by Tim Renowden
So Saxoff is now Tinko, or something like that. Sinkoff Taxo? Sixo Tankoff? I can’t keep up.
I met Oleg Tinkov once. It had taken me the best part of two hours to pass by his various layers of security: the voluptuous receptionist at the front of his corporate office; the thick-necked security guards frisking me at the metal detectors; the thin-lipped man with an earpiece, with his dead-eyed gaze as I strolled through the heavy steel doors.
Once inside, the man himself was seated behind a huge mahogany desk with a scale model of Europe and a big red button, smoking an enormous cigar and stroking a white cat. He rotated in his leather chair and growled, “Greetings…”
Not really, obviously. This story is a complete fabrication. But would anyone be surprised if it were true? It’s not that much more fanciful than some of the lurid-but-genuine commentary about cycling’s newest team owner.
Mr Tinkov does present in public as (to borrow a phrase common in Australian pubs) a pretty loose unit, known for firing off drunk tweets faster than, well, a Russian downing shots at a wedding.
[check out Neil Browne's collection of Tinkov tweets here]
So colourful is Mr Tinkov that there’s even been murmurings of the UCI setting up a “fit and proper” person test, presumably to prevent people like him sullying cycling’s good reputation for ethics and governance.
Frankly, I think this is a bad idea. Basically, I just don’t think it’s fair to single out cycling for attracting dubious characters, when the English Premier League is allowed to exist.
Then there are the practicalities: it wouldn’t necessarily be easy designing a test that catches one self-made millionaire businessman with a slightly dusty public image but lets all the others stay.
I mean, he’s no shadowy oligarch. Tinkov made his millions from flipping companies and investing the huge profits in new companies, which he then flips for even huger profits.
He’s had the business importing cheap electronics from Asia; the brewery with a fake back-story and risque commercials; and the dot.com credit card company with the recent shaky IPO. All very successful businesses.
He’s clearly in this for the long haul.
I will admit he did a pretty amazing job at alienating his star rider, Alberto Contador, by very publicly criticising him during and after this year’s Tour.
On July 22: “His salary doesn’t match his performance. Too rich and isn’t hungry, that’s my opinion, and I deserve it. He must work harder”
A week later: “he is not riding Vuelta- he is tired), LOL, what the fuck Conta is tired from,one race?He isn’t tired to receive monthly HUGE check, though.”
In September, after his relationship with Riis and the team had seemingly broken, Oleg tweeted “Contador to join Alonso team in 2014? If Bjarne get rid of Conta I may re-think may departure from #TeamSaxoTinkoff”
No surprise that Alberto’s sulky teenager impression was on full display at the Tinkoff-Saxo launch. Like a teenager, Alberto just has to survive one more year, and then he can go hang out with his mate Fernando Alonso and not worry about his stupid team owner and his stupid chores.
But Oleg wasn’t completely wrong, Contador used to be able to attack all day, and now he just seems to get tired like everyone else. It’s definitely possibly because he’s not training hard enough.
Despite all this I’m sure all of the Tinko riders will be motivated and in great spirits, knowing their new boss is following their performance so closely.
At least Tinkov seems to have improved his opinion of his star. This week he tweeted: “Exited to see my new @tinkoffsaxo team on the roads. And @albertocontador leading Tour de France in 2014. Wow.”
This has been going on for at least a few weeks. On November 23 he tweeted a photo of Contador out training: “Conta is getting ready to kick ass of Froome))) and I am behind it YET”
Oleg has also had some issues with his new general manager and former team owner, Bjarne Riis, who was reported to have told him to take a long walk off a short pier just a few months ago.
But it’s different this time, they’re mates again, and full of mutual respect. There’s no way this is just a marriage of convenience.
Kind words through gritted teeth are still kind words, right? You take ‘em where you can get ‘em.
Anyone who says that Riis looks set to lose his team anyway when the hammer drops on a big Danish doping enquiry, so he might as well cash in first, is just a cynic.
OK, Oleg has made some off-colour sexist jokes. But it’s not as if the UCI has ever taken women’s professional cycling seriously, so who can blame him? He’s just trying to fit in with the lads!
Perhaps we should be a bit concerned that Tyler Hamilton says Uncle Oleg basically told him to get on the dope in 2007.
But hey, people say the same thing about Bjarne Riis, not to mention half of the guys still running teams, so that’s hardly a unique grounds for disqualification.
