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velo club d'ardbeg

rest and be thankful at ardbeg ardbeg

after much hassling of the poor folks at ardbeg distillery, and the even more unfortunates in glenmorangie's marketing department, a limited run of ardbeg single malt cycle jerseys appeared in the old kiln cafe at ardbeg. as the directeur sportif and i had said all along, these sold out fairly quickly and have continually been replenished with new stock. they are also available from www.thecyclejersey.com

there's also a winter jacket available (see below) meaning we can wear club colours all year round.

colnago at old kiln

purchase of an ardbeg jersey automatically qualifies you for membership of velo club d'ardbeg, and thewashingmachinepost welcomes you to send photos of yourselves wearing the jersey and preferably with the bike(s) in the picture too.




if you've arrived here from a search link, click here to access thewashingmachinepost in all its glory. you can still gain access to this page from the navigation on the left.

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andy moran

unicycle

andy cycled this 36" wheeled unicycle from bowmore to ardbeg (13 miles) on the tuesday of his october 2015 visit to islay and folowed that up with a ride from bowmore to bruichladdich (9 miles) the following day. mrs moran provides moral support from the relative stability of two wheels.

the plan, as i understand it, is to return for a few more rides on one wheel.















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janet mcmordie

janet mcmordie

janet mcmordie and her boyfriend hail from Canada having just returned from a fantastic trip to Scotland where they, using the 'cycling on islay' portion of thewashingmachinepost as a guide, cycled around Islay for part of it. according to janet, "It was the best part of our trip!"

janet mcmordie

their trip to islay was delayed a day with all sailings on their day of arrival cancelled due to the weather. they hunkered down in tarbert for the evening, setting off on the first ferry the following morning as foot passengers, there being no space for their car on subsequent sailings.

staying in bowmore they cycled to Bruichladdich and beyond on the first day, finding out about the island's infamous headwinds "A humbling experience." The following day they cycled to Port Ellen visiting all three southern distilleries and venturing as far as the kildaton cross.

the most important part of their trip was a visit to 'mecca'; ardbeg distillery! Both are big whisky drinkers and had a wonderful tour of ardbeg followed by a tough, windy cycle back to bowmore. "I believe we only made it back due the power of our new Ardbeg cycle jerseys purchased at the Old Kiln Cafe!"

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john leggett

john leggett

john leggett though we might all be interested in this photograph taken at the end of the two day bp ms150 houston to austin 2014 ride in aid of multiple sclerosis. the hand to mouth image shows john partaking of an Ardbeg dram from the hip flask which he carried on the last day.

john says the jersey attracted a lot of attention and positive comments from other riders. At one rest stop he was approached by a guy who said he ran a bar and had bought in some bottles of Ardbeg to sell. he tried it and then kept it for himself saying it was too good to sell!

john rewarded him with a wee dram and then had one himself.

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the velo club's new colours

ardbeg jersey 2014

despite the large, blue helvetica lettering plastered across a warehouse not a thousand miles from the velo club's favoured coffee hostelry, most single malt whisky distilleries are not in the least bit progressive. in fact, the anonymous one to which i refer makes great play of using no computers in the process of turning water, yeast and barley into an amber nectar that has the ability to have you forget not only your own name, but where you were when you last remembered it. progressive rather goes against the grain (if you'll pardon the pun), undoing all that sterling work by fevered marketing departments to convince us of the ageing process in oak casks stacked close to the atlantic swell. not a single factor that would link the art of whisky-making with yes, genesis or pink floyd.

ardbeg jersey 2014

match that with the almost obligatory ten years old, twelve years old, seventeen and eighteen. granted, there's the occasional oddity that may have been lurking at the back of an all but forgotten warehouse, a matured malt that promises to adopt the meaning of the word lucrative. i have, in the course of my perambulations, visited each and every distillery on the island on several occasions, though never for the purposes of consumption (though i did have a panini at ardbeg's old kiln cafe once). and on all those visits, the one word that has never sprung to mind is the word progressive. but then, 'twas not me that made mention in the first place.

