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PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:33 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 12:12 am
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Location: Anglesey
I've just been through Blazing Saddles by Matt Rendell - as the first proper racing book I've read, I was quite impressed. Not much detail - it's very much a book that prompts you to dig further into individual riders' biographies - but as a brief summary of the TdF's history it's not bad at all. I personally never realised how truly ancient the whole 'doping' issue was, although considering how brutal/sadistic the Tour used to be, I can't say I'm surprised.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:24 am 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:08 am
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Location: Nth Somerset, UK
I've just finished The Death of Marco Pantani.

I must confess that until very recently I had no interest in road riding, so I don't remember Pantani at all, but it's clear from the book that he was quite a phenomenon and he must have added drama to almost every race he entered.

A fascinating, if slightly depressing book, but also illuminating regarding the behind the scenes endeavours of the Italian authorities. Anyone who thinks Lance Armstrong was the first to organise EPO and other drugs needs to read this book!

As for Pantani himself, I think the outcome was possibly the only way for him to find peace. To borrow from a film script 'The light that burns twice as brightly, burns half as long'.

Rest in Peace Marco.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:07 am 
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 11:33 am
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Location: Riding my Woodsie.
Glad you liked it. I learned a lot about doping reading that book. :shock:

Finished a race for madmen the other day too. Great history of the tour.

I'm onto Flying Scotsman which is Graeme Obree's autobiography. I've seen the film but now to read the book.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:25 am 
retrobike rider
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It was a fascinating read, and having also read David Millar and Paul Kimmage's books, you can only conclude that the UCI was using a guide dog and a white stick when it came to doping.

As for Pantani, I think the saddest thing is that he knew that with the exception of maybe one person, all the people around him, including his family, had long stopped seeing him as a person, and just regarded him as a money making commodity.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 11:16 am 
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider
Gold Trader / MacRetro rider

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 11:33 am
Posts: 3097
Location: Riding my Woodsie.
I'll need to read Kimmages book at some point.

I think a lot of the people in Marcos life thought they needed to keep him cycling to stop him from being even more self destructive. There is a lot that could have been done to help him out, but as is often the case when someone becomes rich and therefore powerfull, too many people are frightened to take things in hand or he just used his power to swat them aside.

He was going to be a troubled bloke no matter the walk of life he took, but if he had been more normal it would have been easier to tackle his issues I think. :(


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2012 11:27 am 
retrobike rider
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firedfromthecircus wrote:
He was going to be a troubled bloke no matter the walk of life he took, but if he had been more normal it would have been easier to tackle his issues I think. :(


No doubt about that.

It just seems that near the end, everyone was fighting everyone else and with the exception of Mengozzi, they all lost sight of a troubled little bloke called Marco.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 3:08 pm 
retrobike rider
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Just finished Tomorrow, We Ride by Jean Bobet.

A really nice book, no great insights as this is really the story of Jean and his better known elder brother Louison, but a delightful glimpse into racing in France and in the Grand Tours during the 1950's.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2012 3:20 pm 
The Guv'nor
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These and other reviews now collated here > Road Cycling Book Reviews and MTB Book Review Thread.


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