Categories: The Other Stuff
Today I Love Cycling More Than Ever 08/24/2012
Today I love cycling more than ever. The day after watching Jens Voigt, one of our sport’s true and most endearing icons, take a wonderful solo win, that even his DS had doubts he could carry off. The day after “Purito” and Froome turned on the afterburners in the last 2km of yesterday’s Vuelta stage and showed Contador and Valverde their wheels. But unfortunately today these stories of heroic and breathtaking riding have been pushed down the queue by Lance. Unfortunately, today all anyone who doesn’t follow this sport will want to talk about is not if Froome can take the Vuelta, or how long can Jens continue at the top. Or even about the year-by-year growth of Wiggins to take this year’s Tour. They will only have one question for us: “Did Lance do it?” And unfortunately, with how this story has unfolded, we still seem not to have full closure.
Not really knowing what the USADA had in their files will always still leave this story unfinished for me and many others. Although, to see one of the most determined and smartest athletes I have ever followed give up is a surprise. Choosing not to fight was his best form of attack? That sure feels like an admission of sorts, but in no way feels definitive, and still feels like it will let people read it how they want. Out of all of the reactions, the one that I keep repeating in my head comes from Jan Ullrich, “I know the order in which we crossed the finish line.” In a time when most of the podium were “on it” in some form, re-awarding the seven Tour titles seems kind of pointless. I don’t think we are going to see many of Lance’s other podium companions rush in to claim his titles – most of them are as tarnished as he is, proven or not.
So maybe it is time to take a leaf out of Uli’s book and move on. There is plenty to write and talk about with those that are riding today. I am so over reading and hearing about this story, and I don’t think it is over yet. So until those USADA files see the light of day, let’s write about something else, and remember why we love this sport. You know Jens is sitting in the RSNT Team bust today saying, “Shut Up Media…I won yesterday for the first time in ages.”
The Slide Luck Bikeshow NYC, May 19th 05/13/2012
It is a cycling extravaganza of art, film, rides, music and raffles. Part of the National Bike Month celebrations in New York this looks like a great night out. Held on May 19th from 6pm – 9pm at Hostelling International Flagship at 891 Amsterdam avenue. Check out the link for more details http://slideluckbike.eventbrite.com/. If you are in town, like bikes and a good night out, this is where you should be on the 19th.
Categories: The Other Stuff
The $9 Bicycle By Izhar Gafni 09/13/2012
Inspired by a canoe made from cardboard, Izhar Gafni set about proving you could make a bicycle from cardboard. His first product release is called the Alpha, a bike made from recycled cardboard and weighing in at 20lbs. The company is currently seeking funding to get the bike into production, so it s unclear if we will actually see it on the streets yet. The adult version would sell for around $9-$12, but maybe more interestingly based on the aesthetic there is a planned kids bike for $5. I can’t find any information on how they are managing to keep the cost so low based on the fact some of the mechanical parts (pedals, brakes, cables…) aren’t made from cardboard. I also wonder how the bike would be perceived by bike thieves, when the very thing you are trying to steal is less valuable than the lock you are trying to break to steal it.
Colorful Commentary From Phil And Paul 07/23/2012
After years of watching Phil and Paul call the races back home in Europe and here in the US, I feel I have a pretty good handle on what they mean. Over the years I have noticed a few tried and tested terms that have stood the test of decades of commentary, and probably warrant some explanation, if not documentation here. Below are our favorite Philpaulism’s that have now found their way into our own cycling vocabulary and somehow out onto our local rides. Only last week at the JP Grand Fundo I commented on one rider going down a dirt road like a “scolded cat”.
1) “OFF LIKE A SCOLDED CAT” (also could be scalded)
Example: “…and Nibali has gone, he is off like a scolded cat”
Typical Usage: Used during a short burst attack at a particularity crucial point in the race. Typically used in conjunction with a favorite, although not always. Delivery: With the excitement of the finale.
2) “YOU DON’T GIVE HIM 10 METERS”
Example: “David Millar is not the sort of guy you give 10 meters to, you may never see HIM again!”
Typical Usage: Typically when a rider makes one of those last-ditch, usually suicidal, attacks off the front of the peleton in the last 1KM – or during a break when a rider attacks his fellow escapees and gets a gap, usually followed by the other riders all looking at each other. Delivery: Emphasis on HIM.
3: “SPOT OF BOTHER”
Example: “Frank Schleck seems to be having a spot of bother…”
Typical Usage: Usually when a pre-race favorite, or rider of some repute, gets dropped on a climb, when form says he should really be sitting somewhere around 1oth wheel. Delivery: With a very slight hint of sarcasm.
4: “VERY HEAVY ROADS”
Example: “The riding today is being made that much harder by the really heavy roads…”
Usage: As various departments prepare themselves for the passing of the Tour it is not uncommon to resurface the roads. Some departments have more money than others and those that can’t afford the super smooth tarmac carpet choose a cheaper “chip and seal” surface. Unfortunately in blistering heat it feels like you are riding through glue with pebbles stuck on your tires, very unpleasant. Delivery: With a “I have been there, I should know” tone.
5: “VICIOUS ACCELERATION” (See also “Dances on the pedals”)
Example: “….and Froome just put in a VICIOUS acceleration on the steepest part of the climb”
Usage: Typically saved for the steepest parts of the high mountains when the Skeletor-like riders (like Chris Froome) blast off the front for 10 or 20 meters. The gap is usually then brought back very slowly after the riders who have apparently “diesel engines” get up to speed, OR the attacking rider gets a short, curt but very clear message on team radio to slow down. Delivery: With a lot of emphasis and excitement – emphasis on VICIOUS.
Categories: The Other Stuff