NPR tells how Phil Gaimon’s Olympic dream became $200,000 in medical bills – While most recent Olympic athlete coverage has focused on heartwarming stories of triumph, for every successful Olympic bid there’s another athlete that didn’t quite make it.
Retired pro cyclist, Everest-er (he calls it the worst retirement ever!), cookie fan & popular YouTuber Phil Gaimon dramatically crashed out of an Olympic qualifying race on the Lehigh Valley Velodrome that landed him in a long & intense hospital battle for recovery.
And while he didn’t make it to the start line in Tokyo, he did end up with “a fractured collarbone, five broken ribs, a partially collapsed lung, a broken shoulder blade, and huge medical bills”.
NPR tells the full sordid tale of Phil’s unexpected return to competition to try to earn a spot on the USA Cycling track team, and how it saddled him with crazy medical bills, even though he was insured. It’s a frustrating tale for those familiar with interstate healthcare in the US, and shocking for those from anywhere else in the world. More at: NPR.org
Where to Ride & Dot Watch
- Join La Vuelta from anywhere in the world with Rouvy – Virtual indoor training platform Rouvy has signed on as official partner for the Spanish Grand Tour for the next three years. That means a constant flow of new La Vuelta routes, challenges & racing series to keep you motivated on the trainer. Five stages are already ready to get you prepped, racing alongside the peloton or on your own. Rouvy.com
- Last chance to join the Granfondo Stelvio Santini – Until Aug 15, there’s still a chance to snap up a bib and experience the rollercoaster emotions of one of the most iconic amateur races on the scene. Entries close next week for the Sept 12 Italian Granfondo, and everyone will ride away this year with a unique new Santini jersey of two Polartec fabrics made from recycled PET bottles – five bottles reborn in each jersey. Pick from 60km Short, 138km Medium, or 151km Long routes with every distance taking in the Bormio start & iconic finish atop the Stelvio Pass. GranfondoStelvioSantini.com
- SRMR saddles back up for Kyrgyzstan bikepacking – The third edition of the Silk Road Mountain Race kicks off in a week with high elevations, sweeping panoramas, wild exposure & ever-changing weather. The ultra-endurance bikepacking race is simple – stick to the 1800km track from Talas to Balykchy, an old fishing town on the northern edge of Lake Issyk-Kul, collecting brevet stamps at three control points along the way – all self-supported. There’ll be fast competition at the front, but there are no prizes at the finished, just bragging rights, even for anyone who finishes before the safety time cut off more than a week later. Get a review with Brooks and ultra-racer Toms Alsbergs in their journal here. Them, dot watch & more at: SilkRoadMountainRace.cc
Industry stories, news & motivation…
- Chasing History with St. Augustine’s first bike racers – “When you’re making history, you’re often unaware at the time…,” Rahsaan Bahati. It all starts somewhere. For two riders on the St. Augustine’s University Cycling Team, the first official cycling team at a historically Black college or university, it came on a beautiful day in Rock Hill, SC. There, at the Rock Hill Outdoor Center, site of national and UCI cycling events, SAU athletes Brandon Valentine-Parris and Finote Weldemariam would compete in their first sanctioned race. It was only a 50-minute, 20-lap race. But the moment felt bigger somehow. Chasing History.
- Sea Otter gets gobbled up by Life Time – In their ever-expanding takeover of the most popular American cycling events, Life Time has acquired the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, CA. Continuing their investment in on the bike experiences (after Leadville 100, Crusher in the Tushar & Unbound/Kanza Gravel) Life Time seems committed to supporting the cycling community while grabbing a dominant foothold across racing disciplines. For now, little is expected to change, but maybe the added investment will boost all of these events collectively. SeaOtterClassic.com/Life-Time
- Greyp iOS updates bring more e-bike functionality – The latest Greyp iOS app update makes their “always connected” e-bike systems even better, with new & upgraded re-routing & turn-by-turn navigation, improved visibility in direct sunlight, more data statistics in Dashboard mode, and better overall app visibility. Over-the-air updates continue to refine Greyp’s e-bike user experience. Greyp.com
- Drop into summer with the PNW crew – No better way to spend your summer than getting drifty on some dusty trails, right? PNW components riders Cody Kelley and Justin Olsen (film & photo) dropped into Utah’s foothills to capture the real vibes that only solo sessions on loose singletrack can provide. It’s just 96 actual seconds of natural wild west trail riding, but that’s somehow still enough to awaken the stoke and get us in the mood to go ride.