Kiss My Panache came on board as a member of VeloVoices in the summer and has brought a real visual flair to the blog. His day job is as a creative director, he lives on the American East Coast and has two mini-Panaches with his lovely wife, Mrs Panache. If a rider doesn’t have style, Panache doesn’t wanna know … here are his wishes for 2013 (in no particular order, although he says that number ten is the most important). All images are by the man himself.
Wish 1: Ryder Hesjedal pops the top off another jeroboam of Grand Tour champagne
1. Ryder Hesjedal wins another Grand Tour.
2. UCI leadership is completely transformed by replacing Pat McQuaid and sending Hein Verbruggen to the island of Elba.
3. Andy Schleck and Cadel Evans have competitive form for the 100th edition of the Tour de France and they have an epic battle with Alberto Contador on the slopes of L’Alpe d’Huez.
Wish 4: Sylvain Chavanel follows Spartacus’ wheel in the Tour of Flanders
4. Fabian Cancellara wins Roubaix in a nail-biter with Tom Boonen. Sylvain Chavanel wins the Tour of Flanders by following Cancellara and leaving him at the end. [That’s so cruel, Panache – Kitty.]
5. Peter Sagan dominates the Ardennes Classics or becomes road race World Champion. Either would be fine with me.
6. Argos Shimano and Europcar obtain WorldTour licences. [Well, he got one of his wishes already – Ed.]
Wish 7: Taylor Phinney gets his revenge …
7. Taylor Phinney podiums at Roubaix and wins the World Championships time trial in Florence.
8. More women’s races are broadcast.
Wish 9: “@Phil_Gilbert1 has sent you a direct message on Twitter”
9. Daniele Benatti and Philippe Gilbert unblock me from Twitter and we start direct messaging each other.
10. I find a dream job of being the creative director of a luxury cycling apparel company, which enables me to move my family to Europe and travel the world. I eat French pastries at a quaint cafe with the entire VeloVoices team at once. [Sounds good to me – Ed.]
Cycling has taken quite a bashing this year so I thought it would be fun to get the VeloVoices crew as well as some of the people we’ve met and followed to give us their top ten wishes for the 2013 season. We’ll start with … me!
I am Kitty Fondue and I am a founding member of VeloVoices. My favourite races are the spring Classics, I love Fabian Cancellara to distraction, I have the regular Tuesday column of Tweets of the Week and I’m always on the lookout for photographers to profile for our Friday Features. I also do a lot of the live-tweeting of races on the weekends, where I try to commentate with humour and only a little bias but I tend to show my true colours at the end of races when I’m cheering someone onto the finish. Here are my wishes:
Wish 1: That Cancellara goes back to his winning ways
1. That the Classics season is one knock-down, drag-out fight after another between Tom Boonen and Fabian Cancellara. And that they each win (and lose) with style and grace.
2. That the final nocturnal stage of the Tour de France in Paris is as fantastic as I imagine it to be and that VeloVoices has its own corner with tons of Twitter friends cheering the peloton on!
Wish 3: That SuperSagan provides the fireworks on the Champs (image courtesy of Roxanne King)
3. That Peter Sagan does his Incredible Hulk impersonation as he takes the Champs-Elysees sprint with bike lengths to spare!
4. That things are changed within the sport so we can be confident of clean, honest wins.
5. That people can express a like and dislike for whatever riders they want without being flamed on Twitter. And that people finally realise that using the c-word is not the way to win an argument or influence people. It’s not big and it’s not clever – it just makes you look stupid. And you know what? It’s just a bike race – there’s no need to eviscerate people for a difference of opinion.
6. That Bradley Wiggins says something and actually sticks to it, as opposed to saying the opposite the next day, crying “misquote!” or changing his mind three or four times in the course of a week. All this back and forth is just bullshit.
Wish 7: Marco Pinotti exchanges his BMC jersey for a rainbow jersey (image courtesy of Davide Calabresi)
7. That Marco Pinotti wins the World Championships time trial in Florence. And that Fabian Cancellara wins the road race.
You’ve had a few days now to puzzle over our 2012 Quiz of the Year. Hopefully you’ve managed to correctly answer most of them, but to put you out of your misery here is the full set of answers to all 50 questions.
Let us know how you got on in the comments below.
2012 UCI WorldTour
1. Name the first and last races chronologically on the 2012 WorldTour calendar.
Tour Down Under, Tour of Beijing
2. Which rider finished top of the individual rider rankings?
3. Who were the top-ranked team at the end of the year?
4. Two riders each won four WorldTour events – name them.
Tom Boonen, Bradley Wiggins
5. Which new race was included on the WorldTour calendar, only to be postponed before it could be held?
Tour of Hangzhou
Name the following Classic and semi-classic races from their 2012 podium finishers:
6. Simon Gerrans, Fabian Cancellara, Vincenzo Nibali
7. Enrico Gasparotto, Jelle Vanendert, Peter Sagan
10. Sep Vanmarcke, Tom Boonen, Juan Antonio Flecha
Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
11. What country does overall winner Ryder Hesjedal hail from?
12. Which sprinter initiated a controversial crash at the end of stage three and later went on to win his maiden Giro stage?
