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Rapha Racing: New York City
Words: Richard Bravo (aka. "Filthy")
Between the realities of living in a hardened city like New York and the insatiable desire to ride bikes lies a chasm—a divide that leaves many aspiring bike racers sitting in front of computer screens all day while their bikes gather dust. This is the ultimate obstacle (some say indignity) of trying to race competitively while living in a city that requires an atypical work ethic during good times. And these aren’t good times.
And yet, for some of us, not riding bicycles is as far from an acceptable option as is sleeping past 6:00 in the morning, leaving the office at 4:30 in the afternoon or skipping the Friday night happy hour at Franklin Park. One of the members of the New York City-based Rapha Racing team described it thusly: “Once my wife told me she wanted me to ride my bike less. But if I rode my bike less she really wouldn’t like hanging around with the guy I would become.”
For some of us there is no option. We are compelled to ride. And because of the competitive predisposition (probably the same one that drove us to work in a concrete jungle like New York) lurking in our psyches, we are compelled to race. Sometimes at 5:45 in the morning in Central Park; sometimes at 7:00 in the evening on an abandoned air strip in Brooklyn; and sometimes in a crit on Wednesday nights out in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Rapha Racing New York City is a group of like-minded cyclists, all drawn by the same desire to ride the legs off our friends, then laugh about it over coffee and bagels or a couple beers before going back to our families. Rapha Racing is for those of us who force a cycling lifestyle upon a city that would rather say otherwise. Rapha Racing is the triumph of our cycling addiction over our urban realities.
Bryan Borgia: Presently 1st overall in the Pro-1/2 Cycle Fitness 2009 Summer Series; 3rd overall 2009 Bethel Spring Series
Peter Hurst: 1st Pro-1/2 Housatonic Hills Road race; 5th overall Cat 2 2009 Fitchburg Longsjo Classic
Photos taken by Gina Green: TeamorganicNYC.org
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