Archive | In Memoriam

Christ I miss the days of free-basing EPO.

FFS Fridays: Lost Friends and Blood Pipes

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FFS. It is Friday, finally, and this is what this week has felt like: I kid, I kid. We actually have no idea whether T-Rex was actually that color. The wine, well, depending on your poison. Today marks the third anniversary of our fallen comrade and community member Jon Lennard’s passing. His memory rides with me still…

Any Questions?

Guest Article- In Memoriam: ‘Iron Man’ Mick Murphy

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Where to begin with this Guest Article? When you start talking about a person who makes Fiorenzo Magni sound like, maybe he wasn’t so tough, that is saying a lot! Who needs an inner-tube? On the sliding scale of Hardmen there are a few outliers, a few data points way out past the crowd. Mick…

Oh Jaja, why so French? photo: Eric Houdas

In Memoriam: The Headband

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Like the Spinaci bars, the headband was cool, effective and disappeared quickly. While the Spinaci was outlawed by the UCI for being too radical, the headband couldn’t co-exist* with the newly arriving hard-shell helmet and it said arrivederci, I’ve heard something about this ‘step aerobics’, I’ll go there. Headband crossed national boundaries: Jean-François Bernard, Roberto…

Gone the way of the frame pump

A Shift In Time

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Returning to your roots can be both a rewarding and sobering experience. The nostalgia one feels for the halcyon days of youth, the memories of carefree times in the sun with the only concern to make it home in time for dinner, the hidden alleyways and secret spots where the bike would take you and…


In Memoriam: Erik de Vlaeminck

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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…

13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18. That's a corncob Popeye would make a pipe of.

In Memoriam: The Straight Block

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Disc brakes and 1x drivetrains. These are the sort of things that belong on mountainbikes, are questionable on cross bikes, and should make an immediate trip to the rubbish bin when it comes to road bikes. Change for the sake of change; gimmickry masquerading as innovation. And to make matters worse, the appearance of 11-speed blocks has killed…

My only remaining hub with loose ball bearings.

In Memoriam: Loose Ball Bearings

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The darker months bring out the macabre in each of us; for Gianni it was the extinction of his beloved Park Tool adjustable clamp. For me, I found myself mourning the fact that I recently purchased a headset press. Ignoring the fact that a Velominatus of my stature didn’t already own one, the mourn behind…

Old School

In Memoriam: The Original Park Adjustable Linkage Clamp

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There are certain bicycle tools that once owned, signify much more than just ownership. For me, it was this Park clamp. No one starts out with a proper bike stand. For any cyclist, I see the early years of working on the bike as it leans up against the end of the bed. I also…

Metzger Bicycle Shop, Detroit City Gas Co, circa 1912. Photo: Detroit Publishing Company

In Memoriam: The LBS

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There was a time when I held down ‘real jobs’. Jobs with (a little) stress, with (some) responsibility, but without soul. And while dealing with the great unwashed never held much appeal, I always envied the guys who worked at my preferred LBS. They seemingly had it all–an endless supply of cheap bikes and parts, hanging out…

A true Velominatus

RIP: Jim Oberstar

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This week we mourn the loss of a true Velominatus, Jim Oberstar. The vast majority of you will have never heard of Jim but if you ride a bike in the US you have him, in large part, to thank for the infrastructure you ride. Jim died this weekend, unexpectedly, at a spry 79. Mr.…

r-EPO man

In Memoriam: Il Pirata, Ten Years Gone

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I don’t know if it’s because I see something of myself in them or if it awakens some kind of nurturing instinct, but I always seem to find myself drawn to tragically flawed figures. Layne Staley and Marco Pantani strike me as two halves of the same whole; incredibly talented yet tortured with mortally addictive personalities,…


In Memoriam: Jon Lennard, aka @itburns

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Each of us throw a leg over our top tubes and submit ourselves to the open road in recognition of the risks involved. These risks include those of a puncture, crash, damaged equipment, disability, and – ultimately – death. We try to be vigilant, we ride assertively yet defensively, and we hope for the best.…


2012 Anti-V Moment of the Year: Bullies are really just pussies

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As referenced in the 2012 V-Moment of the year article and ensuing discussion, it was a most Vawesome year for cycling. It’s been hypothesized here and on cycling sites with more integrity that the fantastic racing of 2012 may be, at least in part, attributed to a cleaner peloton. Unless you watched the Tour de…

Now this is a head badge.

In Memoriam: The Proper Head Badge

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The days of the proper head badge, I’m afraid, are numbered. It seems it used to be that any road bike with a pedigree that was really worth riding was festooned with an artful adornment on the head tube. By that I mean something made with a bit of heft, stamped or cast of alloy…

The classic, steel-railed Selle San Marco Rolls saddle, in gleaming black leather.

In Memoriam: Leather and Brass

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Composites, microfibers, synthetics. They amaze in their qualities; light, strong, durable – unyieldingly stiff or unimaginably suple, depending on our whim. When modern components arrive on my doorstep, upon lifting the unremarkable cardboard box I often wonder whether there is anything at all inside or if perhaps the person on the other end of the postal system…

Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 9.24.46 AM

In Memoriam: Fiorenzo Magni, December 7, 1920 – October 19, 2012

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The Velominati mourn today the passing of Fiorenzo Magni, perhaps one of the Cycling world’s greatest living example of the spirit of The V and all that surrounds it. Magni was the original Lion of Flanders, a feat heightened somewhat by his being Italian, not Flemish – though the Flemish had little to argue with…


In Memoriam: Olympic Tandem Match Sprint

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The Olympic track racing fires off tomorrow and it’s time to remember an event discarded to the bin of noble sports. The Olympic roster of events is constantly evolving and devolving which is why we are now watching synchronized diving as an Olympic sport. What a world, what a world. Maybe it’s a sign of…

Ashes on the Croix de Fer

Guest Article: Velo Love

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Even Wiggo said it’s just a bike race. Bike racing may be just that but Cycling is life. And Love is life and it’s amazing when they all get tangled up together. We first heard from @Farzani months ago; a Belgian in training. She said she had an on-going story to tell and asked if…

Laurent Fignon's Hour Record Machine

In Memoriam: The Funny Bike

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We gather here today to pay our respects to one of the most exciting developments the Cycling world has ever witnessed: the funny bike. For seventy years, the evolution of the bicycle was marked by incremental change; improvements to brakes, more gears, and better shifting followed one another as the sport grudgingly continued its slow journey towards…


In Memoriam: The Tricolore

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It was a simple time. Team kit was understated, with black shorts and a few colored panels on the jersey. Race Leader and National Championship jerseys were plain, and often even lacking in the name of the sponsor. National Championship jerseys in particular were a matter of national pride more than sponsorship; it was an honor…

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