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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

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Old 02-14-11, 08:36 PM   #1
CraigB
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Proof that I belong in the 50+ forum

I recently stumbled upon this photo of me finishing third in a race in Galesburg, IL, waaaay back in 1985 or thereabouts. Talk about a blast from the past.

I had no idea I was finishing in the top three - I had long since lost contact with the lead group, which I swore was greater than 2 (at least one person ahead of me must have dropped out at some point). All I knew for sure, was that going into the first turn of the final lap, I was passed by the guy in the leather hairnet. So I took the opportunity to hop on his wheel and rest for that whole lap, only to take an inside line in the final turn to nip him at the finish.

It was the only moment of glory in my short-lived racing career, which began and ended in Citizen's Class, the precursor to what I believe is now called Cat 5.


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Old 02-14-11, 08:54 PM   #2
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Wow...sporting a Bell 'Biker' helmet no less. Cool.

What bike are you riding in that pic?
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Old 02-14-11, 09:35 PM   #3
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Hey, is that Bronco Nagurski in the leather helmet?
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Old 02-14-11, 10:19 PM   #4
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Probably earlier than 85. The large fellow behind you appears to be using Weinmann sidepulls. They pulled from the side opposite Campag or Shimano. I didn't think anyone was using Weinmanns anymore in 85. They were popular in the 70's, since only the wealthy or professionals could afford (or were given) $90 Campag brakes...

L.
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Old 02-14-11, 10:25 PM   #5
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Losing the bar tape to drop some weight is always a good move.
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Old 02-15-11, 12:30 AM   #6
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Nice picture. Those look like the kind of bike I had in the early 80's. I loved that thing- The color was called Champaigne. I loved that bike. Sold it at a yardsale after kids.

That guy behind you looks so heavy for that bike!
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Old 02-15-11, 06:18 AM   #7
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The bike was a 1984 Gitane Tour de France, which is how I figured out the race was in '85. It surprised me, too, when I figured that out, as for many years now I "remembered" that I started racing in my 20s, and this clearly proves I started at 30 (I had a couple of races the year before this, on an old Sekai touring bike).

It was a fun bike, with some unusual components - Ofmega Mistral crankset, brakes and derailleurs. And this was obviously before I upgraded to those first-generation white Look pedals. It was reddish-orange, with a very fine-grained metallic base and the old "balloon" style Gitane logo, even on the front of the chrome fork. Like a red (and less expensive) version of the bikes Lemond and Co. rode when they were with Renault-Elf. And it had bar tape - it just doesn't show up well in the photos because it was that old "Velo" brand shiny plastic stuff that was so popular (and uncomfortable) back then (at that time, about the only other choice was woven cotton). Mine was bright yellow, to play off the yellow outlines of the Gitane graphics, and the yellow brake hoods and saddle (Selle Italia Turbo). My bike, if not me, was certainly stylin'.

Also note the wheels - what was then in-your-face graphics, with "ASPIN" spelled out in between the spokes. It looks so tame nowadays.

One other note - I was absolutely wiped by the time I finished. I thought my knees were going to buckle climbing up to and down from the hay-bale "podium," where I got a nice little glass jar with the sponsoring hospital's name on it. I still use it to keep my daily change.

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Old 02-15-11, 11:03 AM   #8
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Gosh, the guy behind you looks to have the old Bell V1 Pro helmet.
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Old 02-15-11, 12:25 PM   #9
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Gosh, the guy behind you looks to have the old Bell V1 Pro helmet.
It was actually an old "leather hairnet" type of helmet. The old saying was the only thing they were good for was to hold your brains together on the way to the hospital.
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Old 02-15-11, 02:07 PM   #10
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...And it had bar tape - it just doesn't show up well in the photos because it was that old "Velo" brand shiny plastic stuff that was so popular (and uncomfortable) back then (at that time, about the only other choice was woven cotton). Mine was bright yellow, to play off the yellow outlines of the Gitane graphics, and the yellow brake hoods and saddle (Selle Italia Turbo). My bike, if not me, was certainly stylin'.

