Great post, Bob. I actually just added this Cyclo catalog to my list last week. It full of testimonials from many riders.
Chuck Schmidt South Pasadena, California http://www.velo-retro.com (list of reprints)
Bob Reid wrote:
> Hubert Opperman offered up an insight into the progress of variable gears in
> the Tdf in this wonderful testimonial for Cyclo in 1935 ;
> " In 1931 I raced in the Tour de France under the designation of an "Ace."
> The "Aces" were denied derailleurs, the "Tourist-Routiers" were allowed this
> device. That regulation did not mean so much to me, I had never seen the
> "changement vitesse" in action. Together with the brother "Aces" I was
> handed a practical lesson for a month. The despised second-raters won
> stages, slipped away in the mountains, jammed on the flat and became the
> "Enfants terrible" of the daily racing, because of their "CYCLO'S." The
> following season every important race was won by a bicycle equipped in this
> manner, and now it is understood that the rider facing the starter in a
> classic without such an attachment automatically becomes the red light of
> the race (Hubert Opperman, October 16th, 1935)
> Although in perhaps typical 30's style, the testimonial praises the virtues
> of the "Cyclo" and it's use and success in the Tdf, in actual fact another
> later advert for Cyclo indicated the of the 40 Tourist-Routiers who started
> the race in 1931, [only] three were actually equipped with Cyclo gears.
> (that said 40 in total started, 8 finished ! including all three cyclo
> equipped bikes)
> Bob Reid