tour and shop tales

July 1st, 2006 Posted in General Stuff

not sure how many people are interested but there has been an investigation conducted by spanish authorities into alleged doping practices amongst professional cyclists. anyway today some big names have been suspended from the tour de france 06 which was what i am staying up to watch, the prologue coverage begins in about half an hour on sbs.

i find it curious when people are incredulous that professional cyclists are crazy drug fiends. www.cyclingnews.com has some pretty comprehensive coverage and there is a mad book written by willy voet called breaking the chain which refers to the ‘pot belge’ that laurent jalabert has recently been implicated in exposing some riders to.

pot belge or belgian mix is apparently made up of a bit of heroin, speed, painkillers, cocaine, painkillers or whatever you got lying around that will allow you to put the hurt on others or just survive a race.

bring on the tour, should be an exciting race, it is so exciting when the drug taking gets exposed because if you follow road cycling for long enough it is difficult not to be convinced that performance drugs are routinely consumed. i don’t really find it sad as the level playing field does exist because they all munch whatever they can get away with.

the shop has been pretty busy, we sent a dude out to lake eyre for as long as his water lasted on a surly pugsley ( www.surlybikes.com) with a carry freedom trailer (www.carryfreedom.com) he was a professional photographer so he had to take a fair bit of equipment plus 75kg so he’ll be putting the 90kg rating of the trailer to the test i reckon.

we’re in the process of building a mad rohloff and schmidt equipped birdy anthracite at the moment, it should look wicked with these proven cherman products.

on the framebuilding front i have been pluggin away at some frame repairs, learning a heap (when i am not cursing how damn filthy filing is and how propane soot blackens your snot) but i am hoping to have a couple of models by the end of the year.
tafe is excellent, i always get excited to go learn how to do something new. we have finally made it onto the lathes downstairs at ultimo where hopefully i’ll learn the goodstuff.

we have a new helper some of you might have met, john. bicycle tragic who manages to ride a brakeless fixie. that won’t last long i’m predicting, there is only so much your knees can take with a 48/18 ratio. anyway, we are training him to be a professional mechanic and all around guru so we’ll see how we go.

sol can finally ride his first bike, it is a bike without pedals and quite a controlled turning circle so kids don’t oversteer too badly. he seems to prefer the crappy trike that we picked up off the side of the road even though he can’t pedal it yet.
the first bike’s are sweet as hopefully he learns to balance rather than relying on training wheels. we’ll see.

critical mass was sweet last night, we rode along the william street bike laneand then back through the cross city tunnel to the bottom of bathurst street, i’d never been in it and it was pretty darn disgusting but still cool with a posse of cyclists. scooter was trying for a no foot down mass which i can’t even comprehend as i can trackstand for about four seconds.
safe riding
david