By James S
Having been a relatively new convert to the road end of cycling and despite being a quick learner and comfortable with almost anything mechanical or electronic, there’s a huge amount of knowledge to learn and absorb. Whether it’s techniques on the bike, kit attached to the bike, the right clothing to wear on your body or ways to shed weight from it, there’s a myriad of information needed to be assimilated rapidly in order to approach our challenge with an adequate level of fitness, safety and preparation in the limited time available before our event.
We’re therefore more fortunate than ever to be able to glean from others’ many years of experience in the sport through the multitude of online resources available. I’ve therefore assembled a (non-exhaustive) list of some of the resources we’ve found invaluable during our learning process and would strongly encourage others to stand on the shoulders of giants in order to take advantage of the huge amount of learning available from the excellent resources below.
The Col Collective – Inspiration & Education
Mike Cotty‘s passion for climbing cols on two wheels led to seemingly effortless YouTube narrations of his exploits and have now culminated in his business offering cycling-friendly local accommodation and tours of the Pyrenees in addition to many other consultancy activities. We’re visiting Mike next month to get a sense of our challenge up close and personal, but in the meantime you’ll be inspired to watch and listen to him climb some of the mountains that will shortly become our collective nemesis come September.
Global Cycling Network – Friendly & Entertaining
With over a million subscribers, this friendly bunch spend their days creating informative and entertaining short videos covering everything from elementary yet critical bike handling techniques through bike maintenance and cleaning to gear reviews. Whilst I’d encourage everyone to subscribe to their YouTube channel and browse their vast content library, here are a few relevant highlights for those new to the sport.
DC Rainmaker – Sound Technical Advice
A well-respected reviewer and podcaster on much of the technical side of cycling gear, triathlete Ray from Seattle comes from a technology background and writes excellent reviews on the latest cycling tech and upcoming products from the industry’s many trade events. He also has some excellent How-To Guides covering many important topics.
Bike Radar – Bite-sized Daily News
This easily-digested daily news site is a rich vein of cycling news, gear reviews and editorial that’s mobile friendly and conveniently followed via Twitter to stay abreast of the latest product releases and general happenings in the bike world.
I hope the above sites enrich and accelerate your learning of the road cycling world as much as they did ours – please feel free to recommend others you’ve found in the comments below!