What's Cool In Road Cycling

MailBag: Smells Like Friday!

It’s been a while since we last pulled on the hip waders, industrial gloves & goggles, but with the top of the Mailbag bubbly over, we had no choice but to wade in. And regardless of pungentry, there’s no better way to kill a few minutes of company time than a gander at the goo we choose for you… Dear Readers, we present for your viewing enjoyment – the MailBag!

Raves, rants, and some stuff in between, it’s the mix that makes the bag so tastey, and really keeps world spinning round, don’t you think?

Spritz Hits The Fan
First I love your site, especially the italophile undertones .. but I have a little bone to pick with Ed based on his description of the spritz. To qualify my argument I have spent time in Padova (loved the Padova article during the Giro), not the birthplace of lo spritz but certainly land of lo spritz, and I have consumed many a spritz during what padovani refer to as “l’ora spritz”. I was appalled that he did not acknowledge the fact that probably >90% of consumed spritz are made with aperol even when the very spritz glass he was drinking from has aperol written loud and clear! Also “white wine”? A spritz is made with prosecco, which in my opinion is MUCH more that white wine.

In reality I am not peeved, I wanted to 1. be able to say I emailed Pez, and 2. thank you guys from the bottom of my heart for putting my two loves together on one site!

Thanks for your time, keep up the good work.

Drew Scoles
(Rochester, NY USA)

ps Thankfully some local liquor stores do carry Aperol, and from time to time I make myself a genuine spritz and eat some finger food just like I was back in Padova.

ED Sez: Thank you for your email, I did try an Aperol spritz, the colour is orange and the taste a little more sour. The pic was in an Aperol glass, but it was the ‘red stuff !’

I wouldn’t say it’s 90% Aperol in Venice, more 50/50 – maybe I was in the cheapo bars, but no one that I saw made them with Prosecco; although the cocktail books say that’s the way to do it.

Maybe it’s the ‘fizziness’ issue ? I don’t think it’s a cost issue, a litre of Prosecco in a ‘bring your own bottle’ wine merchants is euro 2:50 ! A cool drink though.

Padova, need to get myself there – maybe next Giro. Thanks again, emails like yours mean a lot to guys like me.
– Ed

IOC: Bring Back The IP!

I’ve started a petition to keep the Individual Pursuit in the London Summer Olympic Games. I will submit the results to the UCI and the IOC. I would love to have Pez spread the word. Here’s a link to the petition:

Kirk Port

Just read “What makes a Professional” and I’ve got to say, it is probably the most negative thing I’ve ever read on your site. Generally your articles are so fun loving and positive that it inspires me to ride, build a bike, travel to Italy, etc.

Gregory’s op/ed piece sounds like he had a bad year. Thanks for venting Greg !?!?! But maybe Greg should talk to his team instead. His run by riders team is exactly what he is complaining about. Sounds like he has some issues with his own riders not living up to his perceived level of ability. Maybe he should pay them more to train harder. Or maybe he should recruit better riders. Not every rider can live on some of the basic salaries provided by the team they are on. Lance Armstrong is one of the most elite riders in the world – he actually has another job too! Ever heard of the Livestrong Foundation Greg? Any top rider that is engaged in sponsorship with various cycling industries, are working other jobs.

And I think it is highly unrealistic for Greg to expect his Continental riders to bring into his shop 3 – 5 times what he spent on them for advertising. No matter what the standards of the advertising community think. Especially if they are not dominating their local races. Winners sell products, period. And I’ve rarely seen their name, Team Velo Ecosse, mentioned anywhere. Do they win a lot of races?

Local shops sponsor teams and riders because they love cycling. Most don’t have any delusions about the fact that their local riders are not going to the Tour. Or even smaller one day events such as the classics. I mean really, with the meager salary that his shop is paying their riders, does he really expect to compete with smaller “pro” continental teams?

And his statement of:
“I’ve watched a number of riders head off to parts of the world which simply don’t suit their characteristics (skinny climbers to Belgium for example) only to return months or even weeks later, disillusioned and ready to quit.”

Lance Armstrong was born in Texas, USA. There are no mountains to speak of in Texas. How do you think he became a better climber? He went to the mountains with his coach and learned to ride them. He also did the same with time trialing. And he was not built for either in the beginning. Alberto Contador is not known for riding the classics. Yet, next years Tour will have a lot of cobbles in the first week. Does Greg think that Skinny little Spanish rider will go to Belgium to learn how to handle the cobbles, only to be disillusioned by them and head home. And not ride the Tour because of this? I doubt it. The riders he mentioned probably had other issues that led to their demise. The little Schleck Bros. thrive in Belgium.

People in general love to dream. Most have realistic expectations of their place in life. When I put on my club kit, it elevates me mentally into another realm. I go from Tony the carpenter/dad/velonut, to Tony the club ride leader. Suddenly the cake ride turns into a friendly race. Bumping elbows, razzing my clubmates, and generally acting like sponsored primadonnas. Most of the time I picture myself as a great climber. I am not. But the clothing makes the dream come to life. And it’s fun to imagine myself climbing the 22% four mile climb like Armstrong. The kit makes us feel like we are sponsored pros. And little white lies don’t hurt anyone, and actually makes us feel better. Feeding our egos and adding fuel to the fire of our dreams.

We have no illusions as a shop, Elevate Cycles, that our riders will bring in that much revenue. We hope they spread the word of our shop, and people come there to buy what they need for cycling. We sponsor them because they love to race. And it makes us enthusiastic to say that we’re a part of something larger. Not for advertising. For us, that is just a bonus. We know we have to promote ourselves too. Not just hope that people read our logo as the racer passes by, at speeds that make it hard to read our logo, and remember to come into our shop.

