Monday, May 11, 2009

Slow, heavy and comforrtable

Garmin Slipstream checked in at the Giro d'Italia on fat tire cruiser bikes. Fun stuff. Watch the video at Vimeo.

Bummer about Christian VDV, huh?


  1. ...the beach cruiser, sign-in thingy was absolutely, awesomely cool...i'll bet that knocked a few traditional euro socks off, even in this day & age...

    ...christian crashing out, breaking ribs & maybe jeopardizing his 'tour' prep in a sense emphasizes just how amazing 7 tour wins in a row actually is...that's how fragile a cycling career can momentary instance & a whole season is rewritten...

  2. Agreed, the cruiser move was very cool.

    Bummer about Vandevelde's chrash though. He seems like one of the nicest guys in the peloton, so I hated to see that.

  3. Oh, I almost forgot to mention it. The new header looks great Yokota Fritz.

  4. Bikegonewild:

    It's not as amazing considering how few races Lance actually rode leading up to the tour. Now that he's riding more we'll see how competitive he is. He wins ToF this year and I'll shut up about Lance. He doesn't win a stage and I'll be saying I told you so.

    I know, I know, there are a lot of other factors that could prevent him from another win like his age and his upper body. But I'm not the one who set up his "reunion tour."

    Like an 80's hair band playing two decades later, the spandex are looking a little tight. ;)

    Of course he'll still outride me when he's age 80, but that's why I don't race. ;)

  5. Thanks James! KWC designed that for me a while back.

    BGW -- I agree, ultra classy on their part.

    Kit: Does L.A. still plan to try to win the TdF, or just participate? I don't remember...

  6. ...kit...i ain't buyin' yer premise, not even a armstrong not only stepped out of the pro peleton for a number of years but he retrained his body to run in marathons & now he is back as one of the top pro cyclists in the world...

    ...considering the actual number of said "top professional cyclists" capable of competing in, never mind winning grand tours, week long races &/or one day races, be they classics or not, when you add in the various factors relating to overall health & cycling related injuries, i reiterate that it is quite remarkable that one man could simply avoid trouble (& lance DID have some issues throughout those years) & yet be on top of his game long enough to win 7 tours de france in a row..., training, whatever, we're still talking about probably the most consistently intense endurance sport in the world & every one of these gentlemen has to deal w/ said issues on a daily if not minute by minute basis... my book, the simple fact that mr armstrong is back after such a layoff, whether he rides to win or rides in support is remarkable...but that's just me...

  7. ...on a different note, fritz, i agree w/ james that the new header looks great...props to kwc for simple yet standout work...

    ...however, when i read "Slow, heavy and comforrtable" my first thought that while it was great to see you a "sea otter", i'm insulted to be described in those terms...

    ...& my second thought was that being as the "giro" is a road race, that it was brilliant of you to have spelled "comforrtable" w/ two r's..., sir, are so on top of it...hah !!!...luv ya, bud...

  8. Oh man, I completely missed the double rr. But I like your explanation better :-)

    Sorry we didn't have time to chat longer in Monterey, but it was good to see you there.

  9. bkesgonewild,

    i never said mr. armstrong was not an exceptional cyclist, just that the exceptionalism of his 7 time wins are somewhat marred in the eyes of cycling fans much more devout than i due to his lack of participation in other events where he could have risked injury.

    this is no new story, but i bring it up because you compare christian, who has been riding a considerable schedule, to the 7 time wins of armstrong, and I call that an unfair comparison.

    all that said, with much respect to vdv, i don't think he will ever be the cyclist that armstrong was, but at least he believes in the sport as a whole season, rather than a single race.

    to fritz' point, the only time we actually see lance riding an extensive, risky schedule is this season, when he's clearly not suggesting its his goal to win the tour de france.

  10. There was an article earlier this week in the NYT about VDV that implied that Armstrong thinks VDV might be a stronger cyclist than him. Lessee if I can find it.

  11. That's generous of Armstrong to say until you realize the crushing pressure he's already under to be the next Lance. Lance saying he's the next Lance makes things even worse.

    As a side note, I'm vaguely offended that your word verification is, at present, "dinglyz."

  12. I don’t know… criticizing Armstrong for not doing enough races just seems like the popular thing to do. Sure, I would have liked to see him race the Giro, or even go for the hour record in his prime, but you have to admire the guy for setting a goal and stopping at nothing to accomplish it.

    Even Eddy Merckx, who many people (including me) still consider to be the greatest rider of all times, has defended Armstrong’s singular focus on winning the Tour. Sure the cannibal raced hard 9 months out of the year and has an amazing list of accomplishments, but Merckx himself realizes that pro racing has changed since the 70s. The days of one rider dominating every facet of the sport in a single season are over, so why shouldn’t a talented rider specialize in the event(s) in which he can excel? Merckx and other greats didn’t do that simply because they didn’t have the option to do so.

    Even if you take all the other races and training rides out of the equation, I do agree with bikesgonewild that the 7 Tour winning streak without crashes, illness, injury, etc is pretty amazing. No doubt luck was involved too, but the implication that Armstrong simply just didn’t take enough risks seems silly to me.

  13. ...thank you, james...points well taken & i fully agree that not only is lance's friend eddy merckx the greatest all round racing cyclist ever but that eddy has a good perspective on the different eras...

    ...& kit...this isn't a pissing contest between lance & christian or you & i...i never once implied a comparison between the two but rather i was voicing my incredulity that, after witnessing christian's unfortunate accident, it was brought home to me that mr armstrong not only made it through all those tours de france but he actually won the damn thing 7 times...

    ...w/out delving too far into it, think of all the 'contenders' that whether they actually had the strength to best mr armstrong or not, at one time or other suffered from problems...ulrich - tt crash in the rain, mayo - 'jra' early flat stage crash before the cobbles, beloki - horrendous downhill crash...

    ...ok...i'm already exhausted from this discussion & i'm about to go for a spin (for real) w/ il campionissimo fausto coppi (in my own mind)...the year i was born, mr coppi won milan - san remo, the giro d'italia, the tour de france & the giro di lombardia...
    ...i may not be worthy of his company, but not the less, fausto deigns to ride w/ me...
    ...& no, i'm not crazy, just imaginative...

  14. bgw:

    you're a classy fella.

    i'm just a newb who gets bothered that lance has so transcended bicycling in popular culture that he has almost become larger than it. tell someone you race carbon and they'll say something about lance. bike to work and they'll mention lance. buy your kid a big wheel and they'll mention lance. it's irritating as hell.

    and i'd like to say it's not his fault, except it is, for being so damn good at winning the TdF. ;)

  15. ...well, thank you, kit but as newbie, i must warn you that you have prob'ly involved yourself in an obsessive & lifelong habit... will spend untold amounts of money on parts, clothes & equipment that only other similarly obsessed individuals could ever understand or appreciate...hopefully your wife will humor you.. you've prob'ly already found out, you will learn & continually update an esoteric language & compulsively speak a dialog well beyond the understanding of your non-cycling peers...

    ...italian, french, spanish & flemish cycling terminology will start to pepper you day to day conversations... & friends will look at you w/ askance, just like dave stoller's folks in "breaking away", which btw will become one of your 'top ten of all time' movie favorites...& from my pov, hey, well duh, ya !!!... mentioned that you not only race but you race on carbon ???, the hooks are already bought the kid a big wheel ??? can't even keep this obsession to yourself, can you ???...dragging others into it, says a lot about you...& honestly ???...that ain't bad... to the club...personally, i think it's the most beautiful "club" in the world...