Beppe Saronni: Patron Saint of Rule #22
The cycling cap was part of any kit: nearly black shorts, team jersey and cap. It would be matching, it would be cotton. In the day before the required helmet, the cycling cap was it. Unrestrained by helmet or hairnet, the cap was the crown upon the head. It would sit high on the head, not pulled down like a baseball cap. It sat no higher upon the head than upon Giuseppi Beppe Saronni’s fine Italian head.
Beppe wore the cap with an unrivaled sense of italian style. The cap perched up there, as if it just landed, light as a feather. How it stayed there in the breeze, we don’t know. Perhaps the Saronni skull had just the perfect shape to hold a cap. We will leave that for the Phrenological scientists and the pathologist.
Rule #22 states the wearing of a cap may be for a brief interval before and after a ride, otherwise it has to be hidden under your helmet. That is a sad state of affairs. Maybe we need a national day of helmet-free cap riding. What is the worst that could happen? Do we have to ride the old timey Strade Bianche if we long to spend a long time in the saddle wearing a V-cap? If we can only wear it for a brief time or while using toe clips, is it an anachronism? Is it time to take it back: wear it in the bathtub, in the car, gasp, while walking in public? This idea has been discussed before here; the cap is ours, we should own it. When and where would Eddy wear it?
Behold the Beppe.
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This video has been posted on the site before too but it deserves a wider audience.