the lure of the dram

bruichladdich open day

yesterday was the second day of fèis ìle, and traditionally the preserve of bruichladdich distillery, who, this year, had engaged the services of several bands to play on the courtyard stage, including headliners, tidelines, along with heron valley and local girl, mairi macgillivray and others. it's a place on the festival calendar that has been theirs since the early days of the festival at the turn of the century, predominantly since they seem to be as keen on the entertainment value as the whisky.

as the years have rolled by, and the costs of being a part of fèis ìle have escalated, as well as an increase in the numbers attending, it has become necessary to charge for admission, if only as a means of restricting the numbers in attendance to a finite amount of space. it's a relatively simple ploy for bruichladdich, the design of which has created a courtyard to which there are only two entrances.

last year, the first actual festival since 2019, when we finished our bike ride at debbie's, there was not a seat to be found, and it took almost 45 minutes to be served, a scenario for which we were prepared again this year. however, it's possible that the restricted number of £10 tickets for entrance had limited the numbers able to attend, for yesterday morning, it was not only simplicity to nab a table outside, but it took only a matter of ten minutes to be provided with a soya latte and a cheese and tomato toastie. the latter was scoffed despite a wide open mouth watching a tall fellow dressed as the mandalorian from star wars, enter the café.

whisky fans would appear to be a tad deranged.

as to the cost of attendance, money for whisky seems not to be a problem. prior to my percussive performance on friday eve, i was stood by the bar supping my double-espresso when a fellow ordered two drams of a particular ardbeg dram, the total for which came to well in excess of £400. and when the price of several festival bottlings have headed into the hundreds, it seems that cycling's approach to the cost of living, is not that much different. consider simon yates' £3,500 skinsuit for a time-trial at last year's vuelta.

the fellow who purchased the expensive drams mentioned above is of german origin, a fellow i have come across several times over the past ten or so years, though i'd be fibbing if i said i could recall his name. like many from all across europe, north america and japan, attendance at each year's fèis ìle is a highlight of each year, many having attended for almost as long as the festival has existed.

in that time, while islay may have acquired a few more distilleries, along with gin and rum, the process of creating the amber nectar has not changed one iota. in fact, bruichladdich, who position themselves as a progressive hebridean distillery, are proud of the fact that they employ no computers in the process of distilling whisky, utilising equipment that has been in place for a century or more.

yet those whisky fans appear year on year to attend masterclasses effectively reiterating the same knowledge that the head distiller or distillery manager has provided for the last 23 years. and those booked on the tours will witness the same process at each and every distillery on the island, precisely the same as exists at any other single malt distillery they might have visited anywhere in scotland. and despite the often colossal prices charged for bottles of whisky these days, it's still a product that consists of a combination of water, yeast and barley. i have it on good authority that discounting any of the extraneous processes and costs involved, the liquid contained within each bottle is worth approximately 75p.

as someone who harbours no taste for whisky or any other alcoholic beverage, i find the whole thing quite humorous, bordering on the ludicrous, though in an altogether innocuous manner. given the number of porsches, bentleys, and range rovers currently seen about the principality, money is not something the whisky cognoscenti sees as a problem.

mr wshingmachinepost, in an attempt to place it all in some sort of velocipedinal perspective, asked me, were i to find myself in italy, would i be likely to visit the home of colnago, to which i replied in the affirmative. however, i was keen to qualify that by pointing out that i'd be very unlikely to do so for ten years in a row.

that said, and mandalorian notwithstanding, the whisky aficionados who surrounded us at lunchtime yesterday, probably thought it distinctly odd that two reputedly grown men would consume cheese toasties dressed in sportwool and lycra.

image: © island light photography

monday 29 may 2023

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why? just, why?

loch gorm

over a decade ago, i was commissioned by argyll & bute council's road safety department, to produce a leaflet that would explain the dos and don'ts of cycling on islay and jura. you would be within your remit to enquire why cycling over here is any different than riding anywhere else, but believe me, it's different to any urban or city conurbation from whence many of the islands' cycling visitors originate. the principal variation is the preponderance of single-track roads and the many blind corners created when the network originated in previous centuries. add to that the fact that this is a predominantly agricultural region, and it was considered important enough that the leaflet be not only created, but created by a local cyclist.

