Your Thursday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

April 13, 2017

In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Colbrelli wins De Brabantse Pijl; Cavendish diagnosed with mononucleosis from Epstein Barr; Two riders on Czech Continental team test positive, possible team sanction; British Cycling independent review report release delayed again; Wout van Aert to race all the Spring Classics?; In memory of Mike Hall, the man who inspired a world of cyclists; Dibben ‘finished’ Paris-Roubaix despite time cut; No more hippies and explorers: a lament for the changed world of cycling; Could financial problems in Bahrain affect team?; Pon Holdings looking to acquire Accell Group; E-bike legislation signed into law in Colorado; Video: Night Riders by Racing Club; Track Cycling: What is the Omnium?

In memory of Mike Hall, the man who inspired a world of cyclists

by CyclingTips

Juliana Buhring, a professional ultra-endurance cyclist and a fellow participant in the inaugural Indian Pacific Wheel Race, wrote this touching remembrance of Mike Hall, who was killed during the event. Here is an excerpt:

We all race knowing the risks we are taking—that anything can happen out there alone on the open road—but it is something we try not to dwell on much. The fear of all the “what ifs” would become paralyzing. I rolled numbly along for a few more miles, in a state of shock and disbelief. Then it crashed into my gut like a sucker punch, knocking the air right out of my lungs, and I convulsed into hard sobs. It couldn’t be true. Not Mike. Mike was immortal. The strongest of us. A legend in the world of ultra cycling. He was my mentor and a kindred spirit. But most of all, he was my friend.

I first met Mike in December 2012, after returning from cycling around the world. He, too, had recently completed a record-breaking circumnavigation a few months before and we bonded over beers at a pub in Bristol, in the U.K., comparing notes and stories from the road until the bar called for final rounds. We hung out on weekend at the annual Bespoked Bike Show. We chatted about the loss of loves, the loneliness of the road, and the feeling of never quite being able to settle into a life of normalcy.

Mike had studied and worked as an engineer, but he struggled to conform to corporate life and the constrictions of a social structure he felt alien to. He seemed to wade hesitantly into humanity until he reached saturation point and couldn’t handle any more, then he would disappear. One night, we had been out drinking when, without warning, he took off running. I didn’t hear from him again until two days later. When Mike heard about the Mars One mission, he seriously considered applying for a one-way ticket off this planet. Riding a bicycle was his way of escaping from a world he did not walk through comfortably. On two wheels he was strong, he was more than human, he was his best self.

“He did it because he needed to,” Anna, his girlfriend of three years, said on a video chat to me a few days after his death. “After a race he would come back chilled and calm, contained, happy, relaxed for a few months. Then the need to do another would build and build till it reached a kind of fever pitch. Then he would become moody and difficult.” Pushing himself out on the road was not an option. It was a basic human need, like air.

Click through to read more at Outside.