Saturday, February 27, 2021
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The VV View: Wiggo’s Fairytale Finish, NeoPros and Retirals

It wasn't just Vik and I who thought the Gent Six Day finale was a tad too obvious to be true - "a Fairtytale" Cycling Weekly said, they got that right - we've had feedback from two men who were there. Our man who lives in Gent said; "It was without a doubt the most historic Gent Six I've attended and I don't think we'll see another in our lifetime ( I did say 10 years ago or so that there will never be a British winner of the Tour - what do I know). It was however the most blatantly fixed Six Day I've seen."
Laura Kenny

The VV View: Monkeydom, Wiggins and Cavendish in Gent, and Laura...

Sir Brad wasn't even off his bike when the phone rang; "Are you watching this? Isn't it heartwarming, nostalgic? I'm almost in tears ..." Yes, friend and sage of VeloVeritas, Vik had just watched the finale of the Gent Six Day on the box – so did I; for the first time in years I wasn't there – that ‘real life’ stuff got in the way. And last week's Cycling Weekly brought us ’12 things you didn’t know about Jason and Laura Kenny’ – to push their new book...

The VV View: Snakes and Ladders

Snakes and Ladders; Let’s be positive and start with the guys on the way up; 17 year-old Englishman Thomas Pidcock for instance, who won the European Junior Cyclo-Cross Championship in France recently. He’s now one of the favourites for the Worlds in Luxembourg come late January; he was fifth in the Worlds last year and is a year wiser and stronger. But if there are ladders then there are snakes, too. It’s over Matt Goss; he won a World Team Pursuit Title, Grand Tour Stages, a Worlds Elite Road race Silver, Plouay and – The Primavera. That last result means he’s a Legend.

The VV View: Boonen’s Worlds, Respect the Rainbow Bands, Tramadol, and...

‘Why do you rant about cycling?’ they ask us. ‘Because someone has to!’ we reply. There has to be a voice in the wilderness ... Did you watch the Worlds? Dave, Ivan and Vik all boycotted it – although they admitted to watching the finale. The Belgian offensive in the desert would have done Field Marshal Erwin Rommel proud – but apart from that and Sagan’s killer finale the race was processional.
Retro

The VV View: TT World Champs, Old Positives and Retro Scrap?

VeloVeritas resident prophet and Guru, Viktor is in Spain just now. His old bones can't handle the Scottish weather these days - a nice wee apartment in Benidorm. There's a Belgian and a Dutch bar, both within crawling distance and both with big TV's permatuned to sport, often bike racing. He has his bike out there and is about as happy as Vik ever gets. I rang him the other day to ask if he'd seen Etixx-QuickStep's beautiful ride to win the Worlds TTT...
Wiggins TUE

The VV View: Sky, Wiggins and the TUE Grey Area

TUE's - once again I'm reminded of Elton John's words; 'and all this science I don't understand...' The forums are ablaze with righteous indignation from carpet fitters and bike shop mechanics, all of whom are well versed in conditions which affect an athlete's breathing and the treatment of any ailments related thereto. Me? I'm a glazier originally and I can't remember Prednisolone ever cropping up once during my 'apprenticeship.'
The VV View

The VV View – Laura Trott and an Olympi-rant!

It's all clear to me now, Lady Laura explained it: "The Worlds are irrelevant, all that matters are The Olympics." Right! So those riders who win the world individual pursuit championships and world kilometre title are just wasting their time, horsing around? I'm glad we've clarified that - and there was me hero worshipping Hughie Porter for 45 years for nothing ...
Lizzie Armitstead

Lizzie Armitstead’s (Three) Two Strikes for Missed Tests

"She’s at it, they all are! And you know she’s at it!" The reaction of a friend of mine when I explained the basics of the Lizzie Armistead case to him – he’s no right-wing balm pot, on the contrary he’s a working class former international sportsman who’s represented Scotland at the highest level. Perhaps if it hadn’t been for Lance feeling sorry for the doubters; Tyler and his phantom twin; Floyd and all that Jack Daniels; Bert and his steak and all the rest he wouldn’t feel that way?
Tom Dumoulin

The VV View: Local Boy Tom Dumoulin Takes Pink and Questioning...

Greipel had just blasted the field to win his first Giro stage the day before; surely there'd be a good write up in the Guardian? I guess he got around 100 words? I used to get more of a word allowance to write up races for "The Comic" [Cycling Weekly] back when Scottish racing got a bit of coverage. Meanwhile said Comic and British Cycling continue to tell us that cycling is now mainstream...
Wout Poels

The VV View: Wout Poels’ Monument Win, Disc Brakes, Wiggins, and...

