I found myself laughing at a homeless person today. Hold it right there! Before you right me off as an arrogant scumbag who laughs at those less fortunate than himself, I should explain why.

There were quite a few beggars and homeless people in Santa Barbara where we stayed on Friday night. They stand out on the manicured, spotlessly clean streets in the central shopping district of the town, but have developed a novel way of getting your attention.

Their cardboard signs that are placed in front of them, asking for help, are a little different to the norm. Instead of simply asking for help, the beggars of SB use humour to get your attention. The sign that got me laughing said ?Spaceship out of fuel ? please help!? How could I not spare some change for that?

As a whole, Santa Barbara had a very different feel to it. I wouldn?t say the people there are crazy, but maybe they should start wearing hats when they go out in the year-round sunshine (that I’m not jealous of at all). Too much of the hot stuff was the only explanation I could think of for the guy who was wheeling round the start area, on his bike, dressed in a Crow costume, making bird noises.

Then there was the guy wheeling round his bike with a home-made sandwich board over the rear wheels that said, ?losers compete.?

As the race was approaching LA it was inevitable that the glam factor would increase. So full marks for Jonathon Vaughters and his Slipstream Sports boys for attempting to out WAG the British football team (they?ve been about as successful! ? sorry JV).

The rider?s girlfriends were sat around the team?s RV with their huge sunglasses and stylish haircuts, raising the team?s profile no end. Although Cheese the dog, was the real star in his full team strip.

Is American TV driving you insane? If so email cycling@ipcmedia.com

This article is from

Cycling Weekly – In print and online, Cycling Weekly is the best source of breaking news, race reportage, reliable fitness advice, trustworthy product reviews and inspirational features. First published in 1891, the magazine has an amazing and unrivalled heritage, having been at the heart of British cycling for over 120 years.

Subscribe to Cycling Weekly in print » | Read the digital edition »