Olympic Mountain Biking Tickets – Thanks Acer!

Like many families in the UK we failed to get tickets for any of the Olympic events due to the huge demand and, to be honest, we had given up and decided to go to the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. However as Olympic fever has gripped the country we started to feel a little left out….. I started following the now famous twitter feed @2012ticketalert to see if I could get some random event just to get the atmosphere, although I decided I would draw the line at the horse dancing!

I saw on ticket alert that Acer had lots of tickets to give away for competitions including the Mountain Biking on the last weekend of the games, so on a whim decided to give it a go.  http://www.facebook.com/#!/AcerUK


The competition was on Facebook and involved submitting a photo showing family sport or Olympic fever. I sent in a collage of Holly’s Sport Relief Challenge of earlier this year and yesterday found out we had won !

4 tickets to both days of the Olympic mountain biking, travel cards and a night’s stay in the Radisson in nearby Southend on Sea – result !

Now the logistics have started. Unfortunately Holly can’t go to the Saturday’s racing as she is on stage until 10pm at Stafford’s Gatehouse Theatre in the final showing of the summer school youth theatre’s production of Peter Pan so we are going to spread some Olympic love and take two budding Mountain Bike Orienteers aged 9 and 14 years old to watch the women’s race. I’ve then got to come half way home to pick up Holly at midnight on the M1 to get her back to the Hotel ready for the Sunday. We have also given 2 of the tickets to another bike mad family with a 6 year old.

We are all very excited to be given the opportunity to go to the event we really wanted to go to when we first applied for tickets over a year ago. Thank you Acer what a fantastic prize.

We will be cheering on Great Britain’s Liam Killeen and Annie Last but especially Liam as we have met him a few times when he used to hangout in our local bike shop Mammoth when being coached by local mountain bike legend Gary Foord.

To top it all Holly’s favourite presenter who inspired her to do her sport relief challenge is one of the anchors for BBC at the Mountain Biking


World MTBO Champs 2012 – preview

Its now only 2 weeks to the World Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships. The Championships this year not only include Elite and Juniors but also the Masters (40+)

An elite team from Great Britain will be racing as well as a number of masters. For more information on the eventto be held in Hungary go to



The Cycle Show – ITV4 #2

After the general negative feedback of the first ITV Cycle show last week I was a little worried that if it wasn’t any better it’s future would be in jeopardy.

However…. they delivered in spades. Gone were the sound issues, they introduced the guests properly and they didnt cram too much in.

I loved the coverage of the crowds at the weekend’s road races, great guests, great features on bike fit, mega avalanche and I liked the club slot too.

Well done The Cycle Show, you listened, good luck for what I am sure will now be a successful season of shows.

2nd show here on ITV player http://www.itv.com/itvplayer/video/?Filter=thecycleshow


500th post

Just a quick note to say thank you to all my readers and for the kind emails over the last 10 months I have been injured. I have tried to keep the blog going as best I can whilst not racing or training and hopefully you have enjoyed some of the other things I have posted about and I have not whinged too much. This is my 501st posting on stodgeblog and I look forward to announcing the thousandth posting which at this rate should be in about May 2016.

The pdfs below are a snapshot of a months webstats for those who are interested in those sort of things, where people are living and what keywords are being searched on for example : washing machines ?

Analytics 1

Analytics sources

The Cycle Show – ITV4 review

Cycling on TV is sorely lacking. ITV4 have fantastically covered cycle races from the UK tour series to The Tour this year but it’s all road racing, exciting as this is there is nothing for the enthusiast up until now…..

ITV4 and Century television have bravely embarked on an 8 show series off the back of the recent Tour de France coverage. The first episode was on Monday and it is now available on ITV player hosted by Graham Little.

It is sponsored by the giant mail order bike company Chain Reaction Cycles which to be honest is fine. A new show like this needs funding from somewhere and as long as it’s not in your face I don’t mind.

The show is modelled on a magazine ‘top gear’ style show with features, chat and regular items to keep things flowing along.

It is based in London cycle café – ‘Look Mum No Hands’ a regular haunt of mine a year or so back when Pozzoni’s London office was almost next door on Old Street.

The first show obviously started with some post Tour Bradley hype but the euphoria of the win made the café so noisy it was obvious the guests and production crew were struggling. I am sure they will sort this out on the next show.

First Guest was Nigel Mansell, now turned cyclist and supporting Team UK Youth. I’d forgotten quite how monotone he was and it’s a shame the interviewer didn’t give a little more context and introduce UK Youth a bit more. He seemed a bit shell shocked to be interviewing such a famous celeb! Graham Obree was also on the sofa. I know who he is, but any non-cycle fans would not have a clue and he was not properly introduced.

We then had a piece on Box hill, where the Olympic road race will be held next week, which was OK but I’m not sure where it was being pitched. Not enough detail for the cycle race fan and not enough background for the novice.

Next guest was the ‘inventor’ of the mountain bike, the crazy Gary Fisher who lived up to his name. Again I know who he is but he needed more of an introduction.

There was a slightly patronising how to cycle in the city bit which was actually pitched OK for beginners but tried to cover too much and was at odds with the rest of the show.

More chat with no real direction and then they finished with a great roller race between the two guests which was fun and I am sure this will turn into a top gear style star in a reasonably priced car type leader board.

Overall it was a good effort but I felt struggled with its level of pitch, they tried to cram too much in and the balance of chat to feature leant too much to the chat .

I’ve set the PVR to record the whole series and look forward to the next ones, although I hope they have taken on board some of the criticism flying around on the various social media and well used forums.

Its worth a watch – support it, help it or lose it!


The Cycle Show on Twitter https://twitter.com/thecycleshowtv

The Cycle Show on facebook http://www.facebook.com/#!/thecycleshowtv

The British conquer France

Well done Sky lads, Olympics next!
Allez Wiggo, Go Cav, Vroom Froome





En velo avec gâteau: patisseriecyclisme.com

A great new website for us cake loving cyclists was launched this week. Every good recreational ride should include a cafe stop and often a training ride might end up requiring one. Patisserie Cyclisme is a website that hopes to create a directory of cycle friendly cafes not just in the UK but worldwide. They are even hoping to create a kite mark for quality cake.

Why not get your favourite local haunts on… www.patisseriecyclisme.com


For Sale – OnOne Inbred Singlespeed


Due to my ongoing back problems I am selling my singlespeed. I bought it more or less new 2 years ago.

£350.00 ono – pickup available ST17, WA14 or M6 Between Stafford and Manchester
Contact me on mark@stodgell.co.uk




Size Medium

OnOne Inbred Light Blue 26er Steel frame  good used condition
OnOne Carbon forks
OnOne Reetardwheelset
Truvativ Firex singlespeed cranks 33 x 16
Chain tug device
Avid Juicy 3 Brakes
Kenda 2.35 x 26 Bluegroove tyres
Bar ends,RicheyComp seatpost, OnOne Saddle and Stem
OneOne Smoothie headset.
Spare original OnOne Mary handlebar.