Monday, July 23, 2007

PRO Defined

What's up with the word PRO? A noun, an adjective? Well, both actually. PRO is used to describe equipment, an attitude, a practice. It is a word that has many meanings and can be used interchangably. When I write the word, I use all caps to make it more pronounced, to give it more punch. But, in many ways, the use of caps helps to convey my love for things PRO and the use of caps gives the word some heart and soul. When I'm watching cycling, cruising a bike site, or reading a magazine and I come across something that is indicative of PRO racing, or the PRO culture, I say "that's so PRO. Or when it's really insanely PRO, I may say something like that's so f#@*ing PRO.

Well, I came across a site the other day that contained some images from Paris Roubaix that were simply too much, even for a seasoned PRO like myself. Paris Roubaix is always a great place to spy equipment and practices that are head and shoulders above the more routine races on the season's calendar. I think CSC is a team that's not afraid to bump it up a notch, evidenced by some of these shots. Check out how insane the 303s look when shod in the black and green Pave EVO CG tubular tires. I mean, come on that is about as PRO as it gets. And when you have a team car rooftop filled with these machines, my little brain begins to swirl and smoke under the stress of computing the total PRO-ness.


Check out this action, too: 180mm cranks? When I labored in the trenches and some 5'4" goof ball on a $300 road bike would drop in asking for a 58t chainring and 180mm cranks in order to tackle the local highway overpass we would laugh him outta the shop. But when I see a 180mm crank in the PRO ranks... well then, that my friend, is PRO, F'ing PRO to be exact.


PRO can be an attitude. Like when Jens Voight grits his teeth while pulling the entire break away or choosing to train in 38 degree rain. Racing anything for 24 hours is PRO, skipping desert for 6 months is PRO and so is a massage after a wicked hard weekend of racing. Drinking black coffee as opposed to a carmel, mocha, equalized, double tall frappa-whippeo is also PRO. So use the term freely as you will; make it your own, take PRO to the races, the group rides and airwaves.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dude! Awesome post!

K.ro

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your contributions to the further degradation of the English language.

--TF

Erik said...

Jens Voigt is the definition of PRO!

G. Orwell said...

Why say "PRO" when "double-plus good" will do?

Ari said...

Pro is seeing Sven Nys get a rear flat riding Duro-Ace carbon wheels with Dugast Tubulars on the opposite side of the pit area. He rides thru all hell on that flat and then chases the leaders. That's Pro
Porn

gewilli said...

Them's 303s but they still are PRO

Wit ya on the coffee too!

Baughb said...

PRO is Oscar Freire bunny hopping a median to attach the break and ultimately win the stage....

Coach Curly said...

dood... I love this blog. It's so PRO... nice work.

and Tchmil jumping the chicane on his way to win the 94 PR was PRO

Radio Freddy said...

gewilli - I will split the difference with you. The fron tis a 303 and the rear a 404. PRO.

-RF

Radio Freddy said...

Thanks Coach. Anything Tchmil is PRO.

Ari said...

Speaking of Roubaix, I was always impressed with the Pro's that were able to keep their jerseys clean during a mudfest Paris-Roubaix. One Pro name comes to mind. Francesco Moser. I remember his awesome shoulders and the rubber hinge in his lower back, he rode so low. He was so mean looking but so gracious on the bike. What a super champion!
ari

Kelly said...

What is not PRO is Alexander Vinokourov.

How about LOSER!!!!

Fer rilla said...

So, last night I'm re-wrapping my handlebars and it's not going very well. Over the years, I've gained countless amounts of mechanical knowledge for cycling, but, to this day, still can't wrap a pair of handlebars for the life of me.

As I finished up my 'attempt', I said to myself "This looks good enough". I started eating dinner and decided to check Belgian Kneewarmers for some good reading, and, low and behold, ya had to post this "Pro" thing. I read it, and realized, yes...it DOES matter. I put my dinner down, got up, and spent the next hour or so (yes...hour or so) trying to re-wrap the bars as Pro as I could.

As usual Freddy...you were right. Lookin' Pro helps.

Carson said...

I don't like to nitpick, but I've been bothered by something in this year's Tour that strikes me as distinctly unPRO. (and I don't mean Vino)

On several stages, Lightweight has painted their logo on the pavement of camera friendly switchbacks. Yes, the Tour is a logo-fest and yes, Tour viewers are prime lightweight customers, but this is weak.

My opinion - A rider's name spray-painted on the road of a major Tour is the essence of PRO. It's a fan thing, with no sports equivelent, and it should stay that way. Lightweight, you've got a cool product, but no more, OK?

Keith Moore said...

Those pictures are great, could you provide us with the site so that we can further explore PRO

Radio Freddy said...

Keith Moore - BKW suffered a complete data loss recently and with it went my book marks. So, unfortunately I cannot locate the page. I can tell you it was a German cycling forum with MTB and Road action alike. Once I locate it again I will be sure to post a link.

movementdub said...

Tour of California 07: I'm running up Balcom Canyon next to Bettini with "El Grillo" written across my chest...im Euro-screaming as loud as I can in his ear and tapping him on his jersey so I can say I touch the World Champ stripes. The dude never turned his head a centimeter in my general direction. His eyes were locked on the wheel in front of him, ignoring me and the other 25,000 bike-dorks on Balcom. That, my friends, is PRO.

MattyVT said...

My New Year's resolution is to be more PRO. Thanks for the inspiration

Anonymous said...

Great Post. I did a similar post on my BLOG "Pro as Shit". Love your site!

http://thebell-lap.blogspot.com/2007/12/pro-as-shit.html

Jesse G

Anonymous said...

"When I labored in the trenches and some 5'4" goof ball on a $300 road bike would drop in asking for a 58t chainring and 180mm cranks in order to tackle the local highway overpass we would laugh him outta the shop."

How horribly elitist... but absolutely true and hilarious! Recently found the BKW blog. What a great site, thank you!

Dan said...

Great post. just got hooked with BKW end of last year. Definitely gotta work on getting back to PRO. Too much slackin on my part. New mantra..... No f^ckin excuses.

Bluenoser said...

Thanks, I needed that.

-B

brettok said...

You know what's not PRO? Spelling breakaway as "break away". And Dura Ace as "Duro Ace"....

Other than that, I love your blog.

hincapie said...

PRO is bkw

Jay B said...

Wow - if it was really George who said BKW is PRO, well what the heck - how can anybody follow that up?

I think this closes the comment thread, eh? George gets the last word. ;-)

Anonymous said...

PRO is Big Fabs pulling for the line from 1Km to go, making an entire peloton look pedestrian.