Sunday shorts

Taaienberg Boonen

A look at the photo above. Photography allows us to catch a millisecond in time and portray the moment as a whole story. Here is a great example. We have Lars Boom taking a tumble at the foot of the Taaienberg. That’s Lars Boom, cyclo-cross champion, a rider who can handle his bike. The fight for position is intense in moments like this and Boonen doesn’t give ground. Boom runs out of road, hits the soft earth. Game over.

From this moment onwards Tom Boonen does his trademark move on the Taaienberg. Dutch Wikipedia says the climb has an alternative name, the Boonenberg for the Belgian rider loves to test his legs on the climb. It’s this moment that the selection is made, see Sep Vanmarcke in the right position whilst Hayman and Flecha are ready to join Boonen too.

Boom was in the perfect position. One minute contender, the next hospital. Such is the brutality of races. It’s not just the fight for space at the front, many riders went down in the middle of the bunch as waves spread across the bunch. It’s fantastic TV but a fierce way to earn a living.

Ride of the week goes to Sep Vanmarcke. First it turns out he stood up and told his team he wanted them to ride for him, bold for a 23 year-old surrounded by veteran classics specialists. Then he was right on Boonen’s wheel as discussed above when the selection happened. And with 20km to go he attacked on the Padestraat cobbles and only Boonen and Flecha followed him. He was perfectly placed for the finish line and blasted past Tom Boonen for the win. Sometimes you can get lucky on the day but Vanmarcke’s ride was hugely impressive.

Cavendish delivers
Mark Cavendish wins a sprint isn’t much of a story these days. But his win was still impressive. First it looked like he was carrying some extra weight back in Qatar. Maybe it’s been an optical illusion, he is a solid build and besides they say horizontal stripes on your jersey make you look bigger. But he passed the climbing test today no problem, in fact he and Bernhard Eisel were leading the bunch up the Nokereberg.

More impressive was the bike handling. He rode with the fearless determination of a Bangkok tuk-tuk driver in rush hour traffic. The road changes direction and width, yet Cavendish and his team were in the right place and were never bounced out of place.

Can you feel the pressure?
We’ve only had one weekend of the Belgian classics and already questions are being asked of BMC. Cyclingnews does its bit in English. But the Belgian media goes to town on these stories. Garmin-Barracuda’s Jonathan Vaughters told Vanmarcke to “train professionally and take care of yourself and don’t let the Belgian media drive you crazy” and he could win a classic. Note the reference to media pressure. The coverage from now until late April is intense. As cycling fans this is great but it can drift into tabloid or “soap opera” dimensions.

The BMC backstory is solid: a very strong squad and there’s an expectation of results. The right time to ask questions is mid-April but until then expect plenty of scrutiny, fair or unfair. It’s not just BMC, Rabobank have similar treatment in the Dutch media too. Luckily to use a horrible – but this time appropriate phrase, Rabo have opened their account this season thanks to a win from Michael Matthews in the Clásica de Almería.

The absence of income tax is the reason why most people live in Monaco. But Tom Boonen and Philippe Gilbert can also enjoy the local sunshine and stay out of reach of the Belgian media. Meanwhile Vanmarcke’s girlfriend is already becoming public property.

Liquigas-Cannondale, unbeaten
They might market bottled gas but there’s no pressure for Italian squad Liquigas-Cannondale. Eros Capecchi won the GP Lugano in Switzerland. Liquigas-Cannondale have had a solid start to the year, in fact they’ve won every race in Italy they’ve started… all four thanks to Elia Viviani in the two stages of the GP Costa degli Etruschi plus the Giro della Provincia di Reggio Calabria and Moreno Moser in the Trofeo Laigueglia. Lugano is in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland so this almost counts as another home win.

Vincenzo Nibali won the Tour of Oman adding to the tally too. But whilst Capecchi won today, Ivan Basso pulled out. It’s probably a good thing as Italian journalist Pier Bergonzi points out. Basso has won this race before but it means he’s peaked too early in the season. Better to target big races.

