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@soigneurs  Soigneur Cycling Journal celebrates the past, present & future of cycling culture in writing and photography. Subscribe to

7 days ago

On any normal day, it’s just a short cut for commuters to get up onto the plateau on their way to Maastricht, but on Sunday... On Sunday, the road will be painted and lined with banners for lemonade-flavoured beer. Thousands of people will camp out by the barriers and up on the slopes and on the bridge with their sandwiches, their mobile phones playing live commentary, and cheer for the tourists who are shameless enough to ride up it on their bikes through the race-day crowd. (I’d say most of us wouldn’t dream of doing so, but we do. Don’t you?). And then the Amstel car will arrive, and dads will pull their kids up onto their shoulders. I bet those kids will remember the race for the rest of their lives. They will forget many more later that they will see on television, but they will remember this one, and who won and who was second and what happened, though they will have only seen a few seconds of it. And later, they will dream of racing up the Cauberg in front of a race-day crowd on their Sunday rides. - @keirplaice Which edition of the @amstelgoldrace do you remember best? at Fixed Gear Coffee

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13 days ago

“Does cycling’s romanticisation of suffering not disguise the real hardship that exists all around us?” @keirplaice asks in his latest column for Soigneur. Tap on the link on our bio. Photo: @michaelblann at Roubaix, France

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17 days ago

The countryside is abuzz, as tens of thousands of people rush from cobbled track to cobbled track to wait for the helicopter that signals the arrival of the riders. First, the publicity caravan passes, and kids and grown men scramble to collect the trinkets and candies that were thrown from the cars’ windows. Then, the race director arrives, red flags flapping, as he plays a tune with his horn, and a giant speaker blasts the same advertising jingle over and over. A squadron of police motorbikes follows. Then, the cafés empty, and people cram more-or-less-drunkenly to the sides of the road to try to get a better view. Volunteer marshals in pale blue jackets stride up and down the berm, warning everyone to stay on the grass. Then, the low-flying helicopter appears, sweeps over the familiar contours of the land, and turns towards them, the chop-chop of its rotors soon muffled by a mounting cheer that is deafening when the first riders make their appearance. There is just enough time to see their dead-to-the-world faces, notice any ripped and bloody kit, and rate the contenders’ pedal strokes. Then, there is a mad dash for the cars, as every family and group of friends take off on their favoured route through the back lanes of Flanders to get to the place on the course where they next hope to see their heroes... @cauldphoto’s gallery from the @rondevanvlaanderenofficial is online. Words by @keirplaice Tap on the link on our bio. at Geraardsbergen

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18 days ago

In Flanders, it’s called ‘de hoogmis’, or High Mass, and they celebrate it outside this chapel and every other one, without priests, the only incense that of cigarettes, the music that of wheels rattling over cobblestones and Wuyts’ and De Cauwer’s incantations. Bars sell communion: cans of Jupiler and stuffed breadrolls. Everyone is welcome. By the end of the day, someone will be God, especially if he was born in Flanders, and spent his childhood celebrating ‘de hoogmis’ with the rest. -@keirplaice at Geraardsbergen

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19 days ago

If you want to watch the Tour of Flanders tomorrow, you’re best to stay home and watch it on television. But if you want to be a part of the mad, beer-swilling, whole-families-come-together-to-race-around-the-countryside-with-tens-of-thousands-of-others celebration of cycling that is De Ronde, get yourself to Flanders. There is nothing like it. It is so much more than a bike race. Photo: @keirplaice at Centrum Ronde Van Vlaanderen

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22 days ago

Cyclocross sure seems to be the best way to learn how to race a bike. Photo: @cauldphoto

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30 days ago

“It is becoming a monument to a bygone era—Milano-Sanremo, La Primavera, Italy’s celebration of the return of spring. At close to 300 kilometres, it is an anachronism, a test, above all, of endurance in an age devoted to speed and power. Ride through the Italian countryside; the best test of endurance is neglect...” -@keirplaice We have just published a gallery of @tornanti_cc ‘s photos from Milano-Sanremo. Tap on the link on our bio.

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1 month ago

After the fact, it almost seems as if it were written in the stars, but for 300 kilometres @alafpolak could not make an error. He waited and waited, and then made his decisive attack on the Poggio. With 200 metres to go, he launched his sprint. On paper, he wasn’t the fastest man left, but the finale of Milan Sanremo is not raced on paper. No one could come around him. A monument. Nothing is written in the stars, but Julian Alaphillipe sure believed this victory was. Photo: @tornanti_cc at San Remo, Italy

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1 month ago

The Peloponnese, where you can steal a bright orange mandarin from a branch hovering over your breakfast table, is so much more than a collection of roads to ride. Life itself feels rich here, rich with history, rich with culture, and rich with the smells of tasty cuisine. There is plenty of Greek wine to drink and a vast landscape to be explored, most likely as the sole king and queen of the road. Go and enjoy the Peloponnese, before the rest of the cycling world finds out.- @rubycycles Full story on or tap on link in profile 👉 📸 @nassostphoto @pedalgreece #roadslikethese #cyclinggreece #cyclinglife #beautyofcycling #theplacesweride #thankyoucycling at Peloponnese (region)

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1 month ago

After 25 hours and 28 minutes of racing, covering 1040 kilometres, @tirreno_adriatico came down to a single second. @primozroglic blasted around the final time trial to earn the overall victory. His win has been months in the making. Alongside the immense amount of work that Roglic had done to improve his time trialling, @jumbovisma_road and @agu_cc have been working behind the scenes to ensure that he and his teammates have the fastest possible equipment. Soigneur has collaborated with them to help bring that story to light. Tap on the link on our bio.

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1 month ago

"Cisterns and stones; the fig-tree in the wall Casts down her shadow, ashen as her boughs, Across the road, across the thick white dust, Down from the hill...” The white-hot screech of brakes. @cadence_images’ photos from @stradebianche are now up on our @exposure site. Tap on the link on our bio. at Tuscany

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2 months ago

“Question: how long is a moment of glory? Answer: Alas, only a moment.” In his latest column for Soigneur, Samuel Abt reflects on cycling’s might-have-beens. Tap on the link on our bio.

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2 months ago

Throughout 2019 Soigneur will be bringing you images and words from the BikingMan series, six ultra-cycling events in the some of the most challenging and beautiful terrains on earth. Together the events comprise the unassisted ultra-cycling World Championship, and the first race was in Oman.⁣ ⁣ Check link in bio for full story and gallery!⁣ #bikingman #longdistanceracing #gravelgrinding #ultracycling

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2 months ago

‘We came off the main road and hit the gravel, and it was loose and bumpy and hard to ride. When my computer said we’d got to the end of the 7km stretch I celebrated. And then it not only carried on but got worse! Somehow I found the courage to say, you can do this. I was really swearing a lot, I was just trying not to fall off, with stones flying all around, but by the end it was the highest of highs.’ ⁣ ⁣ Jasmijn Muller reflecting on the BikingMan Oman. Check link in bio for full story and gallery!⁣ #bikingman #longdistanceracing #gravelgrinding #ultracycling

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