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The Cycling" World. I 00


The Cycling" World. I 00 The irresponsible butcher-boy, sitting behind a fast-going nag. has, times out of min 1, bean viewed by do>ply injured pedestrians as the chartered iibert-ne of our roads. His penchant for cutting round corners on the wrong side at top speed, and his custom of shewing a complete disregard for the rule of the road as applicable to vehicular traf- fic, has become a tradition. It is not often how- ever, that he tries to take a rise out of cyclists, for, as a rule, his love for a bit of pace engenders a sportsmanlike, fellow-feeling, and between the knight of the blue smock and the votary of the wheel, there exists no feud. Occasionally, how- ever, a road-hog holds the reins, and this was the case recently, where a recreant butcher-boy hunted a wheelman into a ditch. The cyclist was so fully convinced that the meat distributor did this of malice prepense that he has applied to the Union (N.C.U.) for relief. It has now been definitely decided to close the Catford cycling track, and to hand the site over to the tender mercies of the jerry-buiider. Cycle racing in London, from the money-making point of view of race meeting promoters, is a thing of the past; and those tracks opened as financial ventures during the height of the cycle boom of ft few years back must necessarily close their gates now that the public interest in racing has depar- ted. Catford has been the scene of some of the finest racing and most desperate struggles ever witnessed in or around London and the passing of this grand cement track will be felt with remorse by those of our cyclists who still retain any vestige of that enthusiasm for racing which was so prevalent in the days of the great chain matches or the Catford Gold Vase race. It appears that the Dunlop Pneumatic Tyre Company is at last losing patience with those who will persistently infringe its patents, for recently a cycle dealer at Newcastle was com- mitted to prison for contempt of court for con- t.inuing in the infringement of the Welch patent. This makes the fourth case within the last few weeks where infringers have been so punished. There are no more thorough and energetic sol- .Iser-cyclists in the British Isles than those which compose the cycling batallion of the 26th Middlesex Ride Volunteers. Undaunted by the apathy which 90 long prevailed at the War Office, this body of en- thusiastic wheelmen has worked steadily on, keep- ing the goal of utility and efficiency always before them. The batallion was recently paraded in Hyde Park, where it mustered 122 strong, and appeared with a cycle-towed ammunition wagon, capable of carrying 6,000 rounds of small arm ammunition, as well as a cycle-towed ambu- lance. The gun team too, possesses a quick-firing machine gun, which is capable of being quickly wheeled into action by similar methods. At last, the military authorities seem to be awakening to the value of cyclists in modern warfare. # 0 I King Carnival reigns supreme throughout the length and breadth of the land, and wherever there I is a carnival there the ubiquitous wheelman foregathers, and, entering heart and soul into the I apirit of the thing, does much to render these jubilations successful as well from a monetary as a spectacular point of view. The really splendid benefaction to the widows and orphans funds bestowed by the gathering upon the occasion of the Stanley Club last Annual Concert, was only an earnest of what wheelmen are capable of when their sympathies are aroused for a deserving object. In the fulness of time all bodies municipal, and magisterial, will come to view the wheelman as a man and a brother. Then will the time-esti- mating policeman and the scorcher fraternise, and brotherly peace and concord reign. The British racing chauffeurs are improving very rapidly, as witness the good ride at the Cry- stal Palace on Saturday June 30th by C. Machin. In the race for the Autocar Cup over one hour, there were several good men entered and it was anticipated that close on forty miles would be crammed into the sixty minutes but the surprise came when Machin, on a Dunlop tyred motor tri- cycle, went to the front directly after the start and driving very cleverly round the not over well banked track, won easily from the other competi- tors, covering 39 miles 324 yards in the hour, which is 712 yards better than the previous beat, accomplished by M. Rigal, the famous French chauffeur in the Crystal Palace Brassard race on Whit Monday last. It is stated that the authorities responsible for the maintenance of Kew Gardens for the public have caused a cycle-shed to be built. near the main entrance, and this will be available throughout the season, a charge of twopence a mount being the figure at which the cyclist may frustrate the machinations of the dishonest. With the great facilities for spending public money which are in the hands of Councils and Corporations, and the laudable craze for building costly baths for swim- ming, &c., it is a little remarkable that at these excellent institutions no provision is made for safe- guarding the bather's wheel whilst he is inside taking his matutinal dip. And yet a good weather- proof lock-up shed within the enclosure that invariably surrounds these institutions,, could be inexpensively erected and would soon return a handsome profit on expenditure. This is one of the little things left undone. In years to come, when all the old prejudices against the wheel have been decently interred, And more enlightened views predominate upon our provincial Benches—for in the fulness of time the fossilised relics which still remain wilt have been gathered to their fathers-it may be possib'e. to obtain intelligent views as to what constitutes "riding to the public danger." How a good pace on a bicycle can be conceived to come within this category, when the road is wide and open, and there is no public to endanger, is diliiuult to understand. Occasionally a more enlightened Justice of the Peace than the rest is seized with this view, and breaks away from the trammels and I traditions which bind his belated brethren, to the consternation of all the "veiophobists'' \vh > still linger in the land. But these common ,ome decisions are, like angel visits, few and far bet ween.



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