Who’s your Poppy?

Who’s your Poppy?

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You’d think that with such an historical event taking place in France overnight that the Australian newspapers would be a sea of yellow and ‘we are the champions’ headlines this morning. Yet what I saw staring back at me when I visited one of the most respected newspaper websites (ie not a Murdoch tome) was a dead, tattooed junkie. Now that’s news!

Australians are known for our love of the ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’, where we like to take a famous public figure, be it a politician, entertainer or sportsperson, and build them up to a level of adulation sometimes deserved, oftentimes not, and when that figure reaches the pinnacle of their field we criticise or ridicule them to bring them back down to ‘our’ level. We don’t want to be seen as lesser than them, or more likely want our heroes to be just ‘ordinary blokes’ like us. Aussies love to be the common man, but also want to be better than all those high-and-mighty Poms, Yanks, or in this case, ‘Frogs’.

Now that ‘we’ have won the world’s biggest bike race, we will embrace the victory and milk it for all it’s worth. Even if the majority or the Holden-drivin’, VB-drinkin’, steak-eatin’, footy-watchin’ public thinks that cyclists are lycra-wearin’ fags, and would gladly swerve their ute to run us into the gutter for a bit of a laugh.

So enjoy your time in the sun Cadel, make the most of the plaudits from the press, the politicians and the cycling fans, because cycling will still be seen as not a real man’s sport by most. Kind of like yachting, but hey, we loved it for a brief moment when we won the Americas Cup.

You little bloody ripper!

// Defining Moments // General // Racing // The Hardmen // Unforgettable Rides

  1. @Blah
    That bike is a weapon! It’s interesting to see that BMC appear to be the only frame manufacturer in the last 3 that he’s raced for that’s got it right. I can’t remenber what the Canyon looked like, but the Ridley he had a few years ago when he was still with Lotto with the adjustable stem cranked all the way down was as anti V as you could imagine.

    @Ron
    I understand that Cuddles is indeed very flexible. I recall reading that he does plenty of yoga to maintain his position.

    @mauibike
    +1

  2. Ah, my extensive research has revealed this

  3. @mouse
    A little while back I was told by a certain Australian 6-time TdF rider (clue: Jaja’s domestique – and yes, quality non-name drop from me) that Cadel’s Canyon (albeit his road bike) just wasn’t right for him. The reason he didn’t salute when he won the ’09 Worlds was that he wasn’t comfortable going no hands on it.

    For a rider with his handling skills that is saying something. However I do acknowledge that his victory salutes need work.

    He is still on the front page of newspapers again today – and it’s Tuesday Fronk.

  4. Didnt canyon do something bizarre with the headtube and have the stem coming out the front of it? Or was that his road bike?

  5. @Cyclops

    Why do I like Cadel and am totally stoked that he’s won the Tour? Haven’t got a clue. He’s been known to be a whiner, he acts like a douche sometimes, and has a scary painting of himself over his fireplace. But there has just been something about him that has always had me pulling for him.

    It’s interesting (well for me anyway) to ponder what others think of Cuddles.
    You refer to him being a whiner, and I can think of a few instances where people may have formed that opinion of him. I think specifically post Vuelta the year he became world champion.
    Referring to the botched wheel change on the penultimate stage where he lost exactly the same amount of time that he lost the race to valverde, and was also slapped with a 10 second penalty from the commissars for accepting a bidon from (a spectator/team car, can’t remember), he was quoted as follows;
    “I do everything right in this fucking sport…” I remember many painting him as a whiner after that.
    Following on from my posts above about his physiological capacities, cuddles would have known from his testing at the AIS that he would be in the top 1% of all elite athletes.
    My conjecture about his comments is that he knows that he’s clean, and his competitors aren’t, and that he just can’t catch a break. I’d be frustrated too. It interesting to ponder the list of riders who’ve bested cuddles over the years in GC with regard to their doping records.
    I’m just chuffed that he’s finally got there.
    Yep, he’s got a funny voice and may seem a bit strange at times. There’s been a bit in the media here about what a private person he is and how when he was at lotto, the team wouldn’t give him the space he needed. Apparently BMC were much more understanding and accommodating about his personality quirks and it’s apparent that it works.
    Scary painting of himself above the fireplace; Gold.

  6. @Ash

    Didnt canyon do something bizarre with the headtube and have the stem coming out the front of it? Or was that his road bike?

    It’s funny you should mention that.
    I don’t recall the modern version, but I was just this morning trying to track down an image of Fignon riding TT on his blue Gitane (?) in the late 80’s. Thought it would make an interesting comparison how aero configurations on TT bikes has evolved.

  7. @mouse

    @Ash

    Didnt canyon do something bizarre with the headtube and have the stem coming out the front of it? Or was that his road bike?

