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Posts Tagged ‘france’

Paris-Brest-Paris 2019

August 14th, 2019

I will be offline for a few weeks while I’m away participating in Paris-Brest-Paris for the second time. And randomly, NPR included a sound bite of me during a random report onthe sport of randonneuring.

Evidence of a getaway….

If you are curious about randonnering, a form of ultra distance cycling w/roots in France, here’s an NPR report on the history of the sport (w/a soundbite at the end by me). I’ll post a gallery when I get back, emphasizing custom bikes, canvas bike bags, roadside eats and wool jerseys.

On the bridge in Brest in 2011
On the bridge in Brest in 2011 with Willy Nevin. We both rode custom Vanillas.
Taking delivery of my PBP rig from builder Corey Thompson. I’ll be riding this bike in 2019.
Spoiler alert: I completed PBP 2019 in 88 hours and 50 minutes!
Lesli Larson riding Paris-Brest-Paris
A few notes on my ride over on the Bicycle Quarterly blog

From the Archives: Rugby Ephemera

September 28th, 2011

In honor of the World Cup, I’m reposting selections from Frederick Humbert’s awesome collection of historical rugby print ephemera. Humbert’s flickr catalog and blog, Rugby-Pioneers, include photographs, programs, cigarette cards, advertisements and even hand painted lantern slides of vintage rugby action. Even if you don’t follow rugby as a sport, study the photographs as a guide to looking stylish in a sports uniform (blazers and wool knits in lieu of track jackets and sweats).












Archival Report: Paris Brest Paris 2011

September 9th, 2011

PBP spectators in Villaines, France

I just got back from the 17th edition of Paris Brest Paris, an ultra distance cycling event held every four years in France. I always say that I record and erase my memory of rides longer than 600k. I can confirm via official records that I successfully covered the 1200k course in a time of 86 hours and 55 minutes. My primary setback was a series of intense drowsy spells that left me convinced that I was pedaling in my sleep, but overall I felt strong.

First night. 1200k to go


Scenic views and slumbering cyclists

During PBP, I did my best take photos of my practiced obsessions: people, bicycles and food. Snaps of the scenic countryside are in short supply. For interested parties, here is visual evidence of my participation in Paris Brest Paris with some fragmentary notations
Maya selling kerchiefs on bike inspection day. She organized some of the first randonneuring events in Japan.

Amused Breton bystander

Rando Buddha

Audax England rider (designed the club’s jersey)

Photogenic Bryan on his Box Dog Bikes Pelican (SF Rando pal and AC stockist, Gabe, offscreen)

NC rider on one of the last Coho rando bikes

Duane Wright on his Peugeot fixie

Susan Otcenas sporting a signature cycling dress at the famous PBP crepe control

Snappy French (?) gent riding a Gilles Berthoud

Riding buddy Jeff Loomis on his lovely Boxer Bicycles custom

Swedish pal, Jan-Olov, on his Velo Orange Pass Hunter

PBP Ancien Willy Nevin on his Vanilla custom

Kitty Goursolle, ultradistance cycling legend. We finished the Cascade 1200 together.
Jeff “I’m having the time of my life” Tilden

Bill, Oregon rando pal, at the ride start

Charismatic control worker



Food is one of the great motivators in cycling. On PBP, you can forage from Boulangeries on the course for your primary fuel (for me, pain au chocolat and jambon sandwiches). Jeff’s strawberry tart was a visual highlight of one boulangerie which we liked as much for the free coffee. Fatigue and the need for forward movement often drove us to save time by eating at the official PBP controls. My photos reflect the matter of fact nature of this food.

Start
Halfway
One control from the finish

Jeff’s brevet card (so much suffering to go)

Sample view. Vanilla at rest.

Full PBP 2011 flickr set here.