first, a bit of history. many years ago, a group of employees at glenmorangie's livingston bottling hall (glenmorangie are the owners of ardbeg distillery and are themselves owned by moet hennessy) appeared on islay to run the annual half-marathon, dressed in ardbeg corporate colours in the shape of rather fine looking cycle jerseys. not unnaturally, i made further enquiries and it transpired that they had had around a dozen made when participating in a twenty-four hour mountain bike race.

ardbeg jersey 2014

so i made overtures to the brand manager at glenmorangie, pointing out what a rather spiffing idea it would be if the corporate might (and marketing budget) were placed squarely behind producing more of the same, offered commercially to the great unwashed. to cut a long story short, after many apparently deliberate sidetracking attempts, but never a definite "no", the nice gentleman capitulated, saying "we're only going to have 40 made, and truthfully just to keep you quiet." produced by brian gibb at thecyclejersey.com, they currently sell upwards of 300 per year from the old kiln cafe at the distillery and probably just as many direct from thecyclejersey's website. in other words, it has become a commercial success, one for which i have been at least partially credited.

but a good thing can only last for so long. many are the velocipedinists who visit the island already dressed in ardbeg colours and many are those who leave after a short or long visit similarly clad. but cyclists are never satisfied with stasis, and after a lengthy run in its ageing format, the ardbeg cycle jersey has been given a contemporary makeover, already available from the distillery as you happen by this coming summer, or allegedly also available from thecyclejersey.com website.

ardbeg jersey 2014

its polyester functionality is a tad less figure hugging than some of the garb inhabiting the professional genre, but then its fan base is somewhat less specialised than a tour de france peloton, apparently being frequently found clothing those mountain biking chaps and chapesses. perhaps the most obvious nod in this direction is the lack of bicep grasping sleeves with silicon gloop on their inner regions. i have high hopes of persuading mr gibb that a matching set of armwarmers emblazoned with the ardbeg name would be a most palatable and synchronous notion, but i'll let you know how that pans out.

the jersey is available from the link at the end of this article, resulting in the newest edition being posted out in return for your £42.95, failing that, what better excuse to pay a short or long visit to the ancestral home at ardbeg?

you can thank me later.

thecyclejersey.com

tuesday 17 june 2014

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geoff armstrong

geoff armstrong

geoff lives in sunderland, a city domicile that he'd happily swap for the wide open spaces of islay. he joined me for a wednesday morning ride from bridgend, round loch gorm to the atlantic coast, and naturally enough onto debbie's for a post ride coffee. having cycled from keills to meet me, he remarked how wonderful it was to have met only five cars on the seven mile stretch of road. i figured that was quite busy.

i had obviously not marked my card on that first ride, because geoff joined the rest of velo club d'ardbeg for the sunday morning ride, having paid a visit to club headquarters in the intervening days. with more holidays to take, he intends to return sooner rather than later.

geoff was riding a focus mares cyclocross bike equipped with ultegra di2.

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carsten wagner

carsten wagner

there's a couple of ways of acquiring an ardbeg jersey; purchase one at the distillery's old kiln cafe visitor centre, or order one direct from brian gibb's thecyclejersey.com. by means of the latter, your eventual first visit to the distillery can be in appropriate dress code.

such will be the case for germany's carsten wagner who hopes to visit islay and ardbeg for the first time in 2015. meanwhile, not only does he have the necessary jersey, but a bicycle painted in a very close approximation of the colour that adorns much of the distillery itself. and those wheels and tyres seem more than appropriate for more than just one or two of the island's roads.

the bicycle is a specialized fatboy, tastefully decorated with appropriate lettering on the front fork legs, though we have certain misgivings over the dimensions of the bottle on the downtube.

roll on 2015.

