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Rider’s Creed

make your stops short and infrequent, so as not to lose your drive.
eat lightly and often. eat before you’re hungry, drink before you’re thirsty.
never ride until you are so tired that you cannot eat or sleep.
put on extra clothing before you’re cold, and take it off before you’re hot.
don’t be afraid of exposing your skin to the sun, air and rain.
don’t drink wine, eat meat, or smoke, or at any rate while in the saddle.
never rush things. ride within yourself, particularly during the first few
hours of a ride when you feel strong and are tempted to force the pace.
never pedal out of vanity.

by velocio (inventor of the dérailleur in the 1890s)

Note: The Touring Club de France organised a challenge in 1902 in which a professional, Edouard Fischer, rode 200 km of hills without gears against another rider, Marthe Hesse, riding a Gauloise with a three-speed derailleur.

Hesse won. He “never set foot to the ground over the entire course”, one paper reported. Desgrange (organiser of the Tour de France), though, wrote: “I applaud this test, but I still feel that variable gears are only for people over 45.  Isn’t it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailleur?  We are getting soft. Come on fellows. Let’s say that the test was a fine demonstration – for our grandparents! As for me, give me a fixed gear!”

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