He looked super cool on a Fred Baker with a Western Road Club jersey on his back; plonk him atop a silver all-Campag Benotto clad in Sanson strip – complete with crumpled Oppy cap at just the right angle – and well, you were into the Simpson/Ocana/Merckx zone on the CooloMeter.
Phil Edwards is that man; omnipresent on the GB amateur scene when I was a schoolboy, he piled up the wins then headed to Italy, made a name for himself in the savage amateur scene there before stepping smoothly up into the glamorous but cutthroat Italian professional world.
But not just with any old team – Sanson, the ice cream company sponsored squadra (even the sponsor’s product was cool) of Italian Capo, Francesco Moser.
And not just as any old gregario but as Capo Cecco’s right hand man.
We’d been keen to catch up with the big former British Junior Road Race Champion from Bristol for some time and thanks to the good offices of cycling journo and author Herbie Sykes, the connection was made.
Edwards owns a restaurant now, in the south of France and here’s what he had to say to VeloVeritas about those Golden Days back in the 70’s – and despite all those years in Italy and now France he still retains that distinctive but not unpleasant Bristol ‘burr.’
You came out of a good scene in the South West in the 60’s and 70’s Phil, didn’t you?
“Yeah, the Bristol scene was strong with guys like