File Size: 6689 KB
Print Length: 314 pages
Publisher: VeloPress (May 5, 2014)
Publication Date: May 5, 2014
The book is obviously an eye-opener into what these guys have to go through (low or no pay, continuous travel with bad accommodations and what sounds like really bad food and often times bad company) just to get to the pro stage. All that being said, it's hard to feel bad for someone who will get to ride their bike as an occupation regardless of what it pays.
Almost all said, I recommend the book and can definitely see myself re-reading it in the future. It's a great insight into what's going on behind the scenes of professional biking., Love this book and Phil. He is so sensible, and this is one of the greater driver accounts of what it takes to be a pro bicyclist. It's no holes barred... he tells the fact. Would wish to find the same type of accounts from a Euro pro approaching through the rates high, and what the experience is like across the fish-pond., If nothing else, this is a story of hard work and determination... and how they may or may well not pay off. Despite his bumps and bruises along the way, I think this funny, lighthearted narrative inspires one to " follow your dreams" and laugh it off when you can. Here is a passage from the guide that provides a look into his perspective on life (which I do believe is advanced for his age), humor, and ability to offer some truly useful advice:
“A big goal like starting a business or writing a guide can be daunting at first, but all you need to do is break it up into little pieces and keep working at it. You could eat a school bus if you ground it up and sprinkled it on your oatmeal every morning. Juggling it all was stressful at first, but it was also satisfying to get things done. Everyone is always searching for happiness, but satisfaction is almost as good—and much easier to achieve. ”
I also like his " gloves off" approach the Lance Armstrong's giant lie, clarifying in graphic words why Puncture will never have the golf balls that someone like Besty Andreu does. (Sorry, Besty. ), For some reason there have been a proliferation of " insider" books by current/former pro cyclists, but this might be one of the more entertaining, and one likely actually written by the author. What's particularly nice about this you are that it is centered on the US pro cycling scene; others are usually about US cyclists who have attended Europe (" A Dog in a Hat" is particularly good). Plus, you can main for Phil as he or she has just started in European campaign with Garmin.
The book is also written from the " post-Lance" point of view, and for better or worse, the author's aggression towards what that time has done to the activity (and towards Lance themselves and others like Francisco Mancebo) comes out from time to time in the book. He also does little to hide the macho/boys-will-be-boys culture of biking; it's not limited to cycling and he's to be credited for being honest, however, many may be put off by it (as indicated in other reviews).
More than anything, this comes across being an truthful book, and Phil's capability to make a biking career and pursue other businesses to make finishes meet is really interesting to follow. How well he will do in Europe remains to be seen, but he has a profession waiting for him once he is fiinished.
Should you be into cycling (or have enjoyed Phil's columns in Velonews), this is a good book to see. It may well not be as useful or as well written as Lance Armstrong's War or The Secret Race, but it is worth the read., As a pro cycling fan, my education into the sport was long and difficult as pro cycling is sadly a niche sport in a nation more infatuate with the ball sports. My learning about biking was based on books, articles, and narratives from the riders and teams at the top of cycling's food chain. This stage of the activity obviously obtained the attention of folks based on the " Puncture Effect" that sparked interest in professional cycling at the level of Expert Tour teams (my interest was actually based on Greg LeMond's career in the 80's). Phil Gaimon was someone I understood through his monthly " Ask a Pro" articles in VeloNews - always sharp and witty discourse. His book is a great way to understand life at the other conclusion of the foodstuff chain. I was amazed at how hard life is for a rider trying to endure in a sport that paid low salaries, provided little support and called on guile and sneaky to succeed. Due to personal narrative of his profession, I now have much larger respect for riders on the National Racing Calendar (NRC) who are away there competing with little recognition. They are the foundation of the sport and the farm golf club for the future. Thanks to events like the united states PRO Nationwide Championships, I get to watch the NRC and Pro Tour riders compete together and see that great cyclists are present at both levels. Foulard to Phil for his book and for furthering my education into the toughest sport around.
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