Thursday, December 2, 2010

Things I don't understand about cycling

I should start off by saying how cool it was to have some hate mail. I felt a little funny about it at first, but it was touching to see so many people coming to my defence. I still don't know who Anonymous is (I am assuming a triathlete but I am nothing if not open minded), but if you are still a reader, welcome back and feel free to leave more feedback, so long as you LEAVE YOUR NAME YOU WIMP. C'mon mate, have some guts behind your swagger.

another Anonymous cyclist

But back to more important things.

There are a LOT of things I don't understand about cycling. Having said that, I promised myself that this would be a short post, so please consider what follows as a highlights package. Please feel free to add your own suggestions as comments.

  • When they do track sprints, why don't they go hard from the gun? I'm aware this probably sounds stupid to a trackie, but really, WHY? I'm not sure who first came up with the idea of playing cat n mouse instead of going for it, but man, that must have taken some guts.
  • Why do boys never smile on the podium?
  • Why do people attack at the start of a race? Unless you're Emma Pooley and this is the Plouay World Cup, you're never going to stay away. Don't give me that 'exposure is good for the sponsors' line. Stupidity is bad for the sponsors.
  • Who made the unquestionably awesome decision that we always race for money? What other weekend sport lets you do that, other than poker?
  • If you have a race that involves skinny blokes racing up to 200km a day, up mountains and across countries, for 3 weeks at a time, at a pace that is faster than most people can ride for an hour, why are people surprised when some of them get busted for drugs?
  • Why don't time triallers get along with other time triallers?
  • Why do I climb so much faster when I'm 2kg lighter? It's not much of a difference compared to my overall body weight. Come to think of it, why do my scales consistently measure 2kg too much for most of the year? 
  • Why is cycling a team sport but only 1 person gets the Olympic or world championship medal? If I could change one thing about the Olympics (and miniature dachshund harness racing was already on the fixture), it would be to give medals to the whole cycling team. This would also help out multiple generations of cyclists giving talks at their grandkids' show-and-tell who have to explain to a class of 5-year olds that grandpop drove himself into the ground, his friend got the medal instead of him, and he couldn't be happier.
  • Why, in the peleton, is it wrong to wear black socks, but fine to wear a teeny-tiny little hat that looks like it should have a propeller attached to it?
  • While we're on socks, what is with this obsession with long socks? The only time in my life I remember long socks being fashionable was at school when your legs were getting a bit prickly. Ladies, do you REALLY want your calves to look any bigger? 
Get this man some long socks

No long socks required

Got an answer to any of these conundrums? Or do you have a conundrum of your own? Send it through to and I'll put Lisa's Mum on the case.

Ride happy.


  1. >Why do boys never smile on the podium?

    They are far too concerned about the likelihood that people are either :

    1) Checking out their package
    2) Marvelling at the clash between the cycling kit and the sneakers
    3) Thinking that their team should be up there with them

  2. Good answer Cam... forgot about the package. Very glad I'm not a bloke at times like that. Other times I'm glad I'm not a bloke include: most road rage incidents; getting help with anything mechanical; and tending to a dying animal. Otherwise, I reckon you blokes have a pretty good deal.

  3. Lisa,
    Firstly, I do not need long socks. 7cm cuff is fine. It shows the sponsors branding and thats enough. And attacking early has worked for me!

    Guys dont smile on the podium because when we take the podium girls back to the hotel it ruins your racing the next day(unless you're Cipo) and they are showing their disapproval at this circumstance.
    Which leads me on to: why does that have to ruin your racing so badly? 2 bottles of sambucca doesnt even seem to have the same effect.

  4. I think a petition to the UCI, Olympic Committee, and Comm Games Committee to insist that medals be awarded to the Team, not the individual in the Road Race, as you are right to see just one individual on the podium when it was clearly a contribution would recognise the work the team did. I would like to place my name on the petition.

  5. I got myself a new (Lazer) helmet for Christmas 'cause no one else would! It came with a teeny-tiny little hat that looks like it should have a propeller attached to it! I searched and searched and couldn't find the bloody propeller and I'm not sure on what occasion I should wear it anyhow so what does one do with a little hat like that? Jasper Parnevik used to play golf in one!