Two more diabetic pro cyclists emerge

TeamNovoNordiskProCyclingThere was a time when the idea of diabetic pro cyclists was rare. Common wisdom held that diabetics had too many obstacles to be competitive. However, thanks to the continued efforts of Team Novo Nordisk, we’ve seen that diabetic pro cyclists can compete at the highest levels of the sport. And do it successfully.

Recently two additional riders with type 1 diabetes have made the transition to the pros. Frenchman Quentin Valognes and Dutchman Rik van IJzendoorn have moved up from the Team Novo Nordisk development squad onto the men’s pro squad as stagiaires for the remainder of the 2016 season. Keep reading →

Women’s cycling week… err, weak?

This year has been huge for the advancement of women’s cycling. But it underscores the fact that women’s cycling has been neglected. The very fact that it still needs “advancement” is in and of itself indicative of the problem. That is why I have really mixed feelings about declaring “Women’s Cycling Week.Keep reading →

Interview with Joonas Henttala of Team Novo Nordisk

Amgen Tour of California 2016, Stage 1 Breakaway
Photo ©TDWSport. Used with permission.

Joonas Henttala is a professional cyclist with Team Novo Nordisk. Joonas started the 2016 Tour of California aggressively. We was the first rider to attack after the neutral start of Stage 1. This created a break away with 6 other riders that was off the front for over 85 miles. The break away was reeled back in before the final 3, resulting in a bunch sprint. Joonas’s teammate on Team Novo Nordisk – Martijn Verschoor – was able to capture a 5th place finish against some of the best sprinters in the world.

We caught up with Joonas Henttala before the start of the Tour of California to ask him some questions about his life as a professional cyclist, overcoming Type 1 Diabetes, and competing at the highest levels of the sport. Keep reading →

Team Novo Nordisk showing new kits for Tour of California

Photo ©Team Novo Nordisk. Used with permission.
Photo ©Team Novo Nordisk. Used with permission.

Team Novo Nordisk will be returning to the Amgen Tour of California this year with a whole new look that will be exclusive to the US races. The new green kits feature Tresiba®  – a long-acting insulin produced by title sponsor Novo Nordisk.

Team Novo Nordisk is a global team made up of nearly 100 endurance athletes with diabetes, including cyclists, runners and triathletes. The men’s professional cycling team includes 17 athletes from nine countries, 8 of which will be on the starting line for the Amgen Tour of California.

The Amgen Tour of California is the biggest cycling event on U.S. soil and it’s definitely one of the most important races of the season for Team Novo Nordisk, so we are excited to introduce our new U.S. kit at this prestigious race. This year marks our third consecutive appearance at the Amgen Tour of California, and we are eager to use this opportunity to show the 415 million people around the world living with diabetes what may be possible.

Phil Southerland, co-founder & CEO of Team Novo Nordisk

Keep reading →

An interview with Mandy Marquardt

Photo © Team Norvo Nordisk. Used with permission.

It is, without question, extremely challenging to reach elite levels in any sport. Cycling has its own unique challenges. Couple that with the demands of managing a life long disease like type 1 diabetes and challenging can quickly turn into “daunting” or even “prohibitive.”

However, US track sprinter Mandy Marquardt is a fantastic demonstration that type 1 diabetes is not something to keep people from achieving their goals. Along with the help of Team Novo Nordisk, Mandy is spreading the word that diabetes does not have to be a limiting factor in our lives. We caught up with Mandy via email to talk to her about her experiences as a diabetic athlete. Keep reading →

Nobel Peace Prize for cycling?

Can you win the Nobel Peace Prize for cycling? Possibly. If you are the Afghan Women’s National Cycling Team. This tough group of women face challenges daily that will make your next urban traffic dodging exercise seem trivial.

They are already in the running for the National Geographic Adventurers of the Year award. But their story has reached new levels of exposure with the help of documentary film makers and the movie “Afghan Cycles.” But the nod in the form of a nomination for the Nobel Peach Prize has really garnered headlines. Keep reading →

My most well researched post to date

Lance who?

Will the real Greg LeMond Please Stand Up

Ahhh social media. Not only do you get provocative messages – you get provocative discussions about who the provocative messages actually came from.

Adding to the “intrigue” is the fact that the message was posted to the Greg LeMond timeline at least 13 separate times – the identical post – at the time of this writing. Speculation was already rampant that the posts didn’t in fact come from Greg himself.

Maybe, maybe not. But here’s the full text of the post in quesiton:
Can anyone help me out? I know this sounds kind of lame but I am not well versed in social marketing. I would like to