every year, thousands of cyclists head for france, italy, austria and switzerland, intent on testing their mettle against the substantial gradients to be found in the mountains of those countries. islay and jura, on the contrary, tend towards the flatter parcours, but what makes the latter more than a cycle in the park, are the persistent and often galeforce winds, even at the height of summer. therefore, when composing the narrative for said cycle leaflet, there was always going to be mention of those meteorological niceties, in order to satisfy those who are fed up with hills, and fancy some horizontal rain instead.

the council employee who originally asked me to produce the leaflet mentioned that she was required to send the proof to a panel of councillors for approval, several of whom took objection to the mention of the wind, and thought the subject ought to be omitted, lest it prove counter-productive. i thought that a bit naive; if you were about to visit the hebrides by bicycle, wouldn't you want to know of such potential hurdles in advance? however, the woman told me that, while she'd said she'd consult, she hadn't said she'd act on their comments, and i was given the go ahead to have the leaflet printed without any changes.

i'm pleased to say, it has proved very popular and has been reprinted once already.

however, apart from those who visit the isles by bicycles, there are probably more who do so by motor car, with bicycles strapped to the roof or the back of those vehicles. those of us in the velo club peloton have long considered that those bicycles may be more for show than for use, for no matter how many cycles we see attached to motor vehicles, a large proportion seem never to be used for the purpose of riding around the principality. a colleague of mine who owns a self-catering property on the island, informed me a few years ago that a young couple who arrived on holiday with two bicycles on the roof of their car, left a week later without either bicycle ever having been removed for use.

which beggars the question why?

loch gorm, on islay's west coast, which features a circular perimeter road, is one of the finest locations on the isle in which to go cycling, yet only a week past, as we perambulated that selfsame road, we were passed by two vehicles with bicycles strapped to the tailgates, and we once again, asked ourselves why? on a circular road, where it would be possible to park the car (even at kilchoman distillery), ride the 10km road, and return, as a matter of course, to that parked car, why on earth would you leave those bicycles strapped to the vehicle?

there's nowt so queer as (holiday) folk.

sunday 28 may 2023

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where have you bean?

costa coffee cup

as we wended our weary way around the principality last july, cyclist editor, pete muir had asked the question that several cyclists have asked before, 'is there a connection between cycling and whisky, and if so, what is it?' i'm paraphrasing of course, because unlike carlton kirby, i do not possess superlative powers of recall. suffice it to say, that is the gist of the question that has punctuated many a pleasant islay bike ride.

given the whisky industry's predilection for obfuscation and exaggeration, i often find myself in a state of dismay that i have been unable to concoct an exotic, if only half-believable answer to that question. when the release notes for one of this weekend's bruichladdich festival bottlings would have us believe that it contains notes of melon, lychees and pineapple, fruits that are rarely even available in the local averagemarket, you can perhaps comprehend the wide vistas of fiction from which i have licence to draw. if only kirkpatrick macmillan had ridden as far as port ellen or port askaig, there would be some credibility in any assertions that a tangible connection between riding a bicycle and a recipe of water, yeast and barley actually exists.

for those who perused the excellent article in last month's copy of cyclist magazine that followed from the bike ride mentioned above, the answer will already be mundanely realised. for those without a copy to hand, allow me to enlighten you with a story that has probably seen too much exposure in these pixels already.

during the first decade of this century, a team from the bottling hall at glenmorangie, owners of ardbeg distillery, participated in a 24 hour mountain-bike event, for which they had a dozen cycle jerseys produced in ardbeg colours. a few weeks later, they arrived on islay to participate in august's annual islay half marathon, clad in those very jerseys. desperate to acquire one for myself, i enquired as to where one might be purchased, only to learn that the counter had stopped at one dozen and there were no more on offer. thus, for the next two years, i pestered the life out of ardbeg's brand manager to produce more, not only for yours truly, but for the velocipedinal public at large.

his initial resistance was worn down by my relentless persistence, and after a couple of years, he caved and had a run of just over three dozen made "just to shut you up". that jersey has not only spawned a number of re-runs in slightly different guise, but resulted in sales well in excess of 200 in the first year, with brian gibb at the cycle jersey selling equally as many from his online shop. and, witnessing ardbeg's success in such matters, cycle jerseys are currently available from ardnahoe, bruichladdich, bowmore and kilchoman, while i have also designed a cycle jersey for islay gin (one that has yet to see the light of day, unfortunately).

