The Rules Goes on the Road-NYC

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What’s wrong with this picture?

Here are a few lessons learned while in New York City.

  • I’m sure leaving a bar at one o’clock in the morning is not how the serious riders prepare for a ride with a 9 o’clock morning roll-out. I am sure.
  • Conversational pace for a group ride means different things to different people. Eddy could talk your ear off at 40kph.
  • Lezyne mini-pump owners, listen up. Grease up those aluminum threads on your pump. It’s inflating effectiveness is diminished when the inflator tube is corroded in place and the group disappears up the road.
  • @xyxax is the single best draft I’ve ever hunkered behind, until he wasn’t.
  • Signing books and interacting with strangers is better with pints on the book signing table.

The Rapha store is an excellent place to begin a ride. It’s a killer bike shop with no bikes for sale. Once in the door there are ample places to rack a bike. Behold beautiful espressos, fresh croissants, bike racing projected on a whole wall, seats, tables, a WC, and evidently some nice kit for sale too. They are welcoming to riders who just want to hang out for a coffee and watch a race. Did I mention it has two Belgian-style beers on tap? It is a beautiful place. 

Saturday dawned sunny and warm. The Rapha Club-Velominati Saturday ride was on. Riders assembled, the place filled with carbon wheeled beauties, Rapha clad youth and us. The V-kit stood out in contrast to the understated Rapha colors. I outfitted Frank with the oldest and heaviest bicycle there. It was a thirty year old steel bike with heavy but aero aluminum wheels. The best part was it was geared for Roubaix when we were riding Flanders; it had a 44 tooth inner ring and a mostly inaccessible 23 tooth inner cog on the back. I was hoping it might slow him down but it didn’t, nothing does. 

The ride was awesome. Some of us represented the kit better than others, let us leave it at that. Our Rapha Club leader, Rob, did a beautiful job getting thirty-plus riders out of Manhattan and eventually back, safely. He is a stud. 

The book signing was heart warming; people buying The Rules and us writing something obnoxious in it, for them. Riders were coming into the store and whipping out their copies for us to sign. The New Jersey boys drove two hours to join us on the ride and buy a pile of books. It is simply amazing to me: this Velominati community which has grown across the world, all people who love to ride the bike. To meet some of them at a Keepers Tour, or Cogal or in the Rapha store, it makes this whole endeavor worthwhile. 

The San Francisco Event is happening this weekend and I encourage all nearby to venture into the city for the riding and signing. 

Mr T was bold enough to shoot photos while riding. Grazie for sharing.

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72 Replies to “The Rules Goes on the Road-NYC”

  1. Wow! Sounds like a great event. I had no idea such pretty roads existed close to NYC. Great pictures too – looks like spring is a bit ahead of the midwest. Haven’t bared the arms or full legs yet this year here in WI.

    Now I just have to buy the book . . .

  2. This was such a fun day; the ride was amazing and expertly led by Rapha ambassador Rob. I also got to meet the guide for next week’s ride in SFO – Eric. Both super nice guys and excellently Rule Compliant. 

    My mind was blown by how good the riding outside NYC was – rolling hills in the woods…incredible! Can’t wait for the SFO ride which will include climbing and descending. Apparently there will even be a gravel climb up Mount Tam.

    All in all, it just continues to amaze how cool people are and how much fun it is to connect with the community and finish the feedback loop.

  3. Sorry to have missed it. Congratulations on the new edition! Do a book signing in D.C. too, and we’ll do the D.C. Velo weekend ride!

  4. @wiscot

    Wow! Sounds like a great event. I had no idea such pretty roads existed close to NYC. Great pictures too – looks like spring is a bit ahead of the midwest. Haven’t bared the arms or full legs yet this year here in WI.

    Now I just have to buy the book . . .

    Seattle is in full bloom as well; the trees have actually lost their blossoms and moved into leaves. I have tan lines. I even got a wee bit of sunburn.

  5. Here are some of my photos from the ride; hopefully someone took some pictures of the actual signing as well that they can post.

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  6. @frank

    @wiscot

    Wow! Sounds like a great event. I had no idea such pretty roads existed close to NYC. Great pictures too – looks like spring is a bit ahead of the midwest. Haven’t bared the arms or full legs yet this year here in WI.

    Now I just have to buy the book . . .

    Seattle is in full bloom as well; the trees have actually lost their blossoms and moved into leaves. I have tan lines. I even got a wee bit of sunburn.

    I remember being on Whidbey Island 7-8 years ago in March and was shocked at how much spring there was compared to WI. We were still in deepest winter, you guys were in full spring. Here, it’s only been in the last week that the trees have begun to show some green buds. I didn’t hear the wee frogs until mid April.

    This week we’re supposed to get in the upper 70s with rain so that’ll help things along I’m sure. Still not putting the winter gear away yet . . .

