The Keepers

by / 1170 posts

Cycling is a mighty sport with a rich and complex history. Every company, racer, piece of kit, and component has a legend, a story behind it; in many cases it also has a personal and nostalgic connection to our lives.  While this particular sport is steeped in tradition, it is also fiercely modern, a fact that serves only to deepen its complexity.

All these factors combine to provide an unique atmosphere and breeds devoted and loyal disciples of our great sport. We are of a peculiar nature; we seek out the highest mountains and the roughest roads on which to worship at the altar of the Man with the Hammer. Our legs are what propel us; our minds are what drive us. We refer to our shaved legs in the third person – the legs – and speak of distance in kilometres and measure sizes in centimetres regardless of what country we are in.  We adhere strictly to the Canon of Cycling’s Etiquette: The Rules.

A Velominatus is a disciple of the highest order. We spend our days poring over the very essence of what makes ours such a special sport and how that essence fits into Cycling’s colorful fabric.  This is the Velominati’s raison d’être. This is where the Velominati can be ourselves. This is our agony – our badge of honor – our sin.

I have a unique way of looking at bicycles. A good bicycle and it’s components are beautiful things to me. I’m not just talking about appearance, but also how the frame and components show the dreams of those who made them.

– Gianni Bugno, Hardman and Italian cycling legend

Perhaps we are too wrapped up in the past, but the Velominati don’t believe that to be the case.  After all, the greatest lessons can be learned from the past and those lessons can then be applied to the present and may then allow us to more fully experience the future.

The Keepers:

The Community:

Velominati.com is less about the articles and more about the conversation. Those of you who read more and poster more, become an integral part of the discussion and help carry the momentum forward. There are several levels of Velominatus*:

Level 4 Velominatus: The casual observer and occasional poster.

Level 3 Velominatus: The regular reader and casual poster.

Level 2 Velominatus: The devoted reader and regular poster.

Level 1 Velominatus: The most committed of reader and poster.

Gray, Black, and Orange Order Velominatus: Once having passed Level 1, the inducted among the Order wear three color badges, based on their rank.

Conduct:

We strive to foster an open, fun, critical, and censure-free environment. Any criticism of our writing, spelling, grammar, or intelligence is welcome and nothing said will ever get you suspended from the site. That said, the code of conduct is governed by Rule #43 and the Piti Principle. Members consistently exhibiting behavior that falls outside these parameters will be warned to check themselves; should warnings go unheeded, we may elect to issue a suspension. The first offense will result in a one-week suspension, the second in a two week suspension, and the third in a three week suspension. A fourth offense will result in a lifetime ban.

Velominati reserves the right to edit posts with the express interest to preserve the spirit of the conversation and the community. Regarding posts that address a grammatical or typographical error, Velominati may elect to take their input, correct the error in the articles where appropriate, and editing posts that point them out. This editorial action is not to serve as a censure entity, but to preserve the spirit of the conversation. That said, we endeavor to only edit those posts that point out a minor issue and only in the event that we make the edit before the post has yielded further discussion. Furthermore, when possible, we will strive to acknowledge said poster for their correction.

Want to contribute a story to the Velominati? Tell us why.

*Levels are calculated based on the previous year’s activity.

  1. @Brett

    Gianni and I have been trying to get our book royalties for months, nay years, and we don’t even get replies to our emails. We’re owed a lot of money but have just about lost hope of ever seeing it, like all the people who got ripped off with kit orders too. Sad state of affairs, especially as we were all (supposed to be) friends.

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    wow.

    So Frank has not only taken money for kit that will never be delivered (June 2016 was my order date), he isn’t handing over money to (presumably ex) mates for the books.

    So, either Frank has officially adotped the COTHO moniker, or………. struggling to find the way to end the sentance.

    Sad.




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  2. @davidlhill

    @Brett

    wow.

    So Frank has not only taken money for kit that will never be delivered (June 2016 was my order date), he isn’t handing over money to (presumably ex) mates for the books.

    So, either Frank has officially adotped the COTHO moniker, or………. struggling to find the way to end the sentance.

    Sad.

