Archive | The Rules


La Vie Velominatus: Flemish Tan Lines

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Clouds hang heavy in the sky, plump with a rain which contemplates the opportunity to hurl itself towards the Earth below. I get the sense that we wait for each other, the Rain and I; the rain relishes the opportunity to soak my clothes and skin, seeking to corrode my resolve while I cherish the opportunity…

Eddy Hands Down the Tablets from Mt Velomis

The New V-estament

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During the birth of The Rules, just like the Big Bang, there was a flurry of new activity, too much expanding and not enough contracting; certainly not enough thinking. It’s hard to keep the throttle back when divining the Word of Merckx in real time. The interweb tubes whistled with new Rules shuttling back and…


Anatomy Of A Photo: Professeur Pavé

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Despite being a bald, visually challenged Velominatus, I envy only one other man from the peloton past. The only man who could pull off the historically near-impossible chrome-dome/ponytail combination, and couple it with a pair of wire-rimmed reading glasses yet still manage to exude a lethal concoction of Gallic style, hardness and pure V that…


New Rule: 52 (Plus a Guest Reverence)

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With the writing of our first book supposedly well underway (but in reality being discussed ad-nauseum in the Boardroom rather than actually committed to text), The Rules have at least been getting some form of attention from The Keepers. When deciding which Rules each of us were to curate, no-one really had much idea what…

The classic gear lever

Changer de Braquet

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Some people are supremely good at it, reducing complex situations into matters of simple black and white. This isn’t my particular area of expertise; I enjoy wading through the pools of ambiguity a bit too much to go about bludgeoning this beautiful world into absolutes. In fact, I would venture that delighting in nuance is part…

Its in the loose sleeves

Climbing Weight

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When it comes to weight and body dysmorphia, we cyclists can go toe-to-toe with any thirteen year old tween who has done their time flipping through the pages of Vogue and Sixteen. However fit and thin we might be, at some point it dawns on us that we’re not as light as we could be.…


La Vie Velominatus: The Rain Bike

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In our privileged stables of bikes, it ranks towards the bottom of the heap as Bike #2 or lower, but the Rain Bike is no slouch. This is, after all, the bike we rely on in bad weather, trusting it to carry us safely through what typically amounts to the most dangerous conditions we ride…


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?…

Rik van Looy, The Emperor, proving that Steel is Real

The Rule #5 Talk

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Have a look around to see who you find occupying your immediate vicinity. Presently, I am surrounded by a pleasant-seeming bunch. Some are even going so far as to appear happy or at least not displeased; all of them are pale and none of them fit. My attention is drawn, however, to a a portly…

The Badger had it worked out.

La Vie Velominatus: The Goldilocks Principle

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The Rules are about cultivating a passion for riding our bikes to gain the maximum enjoyment possible. This requires humility, for one thing, and devotion, for another. It requires a balance between focusing on progress and enjoying the journey. It demands a reverence for our history paired with a hunger for evolution. The Rules teach…

Tool of the Anti-Merckx?   Photo from

Guest Article: Anti-Reverence? The Spin Bike.

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Our balaclava wearing friend, @Oracle, submitted this winter reflection on the V. The article is a little ripe, but for many, spring is still a long way off and the gym or a balaclava are the only solutions to some tough questions.  Yours in Cycling, Gianni — This past winter, I went round a bit…

Rule 47 is one of the most important additions.

New Rules

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The Rules – They were never expected to become this well known. Nor was the list ever going to get this long or be taken this seriously. The Rules were first suggested as a few basic guidelines just to keep some basic civility and decorum on the road. But we took it too far (as…

Photo: The Atlantic

Rule #5: Racing Hoogerland-Style

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Johnny Hoogerland, on receiving the Tour de France Rule #5 Award: I normally don’t drink that much beer anymore but having my first off-season beer in this glass makes it taste great. I moved to my new home and will find it a great place because it honors my way of racing. Fitting words from…


Rule 8: It’s Gotta Be The Shoes

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What Gianni humbly omitted from his last article is that once he finishes ranting about sock color (actually, the lack of need for any color other than than white), he recovers quickly and we wrap up the Keepers executive board meeting with him tearing our legs off on the ride home from the bar with…

Evidence A  photo: Chris

Rule 28: Dissenting Opinion

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Rule #28: “White is old school cool. Black is cool too, but were given a bad image by a Texan whose were too long.  If you feel you must go colored, make sure they damn well match your kit.” You bet white is old school and for good reason, it is the only color of…

Fignon gets on with the job of being a Cyclist

On Rule #9: Love the Work

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Fitness. The rhythm, the feeling of precision in our movement, the sensations of The Ride. The temptation of knowing we might in some way control our suffering even as we push harder in spite of the searing pain in our legs and lungs. The notion that through suffering, we might learn something rudimentary about ourselves – that we might…

Madonna! What time is it?  photo:Reuters

Guest Article: The Ride Starts On Time. No Exceptions.

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In light of the first North American Cogal (a Cogal is a gathering of Velominati just like a Cabal was a gathering of Illuminati); this Guest Article by community lurker @gmoosh seems apropos. Except that obviously every ride starts at V past the hour. In this spirit, we have added Rule #87. Message from the Keepers…

Mountain roads in the Mount Rainier Valley

Where Angels Fly

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When you’re digging deeper into Rock and Roll, you’re on a freight train headed straight for the blues. – Jack White The analog for this in Cycling is that as we dig deeper into cycling, we’re headed for The Mountains. Suffering is the altar of our sport, and Rule VV emphasizes the experience: the pain…

Paul Sherwen lays down The V in the late Seventies

Paul Sherwen

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Paul Sherwen is generally seen as Phil Liggett’s counter-point, dutifully keeping the iconic duo’s race commentary on course, helping to convey to the English-speaking world the sport of Professional Cycling. Liggett, of course, has undeniably helped shape this great sport  for Anglophones across the globe, having been the English voice of this sport since before…

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