Velominati Community Profile Archive

Velominatus: Rigid

Order: Level 3 Velominatus

Location: Wellington, New Zealand

A proud male New Zeelander (, from a country that shares a border with a strip of Belgium. I grew up hard and tough riding a Chopper with a red flag around the coastal roads of New Plymouth before being towed to Wellington by parents. 40 years old currently, I still have a lasting love affair with cycles that I'm hoping will be eternal - A-Merckx. No. 1 Bike is a TIME Proteam with Campa Shamals

@Rigid's activity:

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...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Lizzie Armitstead 2. Emma JOHANSSON 3. Van Der Breggen 4. K Wild 5. Ferrand-Prevot »

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...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Soooo hard to pick this race but I think Fabian is going to repeat last years effort on the Pateburg  and blow the contenders off his wheel. Unless a Stybar or someone similar gets there first VSP PICKS: 1. Cancellara 2. Sep Vanmarcke 3. Sagan 4. Boonen… »

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...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Vos 2. Johansson 3. Borghini 4. Armistead 5. Van dijk »

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...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Boonen 2. Sagan 3. Stybar 4. Cancellara 5. Greg Van Avermaet »

This winter Shimano showed up on Maui with a flotilla of Colnago C-59s set up with disc brakes. The lucky Shimano people tested the bikes on some of the nicest routes on the island, including some descending down the Haleakala volcano. Unbelievably they didn’t invite me along (!?). If they had I would have suggested a different place to ride, one...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Was talking to someone more knowledgeable than I who suggested the UCI might make disc breaks mandatory on all bikes in the pro-tour  in the near future. This is due to differential breaking rates among all the different rims these days causing too many… »

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...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. I’m going for a breakaway on the final climbs with fast descenders coming to the fore but being outsprinted by Sagan, followed by a bunch sprint phew.. VSP PICKS: 1. Sagan 2. Nibbles 3. Cancellara 4. Cavendish 5. Degenkolb »

I wasn’t anywhere near old enough to hold a driver’s license but my dad had already bought me a motorcycle. It was a late seventies BMW R100 RS, dark blue. I loved that bike; I polished it fortnightly even though it never left the garage. I spent hours sitting on it, twisting the throttle and squeezing the clutch, diving in and out of t...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. That’s a gorgeous photo to emphasize the point – all the perspective lines are warped by his speed (and the wide angle lense) to move the vanishing point off the page.. I’m always trying to explain the joy of cycling to non-cyclists but they never underst… »

Lucky is the cyclist who has a parent cyclist. Early mentoring about the pain cave, guidance gluing on tires, these are worthwhile lessons a parent could lecture a child on. If one has to listen to a parental lecture, better it be about Eddy Merckx and how you are no Eddy Merckx than balancing your checking account. For the rest of us, our parents...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Dad’s and bikes go together well- mine used to take us up the street to watch the racers come streaming down the mountain behind us, with sun glinting off shiny bits of their bikes. He used to impress me by riding epic all day marathons to  get to grandpa… »

Ok all you roadies, listen up. You’re not gonna like what I’m about to tell you, but it’s the truth. And sometimes, the truth hurts. You ready?Road cycling owes a lot to mountain biking. Continue reading...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. If I had to ride the Arenburg Trench every year I’d do pretty much anything for a smoother ride, if just to stop my front teeth from falling out. Did those Rox shox Ruby’s have a lockout for the smooth sections I wonder? Well researched article Bretto, yo… »

In the days of Anquetil, this was considered the most prestigious individual time trial on the calendar, and he made his name early by winning the event as an amateur at 19. It was also 100km in length, which brings up the point that maybe everyone in our generation should be banned from ever breathing the phrase, “Rule #5″.These days,...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. I must admit to picking names I like the sound of rather than having knowledge of their form – some of them sound like burlesque dancers VSP PICKS: 1. Strappazzon Marine 2. Leleu Fanny 3. Artaud Audrey 4. Van Houweling Molly 5. Brulee Latoya »

