Do I need a new bike?


That’s the short answer, but if you ever need justification for buying a new bike –  these are some reasons to help you dip in the wallet and buy the new bike you deserve!

Of course, no real cyclist ever needs justification to buy a new bike, but this might be helpful for dealing with those family members who may not share the same understanding of the scientific and emotional benefits of the new 2015 Shimano Dura Ace di2 groupset.


Good reasons to get a new bike

  • Because manufacturers inform you this years model is 20% more rigid, 12% lighter, 7 % more aerodynamic and only 33% more expensive. If you buy, everyone’s a winner!
  • If you don’t buy a new bike, it means you will be riding a bike that is potentially slower than you could be riding. How painful is that thought?
  • Why spend all those hours training in the wet and cold when you could be getting the same marginal gains whilst sitting in the office doing overtime to pay for your new bike?!
  • Because there will definitely be someone on the start line of your race / cyclosportive /  Strava leaderboard – who will have that new bike. You wouldn’t expect Lewis Hamilton to turn up to a Formula One race, in a 1920s Ford Model T. You need the best to have a fair competition.
  • You need a cheap commuting bike to reduce the scare of getting your 33% more expensive new bike stolen. This is brilliant, You get a new bike that is so expensive, you have to get a cheaper bike to complement it. Two reasons for the price of one.
  • Cheaper than upgrades. If you took a bike apart and tried to buy the components separately, it would be twice as expensive.  If you find yourself buying a new component like a new stem or new pair of wheels, you might as well just go the whole hog and buy a new bike!
  • The last bike you will ever need. The next bike you buy is so good, it will be the last bike you ever need. Manufacturers have been making bikes stiffer, lighter and more aero for years. But, this technological progress has to stop sometime. If you buy a bike, bike manufacturers are likely to say ‘that’s it, bikes can’t get better than this. (P.S. I have bought seven ‘last ever bike I will need’)
  • New bike gives new inspiration. There is a great feeling in riding a new immaculate bike. If you’re struggling with inspiration to train, buy a new bike and the next week of training will be really high quality because you are so happy to be riding a new bike. Admittedly, a weekly new bike could be stretching even the most enthusiastic resources of the most ardent ‘buy a new bike’ type person. You should save this for desperate times like the middle of winter.


  • Because it looks good. Who said a new bike needs to be faster? It’s not as if you’re going to win an important race anyway. Bikes are all about looks. That 1980s Colnago C50 will have plenty heads turning on the club run, and if that’s not worth taking out a £5,000 loan – what is?

Poor excuses not to get a new bike

Bike in house. A kind of modern art.
  • There isn’t room in the shed. This is a very poor excuse. There is always room to accommodate a new bike. Who said bicycles have to be stored in the garage? Take down your David Hockney from your living room, and in its place put your new living modern art (aka – your new Colnago) on the wall. In this way you’ve killed three birds with one stone:
    • You have a motivation to clean the bike after every  ride
    • You have joined the modern art movement of spending a lot of money on the unexpected!
    • You have your new bike!
      If all else fails, you could always consider selling an old bike. But, this is really a last resort, because it’s much better to accumulate an ever increasing number of bikes.
  • You haven’t got the money In the days of Wonga, credit cards and quantitative easing, there’s always money somewhere. Your granny may have told you money doesn’t grow on trees, but if the UK can have a national debt of £1,432.3 billion and Q.E. of £350bn money creation, do you not think you deserve a very small extension of credit for helping the economic recovery? Think of it as expansionary fiscal policy – any good Keynesian economist will tell you that your consumer spending is a selfless act for the greater good.
  • Family unconvinced. This is slightly tricky – your partner is not convinced that you need a 12th bike when the last family holiday was a budget hotel in Skegness in 2009. But, still with a new bike – every day is a holiday. All we need is that 12th bike and we will become a beacon of happiness and cheerfulness (until the next seasons models come out) – so everyone is a winner really. Note the emphasis on shared ownership. You may ride the bike, but really it belongs to everyone.

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Cycling uphill awards for 2013

It’s the time of the year for goodwill and to be merry. I’m not quite sure what that involves. Perhaps to fill the cup of merriment, you’re drink of choice is a six hour winter training ride through wind, rain and sleet. Or perhaps it involves going to Poundland and getting a Santa outfit for £1 to distribute loads of crap presents you’ve just brought for a pound. (no offence Dad, I do like all those presents from the Poundshop, especially the novelty Santa Hat which makes a good ear warmer on a cold day.

Or, perhaps we could jump on the interminable-end-of-the-year-fill-a-newspaper-with-award-ceremonies.

Cycling uphill awards 2013

1. How to descend like a girl and still win the Tour of Britain – Bradley Wiggins. Every cyclist can have bad moments descending, but not every cyclists can time trial like Bradley Wiggins.

2. Tate prize for Cycling modern art


– London’s Blue painted cycle superhighway. Admirably fulfilling the criteria for modern art – cheap, gaudy and without any point.

3. Moral leader of our time. No not Nelson Mandela, instead I’d like to nominate Hein Verbruggen for services to humanity, in pointing out Lance Armstrong is a really bad lad, and if anyone injected EPO into Lance, it really wasn’t good old upstanding Hein.

4. Descending backwards down a 25% hairpin pass whilst doing a wheeley.


No this isn’t a joke prize, it really happened and I’m glad to say he’s alive to tell the tale. (don’t worry Mum, I can’t do backwards wheelies downhill and anyway it’s much faster descending when you can look where you’re going.)

5. Peace and reconciliation award. No not Nelson Mandela. But, Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome for burying the hatchet and showing the real meaning of teamwork, especially at the World road race championship in September.

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