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Plump, grumpy, slumped on the couch, and going nowhere fast at age 16, Phil Gaimon began riding a bicycle with the grand ambition of shedding a few pounds before going off to college. He soon fell into racing and discovered he was a natural, riding his way into a pro contract after just one season despite utter ignorance of a century of cycling etiquette. Now, in his book Pro Cycling on $10 a Day, Phil brings the full powers of his wit to tell his story. Presented here as a guide--and a warning--to aspiring racers who dream of joining the professional racing circus, Phil's adventures in road rash serve as a hilarious and cautionary tale of frustrating team directors and broken promises. Phil's education in the ways of the peloton, his discouraging negotiations for a better contract, his endless miles crisscrossing America in pursuit of race wins, and his conviction that somewhere just around the corner lies the ticket to the big time fuel this tale of hope and ambition from one of cycling's best story-tellers. Pro Cycling on $10 a Day chronicles the racer's daily lot of blood-soaked bandages, sleazy motels, cheap food, and overflowing toilets. But it also celebrates the true beauty of the sport and the worth of the journey, proving in the end that even among the narrow ranks of world-class professional cycling, there will always be room for a hard-working outsider.
From the author of the cult favorite Pro Cycling on $10 a Day and Ask a Pro, the story of one man’s quest to realize his childhood dream, and what happened when he actually did it. Like countless other kids, Phil Gaimon grew up dreaming of being a professional athlete. But unlike countless other kids, he actually pulled it off. After years of amateur races, hard training, living out of a suitcase, and never taking “no” for an answer, he finally achieved his goal and signed a contract to race professionally on one of the best teams in the world. Now, Gaimon pulls back the curtain on the WorldTour, cycling’s highest level. He takes readers along for his seasons in Europe, covering everything from rabid, water-bottle-stealing Belgian fans, to contract renewals, to riding in poisonous smog, to making friends in a sport plagued by doping. Draft Animals reveals a story as much about bike racing as it is about the never-ending ladder of achieving goals, failure, and finding happiness if you land somewhere in-between.
Phil Gaimon’s Ask a Pro answers every question you’ve always wanted to ask about pro cycling...sort of. Gaimon gathers the best of his popular Q&A column—and pokes fun at his younger self. Despite the howling protests from his peers, no one’s ever been more willing to spill the beans on what it’s really like inside the pro cycling peloton than the sarcastic scribe Phil Gaimon. Building on the outrageous success of his hilarious 2014 debut, Pro Cycling on $10 a Day: From Fat Kid to Euro Pro, Gaimon gathers the absolute gems from his monthly Q&A feature column in VeloNews magazine into his new book, Ask a Pro: Deep Thoughts and Unreliable Advice from America’s Foremost Cycling Sage, adding a dose of fresh commentary and even more acerbic and sharp-eyed insights. With six years of material to work with—including his incredible rise into the pro ranks, the devastating loss of his contract for 2015, and his bold return to the Big League—Gaimon covers every possible topic from the team dinner table to the toilet with plenty of stops along the way. Gaimon offers wise-ass (and sometimes earnest) answers to fan questions like: · How much chamois cream should I use? · I’ve started shaving my legs. How can I be accepted by my friends? · What do you do to protect yourself when you know you’re about to crash? · How many bikes does my husband really need? · What’s the best victory celebration? Do you practice yours? · In women’s cycling, what is the proper definition of a pro? · What do you say to someone if they honk or almost hit you? · Do you name your bikes? · What do pros think when they see a recreational cyclist in a full pro kit or riding a pro-level bike? · Can you take your bike apart and put it back together? · How bad does the weather have to be to call off a training ride? · How do you know when it’s time to change a tire? · When you’re in a breakaway all day, do riders form a future friendship? · Riders keep complaining about "unsafe" weather at races. When did pro cyclists turn into such wussies? · How do the pros define a "crash"? Gaimon wields his outsider’s wit to cast a cock-eyed gaze at the peculiar manners, mores, and traditions that make the medieval sport of cycling so irresistible to watch. Ask a Pro includes new resources from Gaimon, too, including his Cookie Map of America, dubious advice on winning the race buffet, a cautionary guide for host housing, Phil’s pre-race warm-up routine, and a celebrity baker’s recipe for The Phil Cookie.
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