Riding is Life


Spin Cycle: Pierre Roll-off

Things that don't mix: Pierre Rolland and canals.

Laundrette in Trieste, Italy.

Jonny Long
by Jonny Long 05.06.2023 Photography by
Alex Graves and Cor Vos
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The Spin Cycle is the Escape Collective’s news digest, published every Monday and Friday. You can read it on this website (obviously) or have it delivered straight to your inbox. You can sign up here.


Welcome back to Spin Cycle! The Escape Collective’s news digest.

If you had always been wondering what hijinks Pierre Rolland could get up to if he visited a canal, we now know the answer. We have also uncovered Herregodts the heartbreak kid’s first and only ever tweet. Plus, Tadej Pogačar is back on his trolling BS, which must mean he’s feeling good for the Tour de France, right? And if you haven’t had enough COVID-19 misinformation at this stage, we’ve also got some of that for you too!

Okay, that last one maybe isn’t as inviting, but it’ll probably make you enjoy the other ones even more. Oh, and if you don’t send this along to at least one friend to show them what happens to Rolland at the canal, you may be cursed with the same fate as what befell him. (Disclaimer: That statement is about as scientifically accurate as Dr Feigl-Ding’s Roglič mask claims below.)

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Pierre Rolland (@pierre_rolland_cyclisme)

‘We’re doing pretty good’

Pierre Rolland is out on a gravel ride with his step-dad, his step-dad’s first-ever gravel ride, in fact. A wholesome day out during the French rider’s retirement. Rolland decides to share the moment, stopped at a lock to tell the world via social media that they’re doing well, they’re in control and enjoying themselves.

Cue Rolland’s bike in the background suddenly taking on a life of it’s own and plunging into the canal. A true slapstick moment that surely caused a sudden uptick in the Frenchman’s heart rate.

Luckily, Rolland managed to recover his bike. “Just reassuring everyone I made it back and he’s safe and sound,” Rolland wrote in an Instagram post containing the video, making sure to tag Giant France, who supplied him with the bike. This is the latest bold frontier of cycling influence-dom folks, chucking your machine into watery depths to help them shift a few more models!

Making it up as he goes along

If you thought Primož Roglič’s Giro d’Italia victory was impressive, wait until you learn that he did it while masked up! That’s according to Dr Eric Feigl-Ding, an American public health scientist who actually taught at Harvard but has also (according to his Wikipedia page) gained a bit of a reputation of tweeting things that aren’t exactly true. Exhibit A: Roglič mask-gate.

For once, hellscape dot com, the real name of Twitter, and not a demonic alternative to our online offering, did the right thing and provided some fact-checking below the patently false, bad-faith tweet. We’re also enjoying Eric’s latest marginal gain of pros wearing masks behind team cars to reduce the fumes from their exhausts.

The above series of tweets have since been deleted (but we got the screenshots, our grubby little fingers always get the screenshots) and he’s since sent out a corrected version, commending Roglič for wearing a mask in public and before the start of races. We don’t know what his game is, but it’s another lesson that anyone can make up any old shit on the internet, even a dude who literally worked at Harvard and has over 750k followers on Twitter. Madness!

Feed Zone ?

?? Heinrich Haussler has a new job as an assistant sports director with Bora-Hansgrohe.

? Bingoal WB’s Julian Mertens is no longer in a medically-induced coma following his training crash last week, having undergone surgery following injuries to his spine, jaw, ribs and arm.

?? Keegan Swenson won the men’s Unbound Gravel 200 ahead of Petr Vakoc and Lachlan Morton, while Carolin Schiff won the women’s Unbound Gravel 200, beating Sofia Gomez Villafane and Sarah Sturm.

? Arnaud Démare emerged victorious from the Brussels Cycling Classic.

? The latest Zwift Academy winner, Luca Vergallito, won his first professional victory with Alpecin-Deceuninck at the Oberösterreich Rundfahrt, also taking home the overall victory.

? Ethan Hayter (Ineos Grenadiers) is out of the Critérium du Dauphiné after crashing twice and breaking his collarbone. Jumbo-Visma’s Steven Kruijswijk crashed on stage two and broke his collarbone and pelvis, ruling him out of the Dutch team’s Tour de France squad.

