Many of you have figured it out by now, but consistent with the history of the Internet, cycling media and our own humble track record, we had a little fun with April Fools’ Day yesterday. Of course, we weren’t the only ones, and there were a few cycling and non-cycling jokes that made us laugh. We’re appreciative of all the kind words and good sports, and apologize for (temporarily) raising readers’ blood pressure.
Early in the day, we posted a somewhat plausible story of a 3D bicycle frame printer who creates short-life frames and has NAHBS award aspirations. Walking around NAHBS 2015, you might believe the day this is true is coming soon, as we saw three uses of 3D printing at the show, including 3D-printed Di2 button mounts by TRP, 3D-printed lug molds by Calfee, and $1000 3D-printed titanium derailleur pulleys by Ceramic Speed. 3D printing isn’t constrained just to NAHBS. Charge Bikes has used the new technology to print titanium dropouts, and Fabric has 3D printed saddles. While we believe printed frames aren’t that far fetched, disposable plastic cyclocross frames that last just one season even scares the fools in us.
Then we followed that up with story about USA Cycling stepping in to help pave the way for smoother gravel races and standardization of gravel events and “gravel bikes.” And thanks to many of you, it kinda went viral. We’ve been riding on gravel roads and paths since we were kids, but were still surprised after reading so many of the passionate, calendar-unaware comments that so many of you actually appreciate a little mystery and variety in courses, and the ability to choose your own rig—it’s pretty amazing that readers want to race local terrain, on bikes they already own.
Of course, the whole story, including quotes, were all in the spirit of the “holiday,” but gravel promoters and USA Cycling should still take note of the strong opinions in the priceless comments captured forever below the story.
Thanks again for having a laugh with us.
We’ve pulled out a few of our favorite semi-anonymous comments from the day for anyone who wants another laugh:
Gravel here are former road/CX/ MTB USAC racers that were tired of all the red tape to put on a race…. This is grass roots at its best… Leave it the heck alone.
We already host UCI Gravel Races in Canada!! Nice job catching up to the rest of the world, USAC
Why does it need regulation? Why not just “support”?! I agree with many statements listed by my fellow riders. I have gravitated to Gravel races Fondo races on the roads for many reasons – better organization (such as announcements) than sanctioned road races/crits/TTs; more for my money (which as an unattached rider means 3 day races is equal to a Fondo or gravel race); more riders = better times (in both meanings).
Ashley, are there gravel races close to Toronto? This is extremely exciting to me.
Brilliant. It’s so subtle (to me anyway), that I got all the way to the bottle mounts before craning my neck at a jaunty angle like a confused dog hearing a far off whistle.
Sick to my stomach
The majority of people who do gravel races don’t even know what USA Cycling is
thank god for april fools. i was close to turbo vomiting.
This will not fly with the gravel community. 1cm stones and pebbles?!
“Gravel racing is just in its infancy, we’re learning as we go, and have to evolve quickly. It’s not like people did this type of cycling thirty years ago.” No…they were doing it 100 years ago.
Really a threaded bottom bracket is called out as a problem?!
Best one I’ve seen yet, well done
I have mixed(-surface) feelings about this.
I’m trying to figure out what courses they imagine: gravel no larger than 1cm? Tires must be NARROWER than 30 OR larger than 38? I don’t get it.
Speed gravel vs endurance gravel but no jungle cross? Brilliant!
Sure, it’s dated April 1st but I have a feeling this isn’t a joke.
Esos Puercos los organizadores!, ya tienes a la cyclocross haciendo lagartijas? [Translation]
— Spencer Hackett (@velospence) April 2, 2015
@cyclocross "the gravel racing scene is the wild west, and really needs us right now" said no one outside of USAC. Reminds me of the SCCA.
— Fortune Cookie Zen (@4tunecookiezen) April 1, 2015
— chip baker (@velocb) April 1, 2015
— Jake Davidson (@davidjakeson) April 1, 2015