Derryn Hinch sticks one up the road vermin

Last night Sunday ran a story about cyclists  cockroaches on wheels/road maggots/losers in lycra, as usual trotting out the sob stories about the poor losers in lycra that get run over, hit by cars,  abused and yelled at by motorists. All I saw was what I expected, ignorant tools on tires riding in the wrong places, riding in stupid places, and completely oblivious to road rules and their own safety.

Derryn Hinch unleashes his opinion on cyclists and doesn’t hold back:

Yep. OK. That’s the line I used to describe some cyclists in an interview for a Sunday Night story on Channel 7 last night. And I got twitter bombed – even before the story went to air. Talk about ‘onya bike’.

Included in the more pungent comments were these:

CallsInLate @ I Hate Hills: ‘If cyclists are cockroaches on wheels then @HumanHeadline is an oxygen thieving maggot living on borrowed time’.

Darren [email protected] mitchell2: ‘Why don’t you just hurry up and die’.

And Jamie Hanelt quoted my website on Facebook: ‘“Variety and I want to thank you for giving 706 bikes to needy kids” and yet you call people who ride bikes “cockroaches on wheels”. Hypocrite. I hope you get bashed in prison’. (Anticipating that’s where I’ll go after my contempt of court case next month).

Nobody, it seemed wanted to suspend judgement until the story had gone to air. I wasn’t referring to the thousands of law-abiding cyclists. I targeted the red light runners, the nocturnal night riders without lights, the footpath speedsters, and the ones who think the road rules don’t apply to them.

I might have called them ‘ cockroaches’ – and my stand is not new – but a friend in Sydney, living on a steep hill in Mosman, calls  them ‘wasps’  for the way they duck and weave and  threaten to  sting  pedestrians.

And don’t start me on the middle-aged males in Lycra with their padded codpieces and their dinky shoes.  The weekend warriors, strutting around coffee shops in Brighton and Cremorne.  Deludedly thinking they’re God’s gift to women.

I also believe that adult cyclists should be licenced, should be made to display rego plates and pay for third party insurance. And, at night, they should be booked for riding on pavements and having insufficient lights. Some of the twinklers, if they are using lights at all, wouldn’t guide Tinkerbelle home.

And if they also hold a driver’s licence, demerit points should be applied to that licence. Just like if you are driving somebody else’s vehicle.

Ironically, such drastic action was proposed by Victoria Police back in 2005. So what’s happened?

That plan was supposed to clean up bad riding habits on Beach Road from Port Melbourne to Frankston in the lead up to the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

Back then Inspector Alan Carlisle, who was driving the proposed law changes, said ‘If you breach a road rule, it doesn’t matter if you are a car or a bike, you’ve breached the road rule, therefore the penalty is the same.’

‘If a cyclist all of a sudden saw he was going to get three demerit points for going through a red light on his Sunday morning bike ride, and that might affect his livelihood as a sales rep, I think there’d be a lot more responsible attitude’.

Parity was introduced about a decade ago for financial penalties for the same offences committed by either cyclist or motorist, but without strict enforcement and demerit points, the change has had little effect.

And this doesn’t let road rage drivers off the hook. Motorists should never open a driver’s door without checking the rear view mirrors. They should not be road selfish. Should treat all road users as equals.

I said my stand is not new. I voiced my fears and attacked the bicycle cowboys six years ago in the name of James Gould. A lot of the lycra lairs wouldn’t even know or care who James Gould was. I say ‘was’ because James Gould was killed when minding his business on a weekend morning walk.

As he crossed Beach Road (an unofficial weekend race track) with the lights in his favour, a swarm of anti-social cyclists, taking part in their weekly Hell Ride barrelled towards him and a wave of wheels ignored the red light.

Mr Gould died from head injuries. A coroner was severely critical of the two-wheeled anarchists but every weekend there they are again. Some of them still running red lights as if they owned the roadway.

Inspector Carlisle also said the Hell Ride was still ‘unfortunately, at times, anarchy on wheels’ – and in the pack mentality, there was safety in numbers.

‘Even when the police come alongside in a car and say to cyclists in the Hell Ride, “pull over”, they don’t – they just keep riding.’

These laws are now more urgent than ever. The State Government, and local councils are more than ‘bike friendly’. They are pushing and pushing to get more people out of four wheels and on to two.

In Melbourne, the City Council has turned a main artery, LaTrobe Street, into a single lane peak hour goat track.  Their experimental cycle lane on the already bottle-necked Prince’s Bridge is perverse. And St. Kilda Road, which was once dubbed the ‘best boulevard in the Southern Hemisphere’ has been butchered by ‘super’ tram stops and is ear-marked for more official vandalism.

If the cops want to crack down on red light runners they should spend an hour at the revamped multiple intersections f of Park Street, St.Kilda Road and Domain Road.

Slow down, a cursory glance, this doesn’t apply to me, ride through….

