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SRAM at the ATOC 2012
PHOTOS: John Watson - Prolly Is Not Probably
The involvement of SRAM throughout the Amgen Tour of California was fantastic. It is one thing to see the racers ready to go in the early morning hours before the start, but the mechanics (and especially those of SRAM NRS) are, arguably, more impressive. Not only are they the first ones up every day but more often than not they are the last ones to retire in the evening. Not to mention the fact they are on call at every other part of the day; should something go wrong, these gentlemen are first on the scene. As a part of our ongoing coverage of the ATOC, we thought it only right to give thanks to the guys who make sure everything runs smoothly.
On day three of this year’s ATOC, we placed our pal, John Prolly, into one of the SRAM NRS (Neutral Race Support) vehicles, so that he could see what happens at the back of the pack. And hence the fantastic photos. Luckily for us, our man Chad from the Rapha Continental was at the helm of the SRAM Volvo in question, so John was able to see just how they roll. Chad is a fantastic driver, eats healthy food non-stop and has a great sense of humor to boot. These qualities alone would make him a much-loved face in the pro peloton but should you get yourself into a mechanical situation, then Chad is going to be your beacon of light for getting you back to the peloton as quickly as possible.
This is not the first time that we have worked with Chad at the Tour of California. For the last couple of years the Rapha Continental has ridden our own version of the ToC. The first time we rode the entire length of the course from start to finish. The second time around we enlisted the help of professional cyclocross racer Tim Johnson and did a few of the stages. In both of these cases, Chad was there to help with not only the mechanical side of things but offer support in a broader sense. It was Chad who knew where we could get a massage therapist when someone was injured, and it was Chad who got us to the bike shop that would have the smallest of parts necessary to hold Hahn’s bike together. His thoughts and stories on riding (and eating and sleeping and racing) are a welcome reprieve when a day in the saddle starts to get long.
SRAM had also stopped by the Rapha Cycle Club in San Francisco at the start of Stage Two, to set up bikes for people to test the new SRAM Red components they launched earlier this year. It was mildly mind-blowing to see all the red Specialized S-Works bikes decked out in new gear for people to test around the streets of SF.
Thanks to SRAM (and SRAM NRS) for putting together a fantastic crew once again for the Amgen Tour of California. Your support to the industry and racing scene is invaluable. Check out this short video featuring Chad – thank you, Chad!
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