Friday Feature: Is joining a cycling ‘super-team’ beneficial for a rider?

They can build you up to the sky and then afterwards they discount you when you drop. There is no compassion. For my family it is sometimes difficult.

So spoke Belgian champion Philippe Gilbert recently about his nation’s cycling press, who have been critical of their hero since his move to BMC.

Philippe Gilbert (image courtesy of Danielle Haex)

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Happy birthday Jose Joaquin Rojas

JJ Rojas's megawattt smile (image courtesy of JJ Rojas)

JJ Rojas’s megawattt smile (image courtesy of JJ Rojas)

Feliz 27 cumpleaños JJ. What is it with Murcians and dimpled chins? JJ, Luis Leon Sanchez and Alejandro Valverde all have one. Is it genetic?

A dimpled chin, also known as a cleft chin, superhero chin [my favourite – Ed] or butt chin [not my favourite – Ed] is an inherited trait. The underlying jaw bone of those with dimpled chins has a similar structure. So how do they occur?

In normal human foetal development, the right and left sides of the lower half of the jaw fuse together before birth. When the fusion of the two sides doesn’t take place properly, the baby is born with a dimpled chin. This is generally caused by a dominant gene but it doesn’t necessarily mean that if you have one, all your children will too. While it’s likely that a whole host of genes contribute to the formation of such a chin, the genetic data on this is quite sparse. Environmental factors may also come into play. It’s normally considered an attractive trait and a number of other famous people have them too, such as John Travolta and Superman!
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