Monday, May 30, 2011

Couldn't resist.

Duncan is making me more and more interested in this Supermoto lark, here are a couple of cracking videos;

Fred GUERIN - Spring 2011 by -TribalT-

Championnat de France Supermotard 2010 -... by -TribalT-

It's always the French that seem to be up some crazy shit.


I did a funny ride yesterday evening that has left me with a few thoughts swimming round my head.

Firstly the categorisation that is happening in cycling is barmy, it reminds me of music genres - stupid titles given to the slightest difference to create another market to sell to. We did an off road ride at Dalby, two on mountain bikes and myself on my cross bike and we each faced challenges and had fun in different ways on the same ride. Whether it was me attacking each climb because I didn't have a low enough gear to spin up it or watching Alastair bombing down descents I had to run because of my lack of skill. We were all just riding. Full stop.
The same applies in my mind to the craze of off road riding on road bikes, be it bridlepaths, gravel or old coach roads. It doesn't need a name and to be placed in a genre for manufacturers to rehash old ideas and spin out 'original' new products. That aspect of cycling personally reminds me of 'Green Laning', which is basically driving 4x4's down unsurfaced tracks or forest tracks and enjoying the countryside, almost the audax of the 4x4 world I guess. One thing it is definitely not is cyclocross. 'Cross has to be raced, you can use a cross bike for a multitude of different rides but racing is a whole other ball game.

On a related note, it seems that riding generally slows down this time of year as riders who are tired after a full Spring rest up before Summer and some stop almost entirely when family duties take over.
It's a time for plans to be hatched and one of my all time favourite things to do is bullshit plan making with people, where we're all dreaming and not even considering reality. This weekend was a classic - a week long riding trip to northern Italy. One bag and a bike, days spent in the saddle, evenings spent eating, drinking and sleeping. But it is what it is probably a dream. To do it solo might be possible, but the organisation it requires to get two or four lives full of responsibility to match up long enough to make a window of opportunity is mind boggling. Hell it takes a week to get a trip to Dalby to happen and even then half of us don't even turn up!

So, my recovery Monday has actually been complete rest so far. The most effort has been making beans'n'toast for my dinner but maybe the washing up will require more will power or at least another cup of tea first.
Who knows the sun might even come out again when the rain goes away and we can all get our guns out.
Get ur Guns out

Saturday, May 28, 2011

You only get what you give.

A what point does expressing what you want to do become being selfish, also how do you tell a man who is half your age again to stop acting like a kid?

As the Giro comes to a close in Italy, I've been enjoying watching the Tour of Belgium on my lunch break. Today was great with Gilbert winning and seeing cyclocross stars in the thick of the action, like Niels Albert in the break.

I was going to write a lot more but I forget sometimes.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Monday, May 23, 2011

I met a man today..

He was a bike racer that knew when it was the right time to stop.
He had been a photographer for Cycling Weekly during the 60's and 70's.
He was a Colnago owner.
He lives in Spain but travels Europe in a campervan for seven months of the year.
He and his wife are Masters World Champions at cross country skiing.
He uses a Leica.
He was at the 1980 Paris-Roubaix.
He was at every Classic this year (and is a Gilbert fan).
He knows Francesco Moser.

Does it get any better? and he was a really nice guy too.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Print. Wash. Repeat.

Had a pretty awesome day today. Firstly, Katherine had bought me a darkroom printing session for my birthday, so this morning we had a few hours printing old negatives and revisiting old memories. Including this gem;

Condor Cross, Yorkshire Points Round 6

I was a little nervous that I would have forgotton everything but a quick run through of the DeVere enlarger and I was away. In a few hours I knocked out a couple of small cycling prints for the wall at work and a few large scale enlargements from our holiday in Italy to frame for the bedroom wall.
Then we had a little day trip, lunch and a visit to Castle Howard followed by a drive over to Whitby, for a walk on Sandsend beach then a chippy tea.