the answer to the original question therefore, is that thewashingmachinepost is, effectively, the connection between whisky and cycling, though i still wish i had invented a more sensational fiction. this lack of being able to reply off the cuff to straightforward queries has also stretched to the immediacy of a sunday morning. a few weekends ago, having ridden past kilchoman distillery, the peloton was stopped by two women in a hired car to ask if they were close to the distillery location. kilchoman is sited on a farm just off the singletrack road that forms the perimeter of loch gorm, some 8km from the main road. it is a fairly unlikely location for a whisky distillery and, until reached, features no signposting or apparent likelihood of being reached.

thus, i truly wish i had adopted a quizzical stance and replied "a distillery? out here? are you sure? of course, as a responsible islay resident, i provided them with exacting directions as to how kilchoman distillery might be reached, but perhaps in a parallel universe...

a similar quandary as to a connection between cycling and coffee also exists. i have always put this down to the italian connection, but whether that's the case or otherwise i neither know nor care. yet there is a verifiable assumption that cyclists of all hues and genres are likely to seek out the favoured coffee shops to be found wherever they themselves are found. locally that frequently results in several bicycles, other than our own, being seen in the bike rack outside debbie's cafe in bruichladdich. once the sole outpost of the quality bean, it has been joined by many others, making similar inroads to the likes of costa, starbucks and caffe nero on the mainland.

however, one or two of the coffee hostelries on the princpality are allied to eateries, making it possibly an expensive stop if all you require is a quick shot of caffeine. but as of thursday this past week, all that has changed, with the installation of a costa express self-service machine in bowmore's co-op averagemarket. granted, it is unlikely ever to compete with the likes of debbie's, roy's bookshop, the bothy in port ellen, labels in bowmore or the craigard kitchen in ballygrant, but it does offer greater access; the co-op is open from 7am to 10pm, and makes no demands via sit-in menu.

for those visiting the hallowed isle this summer (or even into winter), and needing either caffeine, warmth or both, just stop in bowmore main street, leave your bicycles safely outside and avail yourself of a made-to-measure coffee.

though presumably unconnected, on the very day that the costa machine was being installed, kilnaughton bay in port ellen paid host to the super-yacht belonging to howard schultz, interim chief executive of starbucks. coincidence?

the truth is out there.

saturday 27 may 2023

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t-lab roadrider t-shirt

there was a point in time when i was in thrall to typefaces and fonts, even to the extent of owning software that allowed me to create my own typefaces (i never made it as far as a whole font). for those unused to the difference between those forms, a typeface refers to a particular style of letter, such as times new roman or helvetica, while a font refers to the variations available, such as bold, italic, condensed, etc.

though my interest had been piqued by letterpress studies at college, it was, believe it or not, through exposure to magazines such as ride bmx, itself heavily influenced by david carson's often irreverent yet iconic publication, raygun, that had me become more immersed in the world of type. the latter two publications made eccentric use of frequently eccentric typefaces, many of them individually created for specific page spreads, as opposed to those commercially available.

until the advent of raygun, type had almost solely concentrated on legibility; why would anyone wish to obscure the ability to read that which had been perhaps laboriously typeset for the purposes of clear communication? david carson effectively treated computer generated lettering as an object ripe for manipulation - legibility or illegibility were often unintended side-effects. even legible typefaces were often laid out in an almost sculputural manner, frequently proving every bit as eyecatching as the images they accompanied. this modus operandi may have been the impetus that led to his ironically titled book 'the end of print'.

though typefaces had been used as decoration since the advent of the alphabet, the flexibility offered by computer-generated lettering heralded the dawn of a new experimental era. when floppy disks were still a thing, it was possible to purchase experimental typefaces by the likes of neville brody, along with early generative fonts that offered an endless variety of glyph variations, depending on rules defined prior to typing. i appreciate that this is a highly nerdy area of investigation, and one that has personally diminished over the years, but i daresay it's no different than following velominati's rules.

there are, however, very few areas of human endeavour that have escaped typographical experimentation or application, including that of the bicycle. if evidence is required in support, you need look no further than the lettering on the downtube of a canyon bicycle, where the name is dramatically slanted to the right, and someone has taken a stanley knife to the bottom of the logo. for it is a well-known typographical oddity that legibility can suffer the loss of the lower portion of the letters, but lose all recognition if the top is sliced away.

