Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Need a reason to do a Flèche?

Besides the Big Adventure you're sure to have, you also get a cool certificate. Mine arrived today.

Half the fun of the event is naming the team. Ours was "Team N.D.D." That's short for:

Night of the Day of the Dawn of the Son of the Bride of the Return of the Revenge of the Terror of the Attack of the Evil, Mutant, Hellbound, Flèche-Eating Subhumanoid Zombified Living Dead, Part 2, In Shocking 2-D!

See the Big Adventure link above for more details on where that name came from. Or check this link.

Also, note the distance: 364 kilometers. A Flèche team must complete a minimum of 360K in 24 hours. Team N.D.D. had the stated goal of coming in as close to that mark as possible. Incredibly, another Flèche team managed to come in right at 360K. Typically, the real honor goes to the team with the highest mileage. So N.D.D. was even a failure in its attempt to be last.

Check out that profile
of Paul de Vivie behind the type. So who is he? For the answer, we turn to Bill Bryant, RUSA writer extraordinaire:

Paul de Vivie (1853-1930) was an early French cycling pioneer who devoted his life to bicycling, especially long, hard rides several days in length with little or no sleep - rather like a brevet. The Audax Club Parisien's Easter weekend "Flèche Vélocio" 24-hour team rides are named in his honor. He was also an ardent bicycle inventor and an early proponent of the derailleur; this helped cycle-tourists haul themselves over hills that scared off the racing types on their single-speed bikes. Among his many various cycling endeavors, he used the pen name "Vélocio" and wrote at length for decades about the glories of all forms of cycling, but especially long-distance bicycle rides.

Click here to read Bill's article on Vélocio's Seven Commandments.

Thanks to N.C. RBA Richard Lawrence and his son Joel for hosting our local event.

Our next Flèche ride is already in the planning stages. Stay tuned.

I predict the turnout for the 2008 Flèche rides will set a new record. The reason: a successful Flèche is required for the R-5000 award. And there's lots of interest in that following the latest PBP, another event you need for the R-5000.


AHands said...
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AHands said...

More on Vélocio: I posted Dr. Clifford 'International Bicycle Touring Society' Graves' article from an old issue of American Cyclist.