Category Archives: Professional Cycling

How Not to Become an Awesome Racer

“He had this really long beard, and he smelled very bad,” said Vaughters, who was in his last season as a rider. “I remember thinking, O.K., this guy is completely different than the image of the typical European money-driven cyclist who buys Porsches in his spare time.”

Ever heard of Garmen-Slipstream’s Svein Tuft?  You will.  The following is a story from the NY Times.


Photo by Matthew Staver for The New York Times

Photo by Matthew Staver for The New York Times

Those who have heard the tale of Svein Tuft have wondered, could it possibly be true?

How he dropped out of school in the 10th grade, lured by the freedom of the outdoors. How he evolved into a barrel-chested woodsman with Paul Bunyan biceps. How he ventured, at 18, from his home in Canada into the wilderness on a $40 thrift-shop bike hooked to a homemade trailer.

They have learned of the way he traveled sparingly, towing only his camping gear, a sack of potatoes and his 80-pound dog, Bear.The way he drank from streams and ate beside an open fire. Or hopped trains across Canada, resting as the land flickered by.

Now 31, Tuft is out to prove that all the raw travel and personal drive can translate into something beyond his survival. Recruited by one of the world’s top cycling teams, he is about to begin a more disciplined journey. It starts next weekend with the Tour of California, where he will race with the Garmin-Slipstream squad, and is likely to continue this summer at the Tour de France.

Read the rest here>

Lance Who?

Being an American cyclist – and I use the second term lightly – I figure I am honor bound to cheer for the likes of Lance Armstrong, Greg Lemond, Andy Hampsten, et al.  But at one of the first bike shops I worked at in my early adulthood there was a strange character there that had a great influence on my cycling allegiances.  I don’t even remember the guy’s name, but the strangeness was based on the fact that this was a lowly bike mechanic that also happened to be a licensed physician.  On the days that it was too nasty to commute via two wheels his mode of transportation had a flat six boxer engine hanging out the back.  For those of you of lowly pedigree, I’m talking about a Porsche 911.  He said he stopped playing doctor – much to his wife’s chagrin – because he was tired of all the politics and he was perfectly happy to turn the various pedals and wrenches of cycledom.

ED_DDYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!

ED_DDYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!

Now even as a BMX racer that only liked road bikes because you could go pretty fast on them, I knew who Eddy Merckx was.  But every morning when the good doctor showed up he would burst out with a loud ED-DYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!  Then the morning was spent either being regaled with stories of epic rides or listening to him bitch about his wife bitching about him diagnosing SunTour Superbe Pro drive trains instead of some old duffer’s pancreatic cancer.

Continue reading

Liz Hatch crashes hard.

lizcrash

From her blog: http://www.lizhatch.missingsaddle.com/

“I was participating in the “Ride the Route” fundraiser for the Women’s Tour Of California Criterium. It left from Santa Rosa and went to Calistoga and then doubled back to Santa Rosa. I arrived a bit late due to traffic and was attempting to catch the main group with few friends. On the last descent into Calistoga I was a bit off the front and enjoying a great time down the hill when I came up on a corner full of pine needles a bit too quickly (understatement) and my only choice was to try to lay the bike out or hit the guardrail… Apparently the second choice was better (???) and I went head first into it at 45k. Specialized helmets, THANK YOU! Also, ROOLY glasses!!! I am so glad I was wearing those things, they kept my eyes protected and all of the dirt and pine needles that ended up in my mouth, nose and ears, yes ears, didn’t touch my eyes! Not only that but they look like new post crash, cannot believe it.

I was knocked out for a short while and don’t remember much except that I couldn’t breath and my mouth was full of blood from biting part way through my tongue. Bob Cullinan from CycleTo was on the scene quickly (and ended up riding with me to the hospital and staying with me for 6 plus hours) as were quite a few other kind souls (Greg Durbin, thank you!) who stopped traffic so I wouldn’t get run over and called the ambulance. From there it’s a blur…”

lizbike

More details and photos can be found here> Cycle To

The full transcript of Donald McRae’s interview with Lance Armstrong

From the guardian.co.uk website

armstrong3

ON DECIDING TO RETURN TO COMPETITIVE CYCLING

What are your main reasons for making this comeback now?

There are two parts to it. There’s the physical, competitive part but there’s also the [Cancer] Foundation part. But I had to know that I would be competitive before I went out and did this because otherwise it would have kind been a joke. Of course there may still be some unknown there although I think I’ll be strong – because I’m strong-willed. I had been mulling it over before racing in Leadville. But it was not very serious and I had not told many people about it. It was just a wild idea.

Read the rest here>

These guys have obviously never…

…had to deal with redneck Idaho drivers.

astanarides

Click me for full story.

Looks like they got a little Gregatory going on though.

For a mere $995…

…you can join:

argleclubbanner

Click me

Club benefits include:

– 2009 Team Kit with a personally endorsed Jersey from the team
– Team Casual Merchandise to sport around town.
– Riding Events with the Team
– A VIP Ticket to next years Gala team launch event in Boulder, CO
– Exclusive “Race Insights” direct from JV

and that’s not all, our sponsors have very generously supported the program and are providing all Argyle Club Members:

– Garmin is providing Factory Direct pricing on 2 Garmin products, including a savings of up to $130 on a team Edge 705

Chipotle is providing all members “FREE BURRITOS for the YEAR”

– Felt is providing a discount of 10% on bikes, including Team Editions

– Pearl is providing 40% off up to $1000 in purchases

– Shimano is providing exclusive pricing on the new R310 Shoe

– Giro is providing 20% of the team issue helmet and havic glasses

– Pedros is providing a Free “Pit Kit’ to keep your bike looking like a team mechanic just washed it.

– Camelbak is providing two free Team Edition Podium Bottles

The free burritos for a year sealed the deal for me.  I wonder if they have bacon flavor?

Race of Champions

Britain’s two most successful racers from 2008 – Lewis Hamilton and Chris Hoy – will go head-to-head at Wembley Stadium next month, as the youngest ever Formula One World Champion takes on Britain’s triple Olympic gold medal winner as part of the entertainment package that will run alongside The Race of Champions on Sunday, December 14.

hoy_hamilton1

On a parallel track, Hamilton will take to the seat of a Mercedes-Benz road car, while Hoy takes to the saddle of a bike. Starting side-by-side on a tight and twisty course which is alien to both machines, the two stars will race around the circuit in the ultimate test of man and machine. Read the rest here>