Velo Magazine – December 2011 /
Velo Magazine - December 2011

What’s inside the December issue of Velo

Velo European correspondent Andrew Hood was a busy man in October, traveling straight from the world road championships, in Copenhagen, Denmark, to the inaugural Tour of Beijing — and he returned with compelling inside analysis from both.

Velo Magazine - December 2011

At the world road championships, Hood traced the paths of riders favored to win over the weeks leading up to the race, including American Tyler Farrar, defending champion Thor Hushovd of Norway, Australian Matt Goss and eventual winner Mark Cavendish of Great Britain. And while the rainbow jersey was still up for grabs with 500 meters to go, Hood explains how Cavendish was able to take the win, even with the weight of the world — and four years of preparation — on his shoulders.

In China, where Hood also covered the 2008 Olympic Games, the story behind the race involved the UCI’s controversial foray into race promotion. Critics saw riders and teams blackmailed into racing a contrived event designed to stuff the pockets of the UCI in a country that has a long litany of human-rights abuses. The UCI viewed the race as a toehold into the world’s fastest growing market, with unforeseen opportunities to expand the sport, fuel bike sales, tap potential new sponsors and spawn a new generation of Chinese racers. After the dust settled, with Tony Martin winning HTC-Highroad’s swansong stage race, the Beijing tour turned out to be all that and more.

Also in the December issue is the story of how a misfit team of Americans dropped in on the 1985 Giro d’Italia, winning two stages and surprising everyone — including themselves. (Adapted from the new VeloPress book, “Team 7-Eleven: How an Unsung Band of American Cyclists Took on the World — and Won”). American cycling would never be the same.

Velo’s technical editors Nick Legan and Caley Fretz contributed two key seasonal articles. “How to Winterize Your Bike” provides tips on converting your bike for foul weather, whether it’s a road racer or a dedicated beater. And our Holiday Gift Guide features eight goodies for you or a loved one (or both).

Also in the issue: Sitting In with Alberto Contador, and Ryan Trebon’s return to center stage, both by Brian Holcombe; the popular Ask a Pro column, by Kenda-5-Hour Energy rider Phil Gaimon; and At the Back, by new, popular contributor Dan Wuori of Livestream Diaries fame.