Friday, July 22, 2005

Does Lance ride his bike to the store?

Media reports over the last couple weeks (this item from a Louisiana NBC affiliate is a good example) suggest that this Armstrong fellow's success in a French bicycle race is causing Americans to drive to their local bike shops and pick up machines of their own.

I suspect this Lance-induced mania for road bikes will be short-lived and could come to a grinding halt when European riders regain ownership of the Tour de France. It's probably nothing more than a small-scale revival of the Bike Boom of the 1970s. Still, if it puts more bicycles on the streets, I think it's a good thing.

I'm wondering how many of these new cyclists will get hip to the notion that they can use bicycles for more than recreation. I wouldn't recommend bolting grocery bag panniers to the back of a Madone SSL, but maybe seeing the world from a bicycle could influence some folks to see their bicycles in a different way. This will be helpful, especially if it turns out that everyone will need to become more familiar with cycling in the future.

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