French success
Victory for FDJ-BigMat in the Boucles du Sud Ardèche race in the South of France. With Hutarovich in second place in Kuurne and neo-pro Arnaud Demare in fourth place the week has ended on a, ahem, positive note for the French team after Yoann Offredo’s one year suspension was announced earlier this week.

More cheer for French cycling comes from rising membership reported by the French Cycling Federation at their annual assembly, now with over 100,000 members and growth in this number. In years past the number had shrunk but it’s been rising, in part thanks to more mountain biking members but le cyclisme traditionel, road cycling to you and me, is now on the up again too. It’s worth noting that the FFC is the main federation but it has competition from the FFCT (cycle touring) and a rival umbrella sports group called UFOLEP which offers races more orientated to beginners and the occasional racer.

Who made your bike?
The piece on the Asian factories who produce fames and more for the major brands was the most popular read on the blog this week… and by some margin. Thanks to the CyclingIQ blog for providing the inspiration.

35 thoughts on “Sunday shorts”

  1. Cav interviewed on Sporza said that he hoped to lose some weight during Tirreno for San Remo. A great opening weekend roll on 3 days of west flanders and strade bianche

  2. I discovered this weekend and watched KBK in the comfort of our spare room whilst doing the ironing.
    Can’t wait for the rest of the season, Eurosport or not.

  3. One weekend and it’s been full of action and excitement. Maybe it the extra coverage from the internet and sites like this but I am finding more and more enjoyment from the sport. Bring on the next races.

  4. Inrng, excellent post (again), brings me basically up to date with everything that happened last week. You could consider (if you have time) to do a weekly wrap-up every week, which is different from your usual Sunday shorts?
    By the way – I was able to watch the games of this weekend from while I was in NL, do you know whether this is new policy and whether this applies for other countries as well?

  5. Thank you Inrng for your recap . It’s so welcome to read a blog article without all the peripheral negatives about this beautiful sport and the snark du jour that too many thinks is hip now. Please keep it up, it’s much appreciated by many.

  6. In this age of borrowing content, let alone inspiration, without credit or compensation it is classy that you have made particular effort to acknowledge CyclingIQ

  7. You can’t steal images off the Internet and put your watermark on them.
    It’s illegal, a clear violation of copyright law… and just unethical.
    Give credit where credit is due. If you took that photo, my apologies… Nice work.

    If you didn’t, join the rest of the world by crediting your source and being aware that taking imagery without permission is stealing. Go ask your new hire “pro photographer”. Here you are profiting from Seven Cycles… at the expense of someone’s talent and effort.

    You seem like a smart guy, so my guess is that you already know all of this. It’s sometimes inconvenient to do the ethical thing. I’m just amazed that you would have the audacity to steal someone’s work and slap your logo on it.

    You’re better than that. Make it right and don’t ever do it again. Take that watermark off the photo; cite your sources every time; pay photographers for work (or produce a common use license) and always, always, always give people credit…. especially the poor bastard to spent 7 hours on the back of a moto in the mud and dirt… Only to have you steal the image and take credit.

    Very disappointing. There’s a reason Red Kite Prayer and all the other blogs don’t do this sort of thing: it’s ILLEGAL!

  8. @Tammy

    Don’t you think that perhaps a quick email to Inrng might be a better, and more ethical way to deal with this, rather than publicly flaming someone? Maybe Inrng did steal the image, maybe he had the photographers permission. If the latter, then there is no need to credit. Clearly you don’t know the full facts, so why take it public?

  9. According to the Eddy Merckx chat in Bicisport (yeah, I know, a long way to get this bit of information) Tornado Tom’s Monaco days are over and he’s back in Belgium.
    Note to Tammy – I’ll second what Jarvis wrote above. Even though your message was not typed in capital letters it comes across as a shrieking rant rather than constructive criticism.

  10. @Tammy I would guess that Inrng paid for the image and then out the watermark on it, don’t jump to conclusions, Inrng is a lot classier than you give credit for.

    Having said that there would of course be nothing wrong with adding a small credit to the source, even if the image has been paid for, in much the same vein as crediting CyclingIQ for the article idea.

    Keep up the great work Inrng!

  11. Let’s put the flame out! The watermark is there for the very reason I have a deal with photographers and have paid for it. This is what the photographers have asked for and it does not seem unique, for example see fellow blogger cyclingtips.