All in all, it’s hard to see how Oleg Tinkov is any worse of a proposition as a team owner than several of his counterparts. He’s definitely more often drunk in public than most of them, but really, is being a drunken buffoon on social media worse than running a sophisticated doping operation?
OK, so perhaps I wouldn’t buy a used car from him, but what could possibly go wrong?
Actually, this is worse than I thought.
One day of Oleg Tinkov
all opinions stated by writers are those held by the writer individually, and in no way reflect the opinion of crankpunk himself nor any other contributor to the site. however, we probably do all agree on most things, if that helps any…
not often i post links to other people’s articles here, but this one is really a great read.
by Richard Moore (author of Slaying The Badger), it features an interview with Shelley Verses, the first female soigneur on the European scene – and an American to boot!
cheers to former 7-11 pro Nathan Dahlberg for putting me onto this…
“When I think of my boys I want to cry,” she says. “Just the sheer thought of my boys’ faces on the start line; it was like walking through a hall of kings. The privilege; the honour to do what I did, in the years I did it.
“That I could even see Kelly, Fignon, Hinault, LeMond, Roche, Visentini, Breukink. All these fucking beautiful, these gifted people, and get to see that level of sport, to be involved at that level. It was a hall of kings to me.”
6,372 indivudual visitors yesterday, with 8,994 page views, 7,084 of those on the Levi Gran Fondo post alone.
seems like people do give a hoot, though montanagirl was particularly irked with herself for reading an article that eschews CAPITAL letters, so much so that she wrote to tell me just that:
“If you’re going to criticize someone so harshly in such a public forum, you should be able to capitalize your sentences. I’m actually bummed I clicked on this and gave you the trafffic [sic].”
apparently if i ‘judged’ less harshly, it’d be ok to use lower case all the time. good to know. i’ll tone it down for you montanagirl – by the way, way to not use capitals in your name, ‘atta girl!
someone else asked why was i picking on Levi, and not the other ‘bad boys’ of the peloton? well, first off, imagine the length of the article if i had to write about every doper every time i wrote abut doping? you know how exhausting this sh*t is already? i’d LOVE to be writing stuff like this every day, or like this, but unfortunately i can’t, because there are far more pressing concerns right now in this sport i love so much.
so for those of you new to crankpunk & company who seem to be sulking at home because i’m ‘only’ picking on Levi, here’s a few links to get your ire a-rising again…
there are loads more, if you can be bothered.
to those who say ‘well it was every thus’ – yes, you are right in that, but wrong to be wearied as a result.
i wrote this a long time ago but as i read it now, i still believe it:
“…so, what’s the point of all this? the point is that, unless we find a way to ‘unlearn’ thousands upon thousands of years of human behaviour, or to eliminate the ‘rogue’ genes that allow for cheating and doping from our sportsmen, we will always have people ready to do it. this doesn’t mean the riders have no responsibility – they bear a great deal. but essentially what we need is a system that curtails ingrained behaviour and encourages athletes to perform clean. we need penalties that are sufficient to discourage cheating, and, most critically, an apparatus, an institutional framework of credible managers and coaches and dedicated officials who are free of corruption, to govern the sport.
then perhaps we can consider talk of a ‘Golden Era’ – and instead of it being dead and in the past, it could, if we do it right, be ahead of us. let’s honor those young men who so tragically passed away [in the early 90s from heart attacks in their sleep as a result of abusing EPO] by not f***ing this up anymore. they, you, we, deserve that.”
finally, this from Terry:
“I’m sure none of my fellow commentors would never watch or buy from a sponsor of ANY sport that is full of dopers, like the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, Pro Golf, Pro Tennis, Soccer, Boxing, Swimming, Track and Field. Lets not forget the sex DRUGS and rock n roll, so no music. For that matter, would any of you even deal with someone who drove 1 mph over the speed limit or “fudged” a tax return? Not me, I’m not that perfect. I love riding with Levi, George, watching NFL…..”
and a reply from MythBuster:
“Nice straw man Terry. You even added a hat with that tax return touch…”
keep ‘em coming folks, keep ‘em coming…!
by Kate Smart
Once again, the off-season has crept upon us and crashed our cycling loving lives with a thick blanket of that dark and heavy fog, otherwise known as boredom.
For those of us watching on the sidelines it’s all a bit like being a kid, stuck inside on a wet and miserable winter’s day, complaining to mum of a never ending and physically painful boredom that cannot be quelled.