Buoyed by the great reception our piece on Shane Sutton received - Darryl Webster branded it; "utter garbage" - we thought we'd fire off a few more opinions on what's been happening recently in our 'King of Sports.' Sky finally got their Monument, not from a 'Brit' though; Lowlands hard man Wout Poels was first into that most unglamorous of Monument finishes - the retail park in Ans.
Sutton Saga

The VV View: The Sutton Saga

The 'Sutton Saga' has me yet again scratching my head about cycle sport and this nation's attitude towards it. Great rides by Ben Swift and Steve Cummings get hardly a mention but Saturday’s Guardian sports section screams; "The Sutton Saga: 10 questions after a week of crisis." There's one question missing though - 'in a week's time, who'll give a rat's backside?'
The VV View

The VV View: Recovery Ramblings from the Sofa, incl. Omloop Het...

There’s never a good time to be in hospital but Grand Tour times apart, the start of March isn’t bad with cycling printed matter and video footage aplenty readily available, and Omloop Het Nieuwsblad...

The VV View: Whatever Happened to the Individual Pursuit?

Who’s Filippo Ganna? Just the World Individual Pursuit Champion, that’s all. But don’t worry, we’d never heard of him either, until he won it. The rot first set in when the UCI ‘unified’ the professional and amateur pursuit titles in 1993 and cut the distance back to 4000 metres – the pros had previously contested the title over 5000 metres. But wet rot gave way to even nastier dry rot after the Beijing Olympics when the UCI announced that the individual pursuit was being chopped from the Olympic programme.
Jacub Marezcko

The VV View: The IAAF Mess, Rio Road Team Selections, Jacub...

We make no apology for more ranting – there’s much to get upset about in the sports firmament at the minute. It’s hard to believe that the public would be so naive as to believe that Athletics would be squeaky clean given the sums of money washing around and the vested interests of the massive sportswear companies who depend on big results from their sponsored athletes to shift their sweat shop trainers, track suits, sweats and Tee’s.
John Pierce

The VV View: End of Year Rant; Gabriel Evans, Froome, et...

It’s a while since we had a decent VeloVeritas rant and the year end is always a good time to take stock; in this VV View edition we compare the Six Day men of then and now, Chris Froome's data, Cycling Weekly's change from specialist to generalist magazine, disc brakes and of course, sadly, doping.
Wiggins' Dogma

The VV View: Bugging Us This Week – Wiggins’ Dogma and...

I’ve read Edgar Allan Poe, I’ve seen The Exorcist, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Rosemary’s Baby; I’ve even been to a Folk Festival - so I thought I’d witnessed what true horror was. I was wrong. The Bradley Wiggins Limited Edition Pinarello Dogma F8 is beyond my worst nightmares.
Astana, CAS

The VV View: Astana, CAS and Righteous Indignation

Righteous indignation - we’re all good at it. The Astana situation gives us the opportunity to use words like ‘scandal,’ ‘disgrace,’ ‘joke,’ ‘appalling’ and all the rest. Here’s the ‘but’: whilst here at VeloVeritas we’re not card carrying members of the UCI and Brian Cookson Fan Clubs we do understand that that the organisation has to work within a framework called ‘rules.’
Richard Virenque Road Book

The VV View: On Inconsistent Attitudes

You have to be in the right frame of mind to rant – unless you’re a Master, like Vik – VeloVeritas’s cycling sage and soothsayer, Vik can waken up ranting and probably rants in his sleep. I can’t do it to order – but the stars have aligned this morning and there’s a lot to get off my chest...
Richard Virenque Road Book

The VV View – @TheJensie Sets a New Standard

First of all we have to congratulate Jens Voigt (presumably this is the same person as ‘The Jensie’ whom ‘that commentator’ continually referred to?) – anyone who can cover 51.115 K on a bicycle in one hour unaided by gravity or pace making deserves plaudits. However, I have to argue the point about his, ‘having broken the world record hour record’ – surely he has 'established a new standard' ? To compare his distance to that of the incumbent of the ‘Athlete’s Hour,’ Ondrej Sosenka’s 49.700 is ridiculous.
Jonathan Tiernan-Locke

The VV View – Ain’t no Smoke Without Fire?

The splendidly named ‘Bugatti and Musker’ released a disco classic in 1976; ‘Ain’t no Smoke Without Fire,’ it’s about a guy who's worrying that his girl is straying. ‘Please don’t do nothin’ to make me ashamed of you . . . when I heard the news it broke me in two... But it could just as well have been written about cycling’s problems...

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