Thursday, 14 March 2013

I was watching Paris-Nice the other day with my daughter and she asked "what do all the team names mean?" Erm...i havn't got a clue was my response.

So many hours later after scouring the t'interweb i have come up with a list of what i have found so far with regards to who is sponsored by who or what.These are all accurate and definately true. I know coz the computer said so.

AG2R (ah jer duzz errr).aka Anyone Good? 2 riders! Brave choice for a team name i thought.

 Astana (Ass Tanna) The first of the russian teams. This one is sponsored by Russia's biggest Health spa. aka Ass tanning agency
 Argos Shimano (Are Goss Shim Anno) - sponsored by a catalogue shop and fishing reels
 BMC (Bee Em See) Some dispute over this but the majority believe its 'Bring Me Cheese'
 Blanco (Blank oh) Sponsored by a TV show from the sixties featuring Phil Silvers
 FDJ (Eff Duh Jurrr) Direct translation means 'French Drunk Journalists, normally seen knocking cyclists in to barbed wire fences
Euskatel Euskadi (Uss cattle Uss Caddy) Something about oranges we think
 Orica Green Veg (Awe Reek Ah Green Veg) Mr Orica's Fruit and Veg store, A small family business in a suberb of Canbera
 Lotto Belisol (Lot Oh Belly Soll) Joint venture between belgian bingo halls and a haemoroid cream
Movistar (Moo Vee Star) Like Eurostar but from Movistan in Russia
SKY (erm....SKY) Anagram of Sirs, Knights and Young 'uns
Saxo Tinkoff (Sacks Oh Tin Cough) Yet another Russian team this time sponsored by the Russian Citroen Saxo Owners Club

I couldn't find any details of Cannodale, Lampre Merida, Trek Radioshack Nissan, Garmin Sharp or Vacansoleil. if you would like to offer your thoughts about these teams....please do let me know.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

E3 or Omloop? Can't I have both?

HOLY CRAP! Its here. Its actually here. Cobbles baby. First up is E3 Harelbeke followed by Omloop.
So i had a look and found some facts. Once again Boonen is' da man'. I think he has pretty much pissed all over Belgium claiming it as if he was a horny tomcat. 

Tom Boonen holds the record for the most wins in E3 with five victories( count them bitches), coming in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2012. He really is the big dog! Can he do it this year? Not in my eyes. I feel its time for new blood. I reckon 'the bear' Ian Stannard.

The on to one of my favourite races. Omloop baby!!!!!
Interestingly, Boonen the tom cat doesnt feature in the record books much.

The record for wins is three, held by Joseph Bruyère (1974, 1975 and 1980),Bruyère also has the fastest speed (43.35 km/h) for 1975.

 Ernest Sterckx (1952, 1953 and 1956)

 and Peter van Petegem (1997, 1998 and 2002).


Monday, 11 February 2013

My daughter is an inspiration. She was born with a poorly liver and at the age of seven she had a liver transplant. Now at the age of 12 she is insistant on helping others. She has never thought herself as different to others.

The other day she hear that the hospital she was treated at and where she pretty much grew up, was to lose its heart surgery centre. This upset here dearly and , of her own head she decided she would make things to sell to help to raise money.

So my request to all my friends and followers, please if you can, make me offers of these little keep-sakes. Lydia has said she will also send a blank card so you can give the item to a loved one as a gift.

My daughter never ceases to amaze me with her compassion. After every thing she has been through, she still puts others first.

Please help if you can. Even if its just a couple of pounds. You can email me at cheques postal orders to be made out to 'Lydia Mellen' and she is taking money to hospital with her.

piglet cross stitch by Lydia for sale.

Two little elephant pin cushions can be coloured with fabric pens. made by Lydia

Friday, 1 February 2013

one year done...