This is the time of year that Aussie cycling fans are doing their best Jason Bourne impersonations. We’re down in the blue lit vaults of some swanky Swiss bank, cashing in on our sleep accounts. If you’re reading this from the other side of the world, you try staying up every night for a three week grand tour, living on less than four hours sleep and trying to remain a functioning human being. Let me tell you, it isn’t pretty.
Usually I would be busy at this time of year, making up for all of the sleep that’s been lost over the last ten months, but some genius invented twitter, and even better still, the genius that is Adam Hansen has an account.
Thanks to the peloton’s resident tech-head and twitter supremo, Adam Hansen, who had me nearly choking on my glass of wine, I’ve caught up on what is surely the highlight of the season, the Pro Tour Pins-Up Calendar.
Where to begin?
Once I got over my horror and revulsion at images of stick men, with wicked tan lines that should never see the light of day, the very funny and, pardon the pun, cheeky side, of this little venture became apparent.
This is the funniest thing I’ve seen in an age. It’s hard to spot a favourite.
Could it be Mr January, Alex Dowsett, the Essex native that he is, applying fake tan to those already highly tanned legs?
Or what about Mr June, Taylor Phinney. I love Taylor Phinney’s homoerotic appeal. He’s so 80s chic in a 21st century, retro kind of way.
This calendar is at once a sad and sorry state of affairs, and yet, a joyous celebration of the not terribly macho physiques of professional cyclists. What we have here is our cycling heroes, reduced to torsos of hideous fluoro-white skin and fabulously tanned extremities.
To be serious, this calendar has been produced as a fundraiser for the 2014 women’s Tour of Britain and is associated with a couple of other charities [and can be purchased exclusively online right here].
It also suggests something I doubt the creators or participants could have imagined. These images of two-toned men in many ways act as a metaphor for the whole sport of cycling.
On the outside, cycling is a sport of healthy, tanned bodies competing in one of the toughest endurance sports around. But underneath, is the evil of corruption, of drug taking and allegations of officials being involved in covering-up the once rampant cheating.
I want to be quite clear from the outset, I’m not about to sling mud at anyone. I do, however, believe that speculation is healthy, as long as it is clearly labeled as speculation.
It is this speculation that will lead to what we all hope to be a positive change in the sport. Our speculation need not defame, but it serves an important function in opening up debate on the events of the professional sport we all follow.
If you come to think of it, whether we are reading Crankpunk or writing on Crankpunk, we are all playing an important role in the democratic function of journalism.
Long gone are the days of sports writing being the retelling of results with perhaps a line or two about the weather thrown in for atmosphere.
Today, sports writing performs the same democratic functions as any other field of journalism.
If Tim Berners-Lee envisioned the Internet as a meeting place to enhance democratic participation, then it is sporting websites such as this that are closest to that function.
That’s why we are all here.
That’s why it’s important that we all stay.
Corruption, drugs and cheating are not particular to cycling, although there are plenty who will try to tell you this is the case.
Any sport can easily and quickly descend into the kind of chaos that beset the peloton of days past.
But what is it that breaks that chaos down?
Sure, it’s drug testing, it’s an attitude from amongst the professionals that this is unacceptable, but it’s also about us on the sidelines speculating on the comings and goings of the riders, teams and officials.
This is where the Internet in all its glory unites voices that previously would never be heard.
This is where we speculate on the actions of those who have ridden in the past and where we make it clear our expectations for the riders of the future.
I’m really excited to be here…
all opinions stated by writers are those held by the writer individually, and in no way reflect the opinion of crankpunk himself nor any other contributor to the site. however, we probably do all agree on most things, if that helps any…
yes, it’s that time of year, you should really be off the cakes and the Belgian beers by now and out cranking it nice and steady and building that solid base for the 2014 season!
and you should be sufficiently motivated and determined to level up to realise that what you need is some crankpunk coaching!
three sports just came up on the program (there’s a max of 15 clients at any one time to be sure that i can give each client the attention the deserve), and so, if anyone is interested please message me (see contact or email me at email@example.com).
if proof is in the pudding then i just got a massive bowl of ice cream and brownies, as my Singaporean client Serene Lee called me as I was typing this to say she’s just won the KOM jersey and the overall GC win at the Masters’ Tour of Chaingmai, attacking the leader on the final climb to come in solo for the win.
this follows hot on the heels of another client’s great ride at the Tour de Bintan, where he secured 2nd place on the GC to reach another of his goals for the season.
be sure to check out the Testimonials (more coming soon)…
this article originally appeared in The Roar
Changes are being rung in under the new presidency of the UCI by Brian Cookson – from confiscating computers and hard drives from MacQuaid’s people right after his victory to setting out a roadmap for the sport’s recovery – but one of the toughest challenges facing the governing body is the rehabilitation of women’s cycling.