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rob martin

rob martin, ontario, canada

rob's been on these pages before, regular correspondent that he is. rob's love of italian trinketry has, however, been briefly usurped by the specialized bicycle on which he rode the td, norfolk, ontario ride this past july. however, though the beloved derosa may have been retired due to its ill-health, it seems that superb customer service will see him back aboard italiana by september of this year.

like most of us, he has found the ideal excuse to get round "she who issues derosa progress payment cheques"; a late 60th birthday present. islay's roads await.

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john hepburn

john hepburn

135km cycling across large stretches of italy's strade bianche is a principal part of the ennual l'eroica sportive, a route theat forms a part of the race course over which the professionals ride in the eraly part of the season. john hepburn, despite failure of his bicycle's gearchanger completed the distance in (and i quote) m.m.mumble hours. still a commendable achievement. the ride features retro bicycles rather than the carbon fibre of the modern day peloton, and does have to be said that the iconic ardbeg jersey has little trouble fitting in with the designs of yesteryear.

timeless is probably a good description

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sam drake

sam drake

not that either the velo club or the distillery would condone under-age drinking, but we both cheerfully support someone classed as under-age in this respect, riding in club colours, particularly somewhere as auspicious as manchester velodrome. actually, twelve year-old sam drake, from cumbria in north west england, is a member of lakeland sprinters, so i daresay that makes us his second club, a situation for which we are pleased to cater.

plans are already being made for sam to join with us for the sunday ride from debbi's later this month. the phrase trailing in his wake has already been mentioned. thanks to dad. john drake for the photo.

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the finishing touch

niall taylor

in the fashion of team spirit, niall taylor sent me the accompanying photo which sports not only the fine club jerseys, but just a dram or two of the sponsor's product. "we have just completed the london to cambridge ride (58 miles), and the photograph shows us recovering with a fine islay dram (Ardbeg's Araidh nam Beist). l to r, we are: james bowen, tom read, adam wagner and me, nial taylor. The bikes are a saracen, a specialized, a rustic raleigh (not in view), and a jazzy peugeot. i believe that what our bikes lack in fashion status we make up for in jersey choice."

no argument there.

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steve rooney

steve rooney + dave gorman

we have two watering holes on islay: one is, of course, club headquarters at the old kiln cafe, and the other is debbie's cafe in bruichladdich. it was at this latter establishment that we met up with steve rooney on his pilgrimage to the island, and as you can see from the photograph, y wearing that jersey, he is a non-resident member of velo club d'ardbeg. the gentleman standing beside him is comedian dave gorman taken during his stand up tour of the uk, large chunks of which he completed by bicycle.

steve tried to persuade him to ride the 2010 ride of the falling rain, so we'll see next august if he turns up.

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fiona andrew

fiona andrew

will andrew from new york city popped down to outer banks in north carolina for the annual family vacation, complete with fixed gear bike. in a moment of disorganisation with which we can doubtless all identify, will has misplaced his own pictures, so sent this photo of daughter fiona training as she prepares to challenge for the status of nicole cooke and vicky pendleton.

it's the jersey wot does it.






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david seaman - corsica

david seaman

previously featured several thousand pixels below, david seaman was in corsica this year apparently uncharacteristically flying instead of driving to his destination. this necessitated bike hire and featured a few climbs and trips out in the heat. the bocca as it is known locally, is a classic hairpin ascent with the consequence that hands ache from so much braking on the way down. david left at 6am to miss the worst of the heat, and on his downhill spin, passed all the other grimpeurs on their way up!







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nick hunter - top ardbeg racing cyclist

nick hunter

this is nick hunter cutting a dash in the ardbeg jersey while romping to victory in the under-14s support race at the scottish crit champs at erskine, june 28th. nick is a member of the edinburgh racers cycling club, but his club jersey is two sizes too small for him and the stock of club clothing is exhausted, so he chooses to race in the all-black of ardbeg instead. this probably contravenes every scottish cycling union ruling going, but so far nobody has pulled him up about it. they're all too busy admiring his outfit!

