Cheats are among us. There’s Brunhilda Gewürtzichenpfümfundorf, the 1971 East German shotput champion. She was a great lump of fraudulence. Then there’s Fluff, your unscrupulous schoolmate who crafted a periscope-like device to copy off Estelle Sarney’s exam paper. And apparently, anyone who casts a vote against The Donald this November is, variously, a cheat, unpatriotic and just a bad person. Very very bad.

But if some Lycra-clad numpty ever casts a disparaging eye upon your exquisite Pashley Britannia with electric assist or Wisper step-through and suggests that you’re something less than genuine because your ride is prefixed with an ‘e’, take aim at them with your best withering glare.

You see, the science is on your side.

A recent Norwegian study found that people who own e-bikes – of the kind like Pashleys and Wispers that require pedaling to activate the motor – venture out further and more often than regular bike riders.

Sure, the workout is different – gentler on lungs and limbs – but this is countered by the distances e-bikers cover when they’re out in the fresh air. We’re talking 340% greater than regular bikers.

Not only that, but e-bike owners are increasingly ditching their cars in favour of cycling. The study revealed an increase in the proportion of personal travel made by bike from 17% to 49%. If that’s cheating, the planet thanks you for it.

Other studies have shown that the mental benefits of e-biking equal, if not outweigh, those gained from regular cycling. There’s reassurance in the knowledge that, no matter what the terrain or weather, you can just relax, get out and enjoy the ride.

Any form of cycling for leisure has multiple benefits. There are no cheats or swindlers.

Oh, except that dude named Lance.