Godwin, though, kept riding after his year was up, logging a total of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) in 500 days – averaging 200 miles a day for those 500 days. I honestly can’t do justice to how staggeringly impossible that sounds!
Yet, Abraham, an unmarried 40-year-old who hails from Milton Keynes in central England, knows full well how difficult it will be to match his idol on his steel-frame Raleigh.
According to the website tracking Abraham’s ride, “Like Tommy, Steven has chosen to ride a steel-framed Raleigh bicycle replete with Brooks saddle. Tommy rode a state-of-the-art 1939 Raleigh Record Ace with four-speed Sturmey Archer hub. This was a lightweight racing machine and would have tipped the scales circa 22-27lb. Steven will ride similar routes to Tommy and have the additional challenge of dealing with significantly increased traffic volumes compared to the roads of 1939.”
Of course, Abraham will have the benefit of 75 years’ worth of training, gear and nutritional advances in his favor. But like Godwin, in the warmer summer months, he’ll be suffering through riding days of up to 20 hours to log extra miles.
Yet, what it comes down to is this: Even one fairly minor illness – even the common cold, which hasn’t changed much in the past 75 years – or crash could easily derail the quest. In short, the true commonality, should Abraham succeed, will be sheer, blind, incredible good luck!
Here’s the site to keep tabs on Abraham’s progress: http://oneyeartimetrial.org.uk/
BTW, he covered 222 miles on his first day! Good luck, indeed, Steve!
Even Rock Stars Crash Hard
I’m listening to U2 as I write this. Perhaps you heard late last year that lead singer Bono, one of the biggest rock stars on the planet, had a bike crash in New York’s Central Park?
I had heard about it and had in the back of my mind to look into it. But the holiday season intervened, and I forgot about it. That is, until there was a follow-up news story January 2 in which Bono said he might never play guitar again as a result of his injuries.
Turns out, he was severely injured in the crash a week before Thanksgiving and is still recuperating. Among the litany of injuries were these, according to a report from the orthopedic trauma surgeon who operated on Bono at New York Presbyterian Hospital:
1. Left facial fracture involving the orbit of his eye.
2. Left scapula (shoulder blade) fracture in three separate pieces.
3. Left compound distal humerus fracture where the bone of his humerus was driven though his skin and the bone was in six different pieces. He was taken emergently to the operating room for a five-hour surgery where the elbow was washed out and debrided, a nerve trapped in the break was moved and the bone was repaired with three metal plates and 18 screws.
4. One day later, he had surgery to his left hand to repair a fracture of his 5th metacarpal [pinky finger].
Bono, 54, suffered the injuries when he attempted to avoid another rider and had what doctors termed a “high energy” crash. There was no report of a head injury, and the photos I found online of Bono riding his Specialized road bike showed that even he is not too cool to wear a helmet! Good for him!
The reason for his inability to play guitar is what he calls his “titanium” elbow (see #3, above).
And while what happened to Bono’s funny bone isn’t the least bit funny, he has at least kept his sense of humor about the guitar playing. In a statement he released on U2’s website, he wrote that his bandmates — The Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen — “have reminded me that neither they nor Western civilization are depending on this.”
Speedy recovery, Bono! And keep wearing your helmet!
Frameblock Bike Features Built-In Lock
Here’s a product that appears to be part of a trend toward bikes that have their own lock built-in to the bike.
The Frameblock, a hand-made Italian city bike sold by Milano Bike, http://milanobike.it/index.php/it/frameblock, features a very functional lock that is part of the frame of the bicycle itself.
Unfortunately, the Milano Bike website is in Italian, so it’s unclear (to me, at least) if far-flung shipping is available for the bike. The Original model is priced at 615 Euros, and it appears that less-expensive models are also in development.
‘Impossible’ Bike Folds up to Fit in a Backpack
We understand that many of the products seeking start-up funds on such crowd-sourcing sites as Kickstarter will never reach the marketplace, and we typically resist talking about them unless, and until, they do.
But we make exceptions for those like the “Impossible” bike that are just fun to look at and contemplate. (In fact, on our last visit to the product site on Kickstarter, funding had been cancelled for this project, so we’re not even sure where that leaves things.)
So go have a look while you still can, https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1181257820/impossible-0?ref=category_recommended
In short, it’s an electric bike that folds up into a package small enough, and is light enough, to tote around in a backpack. It’s surely unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.