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    or… @Frank has given a new meaning to the word Keeper




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  3. I’m sorry to hear that @Brett and @Gianni have also suffered materially. That’s an even worse state of affairs than I imagined.

    Personally what annoys me most was that all the stuff about it being a community has been thrown under the bus.

    We all contributed to this site and in small ways helped it be successful – how many people came here because they heard of the Rules and then stayed for the different articles and comments which were completely unlike anything else you could find. In many ways it provided some deflection from the people who viewed the rules as a bunch of silly wank. It was truly a very different place to the rest of the internet and nobody begrudged it being leveraged into some success and reward for Frank and the other keepers.

    I think that sense of community was genuine on our part and it could have continued as a community-run thing, even if Frank wanted to go off and do his thing. Various offers and suggestions have been made to that effect, all ignored. It’s a great shame that someone who often spoke of and encouraged that sense of community has apparently just left it to rot.




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  4. @KogaLover

    @Brett

    I still visit regularly and somewhere I still have a hope that my kit-order of December 30, 2016, still will find its way to my bike-laden garage; after all, I do not want to have to remove the name tags/decals from my other bikes simply because I could not get the name tags for my new bike (which is already more than one year old), just because I am OCD about symmetry.

    But your comment confirmed what I suspected: it’s all about the money and the money/success is what brings this site & community down. Really too bad.

    @Wiscot

    I agree with your “house” analogy but I do not think the house has become unreceptive for new ideas or that the foundation is crumbling (not yet at least); rather that it is not well maintained or heated anymore (Rule #5 and #9 correct me in my thinking here) hence people move out and do not even come in anymore.

    I also think @emerson referred to @chuckp as someone who advertises for/promotes his mag and articles and not that @chuckp is not around anymore.

    Who is not around anymore is @BuckRogers! What ever did Uncle Sam do to him; last thing he was still eye-balling US-privates in Germany?

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    Chuck’s links and references to his other site never offended me. His socks, on the other hand…




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  5. @ChrisO

    I’m sorry to hear that @Brett and @Gianni have also suffered materially. That’s an even worse state of affairs than I imagined.

    Personally what annoys me most was that all the stuff about it being a community has been thrown under the bus.

    We all contributed to this site and in small ways helped it be successful – how many people came here because they heard of the Rules and then stayed for the different articles and comments which were completely unlike anything else you could find. In many ways it provided some deflection from the people who viewed the rules as a bunch of silly wank. It was truly a very different place to the rest of the internet and nobody begrudged it being leveraged into some success and reward for Frank and the other keepers.

    I think that sense of community was genuine on our part and it could have continued as a community-run thing, even if Frank wanted to go off and do his thing. Various offers and suggestions have been made to that effect, all ignored. It’s a great shame that someone who often spoke of and encouraged that sense of community has apparently just left it to rot.

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    Hear hear.




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  6. @KogaLover

    @JohnB

    @Brett

    Gianni and I have been trying to get our book royalties for months, nay years, and we don’t even get replies to our emails. We’re owed a lot of money but have just about lost hope of ever seeing it, like all the people who got ripped off with kit orders too. Sad state of affairs, especially as we were all (supposed to be) friends.

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    It’s unfortunate that this site is such a global phenomenon, Frank’s behaviour is nothing short of criminal but who really has jurisdiction when the aggrieved parties are spread around the world? There will be no 3rd book, Frank has shown his true colours and we should demonstrate our disappointment and exasperation at him and those who still support him by boycotting their product. Yes, I’m looking at you Cyclist mag (although he’s missing from the latest edition 69) I expect to see a letter about mates ripping off mates to answer for any return… And Rouleur? Don’t even think about it.

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    Gents, while I also think something’s fishy and something big happened, I think we should abide with the “innocent until proven guilty” paradigm, as well as letting the protagonists state each side of their case. It’s all hearsay and blackbox to me, so would appreciate if particularly @Frank can explain. Last thing I heard was, he fell of a ladder (not a wagon) and is still recovering. He must be doing something with the website since old articles get recycled every now and then.

    And where’s @BuckRogers?

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    I’m inclined to agree with @KogaLover here. While there is evidently ill-feeling and perceived wrongdoing, I think it’s the civilised thing to do to give @frank a chance to explain.




