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Cyclist magazine issue 128: on sale now!

15 Jun 2022

In this issue: Tyler Hamilton on doping; Best kit for summer; Pinarello's new gravel bike

Photo: Mike Massaro

Issue 128, Summer 2022, of Cyclist magazine is on sale now. Subscribe to Cyclist here or buy issue 128 at the Cyclist Shop.

There’s something unmistakably British about the Rough-Stuff Fellowship. The cycling club, founded in 1955, made its purpose in life to take bikes to the kind of places that bikes just weren’t meant to go.

In the club’s early days, the members’ spirit of adventure was undeniable, but it was blended with a healthy British dollop of absurdity as they were frequently reduced to carrying their bikes for long distances, and extreme conditions were tackled while wearing colourful bobble hats and inappropriate footwear. All hardships and setbacks were met with humour and copious amounts of tea.

As the archive pictures in this issue show, a proper ride for rough-stuffers meant being knee-deep in mud, fording rivers or slogging over rubble-strewn mountain passes with a bike slung over one shoulder. And look at those bikes – skinny tubes, skinny tyres and not a vibration-damping seatpost in sight.

This was adventure cycling in its purest form: no specialist equipment; no sponsorships; no safety nets. No one was concerned about their FTP, only in discovering what was over the crest of the next hill.

These days it’s different. We’ve got gravel bikes with big knobbly tyres, GPS navigation and high- performance materials. Heading out into the wild is a bit less daunting, a bit less wild, but I like to think that same sense of exploration still exists, and for the past decade Cyclist has dedicated itself to searching out the best places to ride in Britain, Europe and beyond.

Some are race-based classics such as the climb up Superbagnères in France, while others are less visited corners such as this month’s Big Ride in southeastern Denmark or the south of Snowdonia.

For some, cycling will always be about finding that extra kmh or bagging that Strava segment (kudos!). For us, it will always be about the joy and adventure of the ride itself. Even if the bikes are modern and the clothing hi-tech, I hope we will never lose touch with our inner rough-stuffiness. Only without the bobble hats.

Pete Muir Editor

What’s in issue 128?

Flat of the land: With the Tour de France about to visit Denmark for the first time, there’s never been a better excuse to hop on over and discover what makes this place unique

No more secrets: Tyler Hamilton’s 2012 confessional autobiography The Secret Race revealed the truth about doping in the Armstrong era. Ten years on, he tells Cyclist he has finally found peace – and rediscovered his love of the bike

Superbagnères: No climb in Tour de France history has had so much impact in so few appearances. Superbagnères is as storied as it is spectacular

Summer kit picks: The sun’s out, the days are long, and the Cyclist team shares the kit picks that help them make the best time of the year even better

Stuff of legends: Long before gravel riding was a thing, there was the Rough-Stuff Fellowship – adventurers who blazed a trail through mud, blood and lots of tea. To celebrate a new archive of images, here’s their story

It’s always the quiet ones: The southern part of Snowdonia in Wales may be less visited, but its hills are just as tough

For all this and much more, pick up your copy of Cyclist issue 128, on sale now.

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