Racing

  1. Doppio: Giro Week Three

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    There was a touch of fire and brimstone about the race for pink this week, with Team Sky’s Richie Porte choosing martyrdom over another seven days of self-flagellation. Meanwhile, Italy’s latest prodigal son Fabio Aru is also having a tough time of it, finding stepping into the hallowed shoes of Marco Pantani a tricky reckoning as Alberto Contador continues his relentless pilgrimage to the promised land (Milan). He’s looking stronger than ever. We’ve been enjoying the racing at Italy’s Grand Tour as always; we just hope that none of cycling’s sons have sinned in their pursuit of glory.

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  2. Unpaved and unrelenting

    Words: Herbie Sykes | Date:

    Valetti and Bartali under a blizzard on the Rolle, 1939. Coppi’s ambush of Koblet on the Stelvio in ’53. Then Massignan and Gaul, Coletto, Nencini and Anquetil on the Gavia in 1960, arguably the greatest of them all. Arguably the murkiest was Gimondi, seven years later. When he went on the Passo Tonale the rest – the “holy alliance” of Motta and Balmamion, Anquetil and Aimar – simply sat up. The fiftieth anniversary Giro had its Italian winner after all, as Salvarani won what amounted to a sealed bids auction. Merckx in extremis on Tre Cime, De Muynck smashed to pieces on the Zambla.

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  3. Doppio: Giro Week Two

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    The Doppio is Rapha’s weekly double-shot of Giro reportage and previews. In an opening week that had journalists and fans of the sport going pink in the face with excitement, one Italian reporter suggested we’d seen more action in one week of the Giro than a month of Silvio Berlusconi ‘bunga-bunga’ parties. And much like old Silvio’s career, week two has given us ups, downs, political scandal and plenty of leg action. Solo wins from homeboy Paolo Tiralongo, old-dog Phil Gilbert and young-nuke Illnur Zakarin kept us entertained, but the gossip has come from a touching case of sportsmanship gone wrong, i.e. that wheel change. Forza, Italia!

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  4. Doppio: Giro d’Italia

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    Doppio is Italian for a ‘double espresso’ but – also – the name for Rapha’s weekly shot of race reportage and previews. And what better week to kick off the return of the Doppio than with the Giro, a race that never disappoints. We’ve already witnessed some magnifica corsa, from Alberto ‘Pistolero’ Contador taking the maglia rosa and riding on despite a dislocated shoulder, to two unknown young guns escaping up the road with beautiful stage wins; so far, so great. We can’t wait to see what else the first [and for our money the best] Grand Tour of the season will bring.

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  5. Golden State

    Words: Matthew Beaudin | Photography: Ben Ingham / John Watson | Date:

    Next week, the peloton heads West to California, for the 2015 running of the Amgen Tour of California, a race that slots in a peg below a grand tour but capitalizes on the Golden State’s cultural capital, weather, a favourable parcours, and timing during the race calendar to draw attention and some of the bunch’s best sprinters and GC riders.

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  6. Monumental Panache: Liège–Bastogne–Liège

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    The ‘Old Lady’ of the Classics, Liège–Bastogne–Liège has a parcours ripe for daring exploits with its endless hills and curves. A there-and-back race that has been running since 1892, the often-terrible spring weather in the Ardennes also encourages exciting racing. We look forward to La Doyenne with a look back at some of its greatest victories.

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  7. Worth its weight in Gold

    Words: George Tyson | Photography: Offside Sports | Date:

    As the dust settles on the cobbled sectors of north-western Europe, and the bruised and rattled bones are beginning to ease, the professional peloton will turn its head to the upcoming Ardennes Classics – beginning with the 50th edition of the Amstel Gold Race on 19th April 2015.

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  8. Monumental Cobbles: Paris-Roubaix, in the words of others

    Words: | Photography: Graham Watson, Emily Maye and Offside | Date:

    Inspired by Wiggins’s own talent for one-liners, we have put together a compendium of our favourite quotes on Paris-Roubaix, by the people who raced it, organised it, wrote about it, loved it and, of course, hated it.

    You can enter the competition to win Rapha prizes and a signed Sir Bradley Wiggins World Champion Wool Jersey here »

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  9. Spring, The Hell of it All

    Words: Rigo Zimmerman | Photography: Joe Hall | Date:

    The start line is a good place to begin. In races later in the year it can be an easy place, where a mixture of chatter, excitement and nerves builds gently to a casual roll through the neutral, but in spring the start line is different. Tense and crowded, riders push and jostle, no-one talks to anyone they don’t trust, no one can shake that strange unspeakable strain that feels like a giant block of ice sat square on their shoulders.

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