With more than 40 years of experience as a manager, insiders often point out that Eusebio Unzue is a survivor in the sport of professional road cycling . He led Miguel Indurain, Pedro Delgado, and Alejandro Valverde to success but while watching the Netflix documentary I had to wonder where his true talents lie. His eye for spotting Spanish talent is undisputed and among a core group of staff and riders, he has been able to inspire loyalty at a certain level – but only to a point. At the end of the 2019 season the team’s three biggest names – Quintana, Landa, and Carapaz – leave Movistar. Continue reading “Team Movistar and the Least Expected Day”
It was during the care-free days of the 1970’s when a successful painter of the figurative style, an Irishman named Francis Bacon reached the pinnacle of success. His paintings sold for big money and when he exhibited his work at the Grand Palais in Paris, not only did he emerge as the new king of the hill among painters but there was also dead body involved. Continue reading “Will Pro Cycling Ever Get Back on Its Feet?”
What is talent? That elusive quality that’s so hard to define and yet easy to recognize when racking up wins.
You never know who has it – hidden away, waiting to bubble up to the surface. Some will have us believe that greatness is born, but the late bloomers show us that a person can grow into their genetics. As an aspiring riders’ agent, identifying talent should be in my best interest. So with that in mind I headed out for the north and the principality of Asturias. Continue reading “Vuelta a Asturias: talent and road cycling”
It takes luck to win a one day race at the highest level of pro cycling. A balance of dynamics are necessary to get the right mix – reliable teammates, suitable course, support staff, and agreeable weather – and then a dash of right time, right place good fortune. Continue reading “Valverde’s Gold Medal shines a light on Cycling Fed bankruptcy: the Curious Case of Javier Mínguez”
“Your group’s culture doesn’t depend on who you are; it depends on what you do.”
– Daniel Coyle, The Culture Code
Money makes the world go round. And in the case of cycling, it makes the wheels spin faster.
But just how important is money to success? Did team sky buy their Tour de France victories? Well I know I’m not buying it. This shift in culture on the road didn’t just start back in 2012 with the Wiggins tour victory. We have to look all the way back to 1997 at the Manchester velodrome where; before he was crowned with Sir – David Brailford was masterminding the bonanza we’re enjoying today. Continue reading “New Kings of the Road: Can money buy performance?”
“The final plunge into the driving purity of speed.”
Hemingway knew what he was talking about when it came to the art of manliness. Bullfighting, boxing, and war were just a few of the fields in which he dipped his ink. This was my second reading of A Moveable Feast, written between 1921 and 1926 in Paris, and these two pages about bike racing resonate with me in a way they hadn’t during my first reading ten years ago. Continue reading “Ernest Hemingway on Bike Racing”
So many people have read my post about the UCI agents’ exam I thought that I would upload what I think may be a useful tool for anyone thinking about taking the exam.
Anki is free, basic software and a useful memory tool available online. The attached file contains over 200 flashcards copied and pasted directly from the UCI rule books.
A few years ago I read Cycle of Lies and Wheelmen back to back and I learned something important. Don’t fuck with Floyd Landis. Continue reading “Hypocrisy and pro cycling”
What is talent in road cycling? Is talent manifested only in results? Is it purely physical?
In a recent article written by Daniel Friebe and published online by cyclingnews.com, former pro and teammate of Jan Ullrich, Rolf Aldag said, “He’d improved in four days the amount that I would in three weeks. Already then you could stand back and say that was pure talent, whatever he did later in his career. He was just on a different level.” Continue reading “Talent and road cycling”