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an entire peloton

peter slater group

we may have just had the islay whisky festival for 2009, but it was, nonetheless, a pleasant surprise to receive this photo (amongst others) fropm peter slater displaying a peloton of ardbeg jerseys leaning against the casks that seem always to be at the back of the old kiln cafe. the pic was taken at ardbeg's open day on 31st may 2008: those present are l-r. helen cocks, jim beattie, liz brown, peter slater, and graeme young.

as is often the case with visitors to the island, and by implication, ardbeg distillery, they visited again this year (3rd visit by bike), and having met with jez hastings, were persuaded to send in a phalanx of photos of which this was my choice.

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philippe brindley

philippe brindley

philippe is an english teacher in normandy, france, though born in paisley, scotland who has taken up cycliing again after a ten year break. in his racing years he used to train pre-season with some of the pro cyclists of the day, such as marc madiot, thierry marie (mr prologue) and thierry gouvenou, though as any right thinking scot would admit, the ideal would have been to go riding with robert millar who was in the 'z' team of the day.

he discovered the existence of the ardbeg jersey when scouring the web for info on millar and sensibly ordered one to wear on rides around his area of france. the photo was taken near the famous bridge pont de normandie during a 115km outing around the estuaire de la seine. the bicycle is a kuota kebel full carbon, a treat purchased on his return to the world of cycling: "a nice kit helps motivate". training at present is to get in shape for the 209km paris-honfleur in september.

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jaap bos

jaap bos

seen here on a bike friday, jaap bos travelling across the pyrenees from girona in spain to toulouse in france, then back again. guess which jersey?

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patrick mcgownd

patrick mcgownd

we all have a hard time now and again, with rain, wind, frost and other emanations of inclement weather. but if you live in anchorage, alaska, as does patrick, actually getting about by bike at all must be considered above and beyond the call of duty. photo shows patrick with his wife's christmas prsent, a surly pugsley which he'd taken out or its christmas day ride. the large pink sleeping bags on his hands are apparently known as poagies - an alaskan delicacy.

patrick told us his ride was interrupted on a few occasions to let cross country skiers have a shot of fat-tire riding in the snow. patrick will be joining us for the ride of the falling rain in 2010, and this documents the start of his training for same.

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Frank de Neling

frank de neling

Frank and his wife spent three weeks this past summer cycling and camping around scotland, and as whisky fans, such cycling endeavours inevitably led to islay. based in the city of bowmore, they had several days luxury of pedalling around the hallowed isle sans luggage.

as we have often found from most of the island's cycling visitors, you really cannot stay for any length of time without visiting the old kiln cafe at ardbeg from where frank purchased the team jersey seen above. the bicycle is a specialized allez sport, and frank (looking remarkably fresh) has just completed a 110km cycling tour finishing in the amsterdam olympic stadium.

we're keeping an empty space in the sunday morning peloton for his next visit.

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eleanor and adam leadbetter

ealeanor and adam leadbetter

strangely enough, it's not that often we get to meet the folks who send photos for this members' page, but in this case, we've been out riding with adam and eleanor, who were on islay for a couple of weeks in september 2008. adam's on a trek cyclocross machine , while eleanor rides a bianchi cross machine. having purchased their jerseys directly from ardbeg distillery, it seemed the ideal opportunity for a photo at the munch stop at saligo bay during the sunday ride

the two are from warrington in england, and would quite happily relocate to islay if circumstances allowed. we'd happily have them in the peloton anytime.