    Sunburn? It’s still windburn around here!

    Was that some kind of car-free parkway you were on?  I know the Rapha guys are great, but to clear away all traffic is very impressive.

  7. So……completely……..jealous.  Looks like a fantastic event.

    Would have loved to have ridden and be glorified in the Keepers presence, but alas life has a way of conspiring against me.

  8. This was a great ride and a great day. It was a pleasure riding with the Rapha Cycling Club and the Velominati guys. I highly encourage readers of this blog to show up at 8:30am on a Saturday at Rapha Cycling Club (NYC). Wheels roll at 9am. Buy a Velominati book and a draft beer following the ride. My friend Mark and I drove from the South Jersey area and it was well worth it. We will be there again.

    CycleWalt

  9. It was the perfect cycling day. The Rapha store, the ride, the weather and last but certainly not least the company. All perfect. The cycling gods were smiling. The malted recovery beverage wasn’t bad either.

  10. Hey, who is that in the V-Kit, standing to the left in the last picture?

    I always mix up my rock legends – is it Art Garfunkel or James Taylor?

  11. @frank

    Why the fuck were you wearing a helmet indoors?

    On such a day of days when you are presumably meant to be providing some sort of example, why Frank? Why?

  12. How good is that !!

    @frank @Gianni – now its time to go worldwide.

    A certain small UCI race in January would be perfect, followed by a couple of Cogals already in the planning in South Australia.  The beer is cold and the weather warm  ( read – fckn hot ) that time of year.  @Gianni, you could even personally deliver the flag this time.

    Many more books to sign and world domination to plot !

  13. Great to finally meet a couple of the wizards behind the curtain.   Plenty of strong riders, looking fantastic.  Double thanks to Rapha Rob for herding cats and pulling us back.

    Gianni, I owe you one.

  14. I’ve been trying to tell all of you lads…New York State has it all! Two Great Lakes, borders another nation, a so-so city, an ocean, a bay, the Finger Lakes Region, some pretty darn good universities, the Erie Canal. I could go on. Oh, great cycling…

    Congratulations to all of you Keepers! You are great cycling ambassadors and I admire you for all of your hard word, dedication, perseverance, and goddamn good senses of humor and love for life.

    Thanks, guys!! You’re true champions and big Kings of the Road!

  15. Man, I would’ve loved to have been there (almost was). Thanks to everyone who showed up for what looked like a great ride and event, and to all of our community who have made this a great journey for us.

  16. @Timojhen

    A sample of how the actual signing looked. Minus the excellent coffee and loud laughter.

    Great time.

    The picture raises two questions:

    • Was @frank operating at at rate of two pints to @gianni’s half?

    and/or

    • Did @frank bring an extra V-Pint along to ensure that he was Drinking Properly?

    In mitigation though it would appear that @gianni is attempting to maintain some for of Rule #44 adherence even off the bike.

  17. Boy oh boy, what a great day out.  The images say it all, West Side bike path, GW bridge, gravel and no car roads next to the Hudson and a beautiful spring day! Not to mention the signing, Rapha and the Gypsy Doughnut!!

    so wish I could have posted up…

    Gianni – hey I’m impressed your looking fit! So too fearless leader ( but the helmet in store does need explaining or new Rule?). Was there a seatpost competition between Frank, Xyxax and Gianni??

    Congratulations, job well done!

  18. @Gianni So what is wrong with that picture? (In reference to the caption on the main photo).

    I’ve looked several times and don’t see anything – apart from the keyboard stashed somewhat untidily on top of the magazines in the bottom shelf and what may be some of the more questionable items from Rapha’s range.  Don’t get me wrong I love their kit, I’m just less enamoured of the shaving set and leather-bound ride journal end of the spectrum.

  19. @Chris

    @Chris

    The picture raises two questions:

    • Was @frank operating at at rate of two pints to @gianni’s half?

    and/or

    • Did @frank bring an extra V-Pint along to ensure that he was Drinking Properly?

    In mitigation though it would appear that @gianni is attempting to maintain some for of  Rule #44 adherence even off the bike.

    Yes, Frank operates at a pint emptying rate of  N x 2.5 to most humans, or at least me.

    No V pint but that is a good idea. We were both worried about forgetting other important things like cycling shoes.

    I was beer runner. No chance to sit down. And between @xyxax, Frank and myself there is about six meters in height. This furniture is too small.

  20. @ChrisO

    @Gianni So what is wrong with that picture? (In reference to the caption on the main photo).

    I’ve looked several times and don’t see anything – apart from the keyboard stashed somewhat untidily on top of the magazines in the bottom shelf and what may be some of the more questionable items from Rapha’s range. Don’t get me wrong I love their kit, I’m just less enamoured of the shaving set and leather-bound ride journal end of the spectrum.

