Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

This sub-forum all discussions about this "lively" subject. All topics that are substantially about helmets will be moved here, if not placed here correctly in the first place.
pwa
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby pwa » 18 May 2015, 10:45am

I remember Wiggins being knocked off his bike by a motorist not far from his home when out on a training ride. He rides ordinary roads like the rest of us, and mostly in traffic. The fact that his job involves cycling does not mean that he isn't a proper cyclist. That's a daft suggestion.

His suggestion that helmet wearing should perhaps be made compulsory (his wording suggests that he is not completely sure) is not a view that many here agree with, but I am sure he says it for the best of reasons. He seems to me to be a decent man, and to attack him for his hairstyle, his (apparently) poor chances of breaking a record, or for (apparently) being in the pocket of helmet manufacturers is just lashing out at someone who says something you don't like.

kwackers
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby kwackers » 18 May 2015, 11:27am

pwa wrote:attack him for <irrelevant bit snipped> (apparently) being in the pocket of helmet manufacturers is just lashing out at someone who says something you don't like.

Errrr. No.

If someone is advocating something whilst having a vested interest I think they deserve some flack - particularly when they're in a position where others listen.

pwa
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby pwa » 18 May 2015, 11:36am

I don't know what proportion of Wiggins' income comes from a helmet manufacturer, but I would be surprised if it is enough to sway his views on the subject. I'm not too swayed by the sporting success of athletes, so the fact that he won this or that makes no difference to me. But I have the impression that he has integrity and, whether he is right or wrong, he says what he thinks.

Psamathe
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby Psamathe » 18 May 2015, 11:57am


Gosh. Wow. Stunned. Not about what was written but where it was published. I can't agree or disagree with the facts of the article, but not the tone of article I'd expect from the Daily Mail.

Have I fallen for a spoof article ?

Ian

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bovlomov
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby bovlomov » 18 May 2015, 12:07pm

I gave him the benefit of the doubt before. He was clearly a little sozzled after celebrating his gold medal, and the interview was hijacked by an irrelevant question from a reporter about helmets. His response was rather incoherent waffle about cyclists helping themselves to be safe.

Since then he has had nearly three years to refine his thoughts, and he's come back with this:
“I think cyclists have to help themselves in terms of wearing helmets and things. I think that probably should go some way to becoming the law soon.”

Doesn't that sound like a recommendation for legislators?

Unless he gives a bit of background into his thinking - he gives no impression of having studied the subject - we may assume that his opinions are either baseless drivel or sponsored drivel.

I'm not expert on hairdressing, but it is slightly surprising that someone with a long face should choose that style.

pwa
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby pwa » 18 May 2015, 12:16pm

I think Wiggins is a decent man who sometimes says things without much thought. His choice of words can sometimes be confusing. But I don't think he would say something just because someone put a few quid in his pocket.

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bovlomov
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby bovlomov » 18 May 2015, 12:37pm

pwa wrote:I think Wiggins is a decent man who sometimes says things without much thought. His choice of words can sometimes be confusing. But I don't think he would say something just because someone put a few quid in his pocket.

You may be right. I certainly don't dislike him. But he should have learned by now how foolish it appears, to call for compulsion without having anything to back it up apart from vague feelings.

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horizon
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby horizon » 18 May 2015, 1:35pm

pwa wrote:I think Wiggins is a decent man who sometimes says things without much thought. His choice of words can sometimes be confusing. But I don't think he would say something just because someone put a few quid in his pocket.


I agree. He strikes me as someone who shouldn't be asked difficult questions. I would query why he was even asked - the interviewer is more stupid that Wiggins. Everybody laughs at footballers but somehow we expect top cyclists to be different. It's a rare athelte who is also a good speaker/thinker/politician. They do exist but it's expecting a lot from someone who has achieved what he has.

NB Not meant ironically.
When the pestilence strikes from the East, go far and breathe the cold air deeply. Ignore the sage, stay not indoors. Ho Ri Zon 12th Century Chinese philosopher

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Mick F
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby Mick F » 18 May 2015, 3:08pm

I utterly agree.
Just coz a person is a top class tennis player/golfer/footballer/racing cyclist/snooker player or whatever, doesn't mean they are any good at public speaking or politics etc.
Mick F. Cornwall

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bovlomov
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby bovlomov » 18 May 2015, 3:29pm

So why does he continue with this? He must know by now that he is likely to provoke a strong reaction, often from people who have given the matter a lot more thought than he has.