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ardbeg away strip

ardbeg away strip

i am not now, nor ever have been, a follower of the fortunes of football (soccer), but it is well nigh impossible to avoid knowing that almost every team has what i believe is referred to as an away strip, worn at games away from their home ground, and at which the regular team jersey might clash with the team against which they are playing. we have experienced similar in the world of professional cycling: in order not to clash with the leader's yellow jersey, both the once team, and pantani's mercatone uno team changed their normal yellow strips to pink.

i'm unsure as to how any of the above affects the velo club d'ardbeg peloton, whether choosing to cycle to our club headquarters at the old kiln cafe, or taking part in one of the many sportives around the world. it is unlikely that the distinctive jersey that has seen us through many a year, would be likely to be confused with that worn by rivals either in the spedding sprint, or in the race for a decent table and an espresso.

however, a guy (or girl) can never have too many cycle jerseys, and that extends as far as variations on a theme, so it gives me great pleasure on behalf of the resident faculty of velo club d'ardbeg, to unveil the away strip now available. some of you may just have seen, or worn, something remarkably similar to this new version (i have an earlier one myself), but most of these have been prototypes on the path to this official release.

this jersey is currently available from ardbeg distillery, and should also be available from thecyclejersey.com (though it's not at present showing on their website). price, i believe, is £38 ($65).

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posted saturday 11th october 2008

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tom smith

tom smith etape 2008

you may recognise this man from further down the page. or, at least, he was further down the page. but having opted for the team jersey to participate in this year's etape de tour (under the gilet), he has kept the faith and sent in another photo. those of you who own an ardbeg jersey and haven't sent in a photo will hopefully feel ashamed of yourselves.

long time reader of the post, tom smith, originally sent these two pics from the united arab emirates a good few years back. he earns extra brownie points because he's on a colnago (and it's fitted with campag:-) photos show tom riding on the hatta to kalba road in the united arab emirates, crossing the hajjar mountains through the wadi hilo pass and descending towards the gulf of oman. weather looks just like islay (not).

tom smith














...and with an unnamed colleague not wearing an ardbeg jersey

tom smith



























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warren van hutten

warren van hutten

if we could ever get everyone together on one road at the same time, we'd have the largest cycle club in the world. latest member of the ardbeg peloton is warren van hutten wearing both jersey and socks, along with a rather natty looking pinarello.

the photos was taken just prior to his participation in the covington century taking place in loganville, georgia, in heat that matched the distance - something the is unlikely to be a feature of the ride of the falling rain anytime soon.

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winter jacket

ardbeg winter jacket

recently arrived from thecyclejersey.com, the ardbeg winter jacket, and i took the opportunity to nip out on the company colnago between showers to see how it feels.

brian at thecyclejersey.com stated that the jacket should be washed at forty degrees before wearing to activate the stretch in the polyester outer fabric. this has turned out to be perfectly true, since the jacket felt a bit tight across the back initially, but after a couple of long rides, the stretch has eased and it feels more than comfortable.

the wind chill during my first brief exploratory tootle was at -2 degrees and the wind speed had dropped to around 35mph (i'm not kidding - the morning ferry didn't sail), but despite only wearing a rapha merino base layer underneath, cosiness was all mine. since the outer fabric appears to be particuarly resilient in the face of wind (it's windproof and surprisingly waterproof) and the inner is fleece lined, this is indeed a 'good thing' anywhere north and west of watford. in fact my only quibble with the jacket's fitting is that the collar could be a tad closer, since there is a gap at the back of the neck when on the bike (we have reported this to thecyclejersey and they are making the necessary alterations to production garments). mind you, i can't say it had any major effect on the insulation.

the jacket is now on sale from thecyclejersey.com price £58 which is an absolute steal. order immediately and then send us a pic with bike (which is really what we should do ourselves).