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  7. @MangoDave

    Chuck’s links and references to his other site never offended me. His socks, on the other hand…

    Mission accomplished!

    I know I engage in shameless self-promotion but II do so with stuff I think y’all might be interested in. And I get no financial compensation in return. FYI, PEZ isn’t my website. Richard Pestes is the publisher. I’m just a contributor.

    i’m still around but not as active for a number of reasons. One is because the content has fallen off. I try to chime in whenever someone posts something of interest. But while I can access the site during the day, I can’t actually post from my work computer. And when I get home, it’s usually some sort of bike ride and then family stuff.




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  8. At the risk of incurring the wrath of my fellow Velominati, here’s my latest on PEZ. A review of The Wrong Side of Comfortable by Amy Charity. The book is a good read.

    https://www.pezcyclingnews.com/features/pez-bookshelf-the-wrong-side-of-comfortable/#.Wkjl3yOZPdQ




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  9. P,S, HAPPY NEW YEAR!




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  10. HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!




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  11. @Deakus

    HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!

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    Ditto to one and all. Happy and safe riding over the next year.

    I’ll be doing the rollers today as the wind chill is around -30.




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  12. @wiscot

    @Deakus

    HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!

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    Ditto to one and all. Happy and safe riding over the next year.

    I’ll be doing the rollers today as the wind chill is around -30.

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    Ditto inc the rollers – though fortunately not the -30. Best Wishes to All for a great 2018. Only 3 more weeks of work. Yeah!!




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  13. @chuckp

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of my fellow Velominati, here’s my latest on PEZ. A review of The Wrong Side of Comfortable by Amy Charity. The book is a good read.

    https://www.pezcyclingnews.com/features/pez-bookshelf-the-wrong-side-of-comfortable/#.Wkjl3yOZPdQ

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    Nice write up, thanks for the link. No wrath!




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  14. @wiscot

    @Deakus

    HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!

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    Ditto to one and all. Happy and safe riding over the next year.

    I’ll be doing the rollers today as the wind chill is around -30.




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    Crap, that sound cold! Did about 60 km yesterday, cool and cloudy, but very pleasant out.




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  15. @MangoDave

    @chuckp

    At the risk of incurring the wrath of my fellow Velominati, here’s my latest on PEZ. A review of The Wrong Side of Comfortable by Amy Charity. The book is a good read.

    https://www.pezcyclingnews.com/features/pez-bookshelf-the-wrong-side-of-comfortable/#.Wkjl3yOZPdQ

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    Nice write up, thanks for the link. No wrath!

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    Agree… loved the interview too. good stuff, Cheers @chuckp




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  16. @MangoDave

    @wiscot

    @Deakus

    HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!

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    Ditto to one and all. Happy and safe riding over the next year.

    I’ll be doing the rollers today as the wind chill is around -30.

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    Crap, that sound cold! Did about 60 km yesterday, cool and cloudy, but very pleasant out.

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    It is – and was. Supposed to be about 24 degrees on Sunday, so I’m thinking of taking the fat bike up to Lake Winnebago. I hear there’s over 12″: of ice on it so I should be ok . . .




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  17. The Hardmen book was the tits. I read Kings of the Road way back in the 80’s and thought it was a good book at the time but many years later and many drug scandals later, the Festina Affair and Big Tex being the main ones. Hardmen is where it really is at. The “Klasickiers” I think really are the hardmen, as far as the best grand tour winners it all remains more questionable in a way.




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  18. @frank.

    Yes it’s your site. Do what you want with it.

    But instead of sneaking in every now and then to dredge up an old article grow a pair balls and fess up.

    David




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  19. Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………




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  20. @Teocalli

    Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………

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    I am getting the same requests.




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  21. @Rick

    @Teocalli

    Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………

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    I am getting the same requests.

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    ditto




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  22. @mulebeatsdrums

    @Teocali

    I just got a private message from Teocali and 12 saying “er, who are you…”




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  23. @Greyling

    @mulebeatsdrums

    @Teocali

    I just got a private message from Teocali and 12 saying “er, who are you…”

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    That’s weird – so it looks like @12 is some sort of clone of you………




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  24. @mulebeatsdrums

    @Rick

    @Teocalli

    Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………

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    I am getting the same requests.

