March 21, 2011

Journalism-ish and Great Racing


More and more I find myself getting my race information from ever-more-sublime sources. There was a time when Winning Bicycle Racing Illustrated was the only read to read honestly. You can check out some 30+ covers - and I read every one!
They also produced the Tour De France Special Issues - BIG oversize format and chock full of great images...I promptly cut up the first few just to get some pics of LeMond and Hinault in '86, but I digress.

After Winning, VeloNews held the top spot for a long time. Big format, lots of Euro coverage, and a host of local stuff. VeloNews WAS cycling journalism.



Then the internet came along and the original CyclingNews.com crossed my path about mid 1998 and I was hooked. HOOKED! You can look through the "way-back" time machine and relive those heady days. It was just so cool to get up to date content from far away Europe and Australia. Bill did us all a great service and I hope he made a good return when he sold it...

Unfortunately, he sold it..and therein lies the problem. All that is cool is absorbed and diluted. Winning was cool. VeloNews was cool. CyclingNews was cool....then they weren't. Now they are aggregators of information, publishers of press releases, passers-on. They have somewhat made the sport as dull as race radios are purported to do. I can read the same article word for word on at least a half dozen sites

I admit it for awhile I was bored with pro-cycling. It was all so pre-destined, even the racing to a degree. The love was still there, but the passion was waning a bit.

Fortunately, my salvation came in the form of blogs about cycling by informed, smart, and intelligent writers, by not-so-run-of-the-mill content on bigger sites, and by live streaming video of races! Just this past weekend I went out and bought a converter to watch live video streams from my computer on my television...it's awesome!

While most of these don't fall under the auspices of real journalism, I think it's fair to say that real journalism, at least in mainstream cycling media, is mostly a myth anyway, so I'll take my faux journo sites for now.

The other side of the equation is the racing. Watching Tierreno Adriatico and those incredible finishes pushed me back to full-throttle love for the sport! Forget the prognostications, the new technology (ok, not all of it), and the over-analysis and just watch the racing. It's been really good this year and we're just getting started. Now if only we had some great video coverage of smaller/local races we might be on our way...

Let's end with some racing:


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