Author Archive | Gianni

Jan Raas, 5 time winner, not drinking Amstel Gold. photo-Peters, Hans / Anefo

Velominati Super Prestige: Amstel Gold Race 2014

by / / 252 posts

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…

Gino Bartali looking for a gear

The Hail Mary Shift

by / / 93 posts

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…

Eddie Boss

Velominati Super Prestige: Ronde van Vlaanderen 2014

by / / 307 posts

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…

Race of the Leather Toe Straps.

Velominati Super Prestige: Trofeo Alfredo Binda 2014

by / / 206 posts

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…

Honomanu photo:Blue Hawaii Helicopters

Terroir of the Bike

by / / 74 posts

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…

OmLoop  photo:cyclingweekly.co.uk

Let the Season Begin

by / / 117 posts

Omloop het Nieuwsblad is fast approaching on March 1st, Strade Bianche goes off the next weekend; finally, ladies and gentlemen, we have a season. For me the racing season really has to start in cold, wet Europe. I like the Tour Down Under just fine, I watch it, but it’s too early, too sunny and…

Magnus Bäckstedt, 195cm, 90kg

Climbing Tips for the Non-Climber

by / / 189 posts

I’m a non-climber who enjoys climbing. I’d enjoy it more if I was good at it. And “enjoy” might be too strong a word, “tolerate” might be better. But dragging 89 kilos up a volcano gives one time to contemplate the cycling life . Let us define non-climber. It’s someone either too fat, too big…

The Perfect Amount of Dumb

by / / 59 posts

Welcome to the Kermis. It’s not a recycling, it’s a reintroduction. The idea is to repost an old article that still resonates today and see where it goes. We will endeavor not to abuse this feature. I’ve referred to Frank’s fantastic Perfect Amount of Dumb article at least five times in my own posts. My…

This looks OK

Frame Job

by / / 183 posts

Last year we read that Philippe Gilbert is riding a 50cm (top tube of 535mm) BMC frame and he is 1.79m (5’10”) tall. Now it’s reported in Cyclingnews that Ritchie Porte’s Pinarello is a 46.5cm frame (top tube of 515mm) and Porte is 1.72m (5’8″) tall. He is no Nairo Quintana but somehow he is…

East Maui Pavé

Beyond The Rules

by / / 80 posts

Rules! Hear me fools: The Rules mark the beginning of the path to enlightenment, not the end. There are higher planes, expanding dimensions. Beyond the color of your bar tape exists a man, a mountain, and a bike. This is where the world begins. Keeper Jim wrote this, reporting on his utilitarian climb of Mount…

Dutch Cogal

Midwinter Cogal Report: Amsterdam-Utrecht 2013

by / / 19 posts

@Marco’s take Somewhere midway, I realized: looking fantastic while riding batshit fast through unknown territory in Rule #9 conditions in mid-December is hard. The shortest day seemed appropriate for a winter Cogal. It is what one does that day. With abundant Rule #9 conditions, one wouldn’t want to dwell too long upon it. Only strong…

Fake Cigarette optional photo: E. Keller

Rolling with Rule #80

by / / 80 posts

Always be casually deliberate, even when riding. You have just attacked off the front to take a town line sprint. It was a just-the-perfect-amount-of-dumb yet successful move. You went deeply anaerobic for a sprint no one else was even mildly interested in, but you did crush them unrestrainedly. Now, to hide your effort, you deploy…

If only we would fit on an alignment table. photo-Seven Cycles

A More Perfect Union-Phase One

by / / 61 posts

Hear ye, hear ye, get thee, and a mirror, to your indoor trainer. This is going to be a multi-part series on getting the rider and the ride to a more perfect union. Most of us have never been professionally fit for our bikes. An inseam measured, a glance at a reflection when riding by…

Walter Godefroot. photo from www.gios.it

Can’t Do That

by / / 99 posts

Pity our cyclist, it’s Saturday and he won’t shave his face, it might sap his strength but he has to shave his legs or he won’t look serious. He certainly can’t have sex, more strength stealing there, and kissing his wife, whoa, slow down, that could spread some germs. He doesn’t want to get sick…

Ernesto and Beppe credit:Colnago

Beppe Saronni: Patron Saint of Rule #22

by / / 129 posts

The cycling cap was part of any kit: nearly black shorts, team jersey and cap. It would be matching, it would be cotton. In the day before the required helmet, the cycling cap was it. Unrestrained by helmet or hairnet, the cap was the crown upon the head. It would sit high on the head,…

No Cyclometers Needed.

Riding Without Data

by / / 116 posts

I’m compliant with Rule #74: no Garmin, no cyclometer, just an uncluttered cockpit. I’m not anti-data, if I could generate some awesome data I’d like to know about it. If I was racing I would train with data. I just got bored with looking at the numbers and not doing anything about them. When my…

All Haul Ass-Andrea Tafi

Velominati Super Prestige: Paris-Tours 2013

by / / 81 posts

Oh brothers and sisters, we find ourselves here again. It was but a few moments ago when the Milan-Sanremo VSP went up. Racers fought the sleet, producing an unforgettable start to the Velominati VSP season. Cancellara, Nibali, Froome and, and Horner were all big points winners for our astute and well informed audience. But now…

Where is my Compact? image: Italian Cycling Journal

Velominati Super Prestige: Il Lombardia 2013

by / / 171 posts

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…

The old rings.

Front Chainrings and The Theory of Relativity

by / / 170 posts

Disregarding my Schwinn Typhoon, I started keeping score with my 1976 Peugeot PX 10 LE. It came with a Stronglight 52 x 45 and a 14 x 21 five speed freewheel. I always thought this Peugeot was set up for the pavé of northern France with those gears and wire-wrapped and soldered 3x tubular wheels.…

The Azzura previews the course.

Velominati Super Prestige: Women’s Elite Road Race 2013

by / / 157 posts

Where: Montecatini Terme to Firenze, Italy When: September 28 How: 140 km including 5 climbing laps in Firenze. It will most likely be gruppo compatto all the way to Firenze. The bombs start going off on the first of five climbing circuits. The strongest will stay near the front, with each circuit the pretenders will fall…