Archive | Racing

From a Fiat to a Ferrari

Evanescent Riders Of The 90s: Bjarne Riis

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I know what you’re thinking. How can one label Bjarne Riis an Evanescent Rider? He was a champion, he won the Tour, and went on to become one of the leading Directors Sportif in cycling. Yeah, well, just because he hung around long enough to get the right program and then jagged a job as…

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The Team Car

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With the Tour underway there are many things to envy. One that always gets me is the team cars. This, to me, is the ultimate luxury (coupled with the relentless suffering, but hey, these guys are paid for this). No need to stuff your jersey with eight kilos of food and spares. A new wheel…

The ride up Mt. Baker is long, hard, and stunning

Guest Article: Ride 542 – the Mt. Baker Hill Climb

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@eightzero is throwing down the sweaty gauntlet here. He has a vision of a V-kitted, Rule compliant freight train of pain. Normally this post would be directly slotted into the Cogal section but it technically is not a Cogal: it has an entry fee, it’s too organized and people will not get lost. We have,…

Van Petegem in 2003. Photo: Photonews

Peter Van Petegem: A Lesson in Rule #9

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Rule #9–Fair-weather riding is a luxury reserved for Sunday afternoons and wide boulevards. Those who ride in foul weather – be it cold, wet, or inordinately hot – are members of a special club of riders who, on the morning of a big ride, pull back the curtain to check the weather and, upon seeing…

Vande Velde leads on the Stelvio. Photo: Steephill/Sirotti

Twistin Banged and Felled. And Got Back Up.

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As a byproduct of brakes being strictly for ornamental purposes, cyclists are often forced to find alternative means of stopping their bikes. As a matter of both convenience and effectiveness, the tarmac and other objects of greater mass than the sum of cyclist and bicycle are often employed for this purpose. Collectively, we refer to…

All Haul Ass. Photo: Sirotti

Gianni’s Carbon Ball: Sir Twiggo

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The glow from the Giro is still visible, everything is still pink but I’m jumping ahead of all the Wilcocksons of the world with a bold Tour de France prognostication. And to do this  I’ve borrowed Frank’s carbon ball, oft used for somewhat accurate predictions of future cycling events. This article was written weeks ago,…

Basso leads the mice into the Pain Cave

Ride Like a Leader: Ivan Basso

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Everyone knows that things like “tactics” and “thinking” are for the weak. After all, if you’re strong enough, loud enough, and stubborn enough, you should be able to outlast those pesky details like evidence, facts, or people who can ride their bikes faster than you can. Ivan Basso knows this, and Ivan Basso believes he…

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Rule 43: Don’t be a Jackass

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Not being a jackass seems simple enough in spirit but can be difficult to operationalize. Waving to another cyclist because they are on a bike and not ‘the right’ kind of bike reduces your jackassness. But what if that cyclist is clearly riding his daughter’s bike to work because he probably got a third DUI?…

The bunch in Denmark, Giro d'Italia 2012. Photo: Morten Okbo

Guest Article: Giro d’Italia in Denmark

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Morten Okbo joins us on the second rest day of il Giro (even though it really feels like only the first rest day) to tell the tale of the Giro making its start in his homeland of Denmark. Morten is a long-time reader of Velominati, but distinguishes himself amongst our Guest Contributors as also being…

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Anatomy of a Photo: You Can Leave Your Hat On

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Sometimes, when there’s a job to be done, you just don’t care what you look like. As with gardening, changing the oil or building that new pergola, the best gear for the job is usually the most practical, not the most stylish. In this Cor Vos image from the 1985 Liége-Bastogne-Liége, keeping warm is clearly the…

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Guest Article: The Fine Art of Pedaling

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Keeper Jim and I came across Meg Fisher during an icy-rain Rule #9 training ride on Mercer Island in March. The first thing that struck us was that there was a good rider up the road, one of the few braving those cold, wet, early morning hours. It wasn’t until we caught up to her that…

Guest Article: The Most Beautiful Race in the World

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Finally we can speak to this Paris-Roubaix mythology. The Keepers Tour group rode twenty-one sectors at something much slower than race speed. After the first sector we regrouped and we were all stunned by how bad it was. Twenty more sectors of that? That was horrendously tough. The first sectors are the easy ones. The…

Deliverance: The line.

Guest Article: My Journey from Milano to Sanremo

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While the rest of us where bickering over the style in which the finale of one of the most exciting editions of Milano-Sanremo played out, @Pedale.Forchetta was busy behind the finish line, living and breathing the reality of the race. He spent the day following the race to photograph the riders and tifosi and generously…

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Tubulars: Art, Science, and Ritual

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As Keepers Tour crossed from dream to reality and routes over the cobblestones of Northern Europe were sketched out, with it came the familiar tingling in my fingertips and uneasy sensation at the base of my spine as my mind starts its irrevocable journey towards categorizing as mandatory an unnecessary indulgence. I was going to need a wheelset and…

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Ride Like a Girl: Meg Fisher

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This is Meg. Keeper Jim and I found Meg spinning loops around Mercer Island, big-ringing the rollers in the pouring rain. Meg likes sunsets, puppies, and had a gerbil named Fränk. Meg doesn’t need bad weather to be considered a badass; Meg rides her bike with one leg, so riding in the rain is hardly a blip…

"V"os plays in the sand. Photo: Danny Zelck

Ride Like a Girl: Marianne Vos

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While it took seven Belgians to dominate the Men’s Cyclocross World Championship race on Sunday, it only took a single Dutchwoman to dominate the women’s race. That’s seven times more dominanter, if my math is correct – which it always is. Cyclocross fascinates me, mostly because it is completely insane. But I admit: I like the idea…

Photo: Slipstream Sports

The 2011 Anti-V Moment of the Year: Paris Roubaix

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While the The V Moment of the Year is the moment during the season when the sport demonstrated the most pure example of spirit of The V, the Anti-V Moment of the Year similarly acknowledges the moment in which all those things that make The V great were ignored. This is more than just cheating or climbing into the…

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The 2011 V Moment of the Year: Paris Roubaix

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The V Moment of the Year isn’t an award so much as acknowledgment of the moment during the season when the sport demonstrated the most pure example of spirit of The V. This is more than pushing hard en route to glory; the V Moment is the one point in time at which, despite a…

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Guest Article: La Vie Velominatus-Transformation

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The fear of crashing is there but we can’t let override our pleasure in cycling. @mblume writes of this and underplays his riding the Haute Route. That ride alone should be a long article about abiding Rule V. Yours in Cycling, Gianni As a transplanted American living in Europe for 12 years, I have had…

racing at the Marymoor velodrome

Friday Night Lights

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Took my 2-yr-old son to the last of the Marymoor Velodrome summer series races tonight. He rode his tricycle up to watch from the top of high-bank turn and sat there, transfixed. It was a perfect late summer evening– dry and warm, with a lingering sunset. The Cat 1&2 races were fast and precise, and…

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