Yes, riding the amateur classics routes, Paris Roubaix and De Ronde most of all, getting splendidly drunk on fantastic beer with great people afterwards, then watching the pro peloton smash the cobbles. Then doing the whole thing again.
For my part, the non-stop excitement of the Tour Down Under has given way to the expected snoozarama of the Middle Eastern Tours, and it’s proving painful. So, as a service to us all, here’s a recap of my two favourite Classics from last year.
This should keep us going until Milan – San Remo on the 23rd March, where the one-day season kicks off proper, followed by E3 Harelbeke on 28th March, Gent-Wevelgem two days later, then the big two, Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris – Roubaix on the 6th and 13th of April. Not to mention Amstel Gold (20-4), Fleche Wallone (23-4) and Liege-Bastogne-Liege (27-4) after that. April is going to be epic.
If I could hibernate from now till then, or take a time journey, I would. Especially since I’m injured at present and can’t race or train hard until my elbow heals up.
I’m tremendously – unfeasibly – excited for this year’s spring classics season, which starts on Saturday 23rd with Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. And in celebration of this, here’s one of the most dramatic views I’ve seen of Booooonen’s Paris Roubaix 2012 victory, from behind the scenes at OPQS
I’m unashamedly hoping Tommeke smashes the classics again this year, even though his elbow problem of the off-season is forcing him to be a bit conservative at this stage.
Incidentally, rumour has it that the only reason that hard bastard of all hard bastards Boonen didn’t chomp into his infected bursa, suck out the radioactive pus, spit it to the roadside and just keep pedalling is that even Belgians cannot bite their own elbows. True story.