Friday, January 7, 2011

Friday Mail: You say "retard", I say "RAY-tard"

Much of the pro cycling news over the past couple days has focused on the new "Team Shleck".  As we mentioned briefly yesterday, the new Luxembourg-based squad recently had an "unveiling ceremony" and immediately, the blogosphere was a-twitter with questions:  Some of them have included...

1) Is it a prequesite for European Team Directors to be bald?
Team Leopard-Trek directeur, Brian Nygaard

Apparently so.  Nygaard now has joined the ranks of the League of Extraordinarily Bald Directors
From L to R, David Brailsford - Team Sky, Bjarne Riis - SaxoBank, Mauro Gianetti - Geox

2) How are we supposed to pronounce Team Shleck's new team name? What's up with the little superscripted and underlined "O"?
According to one source, the correct pronounciation is to be:


At first this struck me as a bit pretentious.  Not that the Luxembourgians have reason to not be pretentious...after all the official name of the country is actually the "Grand Duchy (pronounced doo-SHAY) of Luxembourg."  But I'm guessing here in Missouri, we can get away with pronouncing these words as "LEP-urd" and "DOO-shee".

Lastly, the most burning question regarding Team Lay-O-Pard is:

3) Who is the ginger kid, and is he aware that as a professional cyclist, he will be forced to spend prolonged hours outside?
Mystery solved: Meet Dominic Klemme. Aside from taking 1st place in the German U23 Championships in 2007, he finished in 8th place at the Munsterland Giro, which, surprisingly enough, was won by this fellow:

And according to sources close to Klemme, he is aware that he is severely affected with 'the gingervitis' and is thus heavily encouraged to only enter indoor track races, or wear a special UV-protected full body spandex suit:

Anyway - on to a few letters:

Dear PooBah,
I really enjoyed your baseball-related post this week.  However, I'm guessing that if you could be a professional athlete, you would choose to be a cyclist first.  But if you had a second choice - what would it be? 

Gary I.

Easy - competitive pairs figure skater.

Dear PooBah
I ride alone most of the time and have to admit, all those miles can get a little boring sometimes.  I'm tempted to try to listen to some music while I ride and am hoping to find a system that is both inexpensive and non-cumbersome while on the bike.  Any recommendations?

Kyle G.

Well, I've used this little baby for years and have no complaints.
"Stereopack, a portable three and one-half pound cassette player...that straps snugly to a cyclist's chest."
A bargain at $185 and it even comes with the earphones!

Dear PooBah,
I've been experiencing a little chafing from my bike saddle.  Do you have any suggestions on what may make my ride a little more comfortable "down below" so to speak?
Thank you,
Gretta M.

Well you could consider some women-specific saddles or possibly the use of chamois cream.  I'm a big fan of Enzo's!  Plus-they also have some sweet apparel that would match your prefered cycling attire perfectly...

Speaking of chamois cream, make sure to lather up for tomorrow's 100 mile Gravel Grumble ride, scheduled to leave Tryathletics at 8:00 AM.  The weather is calling for a high of 25 degrees and partly cloudy.  Try to keep your buttonhole warm.

Have a good weekend -



  1. I have a few comments....

    1. I'm moving to Europe to start my new job in the spring
    2. I want a bike frame made of chain link.
    3. Can I get Gretta M's phone number?

  2. Poobah-
    You post a funny blog. Thanks

    btw you may as well give me Gretta's number too in case Brinker strikes out.

  3. Brinker: Lucky for you, Gretta is Danish, and word on the street is Michael Rasmussen's new squad is in need of a directeur'll fit right in.

    Conspiracy Theorist: Good news for you...Gretta has a twin sister...but you'll have to wait until next Friday to get to meet her....stay tuned!

  4. Poobah, I like that you bike ride with a "Stereopack" (a portable three and one-half pound cassette player), but for training purposes I would highly recommend a 30 pound portable record player.

    The added weight provides valuable weight and air drag resistance and teaches a rider to be "smooth" on the bike in order to prevent skipping.

  5. here is a suggestion for Dominic Klemme, spf 100. they make it, and it works.

    also where can i get one of those UV-protected full body spandex suit?