“What a beautiful parking lot”: a long queue of cars forces cyclists to go to the grass in Richmond Park; “Why are people so indifferent to pro-auto messages? » ; Rest day blues at the Giro + more on the live blog

While you’ve sat back and enjoyed what could be described as a promising Hungarian Giro opening weekend for its Team GB contingent, here’s a quick recap of the stories from the weekend you may have missed…

Mark Cavendish proved his dramatic return to the top of the sport in last year’s Tour de France was no career-ending fluke, unleashing a monster 300-metre-long sprint (after yet another manual led by the one and only Michael Mørkøv) to take his first Giro stage since 2013 and the sixteenth of his storied career.

“It was really nice. We wanted to be good in this first sprint, we did it and I’m very happy,” said the reborn Manx Missile after the finish in Balatonfüred.

“We have half a team for the climbs and half a team for the sprints, but everyone is committed. Ballerini, Van Lerberghe and Mørkøv, I have an incredible final group there, and they delivered today.

“In the end, I had to go long. I went 300m to go. I had to hold one side and I’m just glad I was able to hold out for so long.

While Fernando Gaviria and Arnaud Démare took second and third behind Cav, a boxed Biniam Girmay – second behind Mathieu van der Poel on the opening stage’s uphill finish – was the only rival who seemed to have the speed to challenge the Quick Step- Alpha Vinyl Driver if given the chance. The next steps will be interesting…

Simon Yates was equally impressive in the 9.2 kilometer time trial around Budapest on Saturday, beating pink jersey Van der Poel by three seconds and 2017 Giro winner Tom Dumoulin to claim his first-ever time trial. the grand tour watch and send an ominous warning to his GC. rivals.

Can the man from Bury banish the memories of 2018 and arrive in Verona in pink in three weeks?

Perhaps Yates’ biggest challenge at the GC will come from the cat invading the course which ‘dropped’ Edoardo Affini of Jumbo-Visma on the second TT stage – prompting his teammates for some playful digging at climbing ability from Affini…

As is tradition whenever Mathieu van der Poel wins a stage, we were also curious about his insane power figures – which peaked during his sprint against Girmay at 1,116 watts. Easy.

Away from the Giro, we reported that a bike thief was sentenced to 160 hours of unpaid work after bizarrely claiming he took the bike just so he could “get home”, while a motorist in anger – distraught that cyclists were ‘back on the road’ – was fined £1,000 for reckless driving after he honked his horn and shouted abuse at riders.

In local elections, anti-LTN candidate Lutfur Rahman was elected mayor of Tower Hamlets, although he was removed from office in 2015 after being found guilty of voter fraud, vote buying and religious intimidation .

Finally, a study by injury compensation site Claims.co.uk found Chelmsford to be the safest city for cycling in the UK, while Birmingham came out on top in the ‘most dangerous category’ – although, as Dan explains in the article, the study methodology was shaky to say the least…

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