Though it may be somewhat natural to think that any pro athlete is relatively well paid, for the women that push their pedals for cash, nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, the vast majority of female pros have to negotiate their own contracts, seek out personal sponsorship alone, struggle with the uncertainty that their scheduled races will even be held and generally fret over paying their bills, never mind putting money into the bank.
Here’s a little fact that illustrates this point: the Giro d’Italia forks out €90,000 to the overall winner while second place takes €50,000 and third place €20,000.
The winner of the women’s Giro received – wait for it – €450.
That is not a typo. There are not two, nor even one, zero missing from that figure.
The winner of the women’s version of the Belgian Classic, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, received just €360.
Once these winners have shared their ‘loot’ out amongst their teammates, they may have enough for a celebratory dinner – at McDonald’s.
Cookson though is making strides in the right direction, and when Brian Cookson appointed Australian Tracey Gaudry to the post of vice president, he was making a clear statement of intent.
Gaudry, who became the first ever woman to hold the post, is known as a former professional cyclist and, interestingly, is a member of the Anti-Doping Review Violation Panel to report to the Board of the Australian Sports Commission.
Gaudry has been brought in by Cookson for several reasons, the first being that he considers her to be ideally suited to carry out the duties required of the vice president of cycling’s governing body, and also to specifically tackle the problems facing women’s cycling.
Gaudry is no stranger to the challenges faced by the female peloton, one of which is the cancellation of races due to lack of financial funds.
In 1999 Gaudry won the Tour de Snowy in her first year as a pro rider, a race that was canned in 2003 due to the lack of sponsorship.
Gaudry is currently working on the setting up of a Women’s Commission that she says reflects the UCI’s new desire to diversify.
“We will have 6 or 7 members of both genders, Europeans and non-Europeans, from all disciplines, former and current athletes, National Federations, women coaches, organisers, teams and broadcasters,” she says in an interview on the UCI website.
“The Commission will be set up by the end of the year and we will present our strategy for the coming 12 months and beyond at the next Management Committee meeting in late January.
“In order to develop women’s cycling it needs, among other things, better visibility,” she continued. “But I want to specify that we will have a transversal approach: we will work with all the commissions [road, track, and so on] because the rise of women’s cycling must involve everybody. It is not something that concerns just one department.
“For the first time, there will be a woman in each commission, which is another clear sign from the UCI. We will take on board the proposals that the other commissions make to us and we will make propositions.”
The shortsightedness of the traditionally male-dominated UCI has led us to this point where there is a real and drastic need for measures such as this one.
Indeed, how and why there has never been a Women’s Commission is something that beggars belief. In a world where some 50% of the population is female you would imagine that the governing body of a sport that is suited to all would actually do something to get women on bikes, rather than neglecting them so forcefully all these years.
Speaking of male and female professional cycling, Tiffany Cromwell said to me in a recent interview that “you really can’t compare the two, they are completely different.”
Cromwell went on to state that the women accept that the two strands of cycling have differing histories, but also said that in many ways, the existence of most female pros is not that different – through their entire careers – to young, aspiring amateur men who live in team houses and in rooms above cafes at the start of their journeys.
Just about every female cyclist bar the very best riders also have to work or are studying, preparing for a later career, knowing that they will never become rich, or even well-off, from their cycling careers.
“We do it because we love it,” said Cromwell. ‘You might make a little bit of money but you’re not going to retire off of that. You don’t want to think about it. It’s how it’s always been, it’s sad but I guess we can show the beauty of the women’s side rather than comparing it to the men’s.”
And there, in a nutshell, is the answer to those who bemoan the lack of distance covered in women’s racing or the lack of brute power on display. What the women bring to the sport is different, and it is a difference that should be appreciated, not bemoaned.
Indeed, in many ways the shorter races that are a feature of the women’s side of the sport lead to far more exciting racing than many men’s events.
The sport needs to encourage women to ride, develop new races with UCI funding and outside sponsorship, and bring in television companies to help further support the enterprise.
Right now there is a female rider who may well be the greatest rider the sport has ever seen – men or women – and yet we barely see her. Mention Marianne Vos to casual followers of the sport and many will never have heard of her.
