Quintanaroo and his family have a path to a new life. Whether to take it is their choice.

The Great Escape

The Great Escape

by / / 123 posts

There is a sense of weightlessness that accompanies speed; a strange feeling for any Earthbound creature who temporarily breaks Gravity’s relentless grip – an intoxicating blend of liberty and a sense impeding doom. The day I learned to ride a bike, I felt this sensation spread through me like a virus; immediately my eyes cast to the dirt trail behind the house as the most obvious opportunity to discover just how fast I could go and how far I could get. The excitement filled first my hands and my feet, then it billowed up through body to my shoulders and dazzled me with splendidly blurred vision as I sped down that very trail which previously I had only ever walked along.

The freedom that accompanied these feeling lingers with me today, and their intoxicating qualities express themselves every time my eyes cast upon a bicycle.

The bicycle has represented freedom to Cyclists since well before the turn of the last century. From the start, the question of how far and how fast the bicycle can be ridden has captivated not only those riding, but anyone who cares to spectate. A kilometer, then 5, then 500; race organizers quickly discovered what any modern Cyclist knows; make a ride sound crazy enough, and you’ll attract more than enough idiots to make a spectacle. So was born the sport of Bicycle Racing.

The classical tale we tell is that throughout the pre-War and post-War eras; when Cycling represented a reprieve from the labor of a hard daily life underground or in the fields. Many of the competitors in the Tour were workers who took time from their usual work to race across the great expanse of France. Even the great champions of Cycling’s Golden Era in the 1950’s would have chanced a life with hands gripping a set of handlebars against sickle, hammer, or shovel. Bobet, Anquetil, our Prophet Merckx, Hinault, and Fignon faced life in a field or market versus life as one of the greatest shaping forces our sport has known. It wasn’t until recently when Cycling became a financially attractive occupation; Merckx, in his most winning years, earned as much as his son Axel did as a domestique in the 2000’s.

But the notion of Cycling as an escape from a hard life in the fields may not be dead yet; as many of us now know, Nairo Quintana grew up in rural Colombia, riding 18 kilometers uphill to school (both directions, and naked in four seasons of Winter, supposing our collective grandfathers shared his fate). The bicycle didn’t just free him from the confines of his childhood; the bicycle elevated Nairo Quintana and his family into another stratosphere altogether.

I don’t know very much about life in Colombia and whether his newfound fame will lead to a better or more rewarding life for him. That remains for him to discover, and like anyone who pushes into the unknown, he will need to square his new demons against his old in order to find those answers. But what I do know is that, like it did for us, the bicycle has freed him from his perceived boundaries and set him free explore new territories.

It would seem, then – at least for this moment – that the Golden Era of Cycling is not yet beyond our grasp.

// Folklore // La Vie Velominatus // Look Pro // Nostalgia // Racing

  1. @Deakus I think you’ve answered your own question.

    (@Chris I never said anything about a plum. Different question entirely.)

  2. @Deakus Sounds like you’re doing a good job of imitating my riding style.

    I can’t really see any point in being fat, other than it seems to be an awful lot easier than being skinny. Until you get to a hill or try to go fast.

    I spent a month in the Andes working. The accommodation was at about 3000m to keep it comfortable but alotof the site was at about 4000m. I was smoking a bit at the time (takes ages to smoke at altitude) and unfit – 3000m was quite tough but it was amazing how much harder it was at at 4000m. We got up to 5000m a couple of times, that was an absolute killer.

  3. @Marcus

    @ChrisO I think there is some truth in the 10,000 hours. I mean, it’s a combination of genetics and self discipline that has held me back – not just one of them.

    And you can’t polish a turd.

    Surely it is the genetics that makes you lack self discipine…..or at least I sincerely hope so otherwise I have no excuse.

    As to your last statement….never a truer word spoken in jest….but reminding me did not get you on to my Christmas card list!

  4. @PeakInTwoYears

    (@Chris I never said anything about a plum. Different question entirely.)

    Aplomb. Posh way of saying Casually Negligent or whatever it is that @frank is always banging on about.

  5. @Chris

    @Deakus Sounds like you’re doing a good job of imitating my riding style.

    I can’t really see any point in being fat, other than it seems to be an awful lot easier than being skinny. Until you get to a hill or try to go fast.