Perhaps he's being mischievous. It's a more generous explanation than 'he's being paid' or 'he's an idiot'.

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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby TonyR » 18 May 2015, 4:41pm

pwa wrote:I think Wiggins is a decent man who sometimes says things without much thought. His choice of words can sometimes be confusing. But I don't think he would say something just because someone put a few quid in his pocket.


I'm sure your GP is a decent person too but I doubt you'd be comfortable to find they are being paid by the drug company that is selling the drugs they're prescribing for you. Conflicts of interest are rarely about whether people are decent and honest or not. Its about the perception that they might not be. I've never heard anyone question whether the questions Neil Hamilton asked in the House of Commons were good questions that needed asking or not. That was all swept aside by the revelation that he was paid for asking them.

pwa
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby pwa » 18 May 2015, 5:06pm

If we worry about a potential conflict of interests in Wiggins saying (in a muddled way) that helmets should be worn when cycling, we can carry on in that sceptical fashion and accuse Boardman of promoting cycling because he sells bikes with his name on them. I don't believe Boardman is motivated that way, but he has a commercial interest in people taking up cycling. In reality, I doubt very much that either is so cynical as to let their commercial interests affect their statements on things that matter.

Every racing cyclist has to wear helmets provided for them, so if you say Wiggins should not have a publicly expressed view on helmet wearing you must include every racing cyclist in that. Nor should they say anything that implies cycling is good for you, because they are in commercial arrangements with cycle manufacturers and retailers, so their views cannot be trusted. I think we need to lighten up about this and allow Wiggins to have his say and simply disagree with him if he says something we think is wrong.

martinn
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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby martinn » 18 May 2015, 5:57pm

The problem with Wiggins is not what he believes, its who would believe Wiggins when he says something about cycling.
By being in a eminent position, it is infered that Wiggins "knows" what he is talking about from the persepctive of the non cycling population.
Consequently his opinion carries a great deal of weight, therfore he needs to speak either from a position of strength of knowledge of the evidence for and against compulsory wearing of helments, or he needs to keep quiet on the subject.
I would like to think that Boardman knows a thing or two about bikes,

I dont think Wiggins is saying wear a helmet because he is being paid to, but he is from a generation that automatically wear them without thinking otherwise he would not be able to compete.

At the end of the day, if you put your product on Wiggins, there will be people that buy said product because Wiggins wears it.

Martin

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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby TonyR » 18 May 2015, 7:17pm

pwa wrote:If we worry about a potential conflict of interests in Wiggins saying (in a muddled way) that helmets should be worn when cycling, we can carry on in that sceptical fashion and accuse Boardman of promoting cycling because he sells bikes with his name on them. I don't believe Boardman is motivated that way, but he has a commercial interest in people taking up cycling. In reality, I doubt very much that either is so cynical as to let their commercial interests affect their statements on things that matter.

Every racing cyclist has to wear helmets provided for them, so if you say Wiggins should not have a publicly expressed view on helmet wearing you must include every racing cyclist in that. Nor should they say anything that implies cycling is good for you, because they are in commercial arrangements with cycle manufacturers and retailers, so their views cannot be trusted. I think we need to lighten up about this and allow Wiggins to have his say and simply disagree with him if he says something we think is wrong.


There is an alternative. He could simply make clear that he is sponsored by a helmet manufacturer and by how much and then we could make up our own minds about whether its him or his sponsor speaking. The simple rules of conflicts of interest - either avoid one or declare one. We have complained here in the past about James Cracknell for exactly the same reasons although he went as far as denying a relationship existed when it was on his sponsors website which made it worse.

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Re: Wiggo wants compulsory helmets

Postby Bonefishblues » 18 May 2015, 8:39pm

Mark1978 wrote:
Mick F wrote:The thing is, Wiggo isn't a cyclist.

Yes, he can ride a bike, but he's not really a cyclist, he's an athlete who rides a bike rather than runs/swims/plays tennis/skis/football/rugby.

He therefore has a completely different outlook to the chap down the road who rides his bike to to work and back.


Indeed. The likes of Chris Boardman has far more sensible things to say on the subject of cycling safety. Of course Wiggins still rides on UK roads but at the same time isn't an average UK cyclist.

Boardman's a former athlete, and therefore by definition not a cyclist, so should also be ignored, surely? :wink: