A Note from Fatty: The good folks at the Leadville Trail 100 have asked me to spread the word that if you’re following them on Facebook, the best page to connect up with them is here. And, just out of curiosity, I’m wondering: how many Fat Cyclist readers have sent in applications? And should we organize a meetup in Leadville this year? Cuz I kinda think we should.
Back in December, I did a contest where we raised money to help Andreas Knickman in his fight against bone cancer. The prize on offer was incredible: an entry in one of the tours Andy Hampsten is organizing in France and Italy this year.
We raised a ton of money, and helped Andreas out, both financially and with an incredible show of moral support to him and his family.
And then I never announced who the winner is.
Sure, I had my reasons. Which I will explain shortly. But first, I’d like to gloat just a little bit.
The thing is, we didn’t go to a restaurant. Nope.
Instead, Andy and his wife Elaine cooked. A delicious Italian meal. And they gave us a really incredible gift: a five-liter tin of olive oil from their Extra Virgin Olive Oil Co.
And then we talked about biking. And food. And more biking.
And I, being who I am, just would not shut up.
Yes, that’s right: I’m sitting across the table from ANDY FREAKING HAMPSTEN and I’m monopolizing the conversation, talking about riding the Kokopelli Trail and riding the Leadville 100, and riding the trail network in American Fork Canyon.
All good rides, sure, but you’d think that maybe — just this once, seeing as how I was sitting across the table from the only American to ever win the Giro d’Italia — I’d have asked him about his stories.
Nope. I went on and on. Because I was having a hard time grasping the fact that I was in the presence of a couple of cycling legends and I was about to swoon.
And cuz I’m a dope.
However, in one moment of lucidity, I did produce some Fat Cyclist-related merchandise for Andy, and even got him to put on one particular item:
I’m pretty sure that Andy is — with the exception of Dr. Lammler, of course — the only person who has ever worn this t-shirt who knows the exact extent to which this statement is true.
Meet the Winner
So now I’d like you to meet the winner of the trip for the bike tour with Andy: Laura, from the San Francisco Bay area:
Here’s what Laura had to say about winning:
I’m 40 yrs old, an orthopaedic surgeon, and I’m from the San Francisco Bay Area. Been riding bikes forever (never been fast but I keep trucking).
My husband and I have been doing self-guided bike trips with friends the last couple years. Last year, we rented a villa between Radda in Chianti and Castellina, and rode out and backs each day for a week.
I’ve been following Fatty’s blog for quite some time since I have a very prominent family history of breast cancer; his stories of Susan hit close to home. When I saw he had a fund raiser on for a kid with osteosarcoma, I had to donate. Really didn’t think I’d win!
OK, so now the reason I haven’t mentioned the winner of the Andreas Knickman contest until now. It’s because The Runner and I have been trying to figure out whether it’s possible for us to join that winner on the tour she selected.
Well, we’ve figured out the timing, my Mom has agreed to watch the kids, we’ve pulled together the money, and we are doing it.
So, we’ll be joining Laura for the Alps & Gorges trip in France August 27 – September 4.
Oh, and there’s a good chance Chuck will join us, too.
So yeah: we’ll be riding L’Halpe d’Huez with ANDY FREