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Velominatus: harminator

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"We used to live in a rolled up newspaper in a septic tank." Found the bike relatively late in life after a mis-spent youth. Now cured, living northern Sydney, soaking up the serenity and agony of the local gorges... Married, 2 kids, school teacher (design & tech) renovating the house and running the school MTB program.

@harminator's activity:

Wednesday sees the return of the women to the VSP. More notably, we see the return of Marianne Vos to the road. She’s won this race five of the last seven years. It makes me wonder if the rest of the field have already resigned themselves to racing for second. On the other hand, Vos hasn’t been racing of late and may not be as sharp as...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @Father of Four Ha! He’s posting the results, Poindexter. »

Midweek in Belgium in Spring is a wonderful thing. Hordes of people come from seemingly nowhere to fill the bars and line the roadsides when presumably they’d usually be working, or at school, or some such. That the only ones who appear to be working are the bartenders and frites dispensers reinforces my belief that Belgium is the greatest co...

@harminator's posts:

  1. I’m already way off the pace for the Veloforma GC – now re-aligning to low percentage solo raids. Alba to go one better than 2012. VSP PICKS: 1. Albasini 2. Kwiatowski 3. Gilbert 4. Vanendert 5. Westra »

Wednesday sees the return of the women to the VSP. More notably, we see the return of Marianne Vos to the road. She’s won this race five of the last seven years. It makes me wonder if the rest of the field have already resigned themselves to racing for second. On the other hand, Vos hasn’t been racing of late and may not be as sharp as...

@harminator's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. E Stevens 2. E Longo Borghini 3. M Vos 4. D King 5. L De Vocht »

The Amstel Gold Race, 251 km from Maastricht to Valkenburg, the hard way. There appears to be no flat sections longer than ten meters. There are thirty-four mean little climbs to ruin the legs. We have moved on from the real Spring Classics. There is no rest in this VSP; The Ronde and Roubaix were amazing but we must continue. Legs that are smoked...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Deadly finishing from Giblets there but he won’t have it all his own way this week. He seems to have the Cauberg on speed dial but it’s no Mur de Huy. Position at the bottom turn makes the selection at Amstel but the Mur’s length and grade dishes out more… »

  2. VSP PICKS: 1. Malmerde 2. JeyRod 3. Slagter 4. Poels 5. PhilGil »

Have you ever been told to take a good look at yourself? Usually it infers that you need to smarten up your ideas, get your shit together, shape up or ship out. If Viagra eyedrops had an advertising campaign, (or indeed existed), their tagline would be: “Take a long, hard look at yourself.”Most Cyclists need to take a long hard look at...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Mark Rickshaw straightened his helmet during the sprint and paid a high price for maintaining his Look Fantastic. »

It has been a brutal week for us Keepers, having decided not to hold a Keepers Tour this year. Watching the action from half a world away has been almost too much for us to bear, and I know most of the participants from last year must be feeling similarly. On Sunday, we would be escorted by our friends and guides, William and Alex of Pavé Cycling...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Viewing issues here too. Damn interwebs. Live feed shat itself. Unfortunately I watched the last 10k on youtube. What a display of Anti V! Looked like a payoff to me. The who’s who of in-form classics rider holding tempo while Terpstra rides away? Pfft! … »

  2. Judging by the recon pics, Fabian wins in the Look Fantastic classiment and is therefore favourite for the overall. The cobbles look dry and fast. The strongest will prevail. Poor young Sep will have another year of nightmares featuring the back end of a … »

The grade is long and I am climbing away. I’m not going to Pantani this: I am not out of the saddle, not in the drops and not leaving everyone in my wake. The climbing gear was engaged a long time ago. There is progress, but I am not dancing up this climb. A little more cadence would really help here. If I could just get this mother-lover spinnin...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Great article Gianni. This is my vote for the Di2 hail mary shift soundbite. »

This needs no introduction. The Spring Classics are truly upon us. The course has been modified yet again, it is tougher? The riders make the race and the 2014 Ronde van Vlaanderen is loaded with racers who could win or make the Velominati VSP placings. Just to pick the winner will not be nearly as easy as it has been recently. There are small clo...

@harminator's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Cancellara 2. Sagan 3. Vanmarcke 4. Terpstra 5. Thomas »

Vlaanderen. Its no accident the Flemish word for Flanders starts with a V; there is nothing simple or easy about riding a bike here. If it isn’t wind, its steep bergs. If it isn’t tarmac, its cobbles. Most of the time, its all three. Oh, and the weather there sucks. In fact, Flanders doesn’t have weather – it has VVeather.De...

@harminator's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Emma Johansson 2. Elisa Longo Borghini 3. Ellen Van Dijk 4. Anna Van Der Breggen 5. Kirsten Wild »

  2. @Lukas I can’t find a startlist that lists Madame V. I don’t know what’s influencing her schedule. Velofocus says this: “Especially look out for Rabo-Liv who are running out of opportunities to prove they can win without Vos, ahead of her return at Flec… »

The Velominati Super Prestige is a season-long competition wherein readers will be submitting their predictions for the top five finishers of each qualifying race.  In order to qualify, your picks via the VSP Picks form above the posts section of the VSP Event article pertaining to the race in question by the time the countdown clock goes to zero...

