In 2023, Pearson introduced its most data-driven frame design ever; we look back at some of the other events which made the news.


Kicking off a year in which Britain would crown its new monarch, the man who would never be king released his memoir, Spare. Prince Harry’s book would go on to become the bestselling title of the year. A classic example of getting one’s revenge in first was slightly undone by the fact said revenge was a bit of a stinker. 

ChatGPT was downloaded by 100m people. A revolutionary AI tool which scours the internet to put our own words back into our mouths, other benefits will eventually include the end of meaningful existence.


The world of publishing was divided by news that the works of Roald Dahl were to be amended to eliminate offensive, outdated language. Augustus Gloop was downsized to simply “enormous”, while “ugly” Mrs Twit was upgraded to “beastly”.

As critics including Sir Salman Rushdie cried foul (sorry, body-positive poultry), Dahl’s publisher, Penguin, attempted to douse the flames by saying it had chosen to “review the language to ensure that it can continue to be enjoyed by all”. Elsewhere on Planet Orwell, an AI chatbot licked its lips…


space x

Elon Musk’s SpaceX rocket fell back to earth with a bang. Funded by the mercurial South African Bond villain, the sleek, thrusting probe forged upwards following its launch in the Gulf of Mexico. Pressing itself against the atmosphere, swollen with expectation and the promise of a new era of independent intergalactic exploration, it popped just four minutes later. Musk’s decision to rebrand Twitter, as X, proved equally flaccid.


The month started brightly thanks to the launch of Prisma, our new apparel range. Featuring striking colours and ingenious design, it saw Pearson kit heading in a new direction. Jumbo-Visma landed the Giro d’Italia, with Slovenia’s Primož Roglič topping the GC.

In local news, the coronation of Charles III (#Charlie3) ushered in the new Carolean Age, providing a notable uptick for the Royal family’s stock. Harry attended the ceremony, although any hopes his invitation signalled a warming of the regal froideur were dashed when, at the after-party, he was relegated to the children’s table.



Manchester City completed football’s treble, a heart-warming victory for the little guy in a game increasingly dominated by iffy investors and ‘sportswashing’ bogeymen.

Elton John headlined Glastonbury, while in more Harry and Meghan news the pair announced the termination of their £16m deal with Spotify. After just 12 episodes of their ‘Archetypes’ podcast (11 too many, according to Palace sources) the streaming giant cited a lack of specific ideas and, unlike Sir Reginald of Dwight, any notable talent.



Barbie and Oppenheimer went head to head in their bids to become the blockbuster movie of the summer. Directed by Greta Gerwig and Christopher Nolan respectively, they provided striking contrasts. One concerned an existential threat to humanity, the consequences of investing vast amounts of money in a meaningless, nihilistic vision; the other was about the bloke who invented the atomic bomb.

Jumbo-Visma were at it again, this time landing the Tour de France following a thrilling battle between their man, Dane Jonas Vingegaard, and UAE Team Emirates’ Tadej Pogačar.



The Lionesses came up painfully short in their bid to win the World Cup. Falling behind to a goal from Spain’s Olga Carmona, Sarina Wiegman’s team were beaten but now bowed. Which is more than can be said for Spanish football supremo Luis Rubiales, following his unsolicited kissing of Spain forward Jenni Hermoso.

In London, the extension of the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (Ulez) proved, once again, there’s never been a better time to own a bike, particularly with the introduction of Shift, Pearson’s new flagship road machine.



In bagging the Vuelta a España for Jumbo-Visma (them again), America’s Sepp Kuss helped his team make history, the first time the same outfit had won all three of cycling’s Grand Tours in the same season.

Former comedian turned social-media whackjob Russell Brand was arrested by police following allegations of sexual misconduct. A shock to compare with the coming out of Philip Schofield.



The big story for Pearson was one for cycling in general, with the release of Forge, our most data-driven frame design yet. Rishi Sunak announced the cancellation of the northern leg of HS2, or at least until Sir Keir Starmer replaces him as Prime Minister.

Man’s capacity for inhumanity was in evidence again, both in the Hamas atrocities committed in Israel on 7th October and the subsequent force of the military response. 



In a moment of one-percenter karma, ChatGPT founder Sam Altman was ousted from the company by his own board. Realising how bad the optics looked, the Silicon Valley vipers then rehired their man, who returned with the support of some serious Microsoft muscle. 

As David Cameron returned to frontline politics, Nigel Farage showed his backside on telly. The bare faced cheek of it all.


around the outside

In an act of self-sabotage worthy of Elon Musk, the BBC blew the final whistle on ‘A Question of Sport’. The long-running quiz became another, inevitable victim of changing audience tastes, according to BBC spokestaff. The show’s demise was absolutely nothing to do with the Beeb’s ill-advised 2021 reboot, which saw host Sue Barker replaced by Paddy MacGuiness, and a healthy average audience of 4m replaced by almost no viewers at all.

If the announcement got die-hard fans hot under the collar, things were hardly helped by the year’s record temperatures, with 2023 proving the hottest on record. In other big stories, Pearson relaunched Around the Outside, an adventure bike designed to transport you far away from all this madness. 

Wishing you the very best of fitness and health for 2024.

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