21 April 2012

BMC solid through 2016

Great news today - ProTeam BMC plans to keep on keeping on
This is a happy day, BMC is one of my favorite teams, today their primary sponsor BMC Swiss Cycling Technology announced they will continue title sponsorship through 2016 . BMC racing team compiled an amazing roster of riders for 2012, continued sponsorship increases the chance of retaining these riders for the coming years. There must be great peace of mind when a rider and a team believes the rider is racing for points that will remain with the team from this year to the next. There is also great peace in consistency from the viewpoint of a fan. (Read: BMC Racing Team to continue through 2016 By VeloNation)
Speaking of viewpoints or rather views - this was my view (images below) on a morning in Belgium three weeks ago as I watched the BMC team prepare for a morning ride. The next day they would race the Tour of Flanders. As you can see they were very relaxed and all smiles.
Time to share some photography of team BMC, but first a story:
If you have followed my blog you might remember that my inspiration to begin this ever-evolving cycling quest of mine occurred as a fan when I saw George Hincapie at the 2001 Tour de France. I was happy to see George again on a cool morning in Kortrijk. I was also thrilled to meet his brother Rich, and his very charming father Ricardo, along with their group of friends by chance that same evening, at the Ibis hotel in Kortrijk. I get sort of gutsy when traveling alone, realizing I get out of each day what I put into it. So when I noticed Rich Hincapie sitting among a loudly laughing group of Americans enjoying some beers, I walked up and introduced myself.
"Hi are you Rich Hincapie? I have some friends from Colorado, Brian, Rich and Dash, who wanted me to say hi." And that is sort of how I halfway made a fool of myself and yet made a new connection in life. Cycling is a tiny world, Dash had written to me earlier in the day and said, "Walk around Kortrijk, find Rich Hincapie, and say hi." Of course I didn't think that would actually happen, but I've learned to never write-off possibilities. 
I sat down briefly to chat with Rich, Ricardo, and their 5 friends from Wisconsin and California. They were enthusiastically looking forward to their next day at the Tour of Flanders. Ricardo would be riding along with team BMC in one of the team cars, Rich would be driving the 5 newcomers to Belgium. How lucky were they to have Rich Hincapie, whose brother was about to ride his 17th Ronde van Vlaanderen, as their guide? Rich also spoke fondly of our local Colorado Ride the Rockies event ride. Hincapie sports manufactures the jerseys for the event, Bill Davis a local rep with Mavic and Hincapie has made arrangements for Rich to ride a few days at the event for the past several years. Rich said he enjoys it so much, it is an event he plans to attend for many years into the future. 

To read more about BMC and their bikes please visit an earlier Pedal Dancer post: BMC bikes. To learn more about Hincapie cycling apparel please read: Jerseys of the 2012 Tour of California (Hincapie also manufacture the classifications jerseys for the Amgen Tour of California).
BMC Rider portraits: the day before the big race
All photos by ©PedalDancer.com™,  please click any image to enlarge 
George Hincapie (USA)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
George Hincapie  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
George Hincapie  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
George Hincapie  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Thor Hushovd (NOR)   Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Thor Hushovd  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Thor Hushovd  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Thor  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Philippe Gilbert (BEL)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Philippe Gilbert  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Philippe Gilbert  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Philippe  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Phillipe and Thor  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Phillipe  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Greg Van Avermaet (BEL)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Manuel Quinziato (ITA)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Manuel  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Manuel Quinziato  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Alessandro and Thor  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Alessandro Ballan (ITA)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Alessandro Ballan  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Marcus Berghardt (GER)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Jim Ochowicz (General Manager)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Jim Ochowicz (USA)  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Ochowicz and Gilbert  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™

Hincapie and Ballan  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Gilbert chatting with a BMC mechanic and his son   Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
Thor and the riders roll out  Photo ©PedalDancer.com™
BMC Team preparation: I greatly enjoyed watching the mechanics and soigneurs prepare for the team ride on that peaceful morning in Belgium. When I arrived at their hotel I introduced myself to the mechanics and soigneurs and asked if I could take some photos,  I was giddy happy at how fortunate I was to spend the quiet time watching and observing with just a few others. The staff were kind and cheery while working hard (and meticulously).  Read about the BMC racing team staff on the team website
BMC SLR 01 team bike 2012
If anyone knows who these men are below please tell me, they were having a great time interviewing and laughing.
Below is Georges Lüchinger Chief Communications Officer for  team BMC. He was very professional and allowed me to take these photos and watch the staff prepare before the riders arrived. Thank you!
Georges Lüchinger
Related Pedal Dancer Posts: 
A day on the Kwaremont  (my day at the Tour of Flanders)
BMC bikes  
and many more on George Hincapie

Any suggestions on a caption for this shot of Manny Quinziato? Although I can tell you I have a few ideas of my own. Manuel is another one of my favorite riders. You can add him to my favorites list of Bernhard Eisel, Oscar Freire, George Hincapie, Ted King, Ivan Basso, Thor Hushovd, Laurens ten Dam, and Jens Voigt.