The second edition of the Cycosports Tour de Kepri finally got under way last Friday, and after three days of hard racing in the Indonesian island archipelago that gives the race its name, the haze-induced postponement from September was a distant memory. The stand-out performances of the weekend came from Liam Kelly (Specialized Roval Mavericks) and Andrea Trindler (Anza Cycling) who clinched the respective Men’s Open and Women’s Open titles in dominating fashion. The major consequence of the delay was that over 100 of the race’s original registrants couldn’t make the rescheduled November 1-3 dates, and so the fields for each of the categories weren’t quite as deep as they would have been on the original dates. However, a race is a race no matter how many participants there are, and just under 200 men and women still took part across the competitive and gran fondo categories in the 2019 Tour de Kepri and it was a great success. Click here to read the full race report.
Despite the weather not fully cooperating, the inaugural Haute Route Qingcheng that concluded last Sunday in the mountains of Sichuan province was a big success, vindicating the decision of the Haute Route organisation to bring their prestigious brand of stage racing to China.
Other countries had been considered for the first Haute Route in East Asia, but the opportunity to help develop the vast, largely untapped market for top-end cycling events in China was too big of a lure to ignore. With that decision made, the Swiss-based outfit that has transformed the amateur road racing sector since it debuted the Haute Route Alps in 2011 then had to find an ideal location, and from a large list of potential locations they settled on the city of Dujiangyan to host the October 25-27 event. It proved to be a good choice. Click here to read the full feature story.
Flat Spoke Media founder and editor-at-large Alan Grant was recently invited onto the Endurance Asia Podcast to talk about some of the long-distance challenges he's taken on over the years. As its name implies, the Endurance Asia Podcast seeks to pick the brains of people with a love of endurance sports.
"Endurance Asia celebrates everything about endurance sports, from Ultra Marathons to Mountaineering, from Adventure Races to Ironman. We hear from athletes, explorers and race directors from or based in the Asia-Pacific region. Hosted by endurance enthusiasts based in Singapore, we celebrate ordinary people achieving extraordinary things, going beyond the limit of what they once thought possible."
Click here to listen to Alan's full chat with Endurance Asia chief Scott Pugh.
The phenomenally successful global cycling series known as Haute Route is venturing into East Asia later this month with the inaugural Haute Route Qingcheng, a three-day event set in the mountains of Sichuan province in China. As well as breaking new ground in terms of geography, the October 25-27 event will be the first Haute Route event to take place on completely closed roads.
The Haute Route Qingcheng delivers over 5,000 metres of climb ing over its three stages and promises to be a fascinating event offering something completely different in terms of culture and terrain from previous Haute Route challenges. Click here to read the full preview.
Conditions for the third round of the 2019 Jungle Cross series at the Centaurs Sports Park in Turf City yesterday were perfect, and Singapore’s off-road cycling community produced a string of exciting contests on a race-card packed with something for everybody. Leading the way were the familiar names of Anthony Brown (Cannasia) and Bastian Dohling (Specialized Roval Mavericks), as they turned on the style to clinch the elite Men’s Cross Country MTB and Cyclocross titles respectively, while among the female racers, Tsalina Phang (Treknology3) took top honours by winning the Women's Open XCO contest in a sprint finish.
Click here to read the full race report.
Nuts. Crazy. Madness. Insanity. Just some of the words thrown at me after I posted a ride on Strava in the wee hours of yesterday. And I agree completely, but sometimes it just seems right to do some things, no matter how strange they might seem. The session in question was an “Everesting” on Singapore’s Mt Faber. For the uninformed, “to Everest” on a bicycle is to climb the equivalent height of the world’s highest mountain (8,848 metres) on a single hill, in one ride. No sleep is allowed, but thankfully breaks are permitted, indeed encouraged, by the keepers of the rules of Everesting, an Australian mob known as the Hell’s 500.
It took me 16 hours and 51 minutes of riding to hit the target, plus about three hours of downtime to eat, charge lights and Garmins (yes, plural, it’s best to have a back up for an Everesting), apply chamois cream and contemplate the existential meaning of life. I covered 333km. Click here to read the full report.