@harminator's posts:

  1. All those 15s in the finale! »

This is the kick off of the VSP for women’s racing, though the women have already kicked it off with the Ronde van Drenthe in the Netherlands. Now it’s down to Northern Italy, Varese, by Lago Maggiore, but this is a climbers course, more in the mountains than by the lake. And yes, Sunday is also Gent-Wevelgem for women but Trofeo is par...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @Beers Thanks for that. Interesting reading and great images. »

The Kemmelberg is a brute. In my opinion, its the hardest of the cobbled climbs in the Spring Classics; it has a high speed tarmac approach that saps the guns of their snap. The transition from tarmac to cobbles is awful, the stones are very badly laid throughout and if you don’t hit it just right, you’ll come to a standstill. The cobbl...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @Mikael Liddy Yep. Neither of those guys has enough mongrel. Too willing to give up wheels for young upstarts and dickheads.  Greipel was the same but has got better. Beyond that their top line speed is wanting. Demare looks the shiz. He rode great toda… »

This is the kick off of the VSP for women’s racing, though the women have already kicked it off with the Ronde van Drenthe in the Netherlands. Now it’s down to Northern Italy, Varese, by Lago Maggiore, but this is a climbers course, more in the mountains than by the lake. And yes, Sunday is also Gent-Wevelgem for women but Trofeo is par...

@harminator's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Elisa Longo Borghini 2. Emma Johansson 3. Dani King 4. Lisa Brennauer 5. Annemiek Van Vleuten »

The Kemmelberg is a brute. In my opinion, its the hardest of the cobbled climbs in the Spring Classics; it has a high speed tarmac approach that saps the guns of their snap. The transition from tarmac to cobbles is awful, the stones are very badly laid throughout and if you don’t hit it just right, you’ll come to a standstill. The cobbl...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Revised to include Fabs who will likely continue with his habit of providing great lead outs for riders on other teams. VSP PICKS: 1. Degenkolb 2. Sags 3. Fabs 4. Stybar 5. Demare »

  2. VSP PICKS: 1. Degenkolb 2. Sags 3. The Gorilla 4. Stybar 5. GVA »

The proclamation is heard in the office, on social media, at the bar with friends; “It’s leg day.” When someone utters “it’s leg day” the accompanying tone of resentment and even dread is usually followed by an audible “ugh”. This exasperation belies one fact, the person making the utterance is not a...

@harminator's posts:

  1. Anna Meares on Leg Day: »

The Velominati Super Prestige is a season-long competition wherein readers will be submitting their predictions for the top five finishers of each qualifying race.  In order to qualify, your picks via the VSP Picks form above the posts section of the VSP Event article pertaining to the race in question by the time the countdown clock goes to zero...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @wiscot Just checking the B sample now… »

  2. I’ve just completely bonked in the final Quiz. (…thumps handlebars)…….3 points. Well done Steampunk – solid work! »

Het Volk (it will always be Het Volk to me) and now the Strade Bianche may well mark the sentimental beginning to the season, but those are specialized, pre-season races that appeal mostly to riders who are preparing for bigger objectives later in the year, such as the Cobbled or Ardennes Classics. Same goes for Tirreno Adriatico and Paris-Nice; t...

@harminator's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Giblets 2. Sagan 3. Fabs 4. Nibbles 5. Sauceler »

“Are you havin’ a dig at me?” It’s a good old phrase that one. I hear it occasionally, usually in response to some jest, part of the banter that me and my friends enjoy on a regular basis. It can be used as an off-the-cuff remark, clearly meant in a jocular way, or can carry with it a more sinister edge, a way to make a poin...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @gaswepass Maybe there’s some cross-cultural confusion around half-wheeling. As far as I know, half wheeling is a two-up or double paceline issue where one rider can’t resist the urge to put their wheel half in front, instead of hubs level. If you are… »

  2. Wow. Riis must have spun up his 56% that morning: “Not normal!” Great article Brett. I’m always happy to be involved in a bit of digging. Sometimes I’ve even got the shovel. When I ride in the fast bunch I’m usually expecting to be dropped at some point … »

We recently lost our beloved Great Dane, Kirki, who we nicknamed Beene for reasons that elude logic. She was a good dog, more sweet than clever. A sad side effect of big dog breeds and their short lives is that it wasn’t until nearly the end of her life that she made certain key discoveries about the world. Such as that weighing nearly 65 kil...

@harminator's posts:

  1. @wiscot Its a fair point you make there @wiscot. Their are some good stretches of road. Usually out of town leading to obscure locations of no significance. The main roads are hairy enough that taking rolling pics is not recommended. Its difficult to expl… »