We may be getting somewhere though, thanks to Cookson, Gaudry and the spirit shown by the women riders in their pursuit of their dreams. In many ways, it is they who are the true carriers of the flame of passion and love of this great sport, simply because they do not do it for the money.
“You have to think about how lucky you are,” said Cromwell. “I am riding my bike every day, I travel the world and see beautiful places, and my passion is my job. There are not many people who can say that.”
why is this guy getting any space, anywhere, at any time? did i miss something? as far as i can see it, LA has been making these fumbling, half-assed attempts at clawing back some public sympathy and some of his beaten, battered, smashed-to-a-bloody-oozy-pulp reputation for several months now – and we all knew better right?
we all knew better than to give him that breathing space, to provide him with a platform to pump out his kinky stuff. we all knew better because he wasn’t going to tell all, he wasn’t going to apologise to Betsy, nor anyone else he screwed, despite the constant exhortations of ’100% honesty.’
we all know what a media manipulator he is, and yet he still remains one of the biggest draws in the sport – for some deluded journos – who are willing to allow him to get his rehab up and rolling.
they’re not all so dim though. speaking to a well-respected editor of one of cycling’s leading websites recently, he told me that he’d been offered a chat with Mr. Hospitality some weeks back, but that he had turned it down. the reason? he didn’t want the LA flame to get any oxygen, knowing that any chance of full disclosure and access all areas was zero.
and yet there we have CyclingNews giving LA a nice, chunky three-part interview last week. i’m not at all criticising the quality of the interview but it is the simple fact that LA said ZERO NADA ZILCH new. and of course he didn’t. this is all part of a lengthy rehab process, one that an public relations firm will know all too well.
it’s called ‘the process’, and involves, interviews like this, placed in carefully-selected spaces (interestingly, the un-named editor of the well known website was not a very welcome member in LA’s camp before, which may well be the reason he was approached), some public appearances, apologies and the like.
if you read the CN interview you may have noticed that LA says one of his biggest regrets was that he denied doping so forcefully. ok, hang on, so, had it been less ‘forceful’ (this is the guy who destroyed careers, remember), it would have been ok? does he really even feel sorry?
no, i don’t think so – just sorry he got caught. he’s now bemoaning the huge dent his fortune has taken, calling it ‘frustrating’. we know the feeling Lance, if it’s anything like seeing the sport you love being take over by King Bandit and his Bandoleros…
thankfully, others have said that they want his skin and all he knows in a bag, and hois desire to get his lifetime ban overturned will need a ‘miracle’, says WADA prez John Fahey.
the CN space given to LA wasn’t in any way ill-intentioned – it was just kinda dumb and very naive.
very interesting article here from Popular Science on the effects of cycling through polluted areas. seems that low-intensity riding triggers greater effects on the body than high-intensity cycling. in fact, high-intensity riding, the study found, has little to no effect on the body despite the rider breathing in pollution.
very much worth a read – thanks Steve for sending this in! check it out here.
The UCI has long been looking to Asia and to China in particular as the next frontier in cycling, offering the world governing body what it sees as the best opportunities to expand not only its brand but also its influence and to bolster its finances.
Pat McQuaid had first hand experience and knowledge of the Asian scene as race director of the Tour of Langkawi, the Tour of China, and the Tour of Philippines before he became President of the UCI in 2005. Indeed, it was this experience combined with the desire to open up the Chinese market to the UCI that saw the formation of the Tour of Beijing in 2011.
That event, the third edition of which has just finished, was hugely unpopular when first shoehorned in as the final event on the 2011 World Tour, with several teams plainly stating that they saw no point in turning up. The UCI responded with its usual finesse and threatened to strip those teams of their ProTour licenses if they failed to show in Beijing.
The teams responded in kind by demanding that the UCI postpone the implementation of the radio ban it had been ready to enforce. Both sides backed down, thus saving face, and we saw a Tour of Beijing where what crowds there were found themselves far from the action. Many of those present watching were said to have been bused in by the authorities in any case.
The inaugural Tour of Beijing was in fact a dull, staid affair that barely any real cycling fan had any interest in – much like the 2013 and 2013 editions, it could be said.
In Australia, where the cycling scene is more advanced than in Asia, there is the Tour Down Under, an event that can justify its place on the cycling calendar for several reasons, not least the competitiveness of the racing but also, critically, by the sheer volume of people that turn up to cheer the riders on.
Asia though demands a different approach. Even in the countries where the traditions of racing are quite well developed, such as Malaysia and Japan, there is nothing to match the depth of support seen at the TDU.