    To me it was the incongruity between Rapha’s fancy products and our book, which is full of cursing.

  21. @Gianni

    @ChrisO

    @Gianni So what is wrong with that picture? (In reference to the caption on the main photo).

    I’ve looked several times and don’t see anything – apart from the keyboard stashed somewhat untidily on top of the magazines in the bottom shelf and what may be some of the more questionable items from Rapha’s range. Don’t get me wrong I love their kit, I’m just less enamoured of the shaving set and leather-bound ride journal end of the spectrum.

    To me it was the incongruity between Rapha’s fancy products and our book, which is full of cursing.

    Rapha elicits cursing by other means – namely by placing their embro and chamois cream in identical packaging.

  22. @seemunkee

    And you managed to not miss the insanity of the 5 Boroughs ride.

    We saw almost no sign of that event at all. Except we did send Frank’s brother-in-law into it with a hangover, or if not a hangover, not feeling superb.

  23. @Marcus

    @frank

    Why the fuck were you wearing a helmet indoors?

    On such a day of days when you are presumably meant to be providing some sort of example, why Frank? Why?

    At least Frank is looking as though he’s zipped himself up properly to neatly display the V-Cog cross the finish line (figuratively speaking) whilst Gianni looks as though he’s just been tipped out of the voiture balai.

  24. @Rob

    Boy oh boy, what a great day out. The images say it all, West Side bike path, GW bridge, gravel and no car roads next to the Hudson and a beautiful spring day! Not to mention the signing, Rapha and the Gypsy Doughnut!!

    so wish I could have posted up…

    Gianni – hey I’m impressed your looking fit! So too fearless leader ( but the helmet in store does need explaining or new Rule?). Was there a seatpost competition between Frank, Xyxax and Gianni??

    Congratulations, job well done!

    I thought of you on that route. It was stunning. Frank still wins the seatpost competition, then @xyxax. I don’t compete in that even, but it was fun to get Frank on the Bella for the bike’s sake. Bella has not been ridden so fast in many years.

  25. @wiscot

    @razmaspaz

    Who is responsible for spacing those books in a Rule #27 compliant fashion?

    Other than the bottom shelf, I’m seeing a whole lot of OCD going on there.

    Yeah, the whole shop is like that. The manager, who ran the popup store and then was asked to conceptualize and run the NYC brick-and-mortar operation, is cut from the same cloth as the rest of us. Awesome guy.

    I’ve never seen so many expensive bikes in one place, by the way.

  26. @Marcus

    @frank

    Why the fuck were you wearing a helmet indoors?

    On such a day of days when you are presumably meant to be providing some sort of example, why Frank? Why?

    Its a courtesy. I have been taught by all you bald koonts that show up to Keepers Tours and Cogals that my flowing locks, in addition to the Magnificence  of my Guns, is altogether too intimidating Pre-Ride.

    @xyxax

    @Nate

    @cyclewalt Nice.

    Did @frank drool all over those drop in bars on the LeMond?

    He immediately pointed out that the pedals were wrong. I was so proud.

    And it was missing the horizontal slats he put under the tape. And the Scott stickers. And he rode a Regal, not a Rolls. But still, it was cool.

    @brett

    Man, I would’ve loved to have been there (almost was). Thanks to everyone who showed up for what looked like a great ride and event, and to all of our community who have made this a great journey for us.

  27. @frank

    @wiscot

    @razmaspaz

    Who is responsible for spacing those books in a Rule #27 compliant fashion?

    Other than the bottom shelf, I’m seeing a whole lot of OCD going on there.

    Yeah, the whole shop is like that. The manager, who ran the popup store and then was asked to conceptualize and run the NYC brick-and-mortar operation, is cut from the same cloth as the rest of us. Awesome guy.

    I’ve never seen so many expensive bikes in one place, by the way.

    I have to think that Rapha does pretty decent in the profit/sq ft.  department.  In a place like that the empty floor space is just as important as the stuff in the store.

  28. @frank

    @wiscot

    Wow! Sounds like a great event. I had no idea such pretty roads existed close to NYC. Great pictures too – looks like spring is a bit ahead of the midwest. Haven’t bared the arms or full legs yet this year here in WI.

    Now I just have to buy the book . . .

    Seattle is in full bloom as well; the trees have actually lost their blossoms and moved into leaves. I have tan lines. I even got a wee bit of sunburn.

    Meanwhile in these parts, I woke up to a fresh dusting of snow, and windchill to -5C.  Apparently on this day last year it was 27C.  It feels like winter will not give up its grip around these parts.

    Wish I could have been there, and not only for the nice weather.

  29. Ah, this looks loads of fun, congratulations to everyone involved.  A good moment to sit back with the post-ride refreshing beverage and consider what this funny little blog has achieved.

    Remarkable.

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