HomeCyclingPEZ Bookshelf: No Extraordinary Joe

PEZ Bookshelf: No Extraordinary Joe


Guide evaluation: One of many good issues about this gig is that folks generally ship you cool biking books to evaluation, on this case, ‘No Extraordinary Joe’ sub-titled ‘Biking Legends 1960’s, 1970’s, 1980’s, a singular assortment of tales, USA & Canada.’

no ordinary joe

There’s a wee drawback with the ‘No Extraordinary Joe’ a part of that title in that Joe Calzaghe, Joe Biden, Joe Paterno and others all have books written about them with the identical title. Regardless of.

no joe
Ron Skarin successful the Tour of Somerville on a Teledyne Titan – Picture by Robert F. George

The e-book comes on the again of an English version of the primary e-book with this title written by Brian Jones, together with his cowl jacket intro telling us; “NO ORDINARY JOE is an homage to the newbie bike owner, the riders who obtain far much less column inches than their skilled counterparts however who however have fascinating tales to inform. Certainly, the deeds of those indomitable cyclists ought to be recorded and lauded earlier than they’re misplaced within the mists of time. Let’s have fun these great riders by recounting their lives and occasions on the perfect mode of transport ever invented – the bicycle.”

no joe
1980 Lindsay Crawford La Vuelta de Bisbee Arizona Stage Race

While lots of the riders interviewed within the e-book have been unknown to me, should you name your self an aficionado then champions the like of Don Awcock, Janet Birkmyre, Geoff Cooke and Dave Le Grys – the final three of whom I’ve had the pleasure to interview – are hardly ‘unknown.’ The USA model is an altogether completely different proposition to the GB version with an even bigger, glossier manufacturing. The content material while masking names unknown to me like Pat Barker, Eon D’Ornellas and Phil Guarnaccia, all fascinating characters if not family names, it additionally contains well-known legends of the game, the like of Curt Harnett, Barry Harvey, John Howard, the late Jocelyn Lovell, the late Audrey McElmury, Gordon Singleton and Alex Stieda who’re all legends of the game. And at the very least Howard, Singleton and Stieda all pulled on skilled workforce jerseys throughout their careers, so it’s not all about amateurs. That mentioned, it doesn’t make their tales any much less price telling, particularly now that there are much less and fewer onerous copy biking publications which decide up on ‘retro’ and these riders should be remembered and have their legacies ‘fleshed out.’

no joe
1983 Nelson Vails Pan-Am Video games, Venezuela – Picture by Robert F. George

no joe
1983 Jocelyn lovell. Using an progressive, low profile single seat tube frameset he made himself, Jocelyn makes use of the decrease gear to make a fast begin within the 1983 World Kilo Championships in Leicester – Picture by John Pierce PhotoSport Worldwide

A number of of my private heroes are included within the e-book, not least the late, nice Jocelyn Lovell of Canada who was one of many classiest riders I ever needed to the pleasure to witness in motion. The creator describes him precisely as I bear in mind; ‘Astride a observe bike; adorned within the stunning Canadian nationwide pale blue jersey with white sleeves and purple maple leaf in again; immaculate, slim and lengthy limbed; he appeared as if he’s been born to carry out the position, and none may argue that viewpoint.’ I at all times needed to interview the person however the fates determined that was to not be, ‘relaxation in peace, Sir.’

no joe
Paul Deem (proper) racing towards Dale Stetina, each driving Teledyne Titans

Lovell’s mentor, Barry Harvey will get a chapter to himself, born in Britain, then a a number of Canadian champion on the observe he received Commonwealth silver on the tandem with protégé Lovell in Edinburgh in 1970. He was additionally one of many very first to see the advantages of titanium as a possible materials for bike tubes; his ‘Teledyne Titan’ is now a wanted collector’s merchandise.

no joe
1982 World Dash Championships Gordon Singleton (Canada) racing towards Koichi Nakano (Japan) – Picture by John Pierce PhotoSport Worldwide

no joe
1982 World Dash Championships – CRASH – Gordon Singleton (Canada) crashing towards Koichi Nakano (Japan) – Picture by John Pierce PhotoSport Worldwide

