Velominati Community Profile Archive

Velominatus: ChrisO

Order: Guest Contributor

Location: Abu Dhabi

Social: /

An Aussie, transplanted to Britain and living in Abu Dhabi and now Dubai. One wife, two cats, three kids and four bikes. The wife and kids live in London, the bikes live with me, mostly. I'm a TV person - originally journalism, then consultancy and project management and now in audience research and ratings. On average I ride 10,000+km each year. I love club and group riding and have got more into racing, especially stage races and events. In the past I've done a bit of audax too. I have a Ridley Noah, a custom-built steel Roberts, a Colnago Master and a Pearson fixie.

@ChrisO's activity:

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...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @Mike_P Indeed not, but I don’t think (and certainly didn’t intend) that V kit falls in either of those camps . By perfectly matched expensive kit I mean the rider who is in a complete Assos system designed for whatever micro-climate is forecast that … »

  2. Lounge pants? What is the Mercan definition of these please? Is it what we would call track-suit pants or trackie bottoms? No need for pictures, we can do this by words I hope. In the UK a number of schools have recently had to send notes to parents ask… »

  3. I’m always bemused by anybody whose response includes the suggestion we should ride more, as if they think we have made some decision to cut back our time on the bike in order to post on the internet. Really, how long does it take them to type, even allo… »

  4. @Rules Be Damned Yes but there is absolutely no need for them to compromise each other. Casually Deliberate is a tranquil medium.Trying too hard is just as wrong as not trying hard enough. The rider tricked out from top to toe in perfectly matched exp… »

We are the Keepers of the Cog. In so being, we also maintain the sacred text wherein lie the simple truths of cycling etiquette known as The Rules. It is in our trust to maintain and endorse this list.The Rules lie at the beginning of The Path to La Vie Velominatus, not at the end; learning to balance them against one another and to welcome them...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @VeloSix Excellent stuff and nice write up. Well ridden too. You and the break riders did well – if your Cat 5 is the same as UK Cat 4 (entry level) then it is unusual for any break to stick. Individually people don’t have the fitness to attack and then … »

It’s no secret that I’m prone to riding in the big ring as much as possible, mostly on account of my not being a giant sissy. In accordance with the ISO Non-Sissy Standard, I also never read instruction manuals or ask for directions when lost. I make sure to only rarely ask my VMH to turn up the radio when Adele comes on, usually follo...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @geoffrey Maybe a few would get close to 5 w/kg for 20 minutes, but then to calculate FTP (sustainable power for one hour) you discount by a further 5%. On Andrew Coggan’s scale FTP of 5.2-5.8 w/kg is classed as Domestic Pro. »

  2. @geoffrey Yes it is but the missing element in your post is duration (and weight). Most anyone can do 5-6 w/kg for a short burst but I doubt anyone here would even come close to it on a 45 minute climb. If they can they should be contacting an agent … »

  3. @Puffy That’s very interesting, both for the article and for your charmingly naive idea that science and logic might have any impact on Frank’s pre-conceived and utterly unshakeable beliefs. On the article it is certainly against the grain – not just … »

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...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. Cancellara is clearly the strongest, most in-form and deserves to do the double, but… I think this is another Van Summeren year where it’s the Peleton V Fabian and a feint turns into the real thing. VSP PICKS: 1. Stybar 2. Phinney 3. Kristoff 4. Cance… »

The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.It seems in s...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @chrismurphy92 Very nice – what version of TCR is it ? Although I’m given Giant bikes to ride my admiration for them has nothing to do with obligation. I would happily live with my TCR forever. I agree with the comments above that the cockpit could do w… »

  2. @Chris True, Neil Pryde is not small as a company but I bet their bike division is a tiny part of the whole. Presumably a separate P&L and they would have been looking at it from that point of view. But while I know that emotionally the Café Roubaix»

