Les Maîtres de la Casquette

The last masters of the Cycling cap passed into the night at the close of the 20th cetnury
The last masters of the Cycling cap slipped into the shadows at the close of the 20th century

It doesn’t take a genius to see what’s going on here. Rule #5, Rule #9, Rule #10; every rider in this frame Looks Fantastic (most other Rules). The riders are in short sleeves and shorts while the public apparently has scavenged materials from rubbish bins and the local grain elevator in a very visually unpleasant effort to keep warm. When I visualize the 90’s, this photo pretty much shows what I see. (Why was the weather so crap in France during Big Mig’s reign? Only redeeming quality of his wins.)

What this photo also shows is the highest concentration of Les Maîtres de la Casquette, the masters of the Cycling cap, in recent recorded history. We discussed the art of wearing a Cycling Cap before, probably more often than necessary. Like all art, it begins with some founding principles, and then opens itself to the artist’s vision and expression. And like with art, there are The Masters.

In the art of wearing the revered casquette, we are guided by the Three Point System. From there, we are at liberty to express ourselves. In the days before helmets, the peloton was overflowing with masters of this studied art with an early style peak coinciding directly with the point of bushiest sideburns, but it has since all but died out. The last peak was in 1991, when Big Mig, Chiappucci, Bugno, Luc LeBlanc, and Richard Virenque were all at the height of their powers. Like the Jedi after the rise of the Sith, it is the responsibility of The Velominati to keep this art alive.

It also occurs to me in the state of high fever in which I write this, that the transcended Velominatus is always engaged in a Cycling-related activity which could possibly provide a release-clause for any accusation of a Rule #22 violation.

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130 Replies to “Les Maîtres de la Casquette”

  1. @frank

    @Markp

    That said only Pantani could get away with a bandana.

    Indeed. Kids, don’t try this at home!

    No shit. Pantani had his strong moments no doubt however wearing bandana wasn’t one of them.

  2. @TommyTubolare

    @frank

    @Markp

    That said only Pantani could get away with a bandana.

    Indeed. Kids, don’t try this at home!

    No shit. Pantani had his strong moments no doubt however wearing bandana wasn’t one of them.

    This all really stemmed from him trying to drop the moniker of Elephantino, no?  He hated that nickname and wanted to try to create a new one and came up with the whole Pirata persona.

  3. @frank

    And a close up of the Master.

    Tried to get a close up look at the orange banded chronograph but couldn’t make out what it was. For the longest time I’d simply kept the watch while on the bike to the good ol’ good ol’ ironman watch but lately I’ve left been less particular about it being whatever watch I’d been wearing that day.

  4. @wiscot

    Definitey Millar in the middle. Looks like Sean Yates following behind him and possibly Anderson obscured behind Millar. For the trio to the left we need Oli…but they have their stroke all together magnificently.

  5. Another great article and pic Frank.

    When I see that pic of Gianni Bugno – I recall when he edged LeMan at the finish line on top of L’Alpe d’Huez in the 1990 TDF.  That’s when it looked at is Greg was in position to win, but he almost fell in that last 90 degree turn and as a result was then in too big of a gear.  I was really hoping Greg would have a win on L’Alpe d’Huez after giving the win there to Hinault in ’86.

    Hard to believe that was 24 years ago.

  6. @gerty Agree on all accounts.  REALLY wanted LeMan to win that day, esp after gifting Le Blaireau the stage in ’86.  Then he overcooked that corner and could not hold on to the line.  DAMN!

    We had to wait another two years before the first American win on d’Huez but Hampsten did it with class.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZ5pEm3ZEn4

    Love how they all take random water bottles from the crowd and pass it around and drink it at the 2:28 minute mark in the video.

    And yes, unbelievable that it was 24 years ago when Bugno pipped LeMan at the line.

  7. @wilburrox

    @frank

    And a close up of the Master.

    Tried to get a close up look at the orange banded chronograph but couldn’t make out what it was. For the longest time I’d simply kept the watch while on the bike to the good ol’ good ol’ ironman watch but lately I’ve left been less particular about it being whatever watch I’d been wearing that day.

