As the year comes to an end, your author – like every other cyclist – is looking back on the year just past, adding up the miles and wishing that there was more time in the schedule for riding. Ironically, we want to get to the top of that hill as fast as possible, but always want to spend more time on the bike to do it.
Christmas this year yielded many surprise gifts. A couple of secondhand books in the stocking will hopefully provide fertile ideas for new postings on this blog in the New Year – in between rides, of course.
One highlight from the bookshelf will be Kings of The Road: A Portrait of Racers and Racing, which combines the writing talents of Robin Magowan with the photag skills of Graham Watson. Before our current era of websites, blogs, Facebook and Twitter, the printed medium was where this combination could shine. The helmet-less riders that grace the covers of such books are now as dated as the medium itself – replace by instant updates and continuous coverage.
Not to worry, as we can still look back and enjoy some great portraits, written and visual, such as this great rendering of climbing ace Robert Millar, in his Peugeot kit in the 1980s, his face twisted with fatigue.
Another gift this year was a New Zealand cycling cap, which will be a useful addition to your author’s now nearly complete antipodean kit. It will be a big season for NZ cycling with the launch of the Pure Black Racing professional team – who will be distinctive in their definitive black colours. NZ racers have been visible in the pro ranks for a number of years, perhaps best currently epitomized by Julian Dean (constantly vying with Mark Renshaw from Australia for the title of best lead-out man in the world, a classic cross-Tasman rivalry), who will be going strong for another season with Garmin. So much to look forward to as a fan in 2011.
Thanks to everyone who read the (rapidly diminishing number of) posts on this blog in 2010. Watch this space for the annual post on winter training coming in due course. But in the interim, in the words to Eddy Merckx, ride. Lots.