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TOUR DE ROMANDIE

CYCLING

Froome’s team wins Romandie time trial

Chris Froome's hopes of a third straight win on the Tour de Romandie cycling competition is off to a good start as his Team Sky won Tuesday's opening-stage team time trial by less than a second.

Froome's team wins Romandie time trial
Froome on the winner's podium at last year's Tour de Romandie. Photo: AFP

The British squad, last to set out, stopped the clock on the 19.2-kilometre stage from the Vallée de Joux to Jurapac in 21 minutes 19 seconds, narrowly ahead of Australian team Orica-GreenEdge and five seconds quicker than Katusha of Russia.
   
Sky's Geraint Thomas will wear the leader's yellow jersey on Wednesday's 168.1-kilometre hilly second stage from Apples to Saint-Imier.
   
The Welsh rider, who won the E3 Harelbeke in Belgium last month, wore Romandie's yellow jersey in 2012 after his victory in the prologue.
   
"We usually come second by a narrow margin so it was great to get the win today," said Thomas.
   
"The team time trial is something the team wants to target a bit more," he said.

"We've always been up there but we've never really had much focus on it. 

"We're looking to keep improving in that area so it's great to win."
   
Vincenzo Nibali's Astana finished 16 seconds behind while Nairo Quintana is already trailing by 40 seconds after a disappointing showing from Movistar.
   
The first team time trial on the Tour de Romandie since 2009 served as an ideal warm up for the peloton ahead of the Tour de France's ninth stage, on July 9th, in Brittany.

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CYCLING

VIDEO: Why you may struggle to buy a bike in Europe in 2021

Demand for bicycles has soared in Europe during the coronavirus pandemic, but conversely the global supply is at record low levels, with consumers having to wait months or over a year for their bike of choice.

VIDEO: Why you may struggle to buy a bike in Europe in 2021
Photo: Stocksnap/Pixabay

Bikes are projected to outsell cars in Europe by two to one by 2030.   

But 2021 will not be an easy year to buy a bike in many European countries, especially if you have a particular model in mind. 

Firstly, there's been a huge surge in demand for bikes during the pandemic, as Europeans looked for ways to stay fit and move around more freely without having to worry about being exposed to Covid-19 on public transport.

On the flip side, bike production in China, which supplies almost the entire global market, has practically ground to a halt.

The same can be said for bicycle accessories and components, which are either not being produced in Chinese factories currently or held up for months in ports in Asia due to the reduction of capacity in shipping.

 

In this short report, video producer Alex Dunham explores the issue of Europe's bike shortage in 2021.

 

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