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ethan smith

ethan smith

in velo club d'ardbeg, we're always keen to encourage the younger cyclists to join, thus ensuring a long lineage. jez's kids come out with us now and again, and tom hunter's son has been known to join the peloton at the ride of the falling rain. however, strength and depth don't just come from training and cycling, it can be quite important to ensure some sort of sporting prowess by looking at the potential recruit's genes.

we are nothing if not astute at committee level in vc d'a so we have placed first dibs on ethan smith, son of twice british road champion and former motorola professional, brian smith. the mighty dave t, jez and myself are currently working our merino socks off to develop into ethan's lead out train, while the mighty dave works out a training regime suitable for a five month old sprinter.

now we just have to sort out what colour of colnago he should have.

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lindsay mulholland

lindsay mulholland

photographed i know not exactly where, but probably in canada, lindsay mulholland with his ardbeg jersey purchased at the old kiln cafe itself, seen here astride his trek 5900 sl carbon. lindsay and his wife nina visited islay at the end of june, and had a great time, if the subsequent e-mail was anything to go by

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mark bown

mark bown

mark's ensconced on the sunshine coast, queensland australia and sent a couple of photos. normally one would be sufficient, but since the man is partaking in a time trial and a race, i think it only fair that we accentuate the competitive prowess that is the spirit of ardbeg (i knew i should have taken up copywriting). notice that, not only is mark wearing the team jersey, but the socks too. caps are in the (long) pipeline.



mark bown

time trial bike is a giant, and road race bike a pinarello. our sponsors would be proud.














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peter allen

peter allen

peter (based in glasgow), joined us on islay during the early days of april, and it should be easy enough to tell that summer hadn't yet made it round the corner. so while many avail themselves of ardbeg jerseys, peter had the good sense to acquire a winter jacket.

perhaps difficult to tell from the photo, he was riding an isaac full carbon, but is a fully paid-up member of societa colnago, having one of ernesto's cristallo bicycles at home awaiting summer days.












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feets don't fail me now

ardbeg socks

in the never ending quest to add more apparel to the velo club d'ardbeg wardrobe, the next body part to receive the 'established 1815' logo (vcd'a was formed at quarter past six in the evening) is the part that connects to the pedals - the feet.

these rather spiffing socks are made by 'save our soles' in colorado from coolmax, nylon and lycra and fit like a glove (if you see what i mean). availability is only through the old kiln at ardbeg at the moment, though they will be available online at thecyclejersey.com at a cost of £8.50.

excellent timing though, since they'll match the super tanned legs of the velo club d'ardbeg peloton (either that or they're dirty and weather beaten).

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posted saturday 23 june 2007

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jeff winstanley

jeff winstanley

a certain soft drink has advertised for years that drinking it gives you wings, but obviously a dram of the sponsor's product does even more than that - jeff's pic is ample evidence. taken in not terribly sunny blackpool, jeff is holding up the world's largest mirror ball without even breaking sweat.

the bicycle is a rather aggressive looking trek hardtail, so it must be bumpier on the pleasure beach than we'd all been led to believe.

the new stuff we learn day after day.









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bryan milne

bryan milne

only similarity here is in the first name, and even that's spelt differently. taken at key biscayne, miami whilst over to take part in ironman florida (a bit like the islay tryathlon only much, much harder) - the bike is an argon 18 with ultegra groupset and profile carbon bars (obviously it is too good for the quality of rider), the cyclist is still an undertrained and unfit old guy from edinburgh (he wrote this, not me). he did however go on to complete the ironman. the flags in the background indicate (yellow) medium swimming hazard and (purple) dangerous marine wildlife - also a "stars and stripes" so that the illegal immigrants swimming ashore know which country they have arrived in.

on this occasion he did find a supply of ardbeg in panama city beach - very generous measures for $4 a time and several decent malts in new orleans. gentleman jack was also a surprisingly nice tipple.

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michael cant

michael cant

obviously the name is a misnomer because apparently michael can. the photo was taken at the summit of pla d'adet during the rest day of the 2007 tour de france. michael figures that it was 'the jersey wot did it' despite being left on the climb by somebody called gary from perth who had better gravity defying abilities than michael. at least another scot.

the bicycle is commendably a bianchi, aided on the way down from the top of pla d'adet by generous helpings of beer and pizza. next year's photo is promised from alpe d'huez.

i've left the date stamp on the photo for authenticity.

