Keepers Tour: Cobbled Classics 2012

Keepers Tour: Cobbled Classics 2012

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This event has already taken place, but we are planning to do this particular trip annually, so mark this week on your calendars. See the below articles for a full account of the action.

Keepers Tour: Cobbled Classics 2012 Updates: Part I // Part II // Part III // Part IV

Velominati has partnered up with Pavé Cycling Classics, based in Northern France, to offer the Velominati a chance to walk where Giants tread and pedal through the trench of Arenberg and up the devastating steeps of the Kapelmuur. To pedal with the Pros during their reconnaissance of the Paris-Roubaix route. To visit the Merckx factory, and to spend an afternoon riding with Johan Museeuw, the last Lion of Flanders.

We have several package options available: the flagship fully accommodated, all-inclusive 9 day/9 night tour (2250€), full weekend tours with or without accommodation (500€ and 250€ respectively), as well as daily tours with or without accommodation (200€ and 100€ respectively). Once booked and confirmed, we will coordinate directly to collect a down payment of 15%, with the balance due upon arrival in Lille, France. Everything is included in the packages: food, drinks, support car with spare wheels, Gent velodrome ride, Cyfac bicycles for those not bringing their own (limited sizes and quantities available), energy food, and insurance. All-inclusive packages include accommodation; packages without accommodation are also available for those living in the area or wishing for whatever reason to look after their own lodgings. All packages, with or without accommodation, include dinner and drinks after each day’s ride. People arranging for their own accommodations are encouraged to seek lodgings near Kemmel or Gent in Belgium.

Attendees of the full 9 day Keepers Tour will be greeted with a Velominati Musette stuffed with a commemorative V-Pint and V-Shirt. Given the abundance of Belgian beer, the V-Pint will be well used. We will also have a Velominati Flag to wave at the races. As a final note, a Cogal welcoming all riders will also be arranged, details pending finalization of the itinerary. Also note that only attendees of the full Keepers Tour will be eligible to ride with Museeuw and to join the Merckx Factory Tour. Weekend and Daily Tour attendees will be eligible to buy the commemorative V-Pint directly.

Preliminary itinerary, guided by Pavé Cycling Classics:

  • Friday March 30th: arrival in Lille. Drive to Gent for dinner & introductions at the cottage.
  • Saturday March 31th: Ride Paris-Roubaix course (at least 180km from St Quentin to Roubaix, full ride available to those who dare) – Visit of the Roubaix Vélodromes (both old and new).
  • Sunday April 1st: Rest or short ride around the cottage in the Flanders area (morning) – Watch the Tour of Flanders in Oude Kwaremont and/or Paterberg.
  • Monday April 2nd: Visit to Eddy Merckx factory to pay our respects to The Prophet, followed by a Brussells downtown visit (more detail to come).
  • Tuesday April 3rd: Short ride around the cottage or rest and visit the bicycle museum in Beveren (Roeselare). Afternoon ride with Johan Museeuw.
  • Wednesday April 4th: 2 hours practice with a coach on the Eddy Merckx Velodrome in Gent (track bikes provided). Follow the Grand Prix de l’Escaut Pro Race (http://www.scheldeprijs.be/nl)
  • Thursday April 5th: Ride with the Pros on their Paris Roubaix recon around Arenberg. Visit to the Brunehaut brewery in Belgium (where our Malteni beer is produced). Tour of  downtown Lille.
  • Friday April 6th: Meet with AG2R Team at team hotel, short ride or rest.
  • Saturday April 7th: Ride the Tour of Flanders course (150 and 200km routes available, full ride available to those who dare). Visit the Tour of Flanders museum in Oudenaarde and meet Freddy Maertens.
  • Sunday April 8th: Follow the Paris-Roubaix race (taking in cobbled sectors around Valenciennes + Arenberg + L’Arbre). Depart.

For those arranging their own accommodation, search anywhere around Mount Kemmel or Mount Noir.

Please see the table below for all booking options. There will also be a Cogal Event (to be scheduled) which will be free of charge and welcomes everyone.

Full Schedule PDF

Bookings

Bookings are closed for this event.

Event Details

Loading Map....

Date/Time
Date - March 30, 2012 - April 08, 2012
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM

Location
Kemmel, Heuvelland, Belgium

Cogal Details
Route Details


// Casually Deliberate (No Drop) // Keepers Tour // Rule V (Hard Ride) // Rule VV (Climbing)

  1. How many beatings would I receive if I show up to the Keepers Tour with a cross bike and 35mm slicks?

    Man, that would be a comfortable ride over the cobbles.

  2. @G’rilla

    How many beatings would I receive if I show up to the Keepers Tour with a cross bike and 35mm slicks?
    Man, that would be a comfortable ride over the cobbles.

    Well, four Keepers = four beatings. We won’t discourage others from joining in.

  3. @brett
    Youll have to catch him first. But yeah, I’d have my mini pump drawn.

    @G’rilla
    That crossed my mind as well, for about 3 seconds. Then I was all “#1 is going and if it dies over there it will be with nobility.”

  4. G’rilla – go for it! You know how awesome it is too see dudes in Lycra in road shoes trying to fight! Don’t forget utilizing your wheel to smack someone in the head.

    On second thought, Marko, you’ve got it. Ride #1 and if it dies, it dies in Cycling Heaven.

  5. Anybody else bringing a GoPro or similar camera to capture our slow painful progress over the cobbles and up the bergs? I may be bringing a GoPro with.

  6. @marko
    I’d have to buy one. Hold on, let me check with the VMH.

    3…2…1…

    Ummmmm, no.

    But it would be awesome to see the videos. I’ll carry my small-ish camera on the rides, but will be otherwise occupied on the cobbles and bergs. The bigger camera kit will be for the races.

