Tuesday, January 29, 2008

IF'n Can't Believe How Cool They Are!

Team You Go, Boys!: Tired of hearing about the latest UCI/Grand Tour organizer ego smackdown, the Lamborghini travails of the peloton's rich and famous, the latest dope-snorting embarrassment, or the nascent ProTour standings of the cash-cow squads? Or perhaps just lonely for your long-lost rose-colored glasses, cruelly stomped into shards by the years of disgusting revelations in this beautiful sport? Then here's a pleasant break for once: Sunday night I had the privilege of attending Independent Fabrications' team presentation, and a more enthusiastic, friendly, and bitchin' group of young riders (including at least one former member of the USA cycling team) and general IF bike gods (Jon Bruno among them) you just won't meet. More, one could admire close-up (and get a first-hand design-and-construction play-by-play of) their smashing new SSR 953, a sexy corrosion-resistant stainless steel racing machine. (No, they're not paying me, you cynics, but I will consider swag bribes if anyone's offering...) And, by their dandy slide show, IF's team-building camp--on Thompson Island, a forbidding trek across the frigid, filthy, cod-infested waters of Boston Harbor--looked only slightly less dangerous than Bjarne Riis' famed CSC deathmarches, with the twin bonuses of looking actually fun, and without the CSC camp's notorious if accidental soigneur body count. Even better, the team's a nonprofit, so your contribution may be tax-deductible (consult your tax adviser, don't sue my @#$), so look for these lords o' the future at a road race near you--and pony up already, cycling fans!

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