Scottish cycling’s super fan and grass track aficionado, Harry Tweed posted some pics of a gentleman named Cedric Sachet racing on the grass track with a bottle cage and Garmin at Ceres Highland Games, the other week. Purists like me were horrified.
Matt Green’s is a typical story, a young Englishman who gets into cycling, trudges the well trodden path to the Flatlands of Flanders, gets a contract on low budget teams – Cyclingnews, Cinelli, Marco Polo – and then...
The progression stalls; but rather than bang his head against the combines in Flanders for another year, he’s decided that there’s a New World of cycling for him – across the pond in the USA. He’s secured a private sponsor to pay his wages and all he needs now is a team – here’s his tale:
A few weeks ago saw the last of the Spring Classics with ‘La Doyenne’ – Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the oldest and arguably toughest of them all with barely a metre of flat road in it’s 258 kilometres. Before that, the U23 version of the race took place over 166 kilometres but taking in many of its famous big brother’s climbs, such as La Redoute. Our colleague from the Six Days, soigneur Martyn Frank put us in touch with James and here’s what he had to say to VeloVeritas.
Yes, Scotland has two Olympic champions on the Commonwealth Games squad for The Gold Coast; Katie Archibald and Callum Skinner. We also have double European U23 champion, Mark Stewart and World Cup gold medallist, Neah Evans. But there’s another name which isn’t so obvious, that of 26 year-old Jonny Wale – born and raised in Scotland, British team pursuit champion and author of a 1:01.1 kilometre.
We caught up with Jonny recently to get his story. He’s recovering from a training crash which resulted in a broken collarbone but hasn’t kept him out of the gym or off the turbo – the man wants to get to the Gold Coast, real bad!
Nico Mattan was in the DFL team car with Evan at the Tour of Britain 2007, having his first taste of Kendal mint cake when I rang on Friday; we'll hear more wisdom from Nico later, but he did like the mint cake. Nico does love his beer. He DNF'd today, so will likely be home enjoying a lovely cold Leffe Blonde as you read this.
The first big mountain stage of the Tour has exposed the form of the riders who have intentions of finishing on the podium in the race. The best five in the race to date have been Wiggins, Evans, Nibali, Froome and Van Den Broeck (VDB). Bizarrely, Chris Froome is probably the best in the race right now: he completely cracked Cadel Evans AND (briefly) dropped his own team leader.
'Why do you want to go further, nothing is there?' the cute park ranger asks us; she's guarding the last section of the fabled climb.
We're beside Lago Enol, one of the beautiful Lagos de Covadonga and we need to drive the finale to complete our mission for the day.
'Two minutes?' we plead with her - 'you have ten and then I come looking for you!' she smiles.
She's right, low cloud, grass, rock and no lightweight climbers - just a lone Asturian cow...
At Le Tour de France 2006 I was involved with TV - no, no, not like that, cycling dot TV - the Internet TV guys. I met their guy, Steve Masters in the press room yesterday and he scrounged a lift off me to the start at Obernai with his camera man, James.