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    ditto

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    Ditto here. I’ve not replied. 12 is a 4 badge.




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  25. @Teocalli

    Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………

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    Yes




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  26. Will @chris avoid a Delgado……..




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  27. Possibly, But I don’t think the riders are at sign on yet.

    Went straight from DSing duties at LVVP to the airport so didn’t post them yesterday.

    Thomas

    Pederson

    Stybar

    Terpstra

    Sagan




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  28. @Teocalli

    Is anyone else getting repeated Friend Requests from @12? Is there a gremlin or hacker in the system? @Frank – maybe you could check it and delete if necessary…………

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    me too




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  29. The current state of this website makes me sad.




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  30. @eightzero

    Yep.

    I’ve no idea what’s going on in Frank’s life that he couldn’t come here over a year ago and say “guys, I need to take a break, here’s the keys to the site, look after it, and I’ll be back sometime”.




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  31. @davidlhill

    @eightzero

    Yep.

    I’ve no idea what’s going on in Frank’s life that he couldn’t come here over a year ago and say “guys, I need to take a break, here’s the keys to the site, look after it, and I’ll be back sometime”.

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    Yeah, that puzzles me too.

    His single post in January this year as if nothing had changed before vanishing again just makes me more confused.




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  32. @eightzero

    The current state of this website makes me sad.

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    Have V T-shirt, not sure to wear “proudly” out. Also as supplier of the V Cuff-Links, do I remove them from my steads? BTW The Lion of Flanders has V-plugs on the end of his bars.

    Recently ended up rolling along with this bunch – aka Rule #5, with my Rule #19 done, I asked what was Rule #5 all about. Comrade started to explain about the V Site and The Rules.

    As I rode with the Rule #5 bunch I observed and asked about the violations of Rule #1, #2, #3 29, 33, 41, 45, 74.

    Agree, The current state of this website makes me sad.

    Wish the Keepers/Founder would roll with Rule V!




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  33. too true – a distinct lack of Rule V application!

    I wonder if it is the money, the kit order? From my perspective I was (more or less) happy to write it off as the site had/has given me way more than USD130 worth of pleasure. But with Frank’s general COTHO behaviour I’m getting pissed off it’s efectively been stolen.

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!




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  34. @davidlhill

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

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    Ditto. It was out in the sunshine this morning.




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  35. @sthilzy

    If you still have cufflinks, pls let me know. They were part of the last order that never came. Still me needs 3 pairs: 2 black and 1 white.

    who made the name decals and the caps?




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  36. @davidlhill

    too true – a distinct lack of Rule V application!

    I wonder if it is the money, the kit order? From my perspective I was (more or less) happy to write it off as the site had/has given me way more than USD130 worth of pleasure. But with Frank’s general COTHO behaviour I’m getting pissed off it’s efectively been stolen.

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

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    i don’t really know anybody involved with this debacle, and i didn’t order any kit, so i reserved my opinion on the matter until around the time the post showed up asking for donations to bail Frank out of the kit mess, last fall. i thought it was a bit tacky to ask for money to bail Frank out, when the people that were missing the order were the ones in need of redress. sure enough, that was a bad omen, things fell completely apart shortly thereafter. it is a shame, after having obviously expended SO much effort, and had such good results, that he just walked away and let things die on the vine, so to speak. it would have been better if he had just cut the site off. no matter how much fun we that remain are having hanging out, here, it makes the whole thing look messy and sad, by contast.




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  37. @davidlhill

    @eightzero

    Yep.

    I’ve no idea what’s going on in Frank’s life that he couldn’t come here over a year ago and say “guys, I need to take a break, here’s the keys to the site, look after it, and I’ll be back sometime”.

    Gianni and I have tried everything over the last year or more, we don’t even get replies to emails. Not even a “sorry I’ve spent all your book royalties and all the kit order money”. Embarrassing for us to be associated with the site and brand when we all get lumped in with his doings. We’re sorry to everyone who got fucked, we know how it feels too.