    Don’t jump on Tammy, the sentiments behind the comment are fair and perhaps I should have explained things before. I did touch on it last night and I will write something about photos more specifically on here in due course but have preferred to put out stuff on racing and thank Seven rather than explain the ins and outs of what makes the blog work.

    Note if you see a photo with the INRNG watermark you can purchase a hi-res version. I won’t make a cent from this but the photographers will get something and I’m only too happy to help. Just email me, tell me which photo and I’ll tell the photographers who then send it to a website where you can pay and then download or print.

  12. “Meanwhile Vanmarcke’s girlfriend is already becoming public property.”
    So why join the gutter and link it? (I would have, too.)

    I also read Merckx saying in Bicisport that Boonen is back in Belgium. No idea if it’s true (nor do I care).

  13. Funny, I thought I read about the 2012 Giro photo and the story of its use on this blog, but now I can only find this other blog post:

    I know how hard it is for photographers to make a living, so Tammy’s outburst is quite understandable. I’d really like to see the photographer credited too, not really for fairness, or because I don’t trust Mr inrng but just because I’m interested in who takes what.

    PS you forgot the FSGT as well

  14. Vocal concerns about photo credits are entirely appropriate here. I was about to add my own question before discovering that others beat me to the punch.

    As someone who enjoys reading this site, works in the industry, and has had plenty of my own photos used without permission, I’m happy to hear INRNG is paying for images. I hope that applies to all photos on the site. If not, it should be clearly stated that an image was used with permission from the owner. It should be obvious by now- yet I know it isn’t- that plucking an image from another site and simply giving a photo credit does not let bloggers (or any websites) off the hook.

    Keep up the good work.

  15. “Vincenzo Nibali won the Tour of Oman adding to the tally too.”

    Pretty sure Velits won Oman this year. Believe Nibali won Stage 5 up Green Mountain.

  16. Tammy appears to be a fan of the “shoot-first, ask questions later” genre. Kudos to inrng for your calm response.

    Wonder if Tammy will have the fortitude to post an apology? Probably not, since to borrow a phrase, “It’s sometimes inconvenient to do the ethical thing.”

  17. Hardly a miss$hit as you say… hardly fortitude required for an apology.
    Gents, if you think that was a flame, you need to HTFU. Seriously.

    And PLEASE… go back and look at CyclingTips blog: a proper credit and link to every photographer is always used. The watermark is placed only to act as an additional barrier to the inevitable proliferation / illegal use by others. Not to take credit from others.

    Not crediting others work is poor practice. Journalism 101. Research Methods 101. Did Mr. INRNG steal the image? Ummm… He says no (just trust him)… but there’s always doubt until he cites his source. He says he has a unique relationship with each and every photographer on this site to sell prints… yet he’s never publicized that before (that I’m aware of).

    It just LOOKS really, really, really bad. There’s a reason there are ethics in journalism, and I’ve enjoyed the writing here because of the details that are shared. Mr. INRNG is a guy who goes out of his way to explore details, to hyperlink on top of hyperlink. He’s enthralled with the details of cycling… it only makes sense to credit the source of photos.

    I’ve spent 20 years in photojournalism and commercial photography, and I’ve never met a photographer on the planet who doesn’t want to be credited for their work. Never. I’ve also never met a journalist who a) doesn’t want to be credited for what they write and b) feel frustrated if an article skips the byline, and leaves them as an anonymous source.

    I don’t know a single photojournalist, who wouldn’t appreciate the opportunity to have their name associated with their great work… and the opportunity to direct traffic to their site for prints and additional exposure. It’s very rare we’ll say. Exceedingly rare.

    Who knew that prints were for sale? Not me! Is it because I’m stupid? Maybe… but let’s be honest here: we all know Seven Cycles are for sale. There’s a reason we don’t have to email Mr. INRNG first, ask about the random INRNG branded bike we saw… then figure out where to buy a bike. That would be about as weird as it is now to email him every time you’re looking for credit/more photos. It makes no sense to NOT publicize the photographer every time, and allow them the opportunity to enjoy the credit that they deserve.