Try to keep a more positive light on things Greg. Unrealistic expectations can lead to disappointment. And that is where yours have landed you. You may want to spend more energy promoting your shop, team, and advertising, then hoping everything just works out because you sponsor racers.

– Anthony Mooney

Now Something We can All Agree On
Gentlemen: I absolutely love your web site and is the first one I go to every morning @ work on my pc. But my first love is the review of your WOMEN WE LOVE pics. Keep up the great work. I am an avid cyclist in Arlington, Texas. Today’s pic is absolutely one on the best ever and of course is Italian. I truly believe that the Italian women (as well as the Spanish women) outclass all the others concerning their looks. Truly beautiful. Thought you might want to know how your readers feel. Wish I had the job to take their photo.


Mike J. Stone
PlanArc Architectural Design Group Inc.

First at all, your site is great! Second… just so you guys know… the section where you guys show pictures of girls “Distracciуnes Del Dia”… is misspelled, this is the correct way: “Distracciones del dнa”… in Spanish, you don’t capitalize every word…
Your amigo,
Aldo Cherres

I should know this, but has there been a “Daily Distraction of the Year” announced on PEZ ever before? If not now would be a great year to start the tradition!
– Don Peterkin

PEZ Sez: It’s never an bad time to start a great tradition, and you’re not the first to suggest the idea. But really – who are we to presume – either as individuals, or a lycra-clad mob – that such a lofty and pedestial bestowment be attached to but one of the beautiful and sexy creatures we so simply refer to as ‘women’, and unabashedly describe as ‘distractions’…? Such as task, I submit, is but for souls far mightier than ours… like, for instance, the forums and chat rooms.

Thanks for the piece on Drapac Porsche Cycling. I have followed this team for a few years, and have a set of their team kit. A name like Porsche and being bright red certainly attracts a lot of interest when riding locally (Singapore for me). Please continue to keep these guys on your radar, and other interesting teams like them.

Keep up the great work.
– Brad McCarthy

Bad Punctuation: Aint No Joke
You know, it’s pretty disturbing that your content editors (if not the actual writers) again and again get their contractions so wrong. Did you guys pass on high school? Every contraction is wrong in ALL your copy. Did you know that?

Look, it’s easy: when you have a singular subject, like ‘keys,’ you might say, ‘where are my keys?,’ not ‘where is my keys.’ So EVERY time PEZ addresses a plural the (Pez’s) contraction is singular – as in ‘Where IS my keys?’ This is wrongwrong, boneheaded wrong.

Where’s = where is (singular)
Where’re = where are (plural)
Here’s = here is (singular)
Here’re = here are (plural)


If you don’t believe me, pls check with your junior high-school teacher.

‘Here’s’ a bright and shining example of your lack of ability to speak/write the english language above a lesser third grader, below (hint – use ‘here’re,’ as in ‘Here are the real heros’ vs ‘here is the real heros’). Once you become aware of this you may see the hundreds of times your copy reads such.
Best of luck.
– Andrew G.

PEZ Sez: What can I say – we writes it like we says it, not like we writes it.

And The Answer Is…
Okay, I have three questions:
1) Are you interested in coverage of the Chinese cycling scene?
2) Why did I have to look under your request for writers to find any contact info for you?

Possible answers:
– I’m an idiot who couldn’t find the floor if I fell out of bed.
– You don’t actually want to correspond with your adoring readers.

3) And the reason I was looking for your contact info – Do you know what happened to Svein Tuft in the T of C. He seemed to be doing well and, on the last day, DNF’d.

I come from Vancouver but live in China. We don’t get a lot of coverage of cycling over here and I have been unable to find out what happened to my hometown hero, Mr Tuft.
– Thomas Jones

PEZ SEZ: Good questions Thomas, and even better since you hail from my hometown. For better coverage on the Chinese cycling scene than we could ever offer, check out CyclingNewsAsia.com (no relation to CyclingNews.com). Our Contact Us page is listed on the homepage and every page – right there on the left in the “Inside Pez” blue box. And I do not know what became of Svein at ToC… but it’s been a while since we talked, so an interview could be I order.

Compu-Winner Speaks
Great story on the Tour of the Battenkill. You were listening when you gave me that great trainer. The Erg Videos, came today and the rest; I think that tracking number on the 37 lb package is a good bet. Either that or my ACME electronic brain is about to arrive!!!

PEZ is the BEST
Demostene Romanucci, Esquire

ToolBox Kickin It
AWESOME article on Pez regarding winter myths. Thank you for putting that info out there! It is amazing the number of folks that still want to do lots of “LSD” and ride in 39-17 all winter long. Getting the work out is hard at times, some of this stuff is so entrenched in the club structures and social structure of cycling and endurance sports in general.

Frank, honest, open pieces like yours really go a long way to helping the cause of coaches and athletes everywhere!

– Will Kirousis, BS, CSCS
Tri-Hard Endurance Sports Coaching

Pez Sez: Thanks to everyone for writing – and reading. We do try to respond to most of the emails we get, but we’re now getting more than we can keep up with on some days. So if we don’t reply, or reply right away… don’t think we don’t appreciate you thinking of us and taking time to drop a line, because we do!

Gotta Comment?
If you’ve got a comment or opinion you’d like to share, send us an email and we might just publish you in glorious pixelated black & white! Letters may be edited for grammar, spelling, length or just to make ‘em better.

Send your comments to:[email protected]

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