And I don’t buy the argument that cyclists shouldn’t have a rego ‘because I already paid for it for my car’. If you own two cars you pay registrations for both. If you own a car and a bike you should pay for both of them too.

I don’t care if you are in a Merc or a perambulator with a two-stroke engine. Once you are on the roads then the road rules and licences and registrations etcetera apply to you.

Simple, really.  – Human Headline

Of course it’s not much different in New Zealand, with the same culture of ignorance displayed by the two wheel tossers I encountered last week in Greenlane, Auckland:

It would seem pretty simple really. If you can’t ride safely on a road, stay off it. Don’t come crying when you end up in a mangled heap because of your own stupidity. Or maybe it’s all part of Darwin’s evil plan to cleanse the gene pool…


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  • Dani

    Apart from the safety issues, what about our mental health? I almost quit my job from having to drive behind a sweaty crack every morning along Ti Rakau dr…my advice to cyclists: stick to black pants!

    • blokeintakapuna

      Yes! …and if you’re stuffing a rolled up pair of socks into your lycra’s to try and appear more “impressive” … only put the socks in the front!

  • Justsayn

    Hated by some, opinions a bit over the top at times, says things to get a reaction, supported by some, allegedly undertaken illegal activity… Travis Poulson, are you really Winston?

    The only ones that piss me off are the packs who think they are in Le Tour – only one sort of dope involved for them though, the genetic kind.

    • You missed one:

      Doesn’t care if people hate him.

      • Justsayn

        Sorry Travis, edited accordingly: Hated by some, opinions a bit over the top at times, says things to get a reaction, supported by some, allegedly undertaken illegal activity, oblivious to overwhelming expert and public opinion… Travis Poulson, are you really Winston?

        • I provided video evidence of dangerous cyclists, now I’m waiting on your “overwhelming expert and public opinion” evidence.

          And please make sure it is “overwhelming” before responding. I’m feeling underwhelmed so far.

          • Justsayn

            I have polled two workmates and Colin (a poodle that responded by way of rolling over to answer affirmatively to leading questions and sat impassively when he disagreed).

            They overwhelmingly (Colin dissented) thought that someone who said they don’t care what people think is likely to care what people think as they would be unlikely to care to say they don’t care unless they care in which case the are likely to care more than they care to care.

            Underwhelmed? I don’t care really, but please tell me you’re not.

          • Hang on, you’re skewing off. I said I didn’t care if people hated me, not what they think…2 different things here.

            Don’t pull those Russel Norman tactics on me.

          • Justsayn

            If people didn’t think how could they hate, or love, or be oblivious? We would be reduced to being NZ First supporters, mumbly support through tea soaked ginger-nuts every time our chosen one pauses for a wheezy breath.

            As my idol, Russell, the ginger avenger, the next Minister of finance, and one day leader of the world, would say, it is not about what we hate, what we like, what we want, what we need. No. It is about what we must do.

          • Thank you master yoda, I appreciate your wisdom.

          • Bunswalla

            Travis, what was your specific objection to these cyclists, and in what way do you believe they were riding unsafely?

          • Oh I don’t know, one of them riding in the traffic lane 2 cyclists wide instead of behind each other on the cycle lane? That could be it.

          • Bunswalla

            Then you need to wise up to the Road Code. They have just as much right as four-wheel tossers to occupy the road.

            The cycle lane in the vid is very narrow, how can one cyclist overtake another without venturing into one of the other lanes, or make a right turn?

          • No I don’t need to wise up on the road code, nothing in the roadcode says these cyclists are not a danger to themselves.

            Who said anything about overtaking, they were riding side by side quite obviously.

            Just because it’s legal, doesn’t mean it’s not stupid.

          • Bunswalla

            Why do you label them “ignorant” when it appears their knowledge of the Road Code is greater than yours?

            There’s no such thing as the “traffic lane”, everyone using the road is traffic.

            It’s everyone’s responsibility to use the road safely – both for them and others. You have no right to label them stupid, ignorant or tossers, just because the only thing that makes them “unsafe” is your bad attitude.

          • Why do I get the impression you’re one of these pests that rides in the middle of the road? Trotting along at half the pace of all the other road users but nobody can get past, or get past safely. That’s the ignorant part.

            I have EVERY right to label them stupid, ignorant or tossers.

            Edit: you lycra warriors would be the first to cry if I cut over into the cycle lane with the truck and clipped you.

          • Bunswalla

            See my response to Andrew Carrot’s comment below – posted before your diatribe above – for my views on holding up traffic. Nobody should be holding up traffic and if everyone shared the road and had consideration it would go a long way.

            Of course I’d be crying if you knocked me off my bike – what a stupid thing to say. Didn’t really pick you for an arrogant “might is right” tosser, but the cap’s starting to fit.

          • You left out “if I cut over into the cycle lane”.

            Leave the door intact, I’ll be here when you get back luv :)

          • Col

            I live in CHCH and these guys and girls on bikes are a real problem, I use a bike myself sometimes but never ever ride like these idiots.

