RE: [CR]Jacques Anquetil riding a triple (TA cranks?)- photograph

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Subject: RE: [CR]Jacques Anquetil riding a triple (TA cranks?)- photograph
Date: Fri, 20 Aug 2004 11:03:00 -0400
Thread-Topic: RE: [CR]Jacques Anquetil riding a triple (TA cranks?)- photograph
Thread-Index: AcSGxsjtnJfvOHihRBSK+6yU8kvw0g==
From: "Christopher Barbour" <>
To: <>

[quoting] I'm surprised we don't see more examples of "retired" racing bikes of a Certain Age, since it was common for a feller to hang fenders and such on his old racer and ride it in town, when his racing days were over. (Or, in Britain, damper than the Continong, where they'd take the fenders off at the track!)

Or maybe I shouldn't be surprised -- I suppose the average lightweight doesn't last long when it's thrown in among the rod-brake set. Probably many an old racing bike fell apart in the hands of whoever the old gent passed it to. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

There are hundreds of such bikes still in regular use within the Veteran-Cycle Club ( - their journals are highly recommended). They are lightweight, plenty rugged, and do not fall apart. My utility bike is a very sporty 1959 Mercian that was rescued from a shed by a club mate visiting the U.K., and it often is locked next to nice old roadsters and beaten-up mountain bikes.
>From contemporary accounts and later reminiscences I have read, it is plain that, in the case of Great Britain, there seldom was any distinction made between a racing bike, a touring bike, and a town bike. One owned a lightweight and used it for everything, including commuting, for the average clubman before the late Fifties does not seem to have been somebody who drove a car all week and the bike only after hours. Rough Stuff Journals from the 1960s show lightweights - racing bikes - with fenders and saddlebags being ridden in the woods and along rocky mountain paths.

In the New England Section of the V-CC, it is common to ride 1950s lightweights off-road, and they also are used for commuting by members who have secure places to lock them. A well-made lightweight will stand up to any surface and any weather, and although mountain bikes and roadsters are fun for what they are designed to do, it is exhilarating to set out for work, or steer off into the rough stuff, on a top-notch lightweight bicycle "of a certain age."

Christopher Barbour
Boston, Mass.