What’s happening #15

De Ronde
7th of April 2019

Sunday is Flanders’ most beautiful!
Maybe Michael Matthews will win this year while his parents are sleeping on the other side of the world. That would not be the first time that the winner’s parents are dreaming unsuspectingly …
Belgian rider Briek Schotte won twice, in 1942 and 1948.

After one of his winnings, Schotte had to climb through the window of his parents’ farm in the evening to enter. His parents were already asleep and had no idea that their son was riding the race that day.

Echelon

At Le Patron we add some style in the peloton. But a peloton can have all kinds of forms. Because of the wind direction the peloton can transform into a echelon.

The echelon is the hardest, most dangerous, and most enjoyable paceline to ride. You move diagonally forward and back, with riders situated tightly off your handlebar and hip, the riders directly in front of you moving in a different direction at a different speed. This requires bike handling and fearlessness.  With a group of riders who know how to ride in a crosswind properly, this can be the only way to make it to the red rag.

Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome, Greg Lemond and Bernard Hinault, Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador..

The rivalry between two leaders in a team is a well-known racing phenomenon. Just like  Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna in the 1988 and 1989 Formula 1 seasons. Both at team McLaren and both clearly a class better than the rest. Too bad they can’t continue the battle on the bike..

“the nosebag”

The musette: an iconic symbol of cycling. Introduced in the 1950s by team managers with outstretched arms and filled with fruit, cakes and drinks. Many innovations have been reviewed in cycling but the square cotton bag with thin straps is still standing strong!  It has a vitally important function to provide riders with new energy stocks. In 2019 still the embodiment of cycling culture: canvas bag which took its name from the nose-bag more commonly seen around the necks of farm horses.

Cycling isn’t a game, it’s a sport.
Tough, hard and unpitying, and it requires great sacrifices.
One plays football, or tennis, or hockey.
One doesn’t play at cycling”

Jean de Gribaldy
(cyclist and team leader, here with Sean Kelly at KAS)

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