Across Continents

Ken's Blog

Different breeds

June 20th, 2011

Different breeds. The long-haul touring cyclist. The road rider. Former often alone. But rarely solitary. Invariably relying on their sociability. Their ability to get on with those they encounter as essential a skill as fixing a puncture. Always stopping to greet fellow brethren. No matter where. Or when.

Contrast the typical road rider. Head down. Focused. At best a brief nod of acknowledgement as you pass in the other direction. Sometimes found in packs – pelletons. Statistics often more important than enjoying the scenery.

A niche popular with MAMIL’s – Middle Aged Men in Lycra. Spending huge sums to shave a few grammes off the weight of their bikes. When a few less pies might be the cheaper option. And finding drafting – that’s tail-gating another rider – irresistible. Risking serious injury if it all goes wrong.

Of course, there are exceptions. Those who ride sensibly on the roads. Or enjoy both road and touring disciplines. Niall. Paul. Quite a few others. But that still leaves a lot who do fit the stereotype. Right, time to pop on the shorts. Lycra. Says Ken. Aged forty something.

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