Friday, May 28, 2010

Cycling in Missouri: Meet your Governor, meet your neighbor

It's Friday and the day before the Pedaler's Jamboree - a celebration of cycling in Missouri.  I should be posting the typical "Friday Mail" segment, but in light of the cycling festivities about to go down this weekend, I thought I would instead shed some light on the amazing cycling atmosphere that Missouri has become by highlighing a couple of news stories from the week. 

Here's what Cyclingnews is reporting on this morning in our state:

Chris Aronhalt, Managing Partner of Medalist Sports was quoted as saying, "Yes, we have pulled out of the effort.  Clearly the Governor is not supportive, which means the Tour will not be successful.  In our opinion the Tour will be canclled because you don't expect a change of heart from the Governor."

Thanks Governor Nixon.  Thank you for shutting down an event that established the following:
  • Direct economic impact of more than $80 million over three years
  • Attracted 1.5 million spectators
  • Resulted in $38 million tax revenue
  • Was telecasted to viewers in 173 countries
And thank you for shutting it down without having the decency to even meet with the organizers to discuss it after they requested repeatedly to talk about it with you.  Pure class.  By the way, what will now happen to the $1 million that was earmarked for the event and approved upon by the Missouri General Assembly?

And thanks to the reader who tipped me off on this story which appeared in the Columbia Daily Tribune on Tuesday, May 25th.

If you've not read the article, it essentially highlights some of the dangers that riding on Route K poses because of the increasing development and traffic and lack of shoulders.  Predictably, the article wasn't nearly as enlightening as the comments that followed it.  Here are some of the people that are behind the wheel of the car behind you.....

alpha5 says....
"I can tell you crazy bikers, if I run over you cause you do not have enough sense to not ride on these types of roads and you expect to get a dime out of me... then it will be a cold day in He** and don't hold your breath, cause while you are laying in a hospital in pain because you caused the crash, I will already have my attorney start the lawsuit againist you. I can tell one thing for sure, if comes to my life or safety over yours, YOU will lose and will not lose any sleep over it."

BoCoMo says..."I also feel bikes should be banned from two lane county roads that do not have a shoulder.
Simple, the needs of the many outweight the wants of a few.
Too dangerous, you'll not convince me that we need to "share" the roads, and the tax dollars to build those roads came from drivers, not peddlers."

NotApplicable says.....
"Only homicidal/suicidal idiots ride bikes on roads like Rte. K.

Eventually, one of you will manage to kill someone, all in order to demonstrate your 'rights.'
Hopefully, a long jail sentence will ensue.
Go find a safe road. Better yet, go ride on the trail."

Daryl_Licht says....
"Here's a thought - Let the bikers share the road and ride the non-shouldered roads. Let cars share traffic with bikes on the MKT. Give guns to everyone else and we'll all be happy!"

vsmurray says....
"Riding for transportation is a LOT different than what those Spandex clad booties are doing on Rt. O. I live close enough to work to ride my bike, but that means I would have to ride on Clark Lane. Hell no! I don't have a death wish. The only logical conclusion for me personally is that Mr. and Mrs. Spandex need to stick to safer roads and trails."
"I'm not so sure that bicyclists use these rural roads because they are scenic. There are many bike trails that are just as pretty to look at. They use them because they are hilly and good to train on. So, these bikers are putting everyone at risk to get a tight ass, firm thighs, and maybe win a race. I prefer to go to the gym for that, less stress. Oh, I do like to drive my car to Rockbridge and walk the trails out there, get all muddy and stuff. My kids like it too. Then I drive to the store, pick up some sugar and salt, and drive home to pig out. But I don't partake of tobacco. Yucky stuff. "

For some time, I've been contemplating the notion of this blog giving out awards for various acts to recognize their efforts in one area or another of cycling.....and I've actually been collecting names of potential recipients all along.  So today is a rather big day as I've got two individuals running neck and neck for the COMOCYCO Ass-Clown Award (or CA-CA).....Our two finalists?  Governor Nixon and Daryl_Licht......We took a vote here at COMOCYCO headquarters with the GEEC, intern Ricky, the COMOCYCO dog and me all casting our ballots and it was 3 in favor of the Governor winning the 2010 CA-CA award (the dog abstained...he's a forgiving soul).  So big congrats to our recipient!

At any rate, I hope everyone has fun at the Jamboree this weekend, or wherever your two wheels take you.....try to keep the rubber side down (ahem).  And if you are on the Jamboree ride, watch out for Daryl_Licht above who seems fairly committed to driving down the MKT with his car and guns.



  1. "..The tax dollars to build those roads came from drivers, not peddlers," says BoCoMo (I'm assuming he means 'pedalers'). Ugh...I own and pay taxes on two motor vehicles in the state of Missouri, yet because I am also a cyclist, I evidently don't have the right to use the roadways when I am on a bicycle. Just one of my many annoyances addressed in this post...

  2. Man this is a tough one for real. This has been my (and many others) main loop. It's true developement has changed the safety factor and sadly it is going to get worse. I was glad to see a bunch of cyclists defend our position and rights. But I was worried by some of the crazy driver statements. I will continue to ride it, but lately I've been training on the outer road of Hwy 70 which is straight and extremely low traffic.

    I think I'll post on that link you gave in support of cyclist's rights to these roads, and that drivers need to slow down. All cyclists please drown these haters with bike love!

  3. Sounds like things haven't changed much... such a shame because if you could take out the rednecks and white trash those are some pretty damn nice roads to ride on!

    I'm bringing my bike this summer to BOCOMO hope I get out alive!

    Kris Thompson

  4. I ride Route K from time to time, even more so now that I can cruise down through The Cascades from Sinclair Rd., then take K over past that general store and hop over to West Old Plank, then climb up Glasgow. I've also hit Clark Ln a bunch of times, and never felt nervous riding it.

    I see a lot of hateful stuff from the anti-bike crowd anytime a news story about cycling is posted, but I honestly don't think any of these people are insane enough to hit a cyclist and "not lose any sleep over it."

    Like Cody said above, I, too, pay taxes on two motor vehicles, so the fact that I'm riding a bike doesn't mean I haven't paid for those roads.

  5. this is very greatful and informatic helpful Can I quote a post in your blog with the link to you? i want to book mark it.

    Aleix Peterson
    india tour travel