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  38. @Brett

    I don’t know the story behind the royalties, what happened to the kit money or why Frank’s dropped of the face of the internet but as far as I’m concerned you and Gianni don’t have anything to be apologising for.

    With any luck we’ll still bump into each other outside a beer tent on a hill in Flanders or on the cobbles somewhere. I’m not sure what the plan is for next year, the lad wants do do Flanders again but I fancy Roubaix. Maybe both with William and Alex.




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  39. @KogaLover

    @sthilzy

    who made the name decals and the caps?0

    The caps were made by Apis, the Italian firm that produces caps for a lot of the pro teams. I looked into them for our club last year but from memory it was a minimum order of 300.

    @davidlhill

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

    It’s great looking kit but mine is only used on the turbo these days out of fear of a Rule #53 violation.

    Despite what anyone thinks for the rules these days, that’s one that stands the test of time and should never be violated.




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  40. @chris

    @Brett

    I don’t know the story behind the royalties, what happened to the kit money or why Frank’s dropped of the face of the internet but as far as I’m concerned you and Gianni don’t have anything to be apologising for.

    Neither do I!

    With any luck we’ll still bump into each other outside a beer tent on a hill in Flanders or on the cobbles somewhere. I’m not sure what the plan is for next year, the lad wants do do Flanders again but I fancy Roubaix. Maybe both with William and Alex.

    It’s always a pleasure mate, I’m sure there will be future Flandrian meetings.




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  41. @davidlhill

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

    As do I, from time to time, in fact when out in the first rain in 4 weeks last week. That’s a rarity in Scotland.




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  42. Perhaps someone should write a letter to Cyclist magazine asking for @Franks opinion on a mate who fucked over his close mates and clubmates and run off with all the club funds?




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  43. @Teocalli

    @davidlhill

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

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    Ditto. It was out in the sunshine this morning.

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    Alas I never got my hands on a set. When I first joined in on here I was a student, then an unemployed graduate, and by the time I had any money coming in, the Troubles had started and it’s not the cheapest kit around, even before the gambling on it ever arriving was factored in. It’s a real pity, because I was going to go the whole hog and get the full set.




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  44. @Brett

    Don’t worry yourself Brett. My opinion remains unchanged. I considered you and Gianni to be a couple of cunts way before Frank did anything untoward.




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  45. @JohnB

    Perhaps someone should write a letter to Cyclist magazine asking for @Franks opinion on a mate who fucked over his close mates and clubmates and run off with all the club funds?

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    LOL




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  46. @JohnB

    @davidlhill

    I still wear the V Kit – I have to confess it’s the best looking piece of kit I have!

    As do I, from time to time, in fact when out in the first rain in 4 weeks last week. That’s a rarity in Scotland.

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    Imagine my dilemma -I have a V Jersey and it actually used to belong to Frank. We did an international size swap after the last round of kit deliveries.

    I wear it fairly proudly. The V is bigger than one person or one website. However cuntish.




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  47. @Brett

    @davidlhill

    @eightzero

    Yep.

    I’ve no idea what’s going on in Frank’s life that he couldn’t come here over a year ago and say “guys, I need to take a break, here’s the keys to the site, look after it, and I’ll be back sometime”.

    Gianni and I have tried everything over the last year or more, we don’t even get replies to emails. Not even a “sorry I’ve spent all your book royalties and all the kit order money”. Embarrassing for us to be associated with the site and brand when we all get lumped in with his doings. We’re sorry to everyone who got fucked, we know how it feels too.

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    @Gianni, @Brett you guys have fuck all to apologise for.




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  48. @davidlhill

    @Brett

    @davidlhill

    @eightzero

    Yep.

    I’ve no idea what’s going on in Frank’s life that he couldn’t come here over a year ago and say “guys, I need to take a break, here’s the keys to the site, look after it, and I’ll be back sometime”.

    Gianni and I have tried everything over the last year or more, we don’t even get replies to emails. Not even a “sorry I’ve spent all your book royalties and all the kit order money”. Embarrassing for us to be associated with the site and brand when we all get lumped in with his doings. We’re sorry to everyone who got fucked, we know how it feels too.

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    @Gianni, @Brett you guys have fuck all to apologise for.

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    I’ll second that.




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