Posts Tagged ‘BMC’

The DYNAMITE! Five: The week in cycling, remixed. Issue #16

September 9, 2011

5 UP Todd Gogulski and Steve Schlanger
First things first: if you didn’t catch Sky’s Chris Froome winning stage 17 of the Vuelta on Wednesday, then head over to Universal Sports to see the Kenyan-born Brit’s all-out, gutsy double attack on the Peña Cabarga, and to marvel at the all-out, gutsy double attack of US commentators Todd Gogulski and Steve Schlanger as they attempt to out-yell each other. The OMG-gasm at 3min 20sec – “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!” – is a sound to marvel at. You don’t get this from Phil and Paul…

4 DOWN Dahon
What’s the worse that can go wrong in the world of collapsible bikes? A stiff Sturmey-Archer lever? Misplaced bicycle clip? Scuffed Birkenstocks? Well, if you think that’s the case, you’ve obviously not heard about the internecine battle of the Hons. Dr David Hon, founder of Dahon, began pursuing Josh Hon through the courts after his son and estranged wife Florence started a new company called Tern. In August Dahon senior failed to stop Tern trading, and last Thursday a court in Munich made a preliminary injunction forbidding Dahon from selling two of its 2012 range in Germany ahead of Eurobike. So it’s Dahon vs Dahon. And you know what that means, don’t you? Yes, it’s a DYNAMITE! Files pun explosion! Because things have taken a Tern for the worse. It’s a case that could go Dahon and on. Hopefully, one side will do Dahonourable thing. Or it’s Dahmagedd-on. One company could even fold. (FOLD, you see. Because they’re folding bikes, yes? Oh please yourselves…)

3 UP The bike tree
“Boy went to war in 1914 – left his bike chained to a tree.” That, at least, was the story of a seemingly poignant photo doing the rounds on Twitter – until someone pointed out that tree trunks grow thicker, not taller, so the bike was probably placed up there by some prankster on a ladder. But does that make it any less awesome? No, chums, it does not. In a strange way, the bicycle looks like it naturally belongs there, the colour of the rust melding into the hue of the tree’s bark. And it’s a practical joke which has taken up to 70 years to reach its conclusion – a dedication to tomfoolery which this light-hearted blog wholeheartedly admires. So bravo, mystery bike planter, whomsoever you may be…

2 DOWN Damon Rinard
What would you say to a porky rider looking to justify the purchase of an aero road bike? If you’re Damon Rinard, race engineer at Cervélo, your answer to BikeBiz magazine consists of just two words: “Thor Hushovd.” So Cervélo reckons the muscular, powerful Norwegian is “porky”, eh? Dear oh dear – no wonder he’s off to BMC!

1 DOWN Leopard
The name is extinct – so farewell, then, to that strange, contradictory beast called Leopard. The matching scarves, “epic” black-and-white landscapes, a brief attempt to push a fashion line – it all seemed to be a considered, sophisticated marketing strategy, but the whole project from conception to launch was actually a seat-of-the-pants rush job. Leopard’s detractors saw the team as the epitome of corporate dullness crushing the spirit of professional cycling – and yet it aroused huge passions from many (including a defiant and ultimately wide-of-the-mark piece from Velocast) when reports suggested a merger was imminent. And then, late on Monday night, came the final nail in the coffin of Brian Nygaard’s branding: the team that was originally meant to be about “smart, young riders” announced that it is merging with RadioShack, the semi-retirement home of the Armstrong era’s elder statesmen. An interview with Nygaard in the latest edition of SportsPro magazine, published prior to the merger, serves as an unwitting epitaph to the Leopard story (see page 90) – and the Dane admits he “couldn’t care less” if we all pronounced the name “leppard” rather than the prescribed “lay-o-pard”. But The DYNAMITE! Files only wants one question answered: what will be the fate of the light blue strip across the front of Leopard’s jerseys, which, when worn by the team’s portlier fans, appeared to be a middle-aged moob tube? That design feature must stay, if only for the sake of our amusement.

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The DYNAMITE! Five: The week in cycling, remixed. Issue #5

May 6, 2011

5 UP Triathlon
Cycling purists who steadfastly believe that riding a bike when combined with a swim and a run does not constitute proper racing may want to avoid visiting their local Virgin Active this weekend, because the gym chain is making the multi-sport world even less competitive with an innovation called “Indoor TRYathlon”. Worn out by five kilometres on an exercise bike? Then take a breather in the pool, as demonstrated in the promotional video below. Actually, it looks quite fun – but of course that’s what they want you to believe. All bizarre cults seem enjoyable and harmless at the beginning. You won’t be laughing a few months later when you’re running barefoot through the East End while wearing a wetsuit. Resist, chums, resist!

4 DOWN Jim Ochowicz
Responding to an ongoing Italian investigation, BMC announced the suspension of former world champion Alessandro Ballan and Mauro Santambrogio on Monday by issuing a disappointingly responsible statement. “Jim Ochowicz said new information received, along with consideration of the team’s anti-doping policy and the UCI’s Code of Conduct, means the two will be held out of competition pending further details.” Which doesn’t sound at all like the words of a man who issued the most brilliantly unconcerned “no-comment” when it first emerged that Ballan could be facing charges: “I know what’s been in the newspaper but I can’t read Italian anyway so I’ve got to wait for a translation anyway and blah blah blah.” The DYNAMITE! Files reckons the BMC boss’s reaction this time was something like: “Ah, whatever. Those two are screwed.”

3 UP The Thunderdrome
Attention thrill-seekers! Forget the Cape Epic or the Norseman Xtreme Tri – Detroit should be your next international destination for seat-of-your-pants racing now that a group of “renegade landscapers” has unearthed a lost velodrome buried beneath 30 years of overgrown weeds. Despite the surface having more cracks than a 42-page theory about doping on the Bikeradar forum, the organisers have bravely included a “Geared Road Bike class” in their motorsport-centred racing programme. You know what that means, don’t you? Book those plane tickets – we’ve found a temporary replacement for Crystal Palace!

2 DOWN Bont
UCI officials banned the Bont Crono on Wednesday, purportedly because the time trial-specific shoe “influences the performance of a rider” by, er, being more aerodynamic. Noting that TT helmets perform a similar job, sniggering fashionistas have argued that the Swiss spoilsports took issue with the Australian company’s latest innovation simply because it was aesthetically displeasing – and they’re probably right. At last: a decision by cycling’s governing body we can all agree makes perfect sense.

1 UP Boris Johnson
The staff at Condor had a pleasant surprise on Wednesday when Boris Johnson bumbled through the shop’s electronically-activated doors with his Marin hybrid – the very same bike he had bought from the famous Gray’s Inn Road store some years ago. This photo of Boris, pictured alongside Condor’s Claire Beaumont, pleases The DYNAMITE! Files in many ways. For a start, the London Mayor is in our favourite cycling emporium. Then there’s the suit – a big tip-o-the-hat to anyone who refuses to compromise the integrity of high office by wearing Lycra. But most of all, it’s the shagged-out look on his face. Apparently the pedalling politico cycled all the way from City Hall – a distance of almost three-and-a-quarter miles. Who says politicians don’t know the meaning of hard work?