Sporty losers and loser sports

Welcome to the first post of the new year here at Bike Lanes. Last week in the local rag I spotted an article about bicycle thieves targeting bikes locked up at the Australian Open tennis thing that is going on at the moment.

“A gang of bicycle thieves is believed to be targeting patrons at the Australian Open, with reports that up to 10 bikes were stolen from outside the grand slam tournament in just one day last week.”

Now, firstly, bike thieves suck. They really do. And it sucks having a bike nicked. It really does. Over the last week or so I have noticed a few amazing examples of how not to lock your bike up.

In this first example, spotted at the local train station near my place of employment, we see a nice towny-style Schwinn locked up to a sturdy looking post. But wait, where is that lock attached? Oh, its looped around the seatpost…. I’m not sure whether there was a quick release involved here, but regardless, this type of locking should take your average 13 year old bored kid about 10 seconds to unloop from the the seatpost. On a scale from secure to free-for-all I’d give this a free-for-all.

As an extra deterrent for anyone thinking of locking their bike to a pole by the seatpost alone, one could glance around the area to see if there is any evidence of bicycle tomfoolery to be seen. If you were to do this, you would notice that no more than 10 metres away was this example of how not to lock your bike up.

While this obviously isn’t your high end weekend Beach Road mean machine, it is obviously a beater A-to-B kinda bike. Using two locks on your bike is pretty wise, especially with a quick-release front wheel. Now, if you carry two locks but couldn’t be bothered to use both, them you may well return to your bike to find this. This bike has been discarded at the train station for a good month or so now, and over time the seatpost and saddle have disappeared too. It sucks for someone to nick your front wheel, but you are a bit of a doofus if you carry and extra cable lock but neglectfully forget to use it, you could feel a bit silly.

So until next time here at the ‘Lanes, keep on riding, and use a lock – or two, and think about how you lock your bike.

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