We’ve not been quite as active as we should have been recently & with good reason. We’ve been busy behind the scenes building a new website which is now live. We wanted to freshen things up and to make Ae7.com more user friendly. We’ve added features like currency conversions for customers outside the UK, the search tab is pretty cool (if we do say so ourselves – try it) and it’s simpler all round now for you to buy anything.
We still have all the great features of the old website & we’re using the best technology so that the website is secure to use and everything should be easier to find. We’re working in a smarter, better way with many of our suppliers so you get better deals and a greater choice of products.
We now have a shop integrated to Facebook (look for the Shop tab in the main Facebook page menu).
All in all we’re pretty pleased with the look & feel of the website. We’ve still got a lot of work to do, products to add & descriptions to finish off, however, we figured it’s better to get it live now.
Take a look and let us know what you think. Leave any comments below or on Facebook, we will read them!
Ok, so there’s been the jumps you haven’t hit quite right, there’s the corners that are loose and throw you, there’s the holes in the road, there’s traffic that cuts you up but Danish pro cyclist Matti Breschel gets the prize the most bizarre crash of the year … he was flattened by a flying matress!!
Flying Mattress hits Cyclist
The flying Dane who rides for Team Tinkoff-Saxo was riding back to his hotel (report from Cycling News) when suddenly a mattress appeared from no where and landed in front of him. He was travelling downhill at 70kph when the mattress stopped his bike and launched him onto the tarmac. Luckily for the rider he wasn’t seriously injured and he escaped with cuts and grazes to various parts of his body.
It is unknown at this time whether the mattress was sprung or made from memory foam. There are no further reports on the damage to the mattress. We think the bike is ok and did not suffer much.
Matti Breschel after freak accident
“Snowboarding in Japan, really? Do they have much snow?” Nine times out of ten this is the response when you inform people you’re heading off to quite possibly one of the best but least known snowboarding destinations in the world. And the answer to the question is yes, they most certainly do, over 15m on average per year! Virtually of of it falling as some of the lightest powder you can dream of. At this point in the conversation they assume one of two expressions. The true powder hounds wide eyed and salivating already daydreaming of waist deep pow, while everyone else glazes over consigning you to a character file labelled Lonely Planet touting snow obsessed ski bum weirdo. Their loss.
It had been 6 years since our last trip to the Land of the Rising Sun and memories of epic powder were as vivid as ever, so using my fortieth as a weak justification for a lads trip (hey, sometimes it just has to be done!) we once again set off with expectations running high. As before we were not disappointed. Our destination was once again Niseko the largest and most well known (relatively) resort, located on the northern island of Hokkaido. By European standards the resort is low and tiny and if you picked it up and dropped it in the alps, with alpine snowfall, it would probably only rate as a ‘day trip’ resort. But this isn’t Europe it’s Japan, and it gets blasted by cold dry air from Siberia that picks up moisture as it crosses the Japan Sea dumping epic amounts of light dry powder. Heaven! If your idea of hitting a resort is charging groomers from top to bottom then this isn’t the place for you. If however the idea of fresh lines in waist deep pow, and playing in the trees has you dribbling then I would suggest you make the effort and get yourself over there.
And it’s not just the powder. There is undoubtedly something very special about the whole Japanese snowboarding experience. The Japanese people are incredibly friendly and polite. Lift operators bowing and sweeping the snow off the chairs for you. Massive apologies and free hot drinks when you got stuck on a lift for twenty minutes? Ever had that in Europe? No, thought not. And everything is just so alien and amazing in equal measure: Snowcapped volcanoes. Snowboarding off a peak while being able to see the sea. Leafy green bamboo squashed flat under metres of snow. Supermarket isles where you don’t recognise a single thing. Heated toilet seats. Heated train seats!
It’s all just so different, the beauty in the difference of the detail. Are there any bad points? Well there’s a lot of Aussies there, I’ll let you make your own judgement on that. But if I heard one more conversation on the bus or in the Gondola that started with “Jeez we were soooo wasted last night” ……..Bluebird days can also be a bit of a rarity because, if you haven’t already gathered, it snows rather a lot! And of course it is a little more expensive to get there. That being said once there the food, beer, and most importantly coffee, etc is cheaper and in my opinion of a better quality than the overpriced rubbish in the Alps.
We hiked the peak several times opening up unlimited untracked lines. Did a day out with guides doing snowmobile accessed backcountry. Rode floodlit powder until 9pm at night. Drank Sapporo. And basically lived the dream. And so after a week in powder heaven we had to regrettably say sayonara and head home. But once again we have come away with memories to last a lifetime. Snowboarding in Japan is a very privileged, unique, and special experience that I would thoroughly recommend.
Electric bikes might not pop into your head when we mention extreme biking. These guys however have brought out a crazy ass video of an OSET electric trials bike in action. It’s worth 5 minutes of your day … you’ll be impressed with what these little bikes can do. OSET Bikes is a company set up by Ian Smith after he built a prototype electric trials bike for his son. Check out the video!
Keeping Young at Heart!
There’s something weirdly fun about hitting a puddle on your bike. Ride downhill all day long, take on a high alpine route, head to Tenerife for some winter road training but show me a puddle and my eyes widen, head goes down & feet crank hard on the pedals as my inner child comes out. Even when the cold water gets in my shoes I laugh and pedal on, happy in the knowledge that I’m still young at heart!
Eat Sleep Ride Repeat t’s from Harder Than Stone Clothing.
Eat Sleep Ride Repeat t shirts from the Harder Than Stone clothing brand are available from the Ae7 website. Both Mens & Ladies tee’s in stock!
Cycling Scotland with the backing of the Scottish Government set out to highlight a very important issue for cyclists on the road. Little did they realise that a whole can of worms was about to be opened! The resulting Think Horse ad (see below) was made to try and get motorists to think about the space they give cyclists as they pass by them. A good point and one that as a cyclist & a motorist is very valid. The ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) however took it upon themselves to uphold complaints against the ad and ban it. They ruled that all cycling safety ads to be shown on TV must show all riders wearing helmets. They also stated that cyclists must ride no more than 0.5m from the side of the road!
You have to love it when people make decisions based on … well I’m not quite sure what! Ok, no one is going to argue that a helmet is something that should really be worn if you value your head. A helmet is a life saver (I know from experience), however it is not against the law to not wear a helmet in the UK (another hot topic) and there is no where in the law, highway code or elsewhere that states you must ride no more than 50cm from the kerb. So for an agency to take it upon themselves to ban this type of ad based on complaints about these issues is … well you decide. The ASA have a role and you can never please everyone when it comes to perceptions of any media broadcast. They do however seem to be missing the point. This ad is supposed to be purely and simply about motorists giving cyclists more room and thinking about cyclists as they overtake in a way they perhaps didn’t before. That’s it and I personally think the ad is quite cleverly made to highlight that point. It’s made with humour which helps to keep viewer attention and it’s not anti motorist which is important.
Cycling Scotland are appealing the decision! The ASA have now lifted the ban due to “a potential flaw in the decision” and an independent review is to be undertaken. Check out the Think Horse safety video below and make up your own mind. If the complaint was about a blacksmith trying to put a horse shoe onto a pair of cycling shoes or the beard scratching thing I might be able to understand the resulting ban a bit better!