          • Mickrodge

            I can see both sides of the debate here chaps.

            Sure, there’s nothing illegal about riding two abreast but what also needs considering is the issue where traffic is moving along at 50kmph in the right hand lane whereas traffic is moving at 25kmph in the left hand lane as the two cyclists are out for a leisurely cruise & a bit of a chat.

            Now that’s going to be pretty fucking annoying for anyone stuck behind them unable to pass. It lacks a bit of consideration for other road users but it also warrants mention that it could just as easily be a slow moving car/truck/motorbike causing the inconvenience.

            Ultimately there’s ants at every picnic. There are plenty of dickheads out there on 4 wheels & plenty out there on 2 wheels. Ultimately it should all come down to consideration for other road users regardless of their form of transport.

          • Muffin

            I disagree, pay registration and road users and then we can talk about rights

    • Garbageman

      Totally agree with the pack cyclists not only do they look like a gay pride parade they are dangerous road hogs, if i was the violent sort i would support an open passenger door policy

  • steve and monique

    Have started cycling to work.A mountain bike, not one of those tour de france type racer wankers in lycra. I stick to the safe side of the road,and do my best to keep out of cars way. Simple really,and I still have nearly been cleaned up six times by drivers who have not looked while pulling out of side roads. Have now started riding on footpaths where able. Figured riding motorcycles was bad in this country,but being a cyclist is worse. Still does piss me off though when I see a group of wannabe gold medal winners taking up a country road, and not riding single file. The blame game is easy when wankers do that type of shit.

  • Saccharomyces

    Well I suppose it’s better than him sticking one up a 15 year old……

    • GazzW

      What’s that got to do with fuckwit cyclists?

  • andrew carrot

    I hate individual cyclists who when exercising their right to hog an entire lane during rush-hour, hit the hills (even gentle ones) and drop their speed from the 40kmh they were doing on the flat to 20kmh or lower, extending the line of traffic behind them even further. And don’t say they need dedicated lanes because the ones they have in Akd are shared with buses who are also held up and have to swerve into traffic lanes to pass them. All that these particular cyclists prove is that the human form provides very limited means to safely shift large numbers of people, over long distances (5kms +), at a reasonable speed.

    • Bunswalla

      They have just as much right to be on the road as you do Andy, but you’re right in one respect – if they hold up other traffic they should be ticketed just like geriatrics and caravan drivers.

      Sure buses have to go around them, but don’t forget they also have to go around buses that happen to stop in front of them too. Bus lanes and cycle lanes are all part of the roading system, and show we all have to share them. If all road users shared their space and were patient, it would take a lot of the heat out of both sides of the argument.

      • Bafacu

        The one’s that get me are those that (illegally) worm their way through the traffic waiting at red lights (yes, sometimes people actually stop for them) so they can get top the front and make sure that they hold everyone up as they take off on the green (much slower than a motor vehicle!).
        As you say Buns the Road Code applies equally so why is it never enforced against cyclists?

        • Bunswalla

          You’ll have to take that up with those responsible for enforcing the law, but I couldn’t agree more with you. They should be pinged and Hinch’s suggestion of demerit points is a bloody good one.

          While you’re at it, ask the rozzers why they don’t enforce STOP signs. I’m teaching my daughter to drive and I tell her to treat the yellow line at a STOP sign like an invisible brick wall, that will disappear when you come to a complete stop. Don’t look left or right until you’ve come to a stop. Pretty much everyone else treats a STOP sign as a minor inconvenience and they slow down momentarily, if at all.

  • Beagle2

    Our major problem in the Hawkes Bay is the dumbarses who feel like a ride in the country, on narrow roads. Some poor bastard is gonna get flattened one day soon when a car takes a sharp blind turn legally and finds him/herself face to arse with a cyclist. The bit that pisses me right off is that it will automatically be the drivers fault, I’m sorry but if I’m taking a sharp turn at speed and find a bike in my face and oncoming traffic in the other lane I wont be taking my chances with the big metal object hurtling towards me over to my right.
    I don’t know what other solution to this issue there is but to make it illegal for cyclists to use certain roads. But I bet it would never happen because, “we have as much right as cars to be on that road.”

  • Steve (North Shore)

    When cyclists pay a Registration Fee and Road Tax they will have road user rights.
    Don’t give me that shit about paying rego for your car covers this, or paying rates – it doesn’t otherwise the non – cyclists are subsidising you.
    Until they pay they can fuck off

    • Exactly how I feel, to quote Hinch:

      And I don’t buy the argument that cyclists shouldn’t have a rego ‘because I already paid for it for my car’. If you own two cars you pay registrations for both. If you own a car and a bike you should pay for both of them too.

  • Col

    If they just bloody well were single file on the narrow roads would fucking help, just wishing for a death wish, I deal with it everyday, then you get people who won’t pass them because they need to go over the other side of the road to feel they are far enough away from hitting them. I say if they want to be in 2s then go 50kph or move over.