13. Who, having won his first ever professional race at the 2011 Giro, promptly won his second in this year’s edition?
14. Which rider won the queen stage of the race on top of the Passo dello Stelvio, propelling him to a podium finish?
Thomas De Gendt
15. Which was the only individual classification won by an Italian rider, and who won it?
King of the Mountains, won by Matteo Rabottini
Tour de France
16. Bradley Wiggins became the first British rider to win the Tour de France. Which Sky teammate finished as runner-up?
17. Wiggins won both of the long individual time trials, but who won the opening prologue?
18. Two 22-year olds won stages at this year’s race. Peter Sagan was one, but who was the other?
19. Which American rider claimed the white jersey en route to fifth overall?
Tejay van Garderen
20. A statistical oddity: Sky riders finished fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh in the points classification. Who were they?
Mark Cavendish, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Bradley Wiggins, Chris Froome
Vuelta a Espana
21. How many stages did overall champion Alberto Contador win during the race?
22. How many stages did Argos-Shimano sprinter John Degenkolb win?
23. Which rider was the surprise early leader for the first two days of the race?
24. Stage 16 to the summit of Cuitu Negru provided a titanic showdown among the GC contenders on some of the toughest slopes the Vuelta has ever seen. But who won the stage?
25. Whose streak of four consecutive King of the Mountains titles was broken by Simon Clarke?
The Eternal Seconds
Everyone remembers a winner, but who was the runner-up in each of the following races?
27. Tour de Suisse
Frank Schleck (anyone remember him?!)
28. Olympic men’s road race
29. Vuelta a Espana
30. Road World Championships men’s road race
Edvald Boasson Hagen
Who am I?
Name the rider from the following descriptions. (Clue: each one has been followed by one of the VeloVoices as one of our ‘riders to watch’ in 2012.)
31. I won five stages at the Tour of California before going on to parade a variety of movie-based victory celebrations at the Tour de France.
32. My early season form in a new team was blighted – literally – by teething problems, but I finished the year on a high with notable victories in Spain and the Netherlands.
33. It was a year of #unluck for me. If it wasn’t people crashing into me, I was either breaking my collarbone or taking a tumble at the Olympics. At least I had the consolation of seeing the birth of my second child.
34. Questions remain over whether I bought one of my past victories, but I did secure some gold this summer to help see me into retirement.
35. It’s been a colourful year for me. I briefly looked pretty in pink during the spring and just missed out twice at the Olympics but ended the year with silver while wearing red, white and blue. Maybe next year I might get the opportunity to sample gold?
36. Only one of this year’s three Grand Tours started in its ‘home’ country. Which one?
The Vuelta a Espana. The Giro d’Italia started in Denmark, the Tour de France in Belgium.
37. In ten stages over two editions of the Tour of Beijing, Tony Martin has held the red race leader’s jersey for all but one day. Who is the only other rider to have led the GC in this race?
38. Of the 28 individual WorldTour events, only one featured a final podium of riders who are all from the same country. Which race and which nationality?
Vuelta a Espana, Spanish
39. We all know cycling is a team sport, but which rider was individually responsible for scoring 60% of his team’s WorldTour points in 2012?
Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi)
40. A pair of German riders won back-to-back rainbow jerseys in the elite individual time trial events at the Road World Championships. Name them.
Tony Martin, Judith Arndt
The following questions all relate to nominees in our recent VeloVoices Awards.
41. Which normally mild-mannered rider lost his cool and attempted to storm the Argos-Shimano team bus at the Tour de Framce?
42. What is the name of the CEO of the US Anti-Doping Agency, whose ‘reasoned decision’ brought about the downfall of Lance Armstrong?
43. Who produced a thrilling victory at the Tour of Turkey, holding off the peloton despite dropping his chain inside the final kilometre?
44. What is the name of the FDJ directeur sportif who provided one of the most exciting sights of this year’s Tour as he shouted his support for Thibaut Pinot all the way along the final kilometre en route to a memorable stage victory?
45. Which 2011 Grand Tour champion finished a lowly 30th and 67th in his two Grand Tour participations in 2012?
Juan Jose Cobo
Tour de France 2013
Next year marks the 100th edition of the Tour de France and includes several notable features. How much do you know about next year’s parcours?
46. On which island will the race start?
47. The race features the return of the team time trial. In what year was a TTT last held at the Tour?
48. The Bastille Day stage finishes atop the summit of which legendary Tour climb?
49. Which mountain is being climbed twice on the same day for the first time in Tour history?
50. Which stage is scheduled for a spectacular night-time finish?
The final stage (21) into Paris
How did you do?
Award one point for each correct answer – maximum possible score 50.
0-15: Neo-pro. Showing promise but many lessons to learn before you can mix it with the big boys.
15-30: Domestique. Showing your value but currently lacking the ability to break into the top tier. Now go and fetch me a new bidon, will you?
31-40: Team leader. An established contender who always puts in a strong performance.
41-50: Grand Tour winner. The best of the best. Now where’s that latest endorsement contract?