cycling matters

Book Reviews rss

“Coppi” by Herbie Sykes(0)

December 9, 2013 • by Ed Hood

With Xmas rapidly approaching I was recently emailed to ask if I’d like to receive a Hinault, Kuiper, Lemond or Coppi fine bone china mug as a gift. They were all really nice but there’s something magical about that gorgeous Bianchi ‘celeste’ colour, so that’s what I’ll be drinking my Xmas coffee from – maybe with a shot of grappa in there.

And that got me thinking about the lovely book about Fausto Coppi which Herbie Sykes so kindly gave me to review, way back at the start of the year but which has languished beside my bed ever since. It’s an easy but highly evocative read; the main part of the volume comprises beautiful photographs mined from the vaults of Italian sports photography agencies – with most being seen for the first time…

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Marco Pinotti – “The Cycling Professor”, This is His Story(0)


January 15, 2013 • by Martin Williamson

Italian professional Marco Pinotti’s new book, “The Cycling Professor” isn’t so much a classic biography as a collection of anecdotes and experiences. In the book, the 36 year-old BMC rider from Bergamo takes the reader through his fourteen years as a professional cyclist, why he began in the sport later than his peers, his thoughts on the changes to the roads and training methods, and he details his views on some personalities and the major races on the calendar.

Marco has said that compared to riding a three week national tour, writing a book is much harder, but we’re not convinced and caught up with him before the BMC team launch in Belgium to ask him about his extra-curricular project ourselves…

Book Review – “World’s Ultimate Cycling Races”(0)


November 24, 2012 • by Martin Williamson

It’s been an amazing year for British cycle sport and cycling fans, with Bradley Wiggins of Team Sky winning the Tour de France (that still feels a tad surreal to type) and the Olympic Time Trial in summer, Jonathan Tiernan-Locke (Endura Racing) taking his home Tour of Britain, and the our track riders winning World Championships in several disciplines. It’s got to the point where cycling is becoming so popular in the mainstream press that the guys at work want to talk with me about disc wheels and hors categorie summit finishes.

This is where the new book by respected cycling journalist Ellis Bacon may help – the “World’s Ultimate Cycling Races” is an eclectic mix of facts and stats about events all over the globe, from Pro level races such as the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana to MTB races, Gran Fondos and Sportives that anyone can take part in.

Joe Parkin’s “Come and Gone”(0)


May 12, 2010 • by Martin Williamson

Joe Parkin’s “Come and Gone” chronicles the rebirth of pro bike racing in America, it’s his sequel to the highly praised memoir, “A Dog in a Hat”.

Boulder, CO, USA, May 12, 2010… After a grueling five-year education in European bike racing, Joe describes his return from Belgium, his struggles with the nascent American bike racing scene, and the birth of mountain bike racing.

After those years of racing in Belgium, Joe Parkin said goodbye to Flanders knowing he might never go back, and he never did.

“The Autobiography” by Chris Hoy(0)


October 30, 2009 • by Martin Williamson

As the first Briton to win 3 Olympic golds at the same Games since 1908, Scotland’s Chris Hoy has become a beacon for British sporting achievement.

This autobiography charts his life from 7-year-old BMX fanatic, supported by a devoted dad and local cycling club, through paralysing self-doubt and a major career overhaul, to the sport’s holy grail.

“Boy Racer” by Mark Cavendish(0)


August 21, 2009 • by Martin Williamson

Boy Racer steps behind the scenes of the Tour de France. It unmasks the exotic, contradictory, hysterical and brutal world of professional cycling from the compellingly candid viewpoint of someone right in the thick of it.

Written off as ‘fat’ and ‘useless’ in his youth, Mark Cavendish is now cycling’s brightest star.

“A Dog in a Hat” by Joe Parkin(0)


May 11, 2009 • by Martin Williamson

A Dog in a Hat is the remarkable story of Joe Parkin. In 1987, Parkin left the comforts of home to become a bike racer in Belgium, the hardest place in the world to be a bike racer.

As one of the first American pros in Europe, Parkin was what the Belgians call “a dog with a hat on” “” something familiar, yet decidedly out of place.

Parkin’s memoir reads like a novel. In plainspoken and fast-paced prose, Parkin describes the true life of the professional bike racer, putting the reader into the whirlwind of this hardest of athletic educations.

“The Escape Artist” by Matt Seaton(0)


May 25, 2008 • by Martin Williamson

Matt Seaton’s critically acclaimed memoir about his obsession for cycling and how that obsession was tamed.

For a time there were four bikes in Matt Seaton’s life.

His evenings were spent ‘doing the miles’ on the roads out of south London and into the hills of the North Downs and Kent Weald.

“The Flying Scotsman” by Graeme Obree-Putting the Record Straight(0)


November 29, 2007 • by Al Hamilton

Let me first say this is firstly a review of the Graeme Obree autobiography, the book – not the film – “The Flying Scotsman”, and also my version of the events at the world cycling championships in Sicily in 1994.

I was the Great Britain team mechanic for those championships, but Mr. Obree didn’t remember to mention this fact in his book. You could call this the bitter out-pouring of a man scorned, but rather it’s just my memory of what happened.

“French Revolutions” Tim Moore(0)


November 23, 2007 • by Martin Williamson

“French Revolutions” Tim Moore. Not only is it the world’s largest and most watched sporting event, but also the most fearsome physical challenge ever conceived by man, demanding every last ounce of will and strength, every last drop of blood, sweat, and tears.

If ever there was an athletic exploit specifically not for the faint of heart and feeble of limb, this is it. So you might ask, what is Tim Moore doing cycling it?

“Push Yourself Just A Little Bit More” by Johnny Green(0)


March 8, 2007 • by Martin Williamson

“Push Yourself Just A Little Bit More” by Johnny Green is an interesting read, mostly because it’s a book about the Tour de France, written by someone who isn’t a typical cycling journo.

“Man on the Run” by Manuela Ronchi(0)


November 30, 2006 • by Martin Williamson

“Man on the Run” by Manuela Ronchi is the story of the last few years of Marco Pantani’s life.

The title works on two levels: after being slung out of the Giro D’Italia race on the penultimate day on a charge of suspected EPO use, whilst leading by a long way, Marco was hounded by demons – insecurity, shame, confusion, betrayal, distrust – all the way through a terrible cocaine addiction to his demise of an overdose.

“A Peiper’s Tale” by Allan Peiper(0)


August 25, 2006 • by Martin Williamson

This book, Allan Peiper’s story, is a little different from the usual sports biography: it’s clear that Allan is a sensitive, thoughtful, somewhat spiritual bloke, who spends a lot of time trying to get through life in the best way possible, whilst looking after others (he’s currently working as a Team Director for the Lotto – Davitamon Pro cycling team), and usually putting himself further down his priority list than most other folk would.


Here at VeloVeritas…

...we reckon cycling matters. We aim to provide our readers with truthful, interesting and unique articles about the sport we love.

We cover all aspects of cycling by actually being there, in the mix: from the local "10" to the famous WorldTour "monuments" - classics like Milan-SanRemo and the Tour of Lombardy, the World Championships, the winter Six Days, and of course the Grand Tours.

We attend many local races as well as work on the professional circuit - and we do it all with a Scottish accent.

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