After a slight hiatus of a month or so, Jo decided it was time to resume her search for a shiny new road bike, so off we went to see what is on offer now, with the end of financial year possibly inducing sales in the stores… Fitzroy Cycles were covered in signs loudly proclaiming 20%-50% off everything — the only problem seemed to be that the bikes we’d seen for $1500 six weeks ago had been marked back up to the RRP of $1899 and then “discounted back down to $1499! Three test rides on three different bikes, two from Avanti and one womens’ specific Specialized, then off to Ashburton Cycles to see what was to offer in another store…

Not much it turns out! Ashburton had not a single road bike in stock, but referred us off to the sister shop — the boss had apparently taken the last road bike and transferred it to the other shop. The boss turned out to be someone we knew from the Deadly Treadly tours, slightly short on stock but long on advice and knowledge. Still no new bike, but we’re getting closer…

I did pick up a spare tyre for my road bike and a new D-lock, the old one is starting to rust inside and is getting difficult to open. I think it must be at least ten years old though, and considering what it’s been through — including a twist in the arm courtesy of riding off on the Katana with the lock through the wheel — I think it gave good value for money. After a recent furor where it was shown that half the round-keyed locks on the market can be opened with a Biro, I was keen to get a lock with a flat key. The five spare keys seems a bit excessive, but the Bulldog DT #5012 from OnGuard looks like it’ll fit the bill. The additional four foot of braided steel cable will come in handy for locking other bits up too!

Also cycling related, the Tour de France starts tonight, three weeks of sleep deprivation because SBS will be broadcasting every stage live, and owing to time-zones they all start at around 11:30 at night! I decided not to stay up and watch, tomorrow’s half-hour hi-lights of the prologue should suffice — choosing instead to browse around on Google maps and look at various points of interest. My house, of course, then that of my parents’, a few spots in London where Jo used to live, and then to round out the cycling for the day, l’Alpe d’Huez in the French Alps. Broadband access a must! I could spend hours viewing places this way!