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tony morley - it's a fix

tony morley

tony turned up on islay for the gran fondo 2007 on an il pompino, fixed wheel bike with a carradice saddle bag, and we really couldn't believe he was serious. granted, islay is relatively flat, but it's not that flat. and tony also stood out by wearing the ardbeg away strip, very few of which were made, and only a very few of us possess one.

you may have gathered that the photo was not taken during the gran fondo, since we were all hidden by waterproofs, and there certainly wasn't any sun to lighten up pictures such as this. not having learned anything at all, tony figures he'll be back next year, again with only one gear.

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made us all feel like wimps.

photo: karin farrent.

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ardbeg at fire mountain lanzarote

fire mountain lanzarote

taken at fire mountain (timanfaya), lanzarote while on a training holiday, bryan milne replete in favoured team jersey.

the bike is a bog standard giant scr2, the cyclist is a vastly undertrained and unfit old guy from edinburgh (his words, not ours). apart from the wind and heat, the worst thing about lanzarote was a distinct lack of decent malt.

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keeping the loophole open

robin thomas

this is sort of cheating, because the idea was originally to send in pics wearing the velo club jersey with bicycle, in either far flung places of abode or exclusive far flung areas to which sweat and toil had been expended in reaching (sorry, bit convoluted). photographs while on holiday in sunny climes shoudn't really count, but are probably entirely in keeping with the philosophy behind velo club d'ardbeg (well, if we actually had a philosophy in the first place).

the photo here is of robin thomas complete with schwinn road bike in the shiny island of majorca. nice work if you can get it.

still, he does have two water bottles

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dean cook, washington, usa

dean cook

a member from across the pond in kirkland, washington usa, across lake washington from seattle (all this helps you know, geography is not my strong point). dean is not only now a member of velo club d'ardbeg, but also an ardbeg committee member.

the bicycle (mmmmmm) is a serotta legend st with a triple chainset which, although we know that dave t, velo club directeur sportif has no truck with, he is a pensioner you know. if you need three rings, you need three rings - there's nothing in the articles of membership preventing it.

and washington has hills.





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sara eastwood

sara eastwood, formerly of nottingham sent us the following in april 2007. 'the move to brisbane is now complete and after spending three months shipping round the world, both our bikes arrived safely, just in time for the worst of the heat - something you rarely have to contend with on Islay. In the middle of summer, unless you are finished riding by 9am you may as well forget it, as the heat rapidly saps your energy and drains your camelback. Now it has cooled down a bit, we can go exploring this beautiful part of the world wthout fear of drying out to resemble prunes in 30 minutes. This picture was taken at Boondall Wetlands.'

we think sara may be our farthest flung member, so if you own a jersey and think you might be farther away, send us a pic.

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we are not worthy

the alps

ok, not a chance we can beat this one, and shows just how far, in a vertical direction this most stylish of jerseys has travelled. the chap on the left with the beard is arthur grosvenor, in the middle is david neave and third in line is andrew patullo (very cool name for a cyclist). in case you haven't guessed, they're in the alps, but since the intrepid threetake their jerseys to other exotic locations, we're hoping for an infrequent travelogue of sorts.

kudos gents.

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last of the summer freewheels

last of the summer freewheels

...and last of the summer jokes. just something mentioned on the sunday morning bike ride, aided by a little bit of photoshop. if only debbie's had tables like this (it has now).









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gran fondo 2006

close, but no cigar and somewhat later than expected, the motley crew assembled for the gran fondo. and it will come as no surprise that we all struggled to keep up with the little guy

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directeur sportif dave thomas

velo club d'ardbeg founder member and directeur sportif, 'dave t'. dave's a pensioner, but that's a secret and he never tells anyone.



















