|"In cycling, there are days when you have to take risks. Today, it didn't go my way, but that's cycling. But I'm fine, everything is OK." tweeted by Rigoberto Uran.|
On saturday, while riding my bike next to my brother, he asked me "have you ever thrown up while riding your bike, as a result of a hard effort?" I told him I had come close, but it had never actually happened. In fact, I could only remember one time when I had dry-heaved while on the bike.
Imagine my shame when roughly 24 hours later, I nearly threw up from watching someone else ride a bike. Or more to be more precise, someone else crash while riding a bike.
|Uran's kit after the world championships|
I suppose we'll never know what could have been of Rigoberto Uran's day at the world championships had he not crashed, but (and this may sound like a foolish bromide on my part) I'm still thankful and amazed that such opportunities exist for Colombian riders, and thus for us Colombian fans. Is this my Colombian inferiority complex rearing its ugly head? After all, why be content with the mere fact that these possibilities exist, when (some might say) I should only be happy with victories that fullfill the amount of talent at hand? I don't know, but that's just not how my mind works I suppose.
|Colombia's run at the world championships had plenty of bad luck. Jessenia Meneses lost a podium spot due to a puncture with 5km to go in the juniors race. (Photo: Chocce)|
Women and U23A comment was left in the last post (in Spanish) about the fact that I've not talked about Colombia's women's teams at the world championships. The same holds true for the U23 riders. This is true, and to be perfectly honest, I talked to Colombian director Jenero Leguizamo about these teams, their races, and individual riders. In the end, for the sake of efficiency, I didn't translate and transcribe that portion of the interview. I wanted to get the post up as quickly as possible, and began to doubt how valuable that information would be to many of the blog's readers.
But then, something happened. I began to hear rumors and grumblings (warranted ones) about the fact that several of the women in Colombia's delegation to the world championships had to pay their own way to Italy. I felt unsettled, bothered and, I admit, a bit guilty about my own disregard for these riders. To the person who left that comment: You were right.
An interesting development at the world championships: Jenaro Leguizamo, Colombia's director, was criticized by some in the press there for what riders did and didn't do last week in Italy. Interestingly, others in the sport (namely those who actually work for teams) saw things differently, and Leguizamo is now fielding offers from different teams. Things are looking up for a guy who not long ago was bankrupt, as his wife sold tamales on the street to help put him through school in order to become a team director. Well deserved.
|Esteban Chaves on the final podium at the Tour de l'Avenir|
Speaking of deserved, last Monday, Esteban Chaves signed a three year contract with Orica-Green Edge. Esteban lost most of this season to injury (and subsequent surgeries), which perhaps helps explain why his father told me, "I honestly can't begin to tell you how happy we are about this contract!". If you want to learn a bit more about Chaves, and his impressive talent, you can read the interview I did with him here. By all accounts (including his numbers), Chaves' abilities are simply amazing. Read the interview with him now, and be ahead of the curve. I suspect that interview will become the basis of a "Who is Esteban Chaves" post next season, once major wins start to come his way.
And along with this subject, Janier Acevedo has now signed with Garmin-Sharp, which leaves Rigoberto Uran at Omega Pharma (who Acevedo was said to be in talks with) still needing a good bit of help in the mountains.
Lastly, to round out this (admittedly) less-than-spectacular post, here's a reminder: you can win items signed by Team Colombia by donating cycling goods to needy riders in Colombia (including those from the Esteban Chaves cycling academy). The deadline to send donated goods is this Friday, so get on it! Donate and win cool stuff. You can find out how here.