More derny action;


One thing about the PRO look that is completely unobtainable to the average cyclist is the skeletal gaunt look of a rider in form. You can keep the full carbon bike and Di2 it's about what's in your legs and your head.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


I would pay a lot of money for one of these.

Step by step.

This week has been about checking things off an invisible 'to do list', almost got the end. Possibly heading up to Dalby tomorrow night to watch some Pro MTBer's race round the streets of Pickering, although there is a strong chance that I might just come home and sleep.

There is also an interesting day coming up this Saturday, more details after it's been and gone but it could involve revisiting some past activities and probably this photo;

Tour Of Britian 2008

In equally happy news my immediate family has increased by one after my cousin gave birth to a little baby boy. Another one to invite to the wedding then.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

And again.

Just back from watching TT3D again for the second time, honestly I could watch it everyday. It's amazingly inspirational but not really from a 'let's go ride motorbikes fast' point of view, instead I get the feeling I can do anything if I put my mind to it.
Let's see if I can.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Beer and Curry.

Spending the day at work on my birthday was fine, especially because I was looking forward to a couple of swift shandies and a bhuna afterwards.
There was a lot of talk of motorbikes, and now I come back and see Duncan's latest video he's posted;

Personally would love a crack on a 'crosser or have a everyday run-around such as an old school Italian style Vespa or Piaggio. Not for a while though...

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Stop to think, and it'll never be the Jackie Chan scene it could've been.

Motorbikes and slow-mo.

The french way of doing cyclocross.

It's good to see friends and people I like doing well and enjoying life. Last night was a homemade Mexican meal, a bit of swapping and selling of bits that aren't being used, some banter today and thoughts turning towards my birthday in a couple of days.
I'm trying to make all my actions be centred in confidence rather than doubt, making everything happen smoothly so energy can be saved for the better things in life. This week's events bring back the idea of living life to the full, making sure time is well spent. To that end I'm heading back home tonight for time with my family, then battling the elements with a off road ride tomorrow.
Now time for a lovely cup of tea.

Still have a secret crush on the simplicity of track bikes.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Something good from Italy.

Tuscany looks like a place I could spend a lot of time.

L'EROICA (english version) from Edouardi Sepulchro on Vimeo.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Not Good.

RIP Wouter Weylandt. Death shouldn't be part of cycle racing, but unfortunately it's part of life.


All clean again.

White bikes need a lot of work.

Dressed like a Victorian at a swimming pool.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Race report.

Today was my only proper scheduled road race. It went pretty much how I'd expected, dropped somewhere around the mid point as the serious riders took over and the already 25mph average speed went up another notch.
I had some demons I had to lay to rest though, so I carried on and kept the bunch in sight for another half a lap before they disappeared round the lanes. Satisfied I'd done my best I pulled over at the finish line and watched the now splintered bunch come through, surprising how slow they looked when you're not the one hanging on to the last wheel for grim death.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Fail better.

2011 Tour of California — Stage 4 from RAPHA on Vimeo.

I haven't been that into what Rapha have been doing lately, but the Continental project videos that have just been released rekindled something. The word fun is mentioned a lot, while the 'advertising' vibe has been dropped in favour of a bit more of a documentary feel.
Full sleeve tattoo's look sick too.

There's a knack to finding people who are enjoyable to ride next to. It helps if you share the same sort of tempo/speed on the flats, ego has got to be left behind, no halfwheeling - climbs are done at your own speed, yet a certain amount of competition is always good but more than anything you have to be able to share silence comfortably.

Talking is easy, listening to silence can be unbearable in the wrong situation.

I will always remember a line from a Sherlock Holmes story, as a compliment to Watson, Holmes says 'He has always been able to do silence well.'

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Doing work.

Just been quietly going about my business so far this weekend.

Have to recommend everybody to go see TT3D while they have the chance, it contains some horrific scenes but the overall feel left me full of motivation. Also enjoyed the 3D aspect, rather than being over the top it gave a HD appearance that added another layer to the beautiful Isle of Mann scenery.