    I spent a month in the Andes working. The accommodation was at about 3000m to keep it comfortable but alotof the site was at about 4000m. I was smoking a bit at the time (takes ages to smoke at altitude) and unfit – 3000m was quite tough but it was amazing how much harder it was at at 4000m. We got up to 5000m a couple of times, that was an absolute killer.

    I climbed Gran Paradiso a few years ago 4061m…or rather I did not because between 3000m and 4000m I discovered how difficult that transition is (only one night acclimatisation which was stupid).  I made it within 200m (vertical) of the summit and the tank was empty, I mean I was hardly even able to descend.  Wisest decision I ever made, the weather was on the turn and the day was getting late.  Wisdom is the better part of valour.

    Altitude sucks…period…

  6. @Marcus

    @ChrisO I think there is some truth in the 10,000 hours. I mean, it’s a combination of genetics and self discipline that has held me back – not just one of them.

    And you can’t polish a turd.

    Yeas that’s what I mean – it is a combination of genetics and practice. The the idea that anyone can reach the top if they do the 10,000 hours is effectively saying that you CAN polish a turd.

    The hours concept of training is really just a way of fulfilling the genetic potential – if you don’t have it in the first place then you can do 20,000 hours and it won’t help.

    There’ve been some interesting studies on chess players, where people have reached significantly different levels with widely varying amounts of practice. It comes down to ability first, then developing the ability.

  7. August 23rd until the next Grand Tour? No hockey? Crap, nothing but baseball, golf, and god forsaken CFL highlights to watch on the tele over breakfast. Maybe some female tennis grunting. Ugh.

  8. @tinu

    “Bobet, Anquetil, our Prophet Merckx, Hinault, and Fignon faced life in a field or market versus life as one of the greatest shaping forces our sport has known”

    I don’t agree; do you know why Fignon was known as “l’intello” in the peloton?

    I like the site, I like the book; but I don’t like when people spread half-thruths, especially about riders.

    OK Merckx was born to a middle-class bourgeois family and would probably have faced a life behind a counter or a desk. Although to be fair Fignon’s nickname was probably more to do with his glasses than his philosophical treatises. Jean Bobet was probably the best educated rider for many years.

    But I doubt any of them would have been so well-rewarded and well-regarded in even more upmarket professions, which I think was the point Frank was making.

    The examples may have been better chosen but the concept of sport as an escape into a more privileged life is one that is replicated many hundreds of times over in cycling, football, boxing and so on. It’s hardly a controversial suggestion.

  9. Given that ITTs are functionally time bonuses for the strongest time trialists, I submit that time bonuses for categorized climbs of 2, 1, and HC would even the playing field sufficiently to make the last week of le TDF pretty interesting.

  10. dudes, sorry for my mistake, Quintana didn’t ride the Giro

    so much for memory, my bad

    so Quintana does like spain, and has done alot of racing in that area, and the Vuelta may be on!

  11. genetics and all aside, I do think Quintana did benefit from the greatest single thing any rider gets, and it only comes once

    free pass, the unmarked rider, the unknown commodity

    who knew?  I mean hell, crashednfeld even cracked 4th…once

    look at Ryder now? Kloden, who was 3rd once?  Spartacus can’t do anything without the peloton pissing their bibs, because all these are now marked

    So, now Quintana is a known value, and will see how that pans out.  I personally think he is special and will be phenomenal.

  12. @ChrisO

    @Marcus

    @ChrisO I think there is some truth in the 10,000 hours. I mean, it’s a combination of genetics and self discipline that has held me back – not just one of them.

    And you can’t polish a turd.

    Yeas that’s what I mean – it is a combination of genetics and practice. The the idea that anyone can reach the top if they do the 10,000 hours is effectively saying that you CAN polish a turd.

    The hours concept of training is really just a way of fulfilling the genetic potential – if you don’t have it in the first place then you can do 20,000 hours and it won’t help.

    There’ve been some interesting studies on chess players, where people have reached significantly different levels with widely varying amounts of practice. It comes down to ability first, then developing the ability.

    a big part of what that book was saying Is that hard work and the 10,000 hours to expertise is a necessary component, but  with timing and opportunity(and luck) are the recipe for stardom. The point was that no superstar was one just because they were a “natural”.  Unique opportunity and timing allowed the cultivation of “Being a natural”.

