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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Excellent Links and A Fitting Tribute To One Of Taiwan's Great Cyclists

Dwight J. writes a fitting tribute to one of Taiwan's great cyclists and one of my best friends... Michael Turton.

What makes Michael one on Taiwan's great cyclists is not that he puts up particularly great numbers, wins races, or accomplishes inhuman feats on a bike. He is not a lithe rail of athletic prowess. On the contrary.... He has grey in his beard, a bit of roundness in the middle, an old foot injury and sunglasses that are clip ons. In many ways he seems like an ordinary guy.

Michael also embodies the passion for cycling that so many of us share. On each ride he brings the heart and enthusiasm that is missing from so many people's lives and his attitude is infectious. Riding with Michael is always a good time. Moreover, Michael takes the time in his week to run intervals up the hill behind his house and strives to become better. He pushes himself to ride and to discover all the life that is happening simultaneously in the cultural fabric of this shared space we call "Taiwan"... and then takes the time to analyze it on his own blog.

Few people actually find the courage to do what Michael has done-- to try something new and difficult. I know for a fact that he has inspired others to pick up a bike in search of the same type of passion. I can only hope they found even a sliver of it.

This July I was happy to share a few stages of the Tour de France with Michael as we chatted online turing the webcast. I couldn't help smiling as he became engrossed in the rolling battles and the slow games at play. He was hopelessly hooked.

I look forward to many more opportunities to ride with Michael and I would encourage any of my readers out there to hunt him down on his blog to ask for a ride. I am sure he'd oblige as he can rarely pass up the chance to throw a leg over a top tube.

Taiwan Links:
  • The Merida Tour of Changhua (Huan Hua Sai) will be held 9/25/2011. This is a good entry level race for competition or for just a challenge. The course is mostly flat with a short hill climb and a distance of around 100k. You can find details here.
  • I would also like to wish Dom A. good luck. Dom will be riding around Taiwan for the next two weeks for a little adventure. I can't wait for the ride report.

Other Links:
  • Going Dutch: Taiwan claims to want to copy the European model, but can we create this type of culture.
  • Team Radioshack's Chris Horner suffered a blood clot following his crash at the Tour de France. See his incoherent babbling here. I cann't believe team doctors put him on a bike... and even more so, I can't believe he finished the stage.
The Outspoken Cyclist interviews Rob Vandermark of Seven Cycles. Rob was also at the fore of Titanium bike frames in the early days of the technology. Nice podcast!