The kind of ‘trickle-down’ effects of top-tier multi-stage racing simply have not been shown to work in and real, tangible way here.
However, though the number of participants taking part in any sort of organized racing in Asia still remains relatively low, the number of people actually riding bikes continues to grow exponentially.
As someone who has lived in Asia now for 15 years, I continue to be amazed by the increase annually of the number of people out on the road (and in particular by the number of women). These people are riding top-end carbon fibre bikes with all the gear on – they are just not racing, with too many feeling that the leap from weekend ‘fun’ riding to competition is just too great, which, given the lack of racing culture and the lack of entry-level events here, in most cases is.
At the level just below World Tour events – such as at the 2.1 Tour of Thailand, 2.2 Tour of East Java and the Tour of the Philippines – you will find Pro-Continental and Continental teams that, though certainly competitive, do very little to inspire any real interest in racing from the locals beyond cheering them past for a few moments as the colorful peloton speeds by.
They also bring in very little economic gain to the local economies, the teams being packed with young, jobbing pro riders who have very little expendable income and whom are also unlikely to return to enjoy the local culture with a family any time soon. Not only that, some of these Asia Tour races are lacking completely in drug testing procedure. I know because I’ve raced in them and, as times, not a single rider has been tested over the entire race.
The whole approach to the Asian scene is misguided, like much of what we saw coming from the UCI under McQuaid.
So how can we combine the UCI’s desire to expand into the Asian market with the top teams’ desire to keep their riders interested in the racing, and to inspire the local riders to step into competitive racing whilst also putting something back into the local community?
I ’d suggest a series of one day ‘Asian Classics’ held over a two week period throughout the region in or around the time period that the current Tour of Beijing is held. Keep the racing exciting for the pros by having the races on courses that not only showcase the beauty of Asia – something the current events here just completely fail to do – but also choose routes that place similar demands on the participants as do Roubaix, Amstel or the Tour of Flanders.
To encourage locals to get out and participate also, an ideal format would be to have an early sportif on the Saturday, an amateur race version in the afternoon and the Pro version on the Sunday.
One event could be the Japan Cup, which has provided a very popular format of racing for several years now. Another could be in Taiwan, possibly mid-week, a third in China and another in whichever country the UCI feels would most benefit from such an event – or possibly a second in China.
This would mean a bit of traveling for the World Tour teams but would guarantee interest here in Asia and, I believe, in the rest of the cycling world too, and is surely more appealing than grimly pedaling around Beijing for a week. With one or possibly two races midweek, the whole ‘Asian Classics’ series could take place within a 2-week period, maximizing the appeal to sponsors and riders alike – and to any fans intent on seeing every race.
On top of all this, include a women’s event and make maximum benefit from the popularity of cycling amongst women in Asia, which on visual evidence alone far outrstrips Europe.
This has to be an improvement on what we have now, a race that is foisted on teams particularly that don’t want to be there and one that stands isolated from the real fans and the wider community.
Races such as the Tour of Thailand and Tour of Singkarak and others like it that make up the UCI Asia Tour should continue, but with just a little more thought the cycling community and cycling industry could be getting so much more from the Asian cycling scene – and, crucially, putting something back in.
New UCI President Brian Cookson is already making some strides with the women’s side of the sport. Let’s hope that the UCI can start to reevaluate its approach to the Asian cycling scene.
i like them first of all because they say ‘screw you american spelling rules!’
and that’d be reason enough.
but i do like the 720 Armour range for several other reasons, which i may go into another time at more length, but here they are condensed:
1. price point
3. RX quality is the best i’ve tried, zero complaints on quality for the near-blind, and zero distortion in lens at edges.
but i really fell in love with my 720 Armour ‘Peak’ sunglasses 2 weeks ago when they didn’t take my out of its socket.
speeding down a very familiar hill that i am on at least once a week, i was actually going slower than usual when my front wheel slipped out from under me. the result was road rash on both the front and each side of my body, which was obviously awesome, but also a bad abrasion under my left eye.
i didn’t even know it was there until one of my riding companions pointed out that there was blood on my face, which, despite there being far more blood seeping out of me from other parts of my body, obviously became my main cause of concern.
‘not the face! NOT THE FACE!’
anyway, i ended up with a small cut where the lens dug into my cheek but, despite the glass being scratched i could thank my lucky stars that 720′s shatterproof glass did not shatter. losing an eye to shards of lens is not on my agenda right now, nor will it be, so i’ll be sticking with 720 from now on!