  13. @Souleur

    genetics and all aside, I do think Quintana did benefit from the greatest single thing any rider gets, and it only comes once

    free pass, the unmarked rider, the unknown commodity

    who knew? I mean hell, crashednfeld even cracked 4th…once

    look at Ryder now? Kloden, who was 3rd once? Spartacus can’t do anything without the peloton pissing their bibs, because all these are now marked

    So, now Quintana is a known value, and will see how that pans out. I personally think he is special and will be phenomenal.

    He could well be another Uran or Henao…he may even lose some of the motivation, he certainly didn’t look fresh as a daisy at the top of those climbs.  I hope he does live up to the hype but only time will tell…

  14. @ten B

    @PeakInTwoYears

    Old training advice I read somewhere, in the context of running I’m afraid: if your face and hands are relaxed, the rest of you is probably relaxed, too. That helped me run better, and I try to remember it, now, while riding.

    I do the same, but end up drooling on my top tube when in 5-and-dime situations.

    And as for the Vuelta, if Uran is piloting the Death Star, there may be a couple of Colombinos on the podium.

    Tensioning your face is just energy wasted; I’m certain they train to stay relaxed in the face; makes perfect sense..

    Its hard though. I find myself grimacing wven just walking ip the stairs!

  15. @Souleur

    look at Ryder now?

    He’s had a shit season, mired with crashes.

  16. @frank

    @ten B

    @PeakInTwoYears

    Old training advice I read somewhere, in the context of running I’m afraid: if your face and hands are relaxed, the rest of you is probably relaxed, too. That helped me run better, and I try to remember it, now, while riding.

    I do the same, but end up drooling on my top tube when in 5-and-dime situations.

    And as for the Vuelta, if Uran is piloting the Death Star, there may be a couple of Colombinos on the podium.

    Tensioning your face is just energy wasted; I’m certain they train to stay relaxed in the face; makes perfect sense..

    Its hard though. I find myself grimacing wven just walking ip the stairs!

    Absolutely. I failed to mention that part of my post-ride ritual is wiping the saliva off of my bike. In fact I always feel a bit of added kinship with Laurens ten D, as he ascends with a foot of slime trailing from his face. And if it helps to keep people off of my wheel, bonus.

  17. @ten B Also. the old snot rocket launcher, can bring down a sucker.

  18. Awesome quote from Dave Brailsford

    You all laughed when I told you we were going to win the tour in five years, If I’d told you we would win it twice with two different riders you’d have p***ed your pants.

  19. @Chris

    Awesome quote from Dave Brailsford

    You all laughed when I told you we were going to win the tour in five years, If I’d told you we would win it twice with two different riders you’d have p***ed your pants.

    Isn’t that what Bruyneel said?

  20. @brett

    @Chris

    Awesome quote from Dave Brailsford

    You all laughed when I told you we were going to win the tour in five years, If I’d told you we would win it twice with two different riders you’d have p***ed your pants.

    Isn’t that what Bruyneel said?

    Jeez. I was thinking that, but I didn’t want to be a buzz kill.

  21. @tinu

    “Bobet, Anquetil, our Prophet Merckx, Hinault, and Fignon faced life in a field or market versus life as one of the greatest shaping forces our sport has known”

    I don’t agree; do you know why Fignon was known as “l’intello” in the peloton?

    I like the site, I like the book; but I don’t like when people spread half-thruths, especially about riders.

    Fignon was no professor. It was absolutely because he wore glasses, and it was no compliment. If you know otherwise please enlighten. We are not close minded here. Pains in the ass, sure, but we will listen.

  22. Professional cycling as “social upwards mobility” can also show a darker face: A close friend was a gifted junior MTB racer back in the early 90’s in Spain. After a couple of years of good results he was offered a place in a road racing team that groomed kids like him for pro cycling and soon found how uglier the scene was: He went from getting emergency spares from his main rival in top national level MTB to finding that an attack in the “wrong” place of the “wrong” road race would get him shouldered into the gutter when he was caught.