...
Is that like Benotto cello tape? I had 'em on my bikes, too. Thankfully '80s bling has morphed into something (slightly) more useful.
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Old 02-15-11, 02:14 PM   #11
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Yes, that's it, Benotto cello, not "velo" - clearly I misremembered the name. Thanks for the reminder. My brother had their orange tape on his pearl-finished Peugeot back then. It was stunning. Too bad it had zero grip to it, and even less padding. Speaking of my brother, I see by your avatar that you and he have something in common. One of the few bikes he's held onto from our misspent youth is a 3Rensho.
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Old 02-15-11, 02:25 PM   #12
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CraigB: I like that you are smiling in the photo, shows you are enjoying yourself. Or.... Is that a grimace???
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Old 02-15-11, 03:29 PM   #13
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Craig, I must say there are some nuances in your pic that speak to the 50+s, starting w/ the b&w composition. Crochet cycling gloves, clips and straps (can you come up w/ the last pro to still ride clips & straps?), lo-pro alu rims, early lycra shorts and what looks like an early polypro jersey, and maybe DP or Duegi shoes? It's also interesting to note how many folks' first "real" bikes were French; I had a PX-10 which I should have hung onto, but the vast majority of the parts that used to hang on it are now sitting on my 3Rensho. At least your brother had the good sense to hang onto his.
Yep, I loves me my skinny tube bikes.
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Old 02-15-11, 03:59 PM   #14
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Craig, I must say there are some nuances in your pic that speak to the 50+s, starting w/ the b&w composition. Crochet cycling gloves, clips and straps (can you come up w/ the last pro to still ride clips & straps?), lo-pro alu rims, early lycra shorts and what looks like an early polypro jersey, and maybe DP or Duegi shoes? It's also interesting to note how many folks' first "real" bikes were French; I had a PX-10 which I should have hung onto, but the vast majority of the parts that used to hang on it are now sitting on my 3Rensho. At least your brother had the good sense to hang onto his.
Yep, I loves me my skinny tube bikes.
Wild Guess: Sean Kelly?
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Old 02-15-11, 04:11 PM   #15
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^^^
Yep, that's my answer, too, and I'm sticking with it. I need to go find that pic I saw somewhere taken in the '90s(?) where everyone in the pic is clipless, except for Kelly...
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Old 02-15-11, 07:36 PM   #16
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CraigB: I like that you are smiling in the photo, shows you are enjoying yourself. Or.... Is that a grimace???
That's the "Burgess men workface," as my sister-in-law describes it. It's a kind of toothy grimace that my brother and I unconsciously learned from our father, whenever we do anything even remotely strenuous.
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Old 02-15-11, 07:45 PM   #17
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Craig, I must say there are some nuances in your pic that speak to the 50+s, starting w/ the b&w composition. Crochet cycling gloves, clips and straps (can you come up w/ the last pro to still ride clips & straps?), lo-pro alu rims, early lycra shorts and what looks like an early polypro jersey, and maybe DP or Duegi shoes? It's also interesting to note how many folks' first "real" bikes were French; I had a PX-10 which I should have hung onto, but the vast majority of the parts that used to hang on it are now sitting on my 3Rensho. At least your brother had the good sense to hang onto his.
Yep, I loves me my skinny tube bikes.
Yeah, everything about the pic is dated. The jersey was an early Cannondale, from back when they were mostly in the garment and pack business - well before they got into bikes themselves. My recollection is that it was cotton, though I could be wrong. I've forgotten the manufacturer of the shoes - they could have been Duegis. All I remember for sure is they were the cheapest cleated shoe I could find, and they offered no padding, protection or support to speak of. Just thin leather bonded to the sheet steel soles. All the leather did was keep your foot attached to the soles, and turn your socks dark blue when they got wet.

Curiously, I just sold this bike a couple of years ago. As fond as I was of it, the friction shifters and an easily flexed frame were a combination that led to its retirement when I got my index-shifting Trek aluminum in 1989. I'd had enough of its tendency to up-shift on its own when I'd get out of the saddle. Plus it had the typical French paint job - it was so soft that you could scratch it by looking at it hard. A couple of off-seasons on the wind trainer actually wore through the paint on the underside of the bottom bracket where the frame met the trainer's rubber padding. I harbored fantasies of stripping it completely, getting it refinished with some nice Imron and rebuilding it. Never happened.

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Old 02-18-11, 05:11 PM   #18
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Speaking of dated, I did a double take back in the fall when I saw a guy riding a brand new Cervelo RS with... Toe clips and leather straps with platform pedals.
I didn't see what sort of shoes he had on but I couldn't believe what I was seeing.
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Old 02-18-11, 05:37 PM   #19
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That almost could have been me. I was going to move the Campy pedals from my Crescent to the Trek 2100, but my old Detto Pietro's from the 70's don't fit any more. My niece started out using my Gant Racer crocheted gloves until I got her a more modern pair of gel gloves.
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Old 02-18-11, 06:02 PM   #20
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I belong here, but I don't belong here.
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Old 02-18-11, 06:02 PM   #21
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I belong here, but I don't belong here.
Who the fark even knows what this means? If you figure it out, tell me.
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Old 02-18-11, 06:05 PM   #22
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Who the fark even knows what this means? If you figure it out, tell me.
Which of your apparent multiple personalities should we tell?
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Old 02-18-11, 06:06 PM   #23
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When I started riding again a couple of years ago thought I'd died and gone to heaven when I started using clipless pedals. I still remember the day a friend of mine came to my house on a brand new bike he picked up in Europe. Stefan pulled up into the driveway, came to a halt, got stuck in the clips and fell over.. both feet in the clips.
One of my other buddies said that he wished that he'd had that on film.... Hmm.. and he was the one who had a leather helmet...
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Old 02-19-11, 12:16 PM   #24
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Which of your apparent multiple personalities should we tell?
Tell me.
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Old 02-19-11, 12:16 PM   #25
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Tell me.
Yeah, tell him.
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