and take a look at the downtubes of bicyles from britain's oldest cycle shop, pearsons, sporting a script that pays decorative testament to their lengthy heritage, yet appearing impressively contemporary at the same time. in general, sans-serif type (arial, helvetica, etc.) is preferred by bicycle manufacturers because of the ease with which it can be emboldened for visibility. there are still those who would contend that oversized tubing is not the result of a never-ending quest for stiffness, but more an attempt to improve visibility within the peloton. aero was simply an unexpected bonus.

try to imagine, if you can, a modern road bike devoid of any identifying lettering. in an era when there is little visual difference between marques, identification would be almost impossible. typography would appear to have replaced the intricate steel lugwork that was used as an identifier in the 1950s.

however, there is also opportunity for logotypes to be emblazoned upon riders' jerseys. off the cuff, the most significant that springs to mind is that of movistar. i don't wish to appear overly parochial by remaining exclusively within the velocipedinal realm, but strictly speaking, this is a cycling blog, and certain trading standards have to be met.

thus, as the weather becomes steadily warmer and less inclement, it behoves me well to introduce the latest, typographically influenced garment to emerge from the psyche of mitch at t-labs. described as "An alternative take on the traditional cycling t-shirt, it takes a little while to figure out." seen from a respectable distance, the almost square graphic will likely remain inscrutable to the great unwashed, while eliciting a smugness on behalf of the informed wearer. it is, i believe, the typographic equivalent of the oval tan patches left by traditional track-mitts.

granted, i could be overstating its importance in the grand scheme of things; based on my own experience, those who are not members of the happy throng of roadies could probably care less. but never forget that, while they may remain ignorant, the cognoscenti will be offering silent approbation.

t-labs 'road-rider' organic cotton t-shirt, designed and printed in the uk, is available in classic fit sizes small, medium, large and extra-large in caribbean blue and featuring a blue-toned image." t-lab road rider t-shirt

friday 26 may 2023

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the times they are a changing


it's not so very long ago (well, maybe it is) that the rule of thumb for bicycle purchase was linked to the tyre sizes. any road bike featuring 25mm tyres was likely to be a budget machine, unlikely to be seen on the start line of any grand tour or one-day classic (notwithstanding the fact that the majority of pros rode tubulars). anything sporting a set of 23mm tyres was the verisimilitude of professionalism, and top of any wannabe's shopping list. i can personally attest to the extreme discomfort engendered by a set of 18mm tyres in the mistaken belief that, inflated to within a smidgeon of the maximum, would prove highly effective in a time-trial that i didn't win.

since then, the subject of tyre width has become particularly topsy-turvy. but then, in my days in the school physics class, atoms were considered only to consist of protons, neutrons and electrons. nowadays there are all manner of bosons, quarks, anti-quarks, gluons, mesons that have appeared in the interim. therefore, it should probably have come as no surprise that the tried and tested thinking on rolling resistance, when examined a tad more closely, turned out to be very wide of the mark (pun intended).

it's hard to deny that the logic of narrower=faster makes incredibly good sense, if purely on the supposition that less rubber on the road would create less drag when compared with wider cross-sections. and though i profess to be technically aware to almost superior proportions, i still don't quite comprehend how we got to wider=faster. yes, i have read widely on the subject, but it's possible that i've missed some acutely important detail. and while i'm on the subject of admitting shortcomings, nor do i know at what point lowered rolling resistance ends, and frictional drag takes over.

however, to a certain degree, it makes little difference what you or i think, because the industry at large has accepted the premise, hook, line and sinker. that said, i feel less than inclined to argue, since the ability to run 28mm tyres at lower pressures than i once rode my 23s, has provided succour for my ageing bones. and, in direct contradiction to the technical specifications, those 28mm (or in my case, 27mm) have increased my speed not one iota; quite the opposite, in fact. (i'm willing to accept, however, that my rising tardiness probably has little to do with tyre width).

more often than not, the latest release from any of the world's cycle manufacturers, has recently sported a growing trend, one that i might term the allroad bicycle, with frames capable of accepting tyre widths up to, and including, 38mm. if i'd been better prepared, i'd have researched the availability of smooth road tyres in the latter width. i recently came across a new bicycle for which there was a single frame format, which could be purchased in either gravel or road mode, depending on the purchaser's proclivities. colnago have already brought to market the c68 'allroad' with tyre capabilities ending at 38mm (but bizzarely have plans to offer a c68 gravel bike).