    He was still getting good results while he thought about starting college or delaying it for a few years to see if the cycling thing worked out, but many of the other kids had stopped their educations early and were completely desperate, with their parents and hangers on putting enormous pressure on them to succeed at any price.

    One particular evil effect of this situation was that the kids were basically railroaded into doping: ‘inject this and swallow that or pack and go home” was standard behaviour among the junior team principals, which explains a lot about the next decade worth of Spanish pros.

    A couple of stages into his first week-long race he was shown the needle and decided to pack it.

  23. @brett

    @Chris

    Awesome quote from Dave Brailsford

    You all laughed when I told you we were going to win the tour in five years, If I’d told you we would win it twice with two different riders you’d have p***ed your pants.

    Isn’t that what Bruyneel said?

    Fuck, Brett, can’t we send you away to the mountains for the whole of the Tour season next year? Some sort of retirement home/isolation facility for grumpy keepers.

    Bruyneel may well have said that but the difference is that he’s a weasely, beady eyed little shite. 

    It may all be dodgy as fuck, time will tell, but I quite like Dave’s style and I’m willing to take him at face value.

    As Frank said the other day “I would rather be burned by a liar than to accuse an honest man of cheating.” (although I’d rather see a pregnant lady stand on the bus than see a fat girl cry)

    I’m reading David Walsh’s book at the moment and it seems that whilst there might be similarities between now and then, the mistrust in COTHO and allegations of doping actually had some sound basis but didn’t gain momentum for a long time because many journalists didn’t want to go against the dream story of the sick kid overcoming adversity. Is there anything that points the finger at sky other than the fact that they’re better than other teams at the moment (which is only marginal at the moment anyway).

  24. @meursault

    @ten B Also. the old snot rocket launcher, can bring down a sucker.

    Haven’t used it in anger, but I found this instructional video from Jahvahaah:

  25. @TheFatMan

    Professional cycling as “social upwards mobility” can also show a darker face: A close friend was a gifted junior MTB racer back in the early 90″²s in Spain. After a couple of years of good results he was offered a place in a road racing team that groomed kids like him for pro cycling and soon found how uglier the scene was: He went from getting emergency spares from his main rival in top national level MTB to finding that an attack in the “wrong” place of the “wrong” road race would get him shouldered into the gutter when he was caught.

    He was still getting good results while he thought about starting college or delaying it for a few years to see if the cycling thing worked out, but many of the other kids had stopped their educations early and were completely desperate, with their parents and hangers on putting enormous pressure on them to succeed at any price.

    One particular evil effect of this situation was that the kids were basically railroaded into doping: ‘inject this and swallow that or pack and go home” was standard behaviour among the junior team principals, which explains a lot about the next decade worth of Spanish pros.

    A couple of stages into his first week-long race he was shown the needle and decided to pack it.

    I didn’t know about any of this at the kids level but the sad thing is I am not in the least bit surprised.  It not that I expect it in cycling….actually it occurs everwhere these days….Modelling….Banking….Racing (Horses and Cars)….Tennis….in fact anywhere you find the work “Academy” expect this sort of behaviour and pressure.

    We will probably need to wait for a few more people to die before public opinion and views within the sport change.  At the other end of the scale if you have worked in a sport all your career, you retire at 35 and have no other skills, then you are pretty much bound to apply the same tactics as were forced on you and the pressures remain the same because the team sponsors demand results.

    Think Premiership Soccer….manager gets half a season to perform or is sacked….etc..etc…it is only going to get worse not better…

  26. @Souleur

    genetics and all aside, I do think Quintana did benefit from the greatest single thing any rider gets, and it only comes once

    free pass, the unmarked rider, the unknown commodity

    who knew? I mean hell, crashednfeld even cracked 4th…once

    look at Ryder now? Kloden, who was 3rd once? Spartacus can’t do anything without the peloton pissing their bibs, because all these are now marked

    So, now Quintana is a known value, and will see how that pans out. I personally think he is special and will be phenomenal.

