Don't miss a moment from Paris-Roubaix and Unbound Gravel, to the Giro d’Italia, Tour de France, Vuelta a España, and everything in between when you join Outside+.
Give the boy some poker money
Just writing to say that the Team Money essay/blurb/bit from Ang’ Sheldrakewas brilliant ( see “Youngguns: Playing poker with Team Money“). You should publish moreof him. Hell, are you paying these people? If not, you should even payhim.
All I know is that I like what I like
I have no idea what I just read, but I liked it. Just thought I’d voicemy approval in case you get some differing opinions of this rather abstractpiece.
and Calgary, Alberta
Regarding Mr. Agnetti Sheldrake’s most recent column, wherein he writes,”Looking inside the head of a cyclist is like fracturing a carnival skywith the hands of an innocent child and scattering the pieces in wavingstrokes of glory,” I kept wondering to myself, “What’s more confusing,the IRS tax code or the column I just read?”
It sounded like something Jim Morrison of the Doors might say aftersnorting some old chunky paraffin-based chain lube, then tossing off afew lines of free-form standup poetry in a coffeehouse. What ever happenedto that cranky old columnist you had there for many years? Didn’t he getfired or something along those lines recently? At least he made a clearpoint.
Laguna Beach, California
The grouchy old guy still writes for us now and then. Sadly, he hasbeen in an exceptionally good mood as of late and we haven’t gotten muchcopy from him. Meanwhile, we’re not too sure what kind of mood Ang’ isin, but we’ll be hearing from him through the season. — Editor
In prasie of the Mullet Men
This may not seem newsworthy, but I just wanted to let the world knowthat my two favorite riders are the Frenchman Laurent Brochard and theRussian Vladimir Karpets (has there ever been a cooler name?).
Not only are they great competitors, but they are also the most stylishmen in the pro peloton. Both men proudly sport lavish Neapoleonic and eastern-blocstyle mullets, respectively, which put them light years ahead of otherwanna-be fashionistas in the peloton, such as, say, Scottsman David Millar.
Sure, these days every other Tom, Dick and Harry can be seen walkingthe mall with a mullet and fancy pants, and the runways of Milan are chockfull of mullet nuts- now that the mullet is THE trendy cut of theday.
But where were those people 5 years ago when even your mom was hostinga website dedicated to maligning the mullet? Laurent and Vladimir had theirhairstyles on display for the world back when it was very unpopular todo so. But they are fashion leaders, not followers and I don’t think theyget the credit they deserve.
Don’t blame anyone but Marco
Marco Pantani didn’t die of a broken heart, media harassment, policeharassment or judicial harassment. He died of acute cocaine intoxication(see “Cocainekilled Pantani, inquest finds“). Through press reports and rumor,we’ve heard for a while of some of his troubles related to the drug.
I venture to say that Marco Pantani, like any other cocaine addict,effectively died the day cocaine took over his life. Since then, the addictin the Pantani mask tallied a list of sad and misleading acts and lies,to the suffering of his family, friends, colleagues, and fans. Whateverthe reasons he turned to cocaine use, make no mistake, the real villainin this story is the drug, not the real Marco Pantani or any of the peoplethe addict and his enablers lashed out at. Like all addicts, he becameadept at twisting blame for his troubles toward anything or anyone otherthan the drug and himself.
I will remember Pantani in two ways. First, I will remember him as anastounding and inspiring cyclist, a climber who excited my realities andfantasies about cycling uphill. Unfortunately, I must also remember thatfrom there he went on to become a young, dead cocaine addict. I will neverforget how sad that is.
Sunshine is the best cure
The problem of eliminating doping in cycling has obviously been goingon for the last 20 years with limited success. Sure the controls are tighterand the testing more frequent, but we have all learned that riders arestill finding a way around the controls and the public is left largelyunaware. If WADA and the UCI would simply publish each rider’s drug results,then they can use public opinion to help control doping. Take for exampleIgor Gonzalez de Galdeono who tested high for Salbutamol while wearingthe yellow jersey of the Tour.
By publishing his results, the public would realize that while he wasstill below the UCI limit, he was obviously doping. It’s hard to respecta man in the yellow jersey that got there by cheating. If the public andsponsors became aware of riders that were pushing the accepted drug limitsor aware of groups of riders with unique medical releases on obviouslybanned substances, then public support for that rider would drop no matterhow great their results. The public wants to see clean riders and willroot for clean riders so what better motivation for riders to stay perfectlyclean than wanting true support and respect from their knowledgeable fans.
Palo Alto, California
Got something on your chest? Want to suggest a hairstyle? Eitherway, you can write us at WebLetters@7Dogs.com.Please include your full name and home town.