  7. Couple of quick shots from today’s AWESOME ride… 130km, 21 cobbled sections, one car crash (Frank), an embarrassingly long period of time in the Roubaix Velodrome… more to come from Marko’s helmet cam

  8. I read a book of daily Tao ponderings, with an entry for each day of the year. This was the entry for yesterday, 8 April. Pretty apropos for the end of the inaugural Keepers Tour, so I thought I’d share it. Hope everyone who was fortunate enough to attend supremely enjoyed themselves. Now, back to training & cycling at home, plus work & stuff!

    Day 98
    Farewell

    We part at the crossroads,
    You leave with your joys and problems,
    I with mine. Alone, I look down the road.
    Each one must walk one’s own path.

    People’s paths come together all too briefly when sharing friendship, but that makes those times no less valuable. We must take advantage of support and sharing in a mutually beneficial way. Whenever we take from another, we should try to give back something. This is fundamental. No one should lean on another person, or expect another to carry them a long distance down the road. Friends should walk side by side for as long as their journey carries them, without becoming dependent on one another.
    There should be no obligation. If I can help someone do something, then I should do so without any hesitation or expectation of reward or debt. If there is something that I need to learn and my companion can show it to me, then I should accept it in humility. No one “owns” knowledge. It should be shared freely.
    Parting is inherent in all meeting. Nothing last forever. Transience is what gives life poignancy. Every person is responsible for himself or herself. There is no road to walk but your own.

  9. @Ron

    Hippy.

  10. @Oli

    @Ron

    Hippy.

    Them’s fight’en words here in Texas!

  11. Ha! How else can I try and keep from getting all Ronned up over stuff? I gotta at least try.

  12. Here is some Kiwi Keepers Tour Training Footage which i can only presume was taken a few weeks back.

    Is the guy in yellow Oli, Minion or G’Phant? My guess is G’Phant as he gets quite tetchy once he is told he is being filmed.

    As for the victim, he seems to have a Pommy accent so I expect no charges will be laid.

  13. Haha! It’s not me, I could never get away with horizontal stripes…

  14. @Marcus

    Here is some Kiwi Keepers Tour Training Footage which i can only presume was taken a few weeks back.
    Is the guy in yellow Oli, Minion or G’Phant? My guess is G’Phant as he gets quite tetchy once he is told he is being filmed.
    As for the victim, he seems to have a Pommy accent so I expect no charges will be laid.

    Nice that they continue to refer to each other as mayte as they conduct the assault, takes the heat out of the confrontation – clearly the guy in yellow was frustrated by his own inability to look in anyway Pro

  15. @Ron
    Those were beautiful words.

    Don’t ever try to be anyone but yourself; you won’t be any good at it; everyone else can take it or leave it. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to be a better self, but getting Ronned up is just you. Don’t be apologetic.

  16. @frank

    @Ron

    Ron, you’re a cool dude and that was a lovely and apposite passage to quote. I meant no offence and I’m sorry if my joke didn’t come across well. I am finding that more and more lately, and I’m not quite sure why…

  17. @Dr C

    @Marcus

    Here is some Kiwi Keepers Tour Training Footage which i can only presume was taken a few weeks back.
    Is the guy in yellow Oli, Minion or G’Phant? My guess is G’Phant as he gets quite tetchy once he is told he is being filmed.
    As for the victim, he seems to have a Pommy accent so I expect no charges will be laid.

    Nice that they continue to refer to each other as mayte as they conduct the assault, takes the heat out of the confrontation – clearly the guy in yellow was frustrated by his own inability to look in anyway Pro

    Nope – guy starts calling you “mayte” too much and you know a punch is coming. Surely others from downunder have experienced this in or outside a bar or club?

  18. @Blah
    And if someone says “don’t call me mayte” “I’m not your fucking ‘mayte'” you know you’re in the shit.

  19. not friend=mate( menacing tone)
    good friend= you bastard

  20. @Marcus

    Here is some Kiwi Keepers Tour Training Footage which i can only presume was taken a few weeks back.

    Is the guy in yellow Oli, Minion or G’Phant? My guess is G’Phant as he gets quite tetchy once he is told he is being filmed.

    As for the victim, he seems to have a Pommy accent so I expect no charges will be laid.

    That video actually shits me. Christchurch has had over 10,000 quakes since Sept 2012. No wonder the guys have got no fucken cord left, I’d honestly just leave em to sort their own shit out.

  21. Even though it is pretty funny that Ron’s post and that video are on the same page.

  22. @Marcus
    Not me either. While I am certainly too fat to climb, I don’t look it quite so obviously. I also have a large purple cast on my left leg (broken foot). I would never mix purple and yellow. Never.

  23. @Chris
    And if you’re going to say ‘Fuck off, Mate’ to an angry man it is best to say it like it’s a threat, not like you meant to add ‘please’ but forgot.

  24. @G’phant
    I prefer “Mate……..do us a favour and fuck off” said casually and with a nice smile. It’ll do one of three things; a) make them realise that you’re really not into whatever the commotion is all about; b) send them into such a fury that they lose whatever sort of advantage they might have had over your skinny cyclist fighting skills or c) cause them to question your sanity, in those sort of circumstances a bloke usually has good reason to be calm and smiling.

    Obviously, the bigger and uglier the angry man is, the harder it is to pull this off and the more likely he is to go for option (b) and beat you into a pulp but option (c) has served me well in the past. With option (a) it helps to be considerably bigger than everyone else in the room.

  25. @frank

    @Ron
    Those were beautiful words.

    Don’t ever try to be anyone but yourself; you won’t be any good at it; everyone else can take it or leave it. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to be a better self, but getting Ronned up is just you. Don’t be apologetic.

    Unless you can be Batman, Fronk.

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