The SCF Challenge @ Sportshub returned to the criterium circuit at the Singapore national stadium on Sunday and after 25 thrilling rounds of action, Victor Michel (Specialized Roval Mavericks) and Chelsie Tan (BikeLabz) were crowned the points racing king and queen.
Sunday’s superb morning of racing was the second of a new four-date series that is the SCF Challenge @ Sportshub. Run by the Singapore Cycling Federation and events kingpins Cycosports, the series is a no-frills competition put on for the local cycling community but with heavy involvement of clubs and teams within that community.
The inaugural SCF Challenge @ Sportshub in June was sponsored by Anza Cycling and on Sunday for Round #2 it was the turn of the Integrated Riding club to stump up the logistical costs associated with closing a portion of the road at the national stadium. As well as earning the gratitude of Singapore’s road racers as a return on their investment, Integrated Riding got to choose the format for Sunday’s event, and they opted for a “points race”.
Click here to read the full race report.
Such has been the growth of the Southeast Asian road cycling scene over the past decade, that the region now supports a long list of fantastic amateur races throughout the year. Riders flock to the likes of the Tour of Phuket, the Tour de Bintan, the Tour of Friendship, the Masters Tour of Chiang Mai, the Taiwan KOM Challenge and the Etape Thailand from all over Asia and beyond, with most competing as part of groups from cycling clubs and racing teams. But a large number of entrants to these events travel as individuals and it’s perhaps surprising in such a vibrant market that more hasn’t been done by some of the region’s cycling tours operators to attract these solo racers with enhanced packages.
SpiceRoads Cycling, one of Southeast Asia’s leading cycling tours company for over 20 years, has actually dabbled with this concept before, but they’ve recently decided to go big and have launched what look like fantastic deals for three of the biggest events on the calendar: the Masters Tour of Chiang Mai, the Taiwan KOM Challenge and the Etape Thailand. All three races take place in October and the official websites each offer fairly straightforward online registration processes, but the people at SpiceRoads Cycling are betting that there are a lot of cyclists out there who are willing to pay a bit extra for the luxury experience they are offering. Click here to read the full article.
The Haute Route brand of competitive cycling adventures took a first step outside of its comfort zones of Europe and the United States in March of this year with a foray into the Middle East for the Haute Route Oman. For the 200+ riders who travelled from all the world to the three-day event, it delivered a unique cycling adventure set in a culture and on terrain most had never experienced before.
From a cultural point of view, the gracious hospitality of the Omani people, their elegant clothing and the fantastic local food will be the abiding memories, while from the cycling side of things, it’s the sand, mountains and wind that stand out. The sand was expected and what’s a Haute Route without mountains? But an unseasonably strong wind brought an unforeseen extra element of challenge, as it whipped the sand into eyes, ears, noses and throats, and messed with drivetrains, bearings and bottom brackets. High up in the mountains the wind was an even bigger factor. On occasion it provided a helping hand and pushed the riders up the steep slopes, but when blowing head on, it had the effect of adding what felt like an extra degree or two to the already severe gradients. Click on this link to read the full feature story.
The unique and exciting OCBC Cycle Speedway Championships returned to the Singapore Sports Hub last Saturday and after six hours of thrilling action the national team of the Philippines were crowned Southeast Asia champions, while the Specialized Roval Mavericks retained their title as top local club.
What makes the OCBC Cycle Speedway Championships unique is that it combines criterium racing with a team relay. Each of the rounds of racing took place over 10 laps of a hotdog circuit skirting the northern edge of the Singapore National Stadium. Significant this year was the presence for the first time of not just one all-female squad, but two; the Anza Women’s Cycling Team and the Fahrenheit Performance Development Team were the pioneers.
Click on this link to read the full race report.
What we do
Welcome to Flat Spoke Media, which was inspired by its editor-at-large Alan Grant, a man who eats, sleeps and breathes cycling. As such our main aim is to explore and write about all things related to the pedal-powered world.