and now specialized have joined the happy throng, but at the entry level, with their alloy-framed, disc-only allez. this particular bicycle, which i did have the luxury of reviewing in its previous incarnation only a matter of years past, undermined my pre-configured preconceptions, and despite its economic price-point, was quite brilliant to ride. this latest iteration may have moved down the groupset level at the behest of electronica (either a claris eight-speed groupset and mechanical discs, or tiagra ten-speed with hydraulics), but will accommodated tyres up to 35mm.

of course, we all know that, in around five years time, subsequent research into tyre rolling resistance will reveal that 23mm was right on the money all along, and the in-thing will be a dramatic reduction in tyre clearances at the behest of aerodynamics (i believe the two are mutually exclusive). lest you think my cynicism is misplaced, i believe we have already agreed that the cycle industry has been subsumed by the world of fashion, the mission statement of which is everything must change, preferably on an annual basis, but with leeway of a few years either way.

still a great bike.

thursday 25 may 2023

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sticky bottle - the cycling year according to carlton kirby. bloomsbury sport hardback. 248pp illus. £16.99

sticky bottle - carlton kirby

during britain's period of lockdown, i opted to write a feature on just what a cycling commentator might do when there was little or nothing on which to commentate. of course, in order to do so, i needed to speak to some cycling commentators. i contacted ned boulting, who declined to participate on the basis that he was simply keeping his head down and attempting to get through the pandemic in one piece. it's a sentiment with which i had considerable sympathy, as apocalyptic circumstances such as those we all experienced, affect different people in different ways.

having been friends for over a decade and a half, i spoke to brian smith. brian's originally from paisley and i'm from glasgow, so we almost share a heritage, as well as a name. then i contacted carlton kirby, a man i had never met, nor previously spoken to, who suggested i give him a call and he figured he could spare fifteen or twenty-minutes. almost an hour later, the call ended, with tears in my eyes and a sore jaw from laughing. trying to write down his responses to my queries midst so much humour, happiness and joy was something of a struggle, and i only hope that the subsequent article did justice to our conversation.

and just as i hung up the phone, carlton insisted that, if i had any further questions, just to call back. in short, considering our complete lack of previous history, he was an absolute delight.

he also has an excellent recall of events, dates and times, of which i am jealous to this day, rarely able to recollect what i had for tea last wednesday. that sense of humour and ability to remember the smallest of details fills all 248 pages of sticky bottle, the title of which is gleaned from the habit of cyclists holding on slightly too long to a water bottle handed up from the team car.

and in order to provide some structure to these recollections and anecdotes, the book takes the chronological form of the cycling year, beginning with january's grand prix la marseillaise and ending in december with a consultative visit to zwift headquarters in san francisco. in mitigation, december also features the previously unheard of (by me, i hasten to add) tuvalu coast to coast, an event taking place on funafuti atoll (honestly, i'm not making this up).

"A huge dazzling sapphire lagoon sits in the middle, and there are so many locals with boats that it will take very little to enjoy a trip..."

sticky bottle adheres to a regular format from beginning to end, but the variety of events described in carlton's inimitable way, often with recourse to comments overheard by his partner in crime, sean kelly, along with the widely varying anecdotes, does not, in any way shape or form, result in tedium. in fact, far from it.

"About £140 lighter, I was allowed to leave with my octopus and a police caution." or perhaps "With her back to the door, she bowed towards us and then, in a movement of sheer power and grace, span outside onto the steering deck and, in a turn and a half, released the ashtray."

don't tell me your curiosity isn't piqued?

but carlton is nothing, if not an acknowledged expert on professional cycling, even descibed on the book's front cover as 'Eurosport's legendary cycling commentator'. you might not be a die-hard fan of his commentary style, but his comprehension of the sport is impressive, along with a frequently splendid turn of phrase that aims to puncture any perceived pomposity of delivery.

Back in 1966, the Beatles started recording Sgt. Pepper's. There had never been an album quite like it. Over in Italy the first Tirenno-Adriatico was born. Even now there is no race quite like it."

the majority of books concerning cycle-racing tend to concentrate on either a history of events, discourses on particular races, or tables of results. mr kirby's narrative is of an entirely different order, and so much the better for it. not only do we gain a humourous insight into the travels and travails of a legendary commentator, but a slightly more oblique view of the racing line, augmented at the end of each short chapter, by an explanation of aspects of the cycling lexicon, or a quote from carlton commentary.