send a message to everyone that really loves cycling. I do not use twitter and do not have an organized way of getting some of my own “rage” out. I want to tell the world of cycling to please join me in telling Pat McQuaid to f##k off and resign. I have never seen such an abuse of power in cycling’s history- resign Pat if you love cycling. Resign even if you hate the sport.
Pat McQuaid, you know dam well what has been going on in cycling, and if you want to deny it, then even more reasons why those who love cycling need to demand that you resign.
I have a file with what I believe is well documented proof that will exonerate Paul.
Pat in my opinion you and Hein are the corrupt part of the sport. I do not want to include everyone at the UCI because I believe that there are many, maybe most that work at the UCI that are dedicated to cycling, they do it out of the love of the sport, but you and your buddy Hein have destroyed the sport.
Pat, I thought you loved cycling? At one time you did and if you did love cycling please dig deep inside and remember that part of your life- allow cycling to grow and flourish- please! It is time to walk away. Walk away if you love cycling.
As a reminder I just want to point out that you recently you accused me of being the cause of USADA’s investigation against Lance Armstrong. Why would you be inclined to go straight to me as the “cause”? Why shoot the messenger every time?
Every time you do this I get more and more entrenched. I was in your country over the last two weeks and I asked someone that knows you if you were someone that could be rehabilitated. His answer was very quick and it was not good for you. No was the answer, no, no , no!
The problem for sport is not drugs but corruption. You are the epitome of the word corruption.
You can read all about Webster’s definition of corruption. If you want I can re-post my attorney’s response to your letter where you threaten to sue me for calling the UCI corrupt. FYI I want to officially reiterate to you and Hien that in my opinion the two of your represent the essence of corruption.
I would encourage anyone that loves cycling to donate and support Paul in his fight against the Pat and Hein and the UCI. Skip lunch and donate the amount that you would have spent towards that Sunday buffet towards changing the sport of cycling.
I donated money for Paul’s defense, and I am willing to donate a lot more, but I would like to use it to lobby for dramatic change in cycling. The sport does not need Pat McQuaid or Hein Verbruggen- if this sport is going to change it is now. Not next year, not down the road, now! Now or never!
People that really care about cycling have the power to change cycling- change it now by voicing your thought and donating money towards Paul Kimmage’s defense, ( Paul, I want to encourage you to not spend the money that has been donated to your defense fund on defending yourself in Switzerland. In my case, a USA citizen, I could care less if I lost the UCI’s bogus lawsuit. Use the money to lobby for real change).
If people really want to clean the sport of cycling up all you have to do is put your money where your mouth is.
Don’t buy a USA Cycling license. Give up racing for a year, just long enough to put the UCI and USA cycling out of business. We can then start from scratch and let the real lovers in cycling direct where and how the sport of cycling will go.
Please make a difference.

I’ll let you be the judge.


I’ve got an idea – name the hole that now exists

Ugh. I know. I probably shouldn’t be writing about Lance Armstrong now. Enough is enough. What I was really thinking about is all those folks that are now going to have to go over the record books with erasers, Wite-Out® and heavy black markers obliterating all occurrences of the name Lance Armstrong from the official record of winners. I think the ancient egyptians were good at erasing fallen pharos from the record too, so maybe we can take some cues from them.

But in our digital age, getting rid of records is a little trickier because any joker with a keyboard (say, like me) can write an article. And those articles will have undoubtedly used the name Lance, Armstrong or, if you’re not into that whole brevity thing, Lance Armstrong. But it becomes really awkward to just schwack his name from all the records. I mean, sentences wouldn’t even make sense.

For example: “…the federal investigation into seven time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong has been closed with no charges filed…” just doesn’t work with his name redacted. “…the federal investigation into seven time Tour de France winner has been closed with no charges filed…”  See – that just doesn’t work, because, well, there now is no one that has ever won 7 Tour de France victories.

Or how about this: “Despite the evidence, Lance Armstrong continues to maintain that he never used performance enhancing drugs.” Take out his name and “Despite the evidence, continues to maintain that he never used performance enhancing drugs” just sounds like a court transcript where the court reporter got lazy.

So it occurred to me that we need some sort of a place holder we can use to replace his name, and fill the gramatical hole created by redacting his name from the record. Something to fill the gap – fill the space left by the absence of Armstrong’s name. Something to fill the hole left behind by Armstrong – the Armstrong hole. Hmmm… Something to fill the Armstrong hole.

Oh! The A-Hole!  That’s perfect!

So now, wherever we would have said “Seven time Tour de France Winner” or “Lance Armstrong” or “Lance” or “Armstrong,” we simply substitute “The A-Hole” and it all works:

“…the federal investigation into seven time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong has been closed with no charges filed…
“…the federal investigation into The A-Hole has been closed with no charges filed…

Likewise, “Despite the evidence, Lance Armstrong continues to maintain that he never used performance enhancing drugs.”
“Despite the evidence, The A-Hole continues to maintain that he never used performance enhancing drugs.”

Nice thing is, this can become a handy twitter hash-tag too! In fact, I highly encourage anyone posting any tweet about The A-Hole to also include #theahole in the tweet, so that we can all easily find it without needing to type out the guys actual name.

Just a modest proposal.

Now every cycling fan is trying to be a lawyer

I’m not a lawyer, nor do I play on one TV. But I nonetheless found myself spending a whole lot of time yesterday reading over legal documents. It would be cool if I were trying to gain understanding into my legal liabilities if I lead a ride and someone gets hurt. Or perhaps finding ways my auto insurance is legally required to cover myself and/or bicycle in the case of an accident in the saddle. Or how about the technicalities of home owners or renters insurance and a stolen bike.

Nope – as you probably guessed, I was all wrapped up in the USADA Reasoned Decision in the Lance Armstrong case. Across the internet, everyone seems to be writing that as “Reasoned Decision” – in quotation marks – as if it is a sarcastic remark.  Turns out that a reasoned decision is actually a specific type of document that the USADA was required to release. From the publication itself:
Keep reading →