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Showing posts from 2006

COUNTDOWN

The 2006 Etape is less than a week away and - in the Apollo 13 sense - I have a problem. The concept of tapering your training is logical. You ease off in the last days before your event to ensure you're as rested as possible, without stopping practice altogether. With this in mind, I duly 'tapered' from a 120 mile Audax run in Kent and a 60 mile club run the next day, down to a very gentle 30 mile spin round Richmond Park. But this last session was the camel's back-breaker.

Within 12 hours I could feel a familiar twinge in my right foot. Two hours into my night shift at work, the foot was throbbing and on fire and my walking was becoming increasingly laboured. It got so bad that I signed off sick for the second shift and sat watching tennis and World Cup football on the TV with a large block of ice wrapped around my foot with a dish towel. I've had tendonitis before and it has kept me out of circulation for a week at a time. I put it down to age (sadly) and over us…

GROUNDED

Slick paving stones and torrential rain should have been enough of a warning. But no, I chose the shortcut anyway - and now have a bent brake lever and a bruised hip to show for it. My tumble was nothing compared to that of Discovery Channel's George Hincapie in the Paris Roubaix race this afternoon. One minute he was riding along, tucked in near the nose of the peleton, the next his hands were loose and his bike veered off the pave, as if possessed, into the grass verge and George hit the deck heavily. The slow motion replay on TV showed that his handle bar stem had snapped somehow leaving him completely at the mercy of momentum and gravity. He looked in bad shape - possibly a broken collar bone. Tough chips for the classics specialist hoping to shine at the end of his career, now that he doesn't have to slave away for his old boss, Lance Armstrong.

My own 'crash' came not in a race, but during the self-imposed, time trial-like spin, I try to put in on the way home fro…

GREETINGS

Image
First time blogger here. The title may suggest I'm going to write about cycling - which I am - but as there's no bike to be seen in the uploaded photo (& I'm afraid that is me), I may be posting on everything else under the sun, or then again I may confine my comments to bike-related issues only.

In my defence, I can say this snap (right) was taken at the 2008 Tour de France, on a rainy day in Brittany. I think it was an uneventful early stage of the Tour. We spent four hours camped under a small umbrella, hogging our vantage point on a street corner. Of course, the race whizzed past us in seconds when the army of Lycra-wearing warriors finally pedalled up the hill towards us. Luckily we then found two seats in a nearby bar and watched the race finish a 100km or so up the road. It seems a ludicrous waste of time and effort when the riders slog away for hours, cycling huge distances, only for the race to be decided in a photo-finish, mass sprint at the end. Why not have …