Archive for the ‘Training’ Category

Registration for L’Eroica 2012 opens at 3:00 Pacific time for those followers in the western United States, or midnight in Italy, which is GMT or UCT -1 hour. Hell, I suppose it is only right to say Greenwich Mean Time when we’re talking about something as traditional as L’Eroica. Regardless, if you plan to go, get your mouse ready and login here at the official site here.

The best part of the ride

The organizers have expanded the registration limits for non-Italians. I’m not sure why, but there are now 800 slots open compared to my experience of last year where the limt was 500. No matter. If you have any inkling that you plan to attend, register and pay your fee. It’s not enough to compel you to go if you have a conflict or a problem. But, it’s one of those motivating factors that sticks with you when you are deciding whether to add a few more kilometers to your daily ride.

You might choose to skip registration on your own because you’ve decided to go with a tour company. If you’ve made the decision, or even thought about it, there is one that stands above all others and is a relative newcomer, In Gamba, or “in the know” as the idiom goes. I met these folks last year. We shared a village home base in Lecchi-in-Chianti. I’ll have more to say in other places about that experience.

They offer a range of tours in Italy and elsewhere that really have no comparison. Led by a former Cervelo pro, but focused as much on culture and community as riding, they give the serious cyclist everything and a great deal more. They also hold registrations for L’Eroica that clients use and the vintage bicycle is provided.

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A view along the 65k training ride from Thursday.


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If you plan to ride L’Eroica, this is part of the training.


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The Moseman took its last ride stateside for a few weeks. Next stop: Lecchi in Chianti.


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Following yesterday’s soggy 80K across the east and west hills, I figured that a gentle hosing of the bike would be adequate to clean it before lubricating the chain and riding again. Not so. Unfortunately, my old habits kicked in and it wasn’t long before the drive-side crank arm and chain rings were off and the derailleur pulleys were out.

I removed pounds of built up gunk, which I will soon replace with brand new gunk. I had another small maintenance job, too. I replaced the brake pads with what I hope are the last replacements.

Credit and thanks go to Velomine for having the pads, though, as with all Campy parts, they don’t come cheap.

I shot a few pictures of the components because I know that’s what folks love to see.

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The forecast called for showers, perhaps in the afternoon. The weather was not listening to the weatherman. The showers started early and did not relent, except for the few short kilometers of our opening climbs. Not so in Gaiole in Chianti.

The next few days in Gaiole in Chianti (c)foreca.com

I was joined by son-in-law Phillip, with whom I can easily geek-out on bicycle related topics, work, some sports and the delicious meals we had the night before or the ones we anticipate this evening. Sometimes, those happen together, but usually not. The great thing about riding with Phillip derives from his love of the sport and his attention to the details. It helps that he and I are closely matched, at least this year. He’s usually far faster and can stay in the saddle longer, but I’ve had a good bit of time on the Brooks Pro this year, so were about equal.

This was one of those days that cries out for rolling over and “fluffing the pillow” instead of crawling out, pulling on the kit and hitting the wet roads. My solace was looking at the weather in Gaiole in Chianti where it was expected to be in the mid-80’s and sunny. Can it last until we arrive? Will it last through L’Eroica? No way to know, but it’s fair to say that I have now ridden the gravel and the roads of my familiar training rides in the rain. If I must be covered in moist, limestone paste, I am ready.

The following is a little inspiration, mostly for me, but this is a well-done documentary which I’ve posted previously.

L’EROICA (english version) from Edouard Sepulchre on Vimeo.

L’Eroica is an old-style bike race without any fuss, crossing Chianti’s landscape and its famous white roads. I went there, done some interviews, did the race and there it is.

Photos : http://www.edouardsepulchre.com

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When my friend, Bob Huff, described his experience riding the strade bianchi while we rode a short training ride at the Oregon Coast, his enthusiasm inspired me. Several months later, he called to see if I’d like to model my bike and L’Eroica kit in a photo shoot. That was an easy answer.

The view from the back. (c) Bob Huff Photo

It was a great pleasure pulling on the kit and have Bob shoot scores of images. I’ve done this on a few occasions and one of the enjoyable elements of this shoot was the use of film. Yes, film. Remember that? You know, the stuff you put in those old cameras and send to a chemistry lab where pictures are returned to you a few days or hours later. Of course, there were the digital shots, too, and the sample here is a window to what went on that day. For Bob’s selections of images, visit the L’Eroica Reber Gallery.

Like a good, vintage bike, it’s great to see the solid, still relevant Hasselblads and Leicas come out. In fact, I’ll be taking a good old Leica “shooter” with me to L’Eroica, though I have no intention to drag it along on the ride.

For those who know Bob, you know of his amateur bike racing chops and his estimable photographic skills. After all, he’s shot some of the best in sport and his fine art work is great, too. Take a bit of time to visit his site and don’t miss his blog, either. Bob Huff Photo.

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