Anatomy of a Photo: And He Parted The Waters

De Vlaeminck parts the waters in the Trouée d'Arenberg.

No double wraps of bar tape. No arm warmers or bandages for an injured left arm; just some wrappings borrowed from an Egyptian mummy he sent back to the underworld earlier in the morning. Nothing special for Roger on a typical race day in Hell. Just unmeasurably enormous helpings of Rule 5.

The most remarkable thing about this photo? He did that to the water before he rode through it.

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80 Replies to “Anatomy of a Photo: And He Parted The Waters”

  1. @wiscot

    @Sam
    I hear ya. I have an old pair of Bolle Edges with interchangeable lenses. Grey, brown clear, red and . . . yellow. On a dull day you can’t beat the yellow! They are also super stylish!

    I had them in Gatorade Green, in honor of Gianni’s sweet pair. Wish I still had them. I still have the Briko Shots I got immediately after the Bolle’s, but I don’t have them anymore.

  2. @Gianni

    @Oli
    @frank
    New avatars? Damn, maybe I should man-up and move on, but change is hard…

    I’m testing a new one, but I feel weird about it. I think I’ll land back on my old one. Go with what feels right; this is your avatar, for Merckxsake!!

    @Benj

    Damn, you know you’re a proper hardman when you’re bunnyhopping puddles on the cobbles. FNG here, thought I’d finally make a post after reading for a long time. Despite being nowhere near as badass as Roger this photo kind of shows how I was feeling on the commute home last night in the rain (it’s not something we see a lot of this time of year).
    Thanks for the inspiration for another evening ride (probably) in the wet. Rule #9 here I come.

    Welcome! The bikehandling is amazing, and photos like these are what inspires each of us to get them!

  3. @Gianni

    @Sam
    Sam, we have all learned the hard way; Oli is the Source. Resistance is futile.
    @Oli
    @frank
    New avatars? Damn, maybe I should man-up and move on, but change is hard…

    Don’t switch dude. Your avatar kicks ass. Makes me smile every time I see it.

  4. @frank
    Now THAT is a classy photo, eh? Fuckin’ Bugno resplendent in everything cool about pro cycling. Monster shades, check, rainbow, check, black shorts, check, campag, check, celeste green, check. Back before the Italians went a little garish in their style.

    And I’ll say it again, I loves me a modern bike but old skool geometry is where it’s at for style. Fuckin’ A.

  5. Thanks for the inspiration, Frank. Great photo, a study in hardening the eff up. Will use this as motivation for many a Portland winter training sesh.

  6. I don’t like all the switching of the lil’ pics…I used to be able to immediately identify many of you, now I wonder who the heck everyone is. Go on ya’ll, switch ’em back!

  7. @frank Yes, I understand the theory. We did the same thing on our BMX bikes back in the day, and for the same reason – protect the undercarriage, and use your arms and legs as shock absorbers.

  8. Tried to think of something clever to say but I just couldn’t think of anything so instead I’ll just leave this here. Just looking at it makes me desire more of The V!

  9. I’ll be there next April, in my safari suit and desert boots cheering Saussler in his suicidal breakaway…
    Just sayin…

  10. @harminator

    I’ll be there next April, in my safari suit and desert boots cheering Saussler in his suicidal breakaway…Just sayin…

    +1

  11. @Marko
    That’s so odd. I have no idea why it misspelled, and even less why I didn’t register that it had!!

  12. @frank
    Not too much pressure, by the way – depending on the tape you’ll have a massively lumpy job of it. With Fizik, you want to pull pretty hard and get a very even wrap, while with Cinelli and it’s imitators in the varying types of cork and pseudocork, you’ll want a firm but not too tight pressure to make sure you avoid the big lump in the middle of each wrap. Be careful on that one, even the Pros will wrap too tight.

    @frank

    I use Spesh Bar Phat with the gel inserts, so the bumps are pretty much a given. I like them, gives the hands extra textural variety when moving around the cockpit.

    Each to their own.

    Fuckin nails photo by the way.

  13. @Souleur

    here is the clips of video, hey frank, can you paste a pic or tell me how to, i am computer stupid
    it indeeed was the 1973 Paris Roubaix, and the video shows it all, it shows them taking out w/goods and evidently he just threw them to the side, i suppose he may have taken the stitches out too and just tossed them bastards out but the antifreeze in his veins would have leaked for sure
    http://youtu.be/ftZkzaarq4E

    Unbelievable. Fing glorious. When men were truly men.

  14. Back in ’92 when Cycle Sport magazine was launched, it came with a free video. That video was a highlights package of english-language cycling and included a 10 minute segment of “A Sunday in Hell”. Later in the decade, as motivation, I used to watch that video the night before races.

    “De Vlaeminck pushes harder on the pedals”

  15. @Blaireau

    @Souleur

    here is the clips of video, hey frank, can you paste a pic or tell me how to, i am computer stupid
    it indeeed was the 1973 Paris Roubaix, and the video shows it all, it shows them taking out w/goods and evidently he just threw them to the side, i suppose he may have taken the stitches out too and just tossed them bastards out but the antifreeze in his veins would have leaked for sure
    http://youtu.be/ftZkzaarq4E

    Unbelievable. Fing glorious. When men were truly men.

    That podium jersey Merckx is wearing is superb! You know it’s wool too.

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