I started following cycling and quickly became a huge fan of Christain Vande Velde's within days of meeting and working with his dad. That was several years ago and as John and I remained friends, my enjoyment of following C only grew. Last year, I found myself having maybe too much fun with following cycling but it was a great escape in life at the time so friends went along with it only encouraging the fun.
In following the past several years, I've kept an eye on:
Christian - of course!, George Hincapie - a sentimental favorite, Jens Voigt & Bobby Julich - fell in love with them after watching the Overcoming dvd, and of course the lovable Dave Zabriskie (aka Nancy Reagan). Jens, Bobby, and DZ were C's teammates, and George was at C's wedding and they're great friends so everything was good. I was about as loyal as one could get. Plus, John loves George and Jens, and he shares hilarious stories on DZ so things were really fun to keep in touch with. I also love Fabian and Stuey but more so as C's teammates. I like Chris Horner too, as I that boy has some "tell like it is" spunk. So that has been my groupie status through last summer - C, George, Jens, Bobby, DZ, and occasionally Horner.
C and DZ then made a move to this team I knew little about - Team Slipstream. I had heard of it as Will Frischkorn started writing diaries on Velo back in March which I had been reading - and thoroughly enjoying (you should check out The Apartment and EuroLogic ones - you won't be sorry you did) . But they were leaving Team CSC, the #1 team 3 years running?!? I was confused (never takes much really but still). John and I talked and I threw out all sorts of questions.
I did my research and reading thing and found out how awesome Slipstream was and how incredible the opportunity was for the guys. If you're going to make a change, this is one sure way to do so. And now, C and Will would be on the same team so I would no longer have any disloyalty in following Will which is cooler by the day! Of course the more I read, the more I loved the guys on the team. I started reading stuff from Mike Friedman (aka Meatball) too as sometimes humor is the only medicine for a bad day. What a great group of guys to stalk, I mean follow!
BUT of course it couldn't/didn't quite stop there. In following these guys as much as I enjoy doing, I've found that I needed to expand the group a little bit to enjoy the full effect of their goofing around. Will and Mike's old teammate and Meatball's certain lover, Brad Huff (now at Jelly Belly) is wrapped in their chronicles and a blast to read. Add Mike Creed (he's at Rock Racing this year - I believe he signed knowing Frankie who's now gone so I actually feel for him on that team - I really dislike Ball and its sad to know the crap he's aiming to get is being grouped at the riders too), and characters like Mike Jones and The Bird?!? Plus I still enjoy reading Dan Schmatz stuff regularly. The list continues to grow and at times, I can't seem to get enough. It's refreshing and pretty funny stuff.
So what's a girl to do?!? I love reading their stuff and someday, hope to meet at least a few of them. Since most are at Elk Grove and/or Downers, its not all that unrealistic. I love C to death and he will forever be my favorite. Because I get to hear so much from John, it's hard not to pull for C, and his little one Uma - OMG is she a sweet cutie! I'm pretty thrilled John shares so much and that C seems to enjoy the fanfare. I'm proud, and even honored that we have such really great, talented guys to follow. They not only rock on the bike but they're amazing characters off it! If they only knew how fun it is to stalk, I mean follow them!!!
These guys are great and I hope if you've stumbled upon this blog that you check them out. They'll make you laugh AND cry and for all GOOD reasons!!! Enjoy!!!
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