❓While Egan Bernal is currently riding the Dauphiné, he’s told Flo Bikes that his Tour de France participation is not currently certain.

?? Another delicious couple of exclusives from the Radio Cycling crew, the UK is confident of hosting the 2026 Tour de France Grand Départ, while the 2024 Tour de France Femmes is expected to start from Brittany and at a later August date to avoid a clash with the Paris Olympics.

He will Rune the day

In the major motion picture Talladega Nights, Ricky Bobby’s father tells him ‘if you ain’t first, you’re last’. In the eyes of Rune Herregodts, who was caught 25 metres from the line by Christophe Laporte on stage one of the Dauphiné, there was a silver lining from an ultimately disappointing day to do away with that flawed movie logic: He got memed by Cycling Memes. It was heartbreak for Herregodts, which you can hear in his appreciative response to the meme created in his honour: “At least I made it into one of your memes”.

What’s even better is that this is Herregodts’ first and so far only tweet. Even though he’s had the account since November 2021. Unbelievable restraint from the man, which must be applauded.

? Tadej Pogatroll of the week ?

“If I was World Champion like Remco, I’d race the Tour de France.”

Tadej Pogačar provides a hypothetical scenario during a press conference, playfully goading Remco Evenepoel about his non-participation in this summer’s Tour de France. The French Grand Tour has never been on the Belgian’s calendar for this year, with his first appearance expected in 2024, but rumours began swirling after the world champion was forced to abandon the Giro d’Italia while in the race lead.

What can we glean from this? Probably that Pogačar’s wrist is feeling okay if he’s able to crack jokes and troll his rivals. Personally, we can only hope this tactic works as someone at Spin Cycle Industries may have chucked a tenner on Evenepoel to win the Tour at 60/1 when whispers started to emerge that the Belgian could line up for this month’s Tour de Suisse…

Cycling on TV ?


GCN+ (09:00-10:55 ET/14:00-15:55 BST/23:00-00:55 AEST)


Critérium du Dauphine, Stage 4

ZLM Tour, Stage 1


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ZLM Tour, Stage 2

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Critérium du Dauphine, Stage 6

GCN+ (09:00-10:55 ET/14:00-15:55 BST/23:00-00:55 AEST)

ZLM Tour, Stage 3

GCN+ (09:30-11:00 ET/14:30-16:00 BST/23:30-01:00 AEST)

Mountain bike

UCI MTB World Cup

Downhill – Junior Women

GCN+ (07:10-07:55 ET/12:10-12:55 BST/21:10-21:55 AEST)

Downhill – Junior Men

GCN+ (07:55-09:15 ET/12:55-14:15 BST/21:55-23:15 AEST)

Cross-country – Elite Women

GCN+ (11:00-11:45 ET/16:00-16:45 BST/01:00-01:45 AEST)

Cross-country – Elite Men

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And finally…

Possibly emboldened by his fourth overall at last year’s Tour de France, David Gaudu has a new favourite hobby alongside four-hour Twitch streams: publicly questioning his team and teammates.

First, in January, Gaudu was found to have messaged about Arnaud Démare: “I don’t want him to come to the Tour… the war is not over,” which he then had to apologise for. Now, he’s also said he’s not so keen on the idea of Thibaut Pinot riding what would be his final Tour de France following a decent turn-out at the Giro d’Italia.

“”I have my opinion that I will keep to myself,” Gaudu said, not really keeping his opinion to himself at all. “Behind it is Marc [Madiot] who makes the team with the [rest of the] sports management.”

Un petit peu de boeuf avant de Tour de France? Mais oui!

Corrections corner ?✒️

After a brief spell of borderline impeccable acceptable news reporting, it was only a matter of time before inevitably cocked something up. It was pointed out that our geographic accuracy in the Denmark potatoes story last week wasn’t as pinpoint as it could have been (read: we said it took place near the country’s capital when in fact it was halfway across the country). As punishment, we will be studying a map of Denmark for exactly one hour.

Primes (for helpful members) ?

Thanks to Nico Wienders for giving us the heads up about the Pierre Rolland story and also helping with some French translation.

And a merci beaucoup to Alex Graves for today’s laundrette photo from Trieste, Italy!

As always, we are accepting your own laundry photos to star in the Spin Cycle. Either send them via the Discord or shoot me an email: [email protected]

Until next time …

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