Welliminati unite for a Casually Deliberate, no-drop ride to celebrate the life of @itburns, a friend we unfortunately never met. This is also to show our support for the itburns Memorial Cogal taking place at Westpoint, NY, later the same day.Shake off the winter blues for 130 (approx) kilometres. We’ll ride from Aro Valley, out to Whitemans Vall...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Welliminati unite for a Casually Deliberate, no-drop ride to celebrate the life of @itburns, a friend we unfortunately never met. This is also to show our support for the itburns Memorial Cogal taking place at Westpoint, NY, later the same day.

    Shake off the winter blues for 130 (approx) kilometres. We’ll ride from Aro Valley, out to Whitemans Valley, across to and over Moonshine Road, through Whitby, then back to the city via Johnsonville and Ohariu Valley. I’’m guessing that few of us have done any distance work over winter, so I’m sure that the pace won’t be too hot for anyone.

    Meet at Aro Valley Fish and Chip shop at 9:30am, whatever the weather. There are 2 cafes in the immediate vicinity for pre-ride espressos and snacks.

    Distance: approx 130km

    And beers afterwards, obviously

    Event Details

    Loading Map....

    Date - October 20, 2013
    9:30 AM - 6:30 PM

    Aro Valley Fish & Chip Shop

    Cogal Details
    Route Details

    Ride Classification

Growing up, I imagine my dad did his fair share of worrying about me getting into trouble with chemicals and girls. Like with most problems in life, the solution lay in Cycling; training encouraged healthy behavior and once my dad convinced me to shave my legs, no one needed to worry about the girls anymore.Cycling caused its fair share of problems...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. @frank that video of Ole Ritter on the track is inspirational, especially when it goes slo-mo at the end – the seemingly effortless application of power. I imagine there isn’t a single dead spot in his pedal stroke »

Five is an important number. Assuming nothing has gone amuck in our development or our usage of cutlery, we each boast five digits on both our hands and both our feet. Most of us have five senses. Most miraculously, any number multiplied by five and then divided by five gives you the same number you started with and yields no remainder.The Babaloni...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Two V’s for a hardman of the peliton – on the road to the summit of the Galibier »

Il Lombardia, this is the race of the fallen leaves. This fall classic is a beautiful race in a beautiful region of Italy. The arduous route may change year to year but what does not change is the Italian need to win this thing. There is some national pride at stake here after the Italian men finished off the podium in Firenze. Bergamo to Lecco, 24...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. This is one of the races I look forward to all year – such a beautiful route and so much history VSP PICKS: 1. Rodriguez 2. Nibali 3. Gilbert 4. Quintana 5. Contador »

They don’t call it the race of truth for nothing, and Ferdi ain’t no liar. There’s no hiding when your specialist chrono machine is also your specialist road racing machine, and aero headwear is achieved through flipping your leather cap around to face the Jeep loaded with drunk French truffle hunters that’s been tailing yo...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. This photo and the pain cave gospel according to Frank where the inspiration for today’s sufferfest. Four hours in and I wanted to turn the bike towards the flats and home – No said the tiny Ferdi on my shoulder, you shall ride the 2k up Mt Albert and so … »

There are many revered places in Cycling, places that are instantly recognisable, places that command their own special page in history and in our memories for the great battles held upon them. Most likely the names you’ll think of first would be the great mountain climbs of the Grand Tours, l’Alpe d’Huez, Ventoux, Zoncolan, Stelv...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. @brett Ha ha. It’s a musette which dispenses many gifts and is also useful for taking a couple of ales to party. I really like the design of the kit – bold sophisticated use of colour and great typeset. Any idea what the Ravito stands for? »