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brian

since i am usually travelling so fast that identification is hard for the casual spectator (who exactly are we kidding here?), here at long last is a photo of me standing still in an ardbeg jersey at bruichladdich distillery. fun.

















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jez on the alpe

don't think any of us can match this one.

jeremy hastings of islay birding went to the tour de france in july 2006 and took the colnago with him. selflessly wearing the club jersey and grimacing through the pain and effort, he singlehandedly (along with several thousand others) climbed almost to the top of alpe d'huez to remain within the time limit.

and no, there has been no photoshopping done to this image - jez really does look like that.









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martin scott

martin scott having been out for an 80km ride with the aix-en-provence cycle club through beautiful provencal villages by the mtge ste victoire that cezanne painted so often (centenary of his death this year). sent us this photo in front of the ste victoire: pierre garin, president of the club (centre in the photo) will give a warm welcome to any member of the velo club d'ardbeg - either for a ride or to try the excellent local wine.

they're all looking forward to trying a nip of ardbeg, so martin's taking a hipflask on the next ride (it's hard to find in provence). hope you've all noticed the colnago in the foreground and are beginning to see a pattern forming here:-)

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lennart magnussen

major kudos to lennart magnussen of norway. lennart joined us on islay for the vca sunday ride when over for a distillery visit. not only did he send us a pic wearing the team strip, but he is also holding the jersey presented to all those who completed the 'gran fondo norvege. we'll let him tell it like it was.

"Sporting my beloved Ardbeg-jersey I set off from Kristiansand in the morning at 0850. My peloton was aiming for a total time of 7 hours to the finish 216 km away and 800 meters above the start.

Nice weather, dead calm air and a comfortable 12 deg C, made the first 100 K very enjoyable. Sadly I noticed too late I was burning more fuel than I imagined, and I had to let the peloton go about half way (110 k), calm down a bit and recover from too little food and drink. I got my strength back just in time for the heavier climbs at the last part of the race.

After the worst uphills I had about 30 k in relatively flat terrain to the finish. Sounds easy, but by this time temperature had dropped to 2 deg C and it had rained for an hour already. 1 k from the finish line I understood that I had used my left gear-shifter "upwards" for the last time that day - my left hand had absolutely no power left...was barely able to click down for the last hill up to the finish line.

But I made it! In 8h 15min.

I'm sorry I don't have any pictures, but I was (like almost everybody) so close to hypothermia I couldn't think of anything but to drop the bike and hit the showers ASAP! A lot of pictures were taken by kengurufoto I can (barely) be seen on one of the pictures of the peloton entering the first food-station. (silver grey helmet) Sadly the jersey isn't showing, I suspect the photographer is a non-drinker, bluecross-member or worse.

So, what can I say? It was one of these strange things: Horrid torture! -but still sort of fun to have done!

When the local tv-stations tried to do interviews with the few first riders to cross the line, they soon realized that no interview was possible for at least half an hour: All the riders were shaking so badly none could utter a sensible word!

Sounds great, doesn't it?

ardbeg

Details of/from the race can be found here and here

Results: (N= "Resultatliste")

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mike smith

mike smith sent me this picture taken between berwick on tweed and kelso in june 2005. excellent location. mike resides in the south of england, but is originally from wales.

bike is a thorn brevet tourer. nice.

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rob martin sent this pic from canada surrounding himself with other notable jerseys.

the bike is a de rosa corum fabricated with deddacciai eom steel fitted with what i take to be a campagnolo carbon record groupset. wheels are apparently gipiemme.

quality bike for a quality malt.

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dave russo sent me this pic of him with ardbeg jersey, kona mountain bike and pink squeaky pig during the islay festival of malt and music 2005. dave lives in boston, massachusetts.

dave russo with kona mtb
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if you're going to send a pic of yourself with ardbeg jersey, send to ardbeg@thewashingmachinepost.net

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