This week has been one of the most difficult weeks of my professional life.
All the efforts, all the planning, all the crumbs for the dirty little masses to fight over, culminating in one life-changing event that occurred this past Sunday when I was a VIP guest – the grand poobah of cycling, the ultimate authority of everything two-wheeled – at the Olympic Test Event won by the home side.
I was booed.
But that wasn’t what shook me to the core. No, it was the fact that one of the little urchins scuffed my favourite pair of Hugo Boss black leather loafers. The 20-something punter had obviously had one too many pints of some cheap, sleazy lager and chose to “accidentally” back into me, and with the heel of his filthy Adidas hightops scuffed a large white mark across the side of MY loafer. Fooking twat.
It is events like this that make me blood boil red hot red. Red. Hot. Blood. It’s part of my motivation to close the circuits and eliminate these ridiculous drunken arseholes from the equation. This also led me to make my decision to head across the puddle and take in the USA-Pro-Cycling-Challenge-in-spite-of-the-fact-that-it-really-isn’t-a-challenge-and-has-even-less-to-do-with-the-entire-country-but-we-had-nothing-else-to-name-it-race for a little R&R before I have to deal with the unwashed masses again in Spain for that Vuelta business.
You see, the Americans really have the formula correct. Sure, they spend so much fooking time in their cars and really just think of bicycles like they think of that Frogger game that my oldest boy used to play back in the day – bicycles and riders are for squishing, bumping and rubbing, and ridiculing. However, they are brilliant at marketing a truly NOTHING event into the greatest thing since sliced bread. They also recognize that it is important to separate the commoners from the millionaire money-grubbing elite that have lunched on the 300 or so million poor souls in that country since around 1981. However that’s politics, and I really don’t give two shites (or three) about that.
Take, for instance, the tripe that they blew on this very fancy and spectacular website which they probably paid way too much for:
“128 of the Gutsiest Riders.” “The #1 Most Influential Athlete.” “The most demanding race on American Soil.” Testimonials from Ryder Hesjedal and George Hincapie. I’m waiting for the stereotypical used car salesperson to come out and do the hard sell on me. After looking at this blatant attempt to try to sway the general public by basically saying “Like me! Really! Please! Like me! I had to buy my friends to put on this show!” This isn’t the best way to try to capture the imagination of the hardcore cycling fan, who really doesn’t have time to even attend the race, since according to the ever knowledgeable Chris Carmichael and TrainRight, the American yuppie/semi-professional athlete is too time crunched to train and is forced to do yoga and workouts in their hotel room in order to gain a chance to dominate that next Category 5 race that they pulled up to in their Audi A6, while riding on the latest $10,000 Pinarello Dogma.
No, the reason why I made the decision to check out this ridiculous race that will probably die a slow and painful death between October of this year and January of next year, was my lovely assistant, Bhon Mhat, showing me their foresight to take care of “uber riche” individuals like me. It’s a lovely acronym. Fooking brilliant little play on their part.
Oh yes, you can entertain your business associates in private rooms, and mingle with the stars of the event at the event and enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast with juice and coffee for your thousands of dollars you just shelled out for an exclusive experience. That was a bonus for me. No more cruddy little nose pickers hanging around unattended and touching their heroes like we do in Europe. No sir, only the exclusives get to socialize with cycling’s elite.
No more punters scuffing my Hugo Boss Loafers.
Needless to say, I’m quite excited about heading over to the wrong side of the pond. In fact, I feel so safe attending this cute little six-stage romp in Colorado, I plan on pulling my Ferragamo Derbys out. That’ll make Bhon’s day; he hates having to polish the damn buckles, but I have to have the silver parts shiny and sparkly.
Do I care who wins? Not really. Maybe I’ll even stop by and see what Aspen’s finest eating establishments have to offer, rather than ride the stupid bike that USA Cycling has “built” to my specifications. Whatever. For those of you with short attention spans, and who lack of depth in your cranial capacity, you can now move onto your gossipy tabloids or return to your ridiculous twatter about how tight Tom Danielson’s bottom looks in his PRPS jeans.