Then there’s Gordon Singleton; I used to be there that day in 1982 when it appeared like he’d introduced an finish to Koichi Nakano’s reign as World Skilled Dash Champion. The Canadian had already crushed Nakano – lauded as the best Keirin rider in historical past and nonetheless a legend in Japan – within the Keirin ultimate. However regardless of his humble bowing to the group the Japanese Keirin King, raised in an enviornment the place sticking your knee beneath a rival’s handlebars at excessive pace was simply a part of the sport, was a ruthless competitor and a decked and disabled Singleton needed to accept the silver medal. I can nonetheless bear in mind the sound of Singleton hitting the Leicester boards – it was like some big oak tree falling.

no joe
1986 Alex Stieda together with his 5 TDF chief jerseys and Jim Ochowicz – Picture by John Pierce PhotoSport Worldwide

Then there’s Alex Stieda, like Singleton one other Canadian legend I’ve had the honour of interviewing. My buddies and I have been at that now legendary 1986 Tour the place the Canadian grabbed yellow on Stage One after some very shrewd breakaway driving. Stage Two was a workforce time trial and we appeared ahead seeing the Canadian as a part of easy flowing 7-eleven tempo line. Nonetheless, the workforce did a good impression of Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow with Stieda deserted by most of his workforce mates, struggling together with a few devoted domestiques properly down. A tragic sight however regardless of, the person had made historical past.

no joe
John Howard begin nice American Bike Race – Picture by Barry Harvey

John Howard is in there too, a person who has achieved all of it. Olympian, Race Throughout America pioneer, Tour of Britain Milk Race rider, Ironman winner, Quickest human powered man on the planet – 152 mph behind a 500 horse energy tempo automotive and one which not many learn about, the final man United States competitor to win the Pan American Video games Highway Race, means again in 1971. It’s a really onerous race to win given right here’s an unwritten rule within the Pan Am Video games peloton; ‘anybody however a Yankee!’ Albeit Ron Skarin received it twice for Canada – however Canada isn’t the USA…

no joe
1974 Skip Reducing. The Shimano Skilled Biking Staff competing towards one another on the Encino Velodrome in Encino, California

Then there are riders whose prime got here a little bit earlier than my time who I’ve learn a lot about however was delighted to have the ability to fill in gaps in my data. Harry ‘Skip’ Reducing is one such, a 3 time Olympian and a Pan Am Video games medallist, it’s an overused phrase however Reducing actually is a ‘legend’ of US observe sport with a profession which noticed him race in 28 international locations and compete throughout the complete spectrum of observe occasions – dash, pursuit, workforce pursuit, tandem and scratch.

no joe
Audrey McElmury Rotterdam Race 1970

The ladies – I get flak if I say, ‘ladies’ or ‘girls’ as of late within the PC world we dwell in – aren’t forgotten, not least the late, nice Audrey McElmury who grew to become the US first world champion in any biking self-discipline since 1912 when she received the ladies’s highway race within the politically charged environment of Brno within the former Czechoslovakia in 1969. The Russians had invaded some 12 months earlier and their athletes performances have been greeted with stony silence while McElmury was one of many heroes of that Worlds collection. She’d completed fifth the earlier 12 months so to aficionados it wasn’t such a giant shock but it surely was an enormous end result for US cycle sport – she would go on to complete fourth on a future two events within the Worlds however by then was very intently marked.

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1973 Tour of Eire Staff. First totally sponsored workforce to trip a stage race in Europe. L-R: Supervisor Albert-Hitchen, John, Howard, Invoice Humphreys, John-Allis, Stan Swaim – Picture by Invoice Humphreys

It’s a e-book no critical biking historian ought to be with out and I look ahead to quantity two, which is, ‘within the works.’

no ordinary joe

‘No Extraordinary Joe’ ‘Biking Legends 1960’s, 1970’s, 1980’s, a singular assortment of tales, USA & Canada.’ By Brian Jones. Foreword by: Christian Vande Velde with contributions by Barry Harvey, Invoice Humphreys and Sandra Wright Sutherland.
Publication Date:Apr 2, 2022
ISBN 9781838000530
Pages: 182
Binding: Hardcover
Dimensions: US Letter (8.5 x 11 in / 216 x 279 mm)
Printed by LuLu press
Worth: $40.00, 29.99GBP, 35.99EU
Order from [email protected]


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