After placing ninth in the Utrechtse Heuvelrug Hill Climb of 1987, The Wattmesiter hung up his racing wheels. The intervening years have seen him follow a conventional route through life (except for the ‘alien abduction’ episode). And now, some 28 years later he has entered a criterium at the Hillingdon racing circuit in two weeks time.
Back in 1987, the peloton had not been introduced to Shimano Pedal Dynamics or Shimano Total Integration; i.e integrated brake and gear levers on road bikes. Back then you had to book a gear change two weeks in advance. How bicycle component technology has advanced in the interim.
What has encouraged The Wattmeister to resurrect his stellar career? We really do not have the space to list his whole palmarés, but KOM jersey in Tour of Wanstead Flats and second place in the Nullabor Sprint (1170 km) were two of his finest achievements.
With the encouragement and enthusiasm of Young Slayer, (who incidentally has reserved twelfth place for the whole season at the Hillingdon events), and the friendly rivalry between fellow veteran members of Muswell Hill Peloton such as Big Mig (who once raced with Greg Lemond), Iron Mike, Pistol Pete and Rapid Ben, it seems a good time to make a comeback.
Hopefully there will be no mishaps like this weekend’s Benington pile-up or the fall in Paris-Nice which has put paid to ‘Tornado’ Tom Boonen’s Classics season.