According to “market research” done by the “wonderful” pinheads at this website locale, apparently the feedback has been that once I approach 1000 words the vast majority of you fall asleep. The other part is that sometimes my diatribes are so in-depth, and so mind bogglingly complex that your simple brains can’t comprehend exactly what the hell I’m getting at. So here’s some Cliff Notes for you stupid gits who can’t seem to get out of your own way long enough to figure out the plot. Alright then, let’s summarize the finer points from the past few weeks:
- Global Cycling Promotion SA is a company that was founded using UCI money in order to directly profit five individuals who are associated with the UCI, including yours truly.
- Global Cycling Promotions will receive direct profits from the Tour of Beijing, as they are the umbrella organization that is in charge of this event.
- Alan Rushton, one of my close associates, has been hired to provide technical support for the Tour of Beijing.
- Gerard Vroomen (he founded Cervélo) was correct in his assessment that Biological Passport test numbers are significantly down in 2010 and also in 2011.
- There is a disparity between which teams are tested, and how frequently they are tested.
- Some riders have significant gaps in between their tests (some riders have had six months between tests)
- Riders are not told if they are being tested for the Biological Passport Programme or if they are being subjected to a random test.
- Teams were supposed to receive the biological passport results every quarter according to Anne Gripper, but according to four separate teams, they only receive them once a year.
There’s your short recap of the last two Dispatches you twats. Now I can get those damned editorial people off my back. For those of you outside Europe (or located in the United States), you have now exceeded your attention span limit. Go stuff your faces with some Twinkies.
So, an actually important race starts this Saturday for the rest of the world outside of the United States. We know that Catherine Wiggins’ husband has spent oodles of time preparing for this event, after his disastrous turn at the Tour de France. In fact, Catherine was complaining on twitter earlier this week about how her husband’s preparation would fuse the electrics in the main house (for those of you curious, there has been a restraining order issued by the authorities on behalf of Catherine Wiggins’ husband. I am no longer allowed to directly reference him in my Dispatches under threat of imprisonment or a light slap on the wrist with a silk handkerchief).
His preparation? A heat chamber. Yes, in order to deal more effectively with that sultry Spanish weather, the ever-industrious husband of Catherine Wiggins constructed a Temperature Acclimation Chamber to prevent the lowering of his socks at any point during the race.
In fact, neighbours state that they were concerned when he started to wheelbarrow mud, sand, and lumber into the TAC, and began working around the clock, building some sort of scale model of something.
In a scene straight out of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Catherine Wiggins’ husband, whilst listening to a steady stream of Oasis (driving any sane human mad), constructed a scale model of Angliru right there in his glorious TAC.
After two weeks and numerous neighbourhood complaints, Mr. Catherine Wiggins strolled out of the TAC, tranquillo.
Greg Henderson, brought in to survey the situation after many desparate phone calls from the queen of the manor, met his team leader in the back yard.
Their eyes locked.
No one moved for several minutes. You could hear a bottle cage hex nut hit the grass it was so quiet.
Catherine Wiggins’ husband finally spoke. “I will win on Angliru.” He walked around Henderson, touched him briefly on the shoulder, and went to the corner pub for a pint.
Henderson walked into the shed, and after being overwhelmed initially by the darkness, the smell, and the whirring sound of the heating apparatus, he focused on the architecturally scaled, authentic reproduction of the hallowed mountain. And on top, was a single solitary rouleur figure, arms aloft, painted intricately in Sky team colours. Yes, Mr. Catherine Wiggins is going to win the Vuelta.
Now, Bhon, story time is done. I’ve wrapped up the Vuelta Dispatch, have my notes for the Hotstove, and I’m ready for bed. Have you finished packing my suitcases for the puddle jump? Yes, yes, I know you think that four bags is excessive for a few days, but the last thing I want to do is show up to VIP tent only to find that Kevin Costner is wearing the same blazer that I am.