Cycling Inquisition's Greatest Hits

As a kid, I remember sitting down to watch my favorite sitcoms from time to time, only to realize that the episode I was watching was nothing more than a dreaded clip show. Somewhere between an ABBA greatest hits album, and making sloppy joes out of day-old hamburgers, clip shows made me irate when I was a kid. I wanted a new episode of Riptide, not a mishmash of season-old clips.

Having said all this, I must not have learned my lesson, because today's post is little more than a clip show. I figured that while I'm traveling, some of the blog's new readers can catch up on posts that they may not be familiar with. Below are some of those earlier posts, sorted by general subject matter.

Before I get to the posts, however, I wanted to mention a couple of things. To those in the press, please take note: the name of the country that teams like EPM-UNE and Gobernacion de Antioquia are from is ColOMbia. Not ColUMbia. I know I've made plenty of spelling errors on this blog (my ongoing confusion between "lose" and "loose" has made most of you cringe on an ongoing basis), but I'm a low-level blogger writing in his third language.

Speaking of EMP-UNE, when I saw the team race at the Clasico El Colombiano last year, I noticed that many of the bikes used by the team didn't match. Multiple brands of frames, wheels and components were used, and the few Giant bikes they had, were clearly year-old cast-offs from Rabobank. This made me love the team instantly. Cycling News recently noticed the same thing, but they still made the ColOmbia/ColUmbia error. Oh well.

For those of you who ordered jerseys, I'd like to let you know that things are on schedule for me to have them on the last week of September. The socks should be coming my way around the second week of September. I will keep you posted.

Lastly, I should mention that I'm currently doing coverage of the Vuelta A España for Universal Sports, as I did for the Giro and the Tour. So if you want to read my amazingly insightful...uh...insight, go here.

And now, let's get to today's clip show:



COLOMBIA


Armando Aristizabal was part of the Cafe De Colombia team, and raced for the team in European races. His body was found outside Medellin in 1987. His hands were bound, he had been blindfolded, and his body showed signs of torture. Photo from Matt Rendell's book Kings Of The Mountains.



Pablo Escobar, one of the most feared criminals in history, had substantial connections to cycling. This post explains those connections, as well as why my dream bike is a Colombian-made one with a shady past.
(Read more here)



Alfonso Florez was the first Colombian rider to wear the polka dot jersey. Sadly, as was the case with many other professionals in Colombia at that time, he died a violent death.
(Read more here)





Ramon Hoyos was Colombia's first great champion in cycling. His cultural importance was such that his biography was written by Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
(Read more here)

Last year, I had the great opportunity of meeting Ramon Hoyos. Now in his late 70s, Hoyos spoke to me about his memories of beating and training with Fausto Coppi.
(Read more here)


Rigoberto Uran proudly wore the white jersey at the Tour this year. But his life, and how he got to where he is have both been arduous ordeals. This is an interview I did with Rigoberto shortly before the Tour.
(Read more here)

Laurent Fignon was mourned by the cycling world upon his passing. But in Colombia he really wasn't missed all that much.
(Read more here)




Hampsten in Colombia


Andy Hampsten is a beloved figure in Colombia, one who raced both in Colombia and with Colombians. This is an interview I did with Andy earlier this year, and deals with his memories of racing in Europe, and the way that he saw Colombian riders being treated in the peloton.
(Read more here)


Bocadillo, one of a few culinary secrets in the realm of cycling.
(Read more here)

Another humble, yet effective culinary secret that Colombian professionals took with them to Europe in the 1980s. Panela.
(Read more here)

The Colombian department of Boyaca has had a substantial amount of importance in cycling. This post explains why.
(Read more here)

Colombian riders who raced in Europe during the 1980s were often treated badly during races, and felt a certain longing for home. In this post, I tried to explain why I readily identified with their sentiments.
(Read more here)

A sad story about a professional cyclist in Colombia. The title says it all: Carlos Julio Siachoque. One man, one big win, and a one metric ton of pure cocaine.
(Read more here)


OPINIONS, DESIGN AND SUCH


A brand of clothing that has become a constant topic of conversation these days. Rapha has also become an adjective.
(Read more here)





Where did that distinctive icon of a stick figure riding a bike come from? If you read this post, you'll know more than you ever wanted to.
(Read more here)

Many were up in arms about the the manner in which the Leopard-Trek team attempted to control the way its name was written or pronounced. Although cycling fans follow a sport replete with brands, logos and even refer to teams by their sponsors...they all got bent out of shape about one team being too forward about their marketing and branding efforts.
(Read more here)


On the topic of non-professionals wearing yellow and polka-dotted jerseys.
(Read more here)

In the United States, there's a current rise in the use of Belgian and Flandrian iconography. How is this connected to the concept of hyperreality?
(Read more here)



PERSONAL

Did you know that the authorities tried to stop me from bringing a stupid replica of the Paris Roubaix trophy? Did you know that I lied to said authorities, and said it was a trophy for a race I had won? Did you know that I did this in front of Jonathan Vaughters? It's true.
(Read more here, and then here)

Delusions of grandeur while riding a bike. Something I know about all too well. Riding a bike can be a humbling experience.
(Read more here)

How come I ride alone so often? Could it be my mid-ride naps? Perhaps.
(Read more here)


BIKE LANES, URBANISM AND BOGOTA


Where do minorities and the poor fit in within America's rising bike culture?
(Read more here)

Bogota would appear to be an unlikely city to learn from when it comes to bike and pedestrian friendliness. But a city that has a car-free day, and closes almost all its major avenues and streets every single Sunday to allow bikes to ride through them is an astonishing example of what happens when a crazy city full of crazy people decides to take on crazy ideas.
(Read more here)

What lessons can we learn from methadone clinics. Plenty.
(Read more here)