  3. I wonder if Specialized are thinking of charging royalties to people along the roadside shouting encouragement to cyclists. What a bunch of tossers. Clearly the Café Roubaix debacle didn’t change their methods, it was purely a piece of PR management. »

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...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. My heart was pounding in that finish. Cancellara from the front, Van Avermaert, Vammarcke, Vandenbergh, Kristoff. What a great race. »

  2. How painful for that group – to make it back to the leaders just in time for Oude Kwaremont. I hate that. »

  3. Stijn Vandenbergh is huge – when Avermaert was down on the bars you could see vandenbergh’s head and shoulders above him. I feel aerosympathetic for him. »

One of greatest cycling pleasures is riding with a mate. Riding ten centimeters off each other’s rear wheel for hours; trust is a beautiful thing. You swing over, ease your effort slightly so your mate rides through, you then tuck behind, in the draft, close and fast. It is the best. @Kah touches on this and other transcendent benefits from...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @andrew Show a bit of respect for those geriatric tourers would be my tip number one. I don’t know where you are but in the UK any CTC ride will be filled with blokes who’ve been on more rides than you’ve had hot dinners. Some of them will tell you wh… »

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...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Amialiusik 2. Van Der Breggen 3. Johansson 4. Van Dijk 5. Armitstead »

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...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. That long relative flat to the finish is the clincher for me – if Cancellara is in front nobody will catch him. If he isn’t then the bunch will catch whoever is out there. VSP PICKS: 1. Cancellara 2. Sagan 3. Vanmarcke 4. Thomas 5. Terpstra »

One of greatest cycling pleasures is riding with a mate. Riding ten centimeters off each other’s rear wheel for hours; trust is a beautiful thing. You swing over, ease your effort slightly so your mate rides through, you then tuck behind, in the draft, close and fast. It is the best. @Kah touches on this and other transcendent benefits from...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. So true about teaching and learning. Unfortunately I think some people go to club rides and get what @antihero describes as a valuable learning experience, but they come away thinking everyone is arrogant and unfriendly. I think it comes from the basic c… »

  2. On the same theme, just done a 50km 4-man TTT – proper group riding ! We’ve all ridden with each other but not together in a TT before. We were second by 16 seconds to the UAE national team, who were fully kitted out in TT rigs and disc wheels. »

  3. So true – riding with good riders who you trust is a wonderful experience. Sometimes you don’t actually have to know them well or even previously – it can be established very quickly by the way they ride – although it’s always nicer with friends. The ot… »

The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.It seems in s...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @Teocalli It’s not the Barfly – the design weakness is in the Garmin. This happened to my Edge 500 after about 2 years and I only ever used the Garmin mount. Having looked at the user forums and other sources it seems to be a very common thing after ab… »

Gravity is the most unavoidable force on Earth, with the possible exception of Stupidity. And like with Stupidity, you can take measures to reduce its influence on you, but you won’t get rid of it completely, assuming you’re staying on this planet. From the very moment we’re born, Gravity takes its unrelenting hold on us –...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. @Teocalli Well that also describes my 17 year old son who goes to a very good school, contrives to speak like a sarf lonnon gangsta and seems to think the world is just waiting to prostrate itself at his feet. It’s comforting to know he’ll end up like… »

  2. @LeoTea Gravity is easier to overcome than aerodynamics. If you go twice as hard uphill you go twice as fast. To go twice as fast into the wind requires eight times the effort. Apparently it’s physics. »

The Ride. It is the cathedral of our sport, where we worship at the altar of the Man with the Hammer. It is the end to our means. Indeed, The Bike may be the central tool to our sport, but to turn the pedals is to experience the sensation of freedom, of flight. It is all for The Ride.The world is overflowing with small, twisty roads that capture ou...

@ChrisO's posts:

  1. I must be going stir-crazy… I’m really excited that my coach has agreed to extend my usual 70 minute tempo session tomorrow to 90 mins, plus warmup/warmdown. Happy days ! Building up to a big race in 5 weeks. Apparently I’m going to peak. Truly, he’s … »