So I took up something  new last year, I learned to be a commissaire. You can read about it here on the gazzetta home page. (While you are there, why not join our brilliant club).
But also celebrating 12 months in a new job is Charly Wegelius.  One of my all time favourite riders turned DS last year for Garmin. Here are a couple of videos of the living legend himeself. Seems his new role is a lot more stressful than mine....or, i'm just not taking it at all serious.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Madness is upon us

The Spring classics are almost upon us and more importantly, the cobbled classics of northern France and Belgium are almost upon us. This year they more than ever there seems and air of unpredictability about the outcome of these races. So many new teams and team structures. So many new faces in the pro peloton. An era of clarity maybe upon us? Large swathes of the peloton may have suddenly stopped seeking outside assistance. I personally think this year more than ever is wide open. Who could win. I mean its the first time since 1936 the George Hincapie hasn't taken part.

The first race of the season (that matters) is Omloop het Nieuwsblad. Mid February. The sadist in me prays for snow to really give the tough guys a shot. Remember Chris Sutton winning Kuurne Brussels Kuurne when i think only 23 riders finished. This is what I love about these races. 200 guys may start but only 20 could finish. I love races that just destroy the pack. I really think the best rider genuinely wins.

This still doesnt answer who will reign on the cobbles this year though. Last year was definately Tommeke's year winning four races E3 Harelbeke, Gent Wevelgem, de Ronde and paris Roubaix. He is certainly looking fit and strong currently but is he strong enough to dominate again? You certainly cant count him out.

Then we get to Fast Phil. He is certainly the man of the moment especially as he sporting a new tramp stamp on his ankle. A shocking year last year until he won the worlds. The stripey jumper will just fire him up even more. He'll be out to prove a point and settle some scores. My money will always be on Phil.

The other rider to have a poor spring campaign last year was Fabian - crashing in de Ronde stopping his campaign dead. You really cant count him out. If he is fit strong and motivated it will be hard to hold him back.

So picked a winner yet? Lets just mix it up a bit more then. I'll chuck some names in and you tell me if they have a shot...

Ian Stannard - big aggressive steam train. so strong and powerful. he has already said he is targetting the spring classics

Steve Cummings - has proven he can just ride away from the world greatest riders

Iljo Kiesse - big strong belgian just coming into his own

Peter Sagan - young arrogant and strong. He could?

Alessandro Ballan - Nine feet tall and very strong.

Juan Antonio Flecha(aka Norman Stanley) - a new team VacanSoliel - if his name is picked out of the 'attack bag' in the morning he has to attack. its the VacanSoliel way.

Johhny Hooligan - why the hell not?

Thomas de Gendt - why the hell not? 

Any VacanSoliel rider - why the hell not? depends who's name comes out of the 'attack bag' on the bus in the morning.

Some wild outsiders for my own perverse amusement;

Adam Blythe - very capable of winning tough Belgian one day races. If he can just hold his attack to last 2km and not try from 20km out(paris-tours 2012)

JTL - who wouldnt love to see him fly up the final climb? I have no idea what he is like on the cobbles

Zak Dempster - I think he has a real talent and given a chance...BOOM Aussie rules

So who is going to win?

Friday, 1 June 2012

Why you should ride a bike...

Recently, Bex Love posted a blog about her tough decisions on whether or not to join our world of old clothing and filthy habits. In her blog she explains her pros and cons about the decisions ahead. Well let me just add my two penneth worth....She was bloody wrong.

The decision is already made to buy a bike. The seed is already sown in her pretty blond head because she is giving it serious thought. Ergo, discussing it it pointless. Futile even. The bike will always win. The only decision to be made is....MAX the credit card or ask hubster to buy it for her.

To help the poor lost Bex Love, I have made my own - and of course correct - list of Pros and Cons


1 Female cyclists are hot
2 Their bottoms are nice to follow
3 Female cyclists are hot
4 Lycra is awesome on women
5 Female cyclists are hot
Exhibit A- BOING!


1 Scabby knees in mini skirts are awesome....oh hang on this is a 'Pro'
2 Female cyclists are hot....dammit this one too
3 erm......cant really think of any
4 dammit woman buy a bike!

So, as you can see, my list IS exhaustive and there is no compromise. I utterly think Bex should go out and buy a Di2 equipped pashley princess.