     

    @Souleur I’m not so sure about Quintana being the unknown quantity. Team Sky admitted in pre-Tour interviews that if there was a man that they were keeping their eye on for surprises, it was Quintana. He already had a GT under his belt, the 2012 Vuelta, in which he was consistently shepherding Valverde in the mountains in the third week. Plus he already had successes against Sky in the past year (Dauphinee, País Vasco, Catalunya). And if that wasn’t enough, Quintana is roommates with Henao and Urán, with Urán also being his landlord. So I’m sure he wasn’t an unknown quantity to Sky

    Other teams may not have been fully aware of what Quintana is capable of, but I think at least Sky, Saxo and Katusha had a pretty good idea of whom they were dealing with

    If there has been an unknown Colombian quantity this year, it’s probably Betancur. Witness how much rope they gave him at Fleche Wallone on the Muur, and he almost pulled it off. But because of that, LBL, and the Giro, he will be a marked man at the Vuelta

  27. @ten B Thanks, the look on his face, after launch, is priceless.

  28. @chrishent

    @Souleur

    genetics and all aside, I do think Quintana did benefit from the greatest single thing any rider gets, and it only comes once

    free pass, the unmarked rider, the unknown commodity

    who knew? I mean hell, crashednfeld even cracked 4th…once

    look at Ryder now? Kloden, who was 3rd once? Spartacus can’t do anything without the peloton pissing their bibs, because all these are now marked

    So, now Quintana is a known value, and will see how that pans out. I personally think he is special and will be phenomenal.

    @Souleur I’m not so sure about Quintana being the unknown quantity. Team Sky admitted in pre-Tour interviews that if there was a man that they were keeping their eye on for surprises, it was Quintana. He already had a GT under his belt, the 2012 Vuelta, in which he was consistently shepherding Valverde in the mountains in the third week. Plus he already had successes against Sky in the past year (Dauphinee, País Vasco, Catalunya). And if that wasn’t enough, Quintana is roommates with Henao and Urán, with Urán also being his landlord. So I’m sure he wasn’t an unknown quantity to Sky

    Other teams may not have been fully aware of what Quintana is capable of, but I think at least Sky, Saxo and Katusha had a pretty good idea of whom they were dealing with

    If there has been an unknown Colombian quantity this year, it’s probably Betancur. Witness how much rope they gave him at Fleche Wallone on the Muur, and he almost pulled it off. But because of that, LBL, and the Giro, he will be a marked man at the Vuelta

    I wonder how good Betancur will be in the high mountains…his performance on the Muur would indicate he can take the sharp gradients but the long slog up the Angliru with the killer ramp at the end, could expose limitations.  Having said that his spring classics performanc was stunning…….it will be interesting!

    Everything I know about Qunitana I divide in half to take account of the press hype.  He was stunning in the tdf but he is now more tired, more well known and …. could be …. more, or less, motivated.

  29. @chrishent

    @Souleur

    genetics and all aside, I do think Quintana did benefit from the greatest single thing any rider gets, and it only comes once

    free pass, the unmarked rider, the unknown commodity

    who knew? I mean hell, crashednfeld even cracked 4th…once

    look at Ryder now? Kloden, who was 3rd once? Spartacus can’t do anything without the peloton pissing their bibs, because all these are now marked

    So, now Quintana is a known value, and will see how that pans out. I personally think he is special and will be phenomenal.

    @Souleur I’m not so sure about Quintana being the unknown quantity. Team Sky admitted in pre-Tour interviews that if there was a man that they were keeping their eye on for surprises, it was Quintana. He already had a GT under his belt, the 2012 Vuelta, in which he was consistently shepherding Valverde in the mountains in the third week. Plus he already had successes against Sky in the past year (Dauphinee, País Vasco, Catalunya). And if that wasn’t enough, Quintana is roommates with Henao and Urán, with Urán also being his landlord. So I’m sure he wasn’t an unknown quantity to Sky

    Other teams may not have been fully aware of what Quintana is capable of, but I think at least Sky, Saxo and Katusha had a pretty good idea of whom they were dealing with

    If there has been an unknown Colombian quantity this year, it’s probably Betancur. Witness how much rope they gave him at Fleche Wallone on the Muur, and he almost pulled it off. But because of that, LBL, and the Giro, he will be a marked man at the Vuelta