Seriously. Is it almost September? This was not the agreement, this was supposed to be an endless summer. And all you A-Holes down there in the Antipodes are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, enjoying longer days and shorter nights. I don’t need to tell you where you can take that, but it’s dark and it smells. I have no patien...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Valverde 2. J-rod 3. Nibali 4. Henao 5. Uran »

I am a road cyclist, at heart. Even when I’m in a car, I’ll daydream about riding the same road I’m driving. I’ll imagine how the tarmac might feel as my wheels carry me across it, the wind, the smells in the air. I’ll imagine how my lungs are expanding and contracting, cleansing me a little with every exhale. In my mi...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. I totally agree regarding the calmness that comes with leaving civilisation behind and venturing into the wild. Every time I go I wonder why I don’t do it more often. Everything you sense seems to be perfectly in place and you feel at one with a greater w… »

Once again the metal grate is rolling up in front of the VSP lotto window. It’s bettin’ time. The Route de France is an eight day women’s stage race consisting of a prologue and seven road stages. The route stays away from any serious mountains so daily victories could go to sprinters or those willing to drive a breakaway. To make...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Was bitterly disappointed by Contador dropping out of 2nd at the tour and stuffing my very clean run of picks, so hoping for redemption from the women VSP PICKS: 1. Stevens 2. Johansson 3. Marijn De Vries 4. Armistead 5. Bronzini »

The early eighties saw the tide change in the European Peloton. Components were taking on a new, curvy shape as they left their boxy forms behind. The glint of toe clips in the sun would become a rarer sight as the move towards clipless pedals would take hold in 1985. English speakers were winning the big races classically won by continental Pros.T...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. Froome 2. Contador 3. Tejay Van Garderen 4. Quintana 5. J-rod »

I find it interesting to observe the chasm between parties engaged in a conversation, particularly in response to questions being asked. I’m thinking, at present, of the question, “How many bikes do you have?” My feelings in response are nothing short of complex and maybe a bit confused; reservation that I feel I should have a mo...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. That bike looks super fast Frank, capable of smoothing out any gravel road surface. The trick to grave is to keep your speed high just like on the pave and then you can blast over any corrugations caused by other vehicles. The motto ride the crest definit… »

The mighty VSP generator has been switched on once again. The mil-spec hydraulic fluid has been changed since the Giro. A new power take-off belt has also been installed. And the punch card reader has been refurbished.Broome and Berti are already riding the Critérium du Dauphiné. The top contenders prefer the Dauphiné for the decent recovery all...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. VSP PICKS: 1. TJ 2. Cancellara 3. Brajkovic 4. Kreuziger 5. Albasini »

Bicycles and automobiles- can’t we all just get along? @Kah writes about this universal (do aliens have this issue also?) problem of us co-existing with humans in cars. We all drive cars too and have cursed the occasional cyclists for some good reason. Cars are our greatest threat. We can crawl away from our own bicycle crashes, thanks very m...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. @frank And someone currently wearing mtb shoes his his road bike. I was just riding the very beautiful bays ride in Wellington and rounding the last corner I came across three roadies all in YJA’s. From the looks of it one was Dad taking his fledglings … »

We’re into day four of the Six Days of the Giro series, let’s talk trash. Yes the Tour de France started a few years before the Giro and has always been credited as The Tour to win. You win the Giro, you are a stud. Win the Tour and you are a stud for life. Why is that? Is the Tour longer, tougher, more murderous, more beautiful? In the 20...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. Let us not forget the Tiffosi – a race is about the people who watch it as well. Stylish, informed, hot… »

Twiggo is dreaming of a Giro-Tour double. He has sent out mixed messages about his Tour ambitions. Will he use the Giro as the ultimate Tour preparation or will be burn all his matches in May and hope he can find another pack for July? He has abandoned his successful 2012 Tour run-up strategy of winning every stage race he entered the previous spri...

@Rigid's posts:

  1. @Benny Wigging out – nice one.. Watching him hurl a $15,000 road bike at a wall makes me think he needs to stop taking it so seriously »