    And up closer

  8. @Harminator

    Peiper far left, Thevenet 3rd from left…

    Nah, can’t be Thevenet. He left Peugeot in 79. That pic is after 82 when Shell came on as a sponsor. Left to right is (I think) Allan Peiper, Pascal Simon, Hubert Linard?, Francis Castaing, ?, Sean Yates, Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle. A bit of research made me switch from Millar to Castaing. While the contrariness of wearing a standard-issue cap (as opposed to the green points cap everyone else is wearing) would suggest the taciturn Scot, I don’t see Millar doing some low-key showboating like this, even in a neutralized roll-out section. Let me do a bit more research at home.

    Oli, any help?

  9. @wiscot

    @Harminator

    Peiper far left, Thevenet 3rd from left…

    Nah, can’t be Thevenet. He left Peugeot in 79. That pic is after 82 when Shell came on as a sponsor. Left to right is (I think) Allan Peiper, Pascal Simon, Hubert Linard?, Francis Castaing, ?, Sean Yates, Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle. A bit of research made me switch from Millar to Castaing. While the contrariness of wearing a standard-issue cap (as opposed to the green points cap everyone else is wearing) would suggest the taciturn Scot, I don’t see Millar doing some low-key showboating like this, even in a neutralized roll-out section. Let me do a bit more research at home.

    Oli, any help?

    So, the Peugeot tem that year was –

    Millar, Robert Forest, Pascal Simon, Duclos-Lasalle, Yvan Frebert, Peiper, Hubert Linard, Yates, Francis Castaing, and Frederic Brun., if you could now run tour facial recognition software…..

  10. @ped

    @wiscot

    @Harminator

    Peiper far left, Thevenet 3rd from left…

    Nah, can’t be Thevenet. He left Peugeot in 79. That pic is after 82 when Shell came on as a sponsor. Left to right is (I think) Allan Peiper, Pascal Simon, Hubert Linard?, Francis Castaing, ?, Sean Yates, Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle. A bit of research made me switch from Millar to Castaing. While the contrariness of wearing a standard-issue cap (as opposed to the green points cap everyone else is wearing) would suggest the taciturn Scot, I don’t see Millar doing some low-key showboating like this, even in a neutralized roll-out section. Let me do a bit more research at home.

    Oli, any help?

    So, the Peugeot tem that year was –

    Millar, Robert Forest, Pascal Simon, Duclos-Lasalle, Yvan Frebert, Peiper, Hubert Linard, Yates, Francis Castaing, and Frederic Brun., if you could now run tour facial recognition software…..

    I’m going to go with Peiper, Simon, Linard, Castaing, Brun, Yates Gibus in the pic.No idea who might be behind Castaing.

  11. And speaking of baller; Fausto shows us a little something about Rule #33 and also why its cool to flip the visor up even when you’re wearing it backwards.

  12. @frank looks like he’s taking the first bomba corretto of the day, seriously fucked over from the previous day, hence the shades

  13. @frank

    And speaking of baller; Fausto shows us a little something about Rule #33 and also why its cool to flip the visor up even when you’re wearing it backwards.

     

    Look at those FUCK’IN shades!  Man, too serenely fucking cool!

  14. @Harminator

    The ride will start soon enough…

    1985 TDF roll-out of Stage 1, Vannes – Lanester, on Saturday, 29 June.

    Nearest to the camera is Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle, the rider riding with his feet on the handlebar is Francis Castaing. Sean Yates (to the left of Duclos-Lassalle) and Pascal Simon (in the shades, second from left). After that (in no particular order) remaining team was Robert Millar, Frédéric Brun, Robert Forest, Yvan Frebert, Hubert Linard and Allan Peiper.

  15. @Buck Rogers

    @TommyTubolare

    @frank

    @Markp

    That said only Pantani could get away with a bandana.

    Indeed. Kids, don’t try this at home!

    No shit. Pantani had his strong moments no doubt however wearing bandana wasn’t one of them.

    This all really stemmed from him trying to drop the moniker of Elephantino, no? He hated that nickname and wanted to try to create a new one and came up with the whole Pirata persona.

    Had never really noticed how well the bandana matched the rest of his kit. Impressive and so much better than the ubiquitous red bandana I see too often.

    I appreciate the idea of a racer creating a persona while on the bike…as has been discussed previously it makes it easier to love, or hate, him or her.

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