Road Cycling

UCI to mandate bike bells in pro road racing according to Close The Gap – BikeRumor.com

HideMyBell bicycle bell & computer mount maker Close The Gap says that international cycling governing bodies are set to require bells on every bike that starts a pro road or mountain bike race from the 2023 season. We’ve seen a lot of back and forth with riders’ associations, event organizers & governing bodies about rider safety, so maybe now the UCI is getting serious and not just taking arbitrary steps that don’t actually protect the riders at the end of the day.

It’s likely not a problem for Team Jumbo-Visma who are already supplied by Close The Gap, and generally train with HideMyBell mounts already. But maybe Close The Gap will actually have to start making more visible bells than their current stealthy black ones, so the UCI doesn’t penalize Jumbo riders when a commissaire doesn’t spot a bell tucked under their GPS?

From Close The Gap:

As of next year, global cycling governing bodies have agreed to make bike bells compulsory for all professional Road or Mountain bike race. Multiple governing bodies, from both Europe and North America, published the update this morning via a joint press release. The mandate will extend from professionals, to continental and junior racing. “Our job is to make competition safe for all athletes. By setting the example of a bike bell in the pro peloton and MTB courses, our goal is to ensure safe competition on any course. With the number of stray dogs, spectators carrying handwritten cardboard notes to grandparents, and even commuter cyclists on this year’s professional race courses, we are confident this is a bold and safe new step, for the benefit of all competitive cyclists,” said a representative from a central European global governing body.

Sporting directors warmly received the news, making a joint statement “We’re honestly relieved to hear that as of today our athletes now have a mandated means of defending their racing space. A rider only has two hands and using one to shove spectators out of the way costs them precious energy. Furthermore, we have calculated that actually being able to race the apex line by ringing spectators out of the way on climbs like the Angliuru and Alpe d’Huez, fits perfectly within the goals of every team’s marginal gains program”.

There has been no indication yet of how this new rule will be enforced for 2023, or whether a minimum decibel requirement will also be announced. Our industry source from CloseTheGap indicated that a minimum volume of 95dB is to expected, to ensure the bells can be heard in a crowd. Founder, Matthijs Wagenaar added, “Luckily, the subtly hidden quick-release bells on our carbon out-front raceday mounts already seem to comply with all rulings – and our athletes have loved using them during training. We’re looking forward to a safer racing scene for 2023!

CloseTheGap.cc