Author Archive | frank

There are a few subtle indications of this not being  the right way to do it.

Doing It Wrong

by / / 69 posts

Cycling is a complex sport, one whose fabric is densely woven from the fibers of a Hundred Years War between evolution and tradition. The Rules were laid out in part to provide a path through the chaos, helping lead the disciple towards transcendence. In the words of Pablo Picasso, “Learn the rules like a pro, so…

These aren't the men you're looking for. Photo: Tim De Waele

Body Dysmorphia

by / / 127 posts

I am thrilled to announce that for the first time in my life, my chest measurement is smaller than my hip measurement, an accomplishment I’m not sure many men around the world would be proud to admit. A Cyclist has no use for an upper body, we’re not going about lifting things with our arms; we are…

Always store your bike in the mechanic's position: small-small to ease tension on the derailleur springs. Photo: Pedale.Forchetta

On Rules #26 and #65: Spring Theory

by / / 80 posts

To hold opposing truths in one’s heart is a beautiful thing; to find resonance within contradiction is a liberating force that opens one’s mind to a wide world of possibilities. Life lived in black and white is a bland, simple world, after all: everything interesting in life happens in the gray space in between. There is…

...and now let me tell you about the time I made Roger cry.

Anatomy of a Photo: Top Dog

by / / 36 posts

I have it on excellent authority that life is good when you’re at the top. I myself am, of course, nowhere near the top but I felt a glimmer of it today, briefly savoring the unique palate of having some semblance of form in January. Which feels a lot like a victory over Christmas. And kicking Christmas’ ass feels pretty…

Erik Breukink crushes fools on the Gavia

Unsung Heroes: Erik “Gavia” Breukink

by / / 21 posts

I do love my Dutchmen. That much I admit. I also admit my love for the Americans with whom I share a passport. These affections are expressed erratically and sporadically, often at high volumes, and sometimes with some unreasonably held or possibly non factual evidence to support my passion. At this point, my love for…

Lean casually.

Lean In, Lean Out

by / / 71 posts

I profess to understand every mannerism and habit of the Cyclist. I’m Dutch, and I’m a writer, so it all comes pretty naturally. The problem is that thinking you understand something and actually understanding it are two completely different things; the first is confidence, the second is wisdom; there is no Venn diagram that has an…

Meeeeerckxy Chriiiisstmas!

Merckxy Christmas and a Coppi New Year

by / / 57 posts

As 20VVV comes to a close, we’d like to once again thank each and every one of you for your readership and participation in this amazing community. Each of you are what makes Velominati the most exciting (if divisive) community in the Cycling world, and none of it would mean a thing if not for…

That is some serious gunnage my boy Jan is showing off there.

Zee Germans

by / / 48 posts

The Germans are onto something. They call a bike a “rad”. From a linguistic standpoint, that is the most accurate name for a bike in any language. They call Cycling “riding rad”. I’m not even making that up. Radfahren. When they put it in a sentence, it translates roughly to “I’m practicing being rad.” I accept the…

If rider A rides 30kph toward rider B who is riding 22kmp, at what time with they lay down The V?

On Rule #74: Going Unplugged

by / / 156 posts

I think the most exciting Christmas present I ever received as a child was an Avocet 30 in what must have been 1989. Being in Minnesota and it being December, it meant my bike was going nowhere near the road any time soon, so I kept the silver dollar-sized computer in my pocket wherever I went,…

Her graceful touch.

The Graceful Touch of La Volupté

by / / 60 posts

I get to certain parts of my training when I begin to crave his blows, especially in winter. Winter is the time of year when training is a time for reflection and spending hours on the bike. Thoughts of hill repeats and intervals don’t creep into even the dampest corners of my mind as I…

Laurel Rathbun makes an adequate effort at Jingle Cross.

À Bloc

by / / 62 posts

The V surrounds us, it penetrates and binds us together. Through disciplined practice we are able to draw from it to push harder and go farther on the bike; what we do on the bike then informs how we face our lives. The masters, such as the Prophet Merckx and the Apostle de Vlaeminck, could channel…

Sarah Ginsbach demonstrates perfect mounting style. Photo: Allen Kuo

A Study in Casually Deliberate: Start Properly

by / / 93 posts

I was recently asked how one is supposed to handle the delicate situation when departing a traffic signal and you are unable to clip in immediately. The obvious answer is that you’re supposed to clip in right away (use your toe to position the pedal and then pop your shoe into it) but I admit…

ERIK V IS ESCORTED AWAY BY THE TOUGHNESS POLICE. FOR BEING JUST TOO FUCKING FLANDRIAN.

In Memoriam: Erik de Vlaeminck

by / / 23 posts

Sad news today that Erik de Vlaeminck, older brother to Flemish Cycling legend Roger de Vlaeminck, passed away today at the age of 70. He was a dominant Cyclocrosser winning a whopping seven World Championships, six of which were back to back from 68-73. He was apparently suffering from Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. I don’t know…

Socks over the booties? Please say it ain't so.

The Punter

by / / 180 posts

They say you can measure the quality of a man’s character by his ability to admit when he’s wrong. That in itself seems wrong, since it would obviously be better to be right in the first place, but I’m probably missing the point because I’m Dutch and everyone knows Dutch people are 97% more righter…

New Kit design (VLVV) and V-Casquettes

V-Announcements: VLVV Product Line and Long-Awaited V-Casquettes

by / / 88 posts

Whenever I drive somewhere in my car, I find myself wondering what the road would feel like from a bike. Driving in a car feels like cheating, especially on a windy day; roads are gobbled up at constant speeds irrespective of the conditions. On a bicycle, you learn what it costs to move up a gradient…

Casually Deliberate

Look Pro: Pre-Ride Afficionado

by / / 54 posts

My office is organizing a holiday 12K run, an invitation to which I replied that one is only to engage in running when one is being chased, and even then only fast enough to avoid capture. I am a Cyclist, not a savage fleeing a beast in the jungle. I walk as little as possible because I hate…

We will always find unity through Cycling. VLVV.

The Power of Sport

by / / 72 posts

Whenever I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the human race. HG Wells The world is a strange place. Our planet is more globally connected than ever before where our differences are measured by increasingly smaller margins, yet they represent apparently unbridgeable chasms. The horrific events in Paris and elsewhere around the world emphasize…

Michele Bartoli, possibly the pioneer of the small frame and slammed stem.

Style and Fashion

by / / 74 posts

The difference between Style and Fashion is that Fashion changes, but style is something that persists through the ages. You can’t buy it, and you either have it or you don’t. In other words, you can get all the best and expensive kit and still look complete crap if you don’t have Style. Conversely, you can…

Pete Boydell shows us what Rule #5 looks like.

On the Rivet

by / / 94 posts

I’m proud to declare that I am fluent in three languages: Hyperbole, Dutch, and English. All of them rubbish. The language of the peloton is, by and large, the most beautiful and expressive in French and Italian, which already make anything sound sexy. But they really excel in le langage du peloton: Sur la plaque, La Volupte,…

We'll always have Paris.

La Solidarité

by / / 68 posts

We will always have strength, we will always have Paris, and we will always have the Tour de France racing to the finish on the Champs Élysée in July. Our thoughts are with the victims and people of Paris. Vive la France.

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