"He flies up hills in much the same way that breeze blocks don't."

and one of the book's unintended benefits is that each chapter is sufficiently brief to be read during eurosport's advert breaks. unbridled joy.

sticky bottle by carlton kirby is published on thursday 25 may by bloomsbury sport.

wednesday 24 may 2023

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has it happened yet?

giro d'italia 2023

in my second year at art college, entering the building one monday morning, i, and my fellow students were greeted by a phalanx of posters and decorations indicating to the great unwashed, that we were about to witness 'happenings week', comprehension of which seemed to have bypassed pretty much all of us. throughout that week, each subsequent day brought more colourful intimations concerning the still unidentified 'happenings week', aided and abetted by the notable point that very little actually seemed to be happening other than a continual replacement of the previous day's posters.

in the true definition of the words, anti and climax, ascending the stairs to the first floor studios on friday morning at the end of the week, a large banner draped across the stairwell announced it happened! as student pranks go, it was, tautologically, a bit of an anti-climax.

though thewashingmachinepost has professed both its knowledge and total ignorance of all too many subjects, the one it is most likely to steer clear of, is that concerning professional cycle racing, particularly at world tour level. where once it took a great deal of over-thinking to even consider broaching the taboo subject of bicycle maintenance (lest the nation's cycle mechanics e-mail their guffaws of laughter), i am very much aware of my visible ignorance of the professional milieu, despite, at one time, having had frequent conversations with current and former professional racing cyclists.

i would have to train feverishly and ride considerably faster to even be described as slow, eschewing for the most part, the pain and suffering experienced by even the lowliest of professional cyclists. and i am well aware that, sunday morning pelotonic conversation concerning the apparent lack of 'right stuff' exhibited by our heroes when the weather turns to the slightly inclement side, is akin to soccer supporters querying the referee's decision.

i would point out that the majority of us on the hallowed isle are well experienced in the art of riding in galeforce-driven, horizontal rain, which, in our eyes at least, provides us with the perfect right to cast aspersions upon the temerity of the well-remunerated professional attempting to avoid either meteorological diversion. but, in truth, it probably doesn't, mostly because we travel a great deal slower and are rarely, if ever, in the habit of riding around 200km each day for a week, while in the process, ascending gradients taller than the hill just outside bowmore village.

which is why i now find myself compelled to agree, at least in part, with a feature currently appearing on even more so when the article states, right there at the top of the virtual page, "Headwind. That's the latest culprit of why this Giro d'Italia is stuck in second gear." tell me that's not what i have been saying for years, more especially when the world tour's perception of a headwind is very much at odds with the hebridean reality. however, i have no desire to pursue that specific topic any further at present, simply to agree with the velonews contention that the 2023 giro d'italia has, so far, seemed a little lacking in swashbuckling and derring-do.

there is, of course, something of a disparity between the script as written by the race organisers, and the ability of the participants to fulfil its promise. currently it seems the latter two are slightly mismatched. however, there are two valid points of view at work in this conundrum: entertainment and sport. the sporting half of the equation is predominantly the preserve of the riders and their respective teams, for whom winning jerseys is the sole motivating force. for those of us switching on each day to discovery+, gcn+, or eurosport (delete as applicable), entertainment is frequently the over-arching criteria.

whether the riders have this in mind as they descend on seriously wet, dangerous italian mountains, is open to debate.

of course, it could be that the original script planned for the very scenario we currently appraise; lull everyone into a false sense of security, then throw every last pink shizzle at the wall over the last five or six days. in which case, i'd expect a whole slew of enthusiastic adjectves to appear on next monday's of course, some of my expressed disappointment might well be at the behest of each day's highlights show on discovery+, gcn+, or eurosport.

out of a one hour programme covering well over 100km of racing, the expectant, enthusiastic audience are offered four advertising breaks, little more than thirty minutes of action, and little less than twenty minutes of orla chennoui's legs reiterating reputedly salient points with three 'experts', studiously avoiding the fact that we have just watched it all for ourselves over the previous twenty-minutes. if the combination of discovery+, gcn+, and eurosport truly is the 'home of cycling', then prove it, and dump the punditry in favour of cycle racing.

and don't get me started on the dubious benefit of having jens voigt on a motorbike, periodically stating the glaringly obvious.

photo: ©giro d'talia

tuesday 23 may 2023

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