WheelsRoundup: Another Heart Operation for Sagan, UCI Approves Visma’s ‘Star Wars’ Helmet

By Siegfried Mortkowitz

Just a few weeks after undergoing a heart operation for cardiac arrhythmia, after his heart rate had exceeded 200 beats per minute (bpm) in a mountain bike race, cycling legend Peter Sagan will have to have a second procedure to deal with the issue. “While I was training on the rocky trails in Marseille, my heart hit a few bumps,” the seven-time Tour de France green jersey winner announced on social media. “Nothing to worry about, you could say that my heart needs a pit stop. I will undergo surgery next week and thanks to my friend, sports cardiologist Dr. Roberto Corsetti, I am sure I will be back in the saddle very soon.”

Though he sounds optimistic, the setback could make it difficult for the 34-year-old Slovak superstar to qualify for the Paris Olympics in mountain biking, his favorite cycling discipline, because he will have to do well in a number of MTB races to collect enough points to make the cutoff. And it is unclear how much training time he will lose after a second operation or if he will even be cleared to continue racing. Just days ago, he was announced as a new member of the Specialized Factory Racing mountain bike team. We at We Love Cycling wish the three-time world road race champion a very speedy recovery.

UCI Approves Visma–Lease a bike’s ‘Star Wars’ helmet

Two weeks after announcing that it would carry out an “in-depth analysis” of helmets that sacrifice safety for performance, cycling’s ruling body the UCI has approved Visma–Lease a Bike’s startling Giro time trial helmet for use in 2024. The UCI’s move had shocked the cycling world in general, but especially Visma–Lease a Bike, whose Head of Performance, Mathieu Heijboer, complained at the time, “Strange, because a year ago the rules regarding dimensions and safety were drawn up. We and helmet manufacturer Giro started working within that framework.” Now, according to Sporza, the prototype has been approved for use until January 17, 2025.  “After that period, the prototype must be available for sale to everyone in accordance with the applicable conditions,” the UCI declared.

Sonny Colbrelli saves the day

Bahrain Victorious sports director and former Paris-Roubaix winner Sonny Colbrelli saved his team’s bacon on the eve of the Milan–San Remo when he prevented a group of about 10 young wannabe thieves from making off with the team’s Merida bikes. “Thieves 0, Team 1,” Colbrelli wrote on Instagram Stories, as reported by Wielerflits.

“We were sitting in the hall of the hotel and suddenly we heard someone shout, ‘Our bikes, our bikes,’” Colbrelli recounted. “That turned out to be our bus driver in his underwear. He saw someone trying to steal our bikes. We went outside and saw about ten young people. I started running and chasing them to the woods, where a car almost hit me. Wee couldn’t catch them because they drove away in a car.”

The 33-year-old Colbrelli was forced to retire after suffering a heart attack during the second stage of the 2022 Volta a Catalunya in 2022. He ended his career with 34 professional victories, including that memorable Paris-Roubaix victory in the mud in 2021. It sounds as if he is still a winner. Bravo, Sonny!