    It’s funny you should mention that.
    I don’t recall the modern version, but I was just this morning trying to track down an image of Fignon riding TT on his blue Gitane (?) in the late 80′s. Thought it would make an interesting comparison how aero configurations on TT bikes has evolved.

    Here you go, got my Oli on.

  8. Photo from Cadel’s *first* bike racing career…

  9. What’s also cool for our antipodean friends is that Oz now ranks third in UCI rankings. Think about it, they are higher than Belgium, France, and Dutchland. That’s very impressive.

    # 1. Spain, 1126 point
    # 2. Italy, 1041 point
    # 3. Australia, 1018 point
    # 4. Belgium, 813 points
    # 5. Germany, 574 points
    # 6. Luxembourg, 514 points
    # 7. Netherlands, 501 points
    # 8. United States, 482 points
    # 9. Great Britain, 460 points
    # 10. France, 377 points

  10. @eightzero
    Not only did she sing the National Anthem well, but it is the first time it has been sung live. Oh and the day before she actually rang around and told them that she wanted to do it. This was not an planned thing. It was a spur of the moment thing she did to support another Aussie.

    Hows that for a great gal.

  11. @Xponti
    Cool. I was wondering how they got hold of her/picked her out

    I also found this..
    http://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum/download/file.php?id=30617&mode=view

  12. @ash
    Top work.

    @Frank
    Thanks for that!

  13. @frank

    @Marko

    Let’s get the chant going here “Cuddles, Cuddles, Cuddles, Cuddles!” It’ll play out so well if Good Cadel shows in July AND doesn’t get hurt.

    About as likely as seeing a Schlecklette showing tactical sense!
    Clenny will be banned (here’s hoping), the Schlecks will bugger something up, Cuddles will crash or get caught behind a crash. This could prove to be one of the best and most wide open tours ever.

    Just rolling through some of the older articles (work can blow itself this afternoon) and noticed the above quote from our esteemed leader post LBL…care to revisit @frank??

    Not only did the Cadelephant more than show up over the last 3 weeks, the last week showed your boys actually deploying some tactics! All they need to do now is learn how to TT or go back down the hills & they’ll be unbeatable.

  14. OK, this will be my last gratuitous photo of Cadel (unless another cool one comes up). Tweets a pic of himself on two phones doing Aussie radio interviews in the middle of the Swiss night.

    “What’s that leaning against the wall in the background Cuddles?”

    “Just some trident I picked up earlier this year. Still looking for a place to put it.”

  15. @Marcus
    As if you get a trident for winning Tirreno-Adriatico. I did now know that. Awesome. That’s gotta be the most V-chanelling trophy in cycling, surely?

  16. @ralasdair

    @Marcus
    As if you get a trident for winning Tirreno-Adriatico. I did now know that. Awesome. That’s gotta be the most V-chanelling trophy in cycling, surely?

    It’s V in a really comic book sort of sense, but for straight-up hard as nails bad-arsery, Paris-Roubaix’s big fucking rock, that you just defeated like the road-paving bitch it is, is hard to beat.

  17. @Blah

    @ChrisOHere’s a pic of his bike – bars about even with the top tube. My back hurts just looking at it.

    Looks like a weapon.

  18. Awesome photo…the MJ, the lion, the trident, his dog…NICE!

  19. Mmmmmm

  20. @Marcus

    OK, this will be my last gratuitous photo of Cadel (unless another cool one comes up). Tweets a pic of himself on two phones doing Aussie radio interviews in the middle of the Swiss night.
    “What’s that leaning against the wall in the background Cuddles?”
    “Just some trident I picked up earlier this year. Still looking for a place to put it.”

    Are those his wife’s jeans? Even his dog looks disappointed.

  21. Full RESPECT for Cadel obeying Rule #15 on the stage into Paris. Well done Cadel. Well done.

  22. @blaireau

    Photo from Cadel’s *first* bike racing career…

    Ahem…

  23. @RiderofRohan

    Full RESPECT for Cadel obeying Rule #15 on the stage into Paris. Well done Cadel. Well done.

    Especially since he has been a massive Rule #15 breaker in the past.

  24. If there’s any doubt about the work ethic and preparation of this guy, the caption to this photo taken before the ITT start reads, “Cadel Evans rode the entire course as part of his warm up…”

    The photo of the Schleck’s pre-ITT caption says, “… while the Schleck brothers ‘went part way by car and rode back chatting’ according to our man on the scene”

  25. Here’s what Melbourne’s iconic trams are doing for Australia’s 1st TDF winner!

    Yarra Trams

    I’m want one for ‘the pool room’!

    Hope Cadel stays out of the tracks next Friday on his victory ride!

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