    It’s journalism 101: state your sources. It’s the very reason I’ve enjoyed Mr. INRNGs writing. There’s actually a touch of journalism going on here rather than the usual boring amalgamation of interweb summaries. Thank you for that. I appreciate your insights. I appreciate the details you go to.

    For those that feel the want to flame me… go for it. There is a groundswell of creatives who are sick and tired of supporting others anonymously and in ways that marginalize their ability to profit from the exposure… or future sales. As stated before: you CAN do better than this. You SHOULD do better than this.

    (and as I’m attacked, please help me understand why in the world you believe it’s “better” to hide the credit for the creators of photography or illustration. I would appreciate that dialogue, because I admit… I genuinely don’t understand how that feels “right” and “proper” to anyone)

  18. righto then /not just one issue on the agenda today is there kevin? .can we get back to news and photos about our favorite sport cycling /and then we have a leadership vote dont we ?

  19. Tammy – “Who knew that prints were for sale? Not me!” – I knew, because I read a blog called inrng where the guy who writes it posted:

    “the irrepressible fairchild: any images stamped with the INRNG watermark can be purchased.”

    “The photographer is selling them, I’m not making money. But just email me, see the contact page and I’ll explain more.”

  20. Tammy, I certainly don’t speak for everyone here but one of the things that make this blog worth looking at and commenting upon for me is the lack of any sort of HTFU attitude. Civil discourse and interesting opinions are what make Inring unique and I hope it can stay that way. Hope you do as well.

  21. So, it looks like I’m not allowed to post links.
    What I was showing y’all was that he’s not paying for every photo used. Absolutely not.

    If you “open in new tab” many of the photos used on this blog… you’ll see that they pull directly from other blogs. Often, those blogs give credit; inrng does not.

    Here is just one example: Look at inrng August 31, 2011. Photo of Fignon as a kid. Open in new tab… oh my! A licensed image that’s licensed only to sport24 dot com by a company called Panoramic. Just add /cyclisme/diaporamas/laurent-fignon-en-images/fignon-en-renault after the sport24 dot com

    This site is littered with similar instances. Obviously, that’s an old one… My apologies if my tone was harsh or overbearing: I find it frustrating it frustrating when I get paid by one site for usage, who gives me credit… and then another swings along and takes it like it’s their right. It isn’t. And sadly, most people don’t care and they don’t stop to think about it ruins the marketplace for the independent photographer/artist out there.

    Obviously, this is just one example. But inrng should be getting permission, and should be citing sources. And we, as a readership… should be as inquisitive and suspect of the validity and fairness of what we read. When one element of the story isn’t 100% true, we should question everything.

  22. From Bryan Nygaard (Communication Director of GreenEdge cycling team) to Inner Ring; January 7, 2011 tweet:

    Brian Nygaard ‏ @nygaardbn
    @julienpretotRTR @inrng Obviously doesn’t make it right that serious media should flat out steal well-researched work without reference.

    Ironically, the comment is in reference to work that inrng wrote, and was snagged by a Dutch Blog, then by Cyclingnews… without reference.

    What goes around comes around.
    Stop the cycle please!

  23. That makes no sense.
    I’m not allowed to “impart my opinion” unless I start a blog? Really?

    It’s weird that half the folks here encourage a healthy, civil dialogue, and another large majority REALLY don’t like someone questioning their leader’s methods…. and defend not with substance of what I’ve stated, but personal attacks.

    Maybe you should start a blog about crit analogies, or any other subject that gets us off the real topic of personal responsibility and the legal/ethical dilemma of being a journalist. I know, it’s kind of scary if you think about it. Maybe we shouldn’t think about it. It’s too complex and scary. Let’s just dehumanize the commenter and call her hysterical. That does usually work pretty well.

  24. …ain’t the net a beautiful thing, everyone gets an opportunity to rant and spew crap to their hearts content. You’ve made your point Tammy Jenson but unfortunately the substance is lost in the delivery.

  25. If I wanted to read about ethics in photojournalism this certainly wouldn’t be my first stop…can we please get back to talking about cycling and the fact that the spring classics are finally here!

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