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The Grand Tours of cycling conjure up many things. Like sunshine, air-horns, motorcades, screaming fans, inflatable giraffes and glorious mountain passes. Each summer, the roads along which these races travel become decorated with a spectrum of names, messages, slogans and images as a declaration of support, disdain and love.
To have your 12 by 12 foot daubing of "ALLEZ ANDY" or “FORZA PELIZOTTI!” (the Italians, of course, giving us the term ‘graffiti’) on the tarmac of Ventoux captured on camera by a Eurosport helicopter is an accolade any cycling fanatic or pirate artist could wish for. Even a small message of “HAVE IT NEVILLE” to your brother-in-law on the 12th hairpin of Alpe d’Huez is a valuable token of faith and a small reminder that everyone can ride and conquer in the greatest arenas of the sport.
These colourful letters and shapes we see along the mountain passes of Europe written with cans, brushes and rollers add to the personal nature of the sport (which other sporting event allows you to scream encouragement down the neck of your hero as they climb?). It is an enduring icon of road racing and an artform in itself.
Graffiti, Geoff Waugh’s entry in this year’s Rouleur Annual, pays tribute to this fanatical vandalism, with an introduction by Johnny Green.
© Geoff Waugh & Rouleur
- Cool to see our friends @chriskingbuzz representing in the mix of the elite men's race. #mycielo Parbo! http://t.co/L8g8gNofyR
- The masked man on the cyclocross course today was @jeremypowers. It was that cold. http://t.co/KztIjCYu4O
- Calm and confident on the snow - Katerina Nash is off to an early lead. http://t.co/8TynNP7Nho
- Mr. McDonald's tire choice for today's snowy conditions. Can you guess his PSI? http://t.co/2iHgOw6sUw
- They reopened the ice covered fly-over here in Bend. http://t.co/6xOs5BSd0W
- River City Bicycles racer Ryan (Dream) Weaver 2_wicked_awesome powered his way to a chilly 2nd in the… http://t.co/HDDjDnS99w
- Meanwhile over in Bend, Oregon it is a bright, crisp day for cyclocross racing. http://t.co/6lcDQK5UNX
- If you're in Scottsdale, Arizona, make sure to stop by the beautiful new @bicyclehaus shop. 2 - 7pm. http://t.co/gsWtf6fa45
- Win today's Alpe D'Quiz prize: a Men's or Women's Classic Softshell. ‘A thing of beauty,’ according to The Times. → http://t.co/3n8XlqiNYq
- @tribryan Hi Bryan, that’s a discontinued Irish Country Jersey which is no longer in production, sorry to disappoint.