know that we’ll be launching a new RBR website in the next couple of months.

I’ve been working (every spare moment for months now) directly with a trusted, long-time associate who’s a terrific designer and web developer on a very open, airy, user-friendly design that I’m confident you’ll find imminently more easily navigable, better organized, far easier to search and find specific info, and, in short, simply a much more useful tool to help you as a road cyclist.

It will also feature “responsive” design that adapts the layout and functionality of the site to whatever mobile device you’re using.

We will, of course, continue to deliver RBR Newsletter each week. It will come in a slightly different package, but the goods inside will be the same quality content across the spectrum of useful how-to road cycling intel and info. (And we’ll feature even more of that “good stuff” regularly on the pages of the site throughout each week when the new site is live.)

In the weeks to come, I’ll be sharing more about the new site, including screen shots, to highlight some of the features.


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