    @chrishent: fair enough and I agree, you mention some great relationships there, but let me play devils advocate for a moment too, since I am the great skeptic. That Sky was watching someone special, it may well have been Quintana, perhaps not.  In retrospect its easy to assume and place an order to things, but it may have been Svein Tuft getting the Lanterne Rouge too?  Perhaps cuddles had them all nervous too, a prior TdF winner, or perhaps it was Contadors great return, perhaps it was fear of bangdnfelds big finale’, or even Ryders push for a TdF showing after last years Maglia Rosas special ride, I’m just simply not sure, but its just hard to infer as to what they were ‘watching’.  I’m just saying, Quintana is now known based on this years proven performance, not only on the inside, but to everyone who has an inkling to follow cycling.  Before he may have been known, and yes had special days, and now he has had a special TdF and that going forward will be recognized by merit, since Quintana now is deserving of this.

  30. http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

  31. Apropos of nothing, Lelangue has just been shown the door at BMC. Rough justice or fair enough?  BMC had an ordinary tour after a good Giro so it’s perhaps more than just the scoreboard.

  32. @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    Um, yeah – good luck with that…

  33. @VeloVita

    @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    Um, yeah – good luck with that…

    I know. Don’t get me wrong, I like Wiggo and he had a great year last year and I think there’s some more to come from him before he ends what has been an astoundingly successful career. But Froome would have kicked his ass this year and even if they have a lot of TT kms next year (which I doubt) there’s not much between Wiggins and Froome in TT ability. Brailsford is a very smart guy, but show me an example of joint leaders working out amicably and I’ll show you Mark Cavendish’s king of the mountains jersey.

  34. @meursault

    @ten B Thanks, the look on his face, after launch, is priceless.

    Hah, yeah. And the elbow flicking was good. Their website is a fucking hoot.

  35. @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    May not be as mad as it seems….what if they were both riding in support of Richie Porte?  Dave Brailsford would be crowing from the rafters that he had delivered 3 seperate Tour Winners in 3 years….now that’s something to develop an ego over!!

  36. @Deakus

    @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    May not be as mad as it seems….what if they were both riding in support of Richie Porte? Dave Brailsford would be crowing from the rafters that he had delivered 3 seperate Tour Winners in 3 years….now that’s something to develop an ego over!!

    I’m assuming you tongue is planted firmly in your cheek.  Seriously though – when was the last time a past Tour winner rode in support of another rider?

  37. @VeloVita

    @Deakus

    @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    May not be as mad as it seems….what if they were both riding in support of Richie Porte? Dave Brailsford would be crowing from the rafters that he had delivered 3 seperate Tour Winners in 3 years….now that’s something to develop an ego over!!

    I’m assuming you tongue is planted firmly in your cheek. Seriously though – when was the last time a past Tour winner rode in support of another rider?

    My tongue was only partially in my cheek.  Never underestimate the power of the Sky Cheque Book and the fact that it is the 2014 TdF starting in the UK.  In fact he probably wants to have them ride in support of another British rider so maybe it is Kennaugh?!

    I really cannot see it happening in all honesty but you would be able to knock me over with a feather and baste me with Dumonde Tech if he managed to get either Wiggo or Froomedog to support each other.  My bet is that Wiggo dissapears in the Autumn transfer market….

    I would not put anything past Brailsfords ego….

  38. @wiscot Tears and a fist fight – he’s dreaming; but then again the Brits may invoke the stiff upper lip.

  39. @VeloVita

    I’m assuming you tongue is planted firmly in your cheek. Seriously though – when was the last time a past Tour winner rode in support of another rider?

    Riis/Ullrich? Hinault/Lemond?

  40. @TBONE

    @VeloVita

    I’m assuming you tongue is planted firmly in your cheek. Seriously though – when was the last time a past Tour winner rode in support of another rider?

    Riis/Ullrich? Hinault/Lemond?

    Riis/Ullrich I can’t coment on. As for LeMan and Hinault, to say either truly took a back seat to the other is highly debatable!

  41. @wiscot

    @TBONE

    @VeloVita

    I’m assuming you tongue is planted firmly in your cheek. Seriously though – when was the last time a past Tour winner rode in support of another rider?

    Riis/Ullrich? Hinault/Lemond?

    Riis/Ullrich I can’t coment on. As for LeMan and Hinault, to say either truly took a back seat to the other is highly debatable!

    That was the point I was getting at.  It doesn’t seem to work all that well. You can add COTHO/Contador to that list too.

  42. @wiscot

    @VeloVita

    @wiscot

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jul/22/sky-chris-froome-bradley-wiggins-tour

    Brailsford can’t be serious can he? This could only end in tears and a rather unpleasant ambiance on the team bus.

    Um, yeah – good luck with that…

    I know. Don’t get me wrong, I like Wiggo and he had a great year last year and I think there’s some more to come from him before he ends what has been an astoundingly successful career. But Froome would have kicked his ass this year and even if they have a lot of TT kms next year (which I doubt) there’s not much between Wiggins and Froome in TT ability. Brailsford is a very smart guy, but show me an example of joint leaders working out amicably and I’ll show you Mark Cavendish’s king of the mountains jersey.

    Surely it’s just because the tour starts in Yorkshire. I bet Wigoo is still the only cyclist that 80% of the UK population know of. So Sky will inlcude him in all their buildup PR. However, that old knee injury may still flare up a week out from the start.

  43. @Deakus

    My bet is that Wiggo dissapears in the Autumn transfer market….

     

    That’s definitely a a possibility. I doubt that Wiggo could either beat or work for Froome. I bet Brailsford is already calculating the PR-benefit versus huge-salary-for-no-results equation.

    But weher coudl he go? Imagine Uran bolting to QuickStep only to find 2 weeks later that he now has to work for their surprise new signing…

  44. @Bianchi Denti

    Imagine Uran bolting to QuickStep only to find 2 weeks later that he now has to work for their surprise new signing…

    Fuck, can you imagine the meltdown Cav would have in the team bus when he heard the news of that one.

  45. @Chris

    @Bianchi Denti

    Imagine Uran bolting to QuickStep only to find 2 weeks later that he now has to work for their surprise new signing…

    Fuck, can you imagine the meltdown Cav would have in the team bus when he heard the news of that one.

    the odd thing about Urán signing with OPQS is that he already knows what it’s like to share leadership with Cav in a GT, as it happened in the 2012 Giro. He only got Henao for support in the mountains and even had to work for Cav in the sprint stages, so I’m not sure what kind of promises OPQS made for him to sign with them. Cav most likely is not liking the prospect of sharing leadership with Urán come Tour time…

  46. @Chris

    @Bianchi Denti

    Imagine Uran bolting to QuickStep only to find 2 weeks later that he now has to work for their surprise new signing…

    Fuck, can you imagine the meltdown Cav would have in the team bus when he heard the news of that one.

    I would pay real money to see/hear that.  Since when does OPQS care about GC though (as far as Uran)?

  47. @ten B

    @meursault

    @ten B Also. the old snot rocket launcher, can bring down a sucker.

    Haven’t used it in anger, but I found this instructional video from Jahvahaah:

    That was one Magic Loogie.

    I ride alone a lot, and guys in this town think it’s OK to hop on your wheel when you pass them. I hate it. It ruins my groove and thoughts. I don’t like some muppet getting a 30% break, not taking a pull and being a liability. As such, stowaways are subjected to a deluge of my human detritus.

  48. @TBONE

    @ten B

    @meursault

    @ten B Also. the old snot rocket launcher, can bring down a sucker.

    Haven’t used it in anger, but I found this instructional video from Jahvahaah:

    That was one Magic Loogie.

    I ride alone a lot, and guys in this town think it’s OK to hop on your wheel when you pass them. I hate it. It ruins my groove and thoughts. I don’t like some muppet getting a 30% break, not taking a pull and being a liability. As such, stowaways are subjected to a deluge of my human detritus.

    That’s just nasty. Should be a rule against it.

  49. I love my bike.  It takes me places I’ve never seen, she calms me down when that seems impossible, she excites me with the speed we share.  And then she surprises me.  This morning I revisited a local climb which for good reason I do not routinely frequent.  As I was 2/3s up the slope and the grade hit 16%, I questioned why I had returned and I approached an intersection which would have allowed me an escape.  But before I knew it, the intersection was passed, and the crest of the hill approached and that freedom overwhelmed me and I was the better for it.  Thank Merckx for my bike and Live la VV!

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