Russell Crowe “challenges” Writer to Bike Duel, Proves Likeable

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One of the stories we noticed today is a piece on Australian actor Russell Crowe challenging a gossip writer to a cycling duel. The background: Annette Sharp, gossip columnist for the Daily Telegraph is Sydney ran a piece on Crowe who was seen smoking cigarettes and eating junk food after a mountain bike ride though the city.

Crowe responded by challenging her to a cycling duel. She accepted.

This is where my interpretation of events (having watched the video) differ slightly from the sites I’ve seen pick up the story. Most versions include Crowe trouncing the reporter on a spirited ride through the city, with her falling off the bike at one point. While it seems true that he was going a bit faster than her (she being completely out of shape) and that she fell, he seems like he was really nice and friendly in this competition. The video shows him stopping to chat with her several times, and then sitting for coffee at a cafe with her at the end of the ride.

Personally if someone splashed pictures of me eating tacos and smoking on a ride while calling me out of shape, I’d just totally crush them. But he seems like he’s mostly out for a leisurely ride with a pal. His insistence in the video that having gone on a ride of 15k entitles you to a few cigarettes makes me wince a bit as I’m not sure how much exercise one has to have to actively try to develop cancer and emphysema, but who hasn’t had a bit of junk food and a soda after a ride, as Crowe did in the photos in the gossip section.

Still, their average speed and distance was laughably short and slow. Do you hear that Mr. Crowe–or should I say Rusty?! I think that you don’t measure up as a cyclist. I think you’re out of shape. Go ahead, challenge me to a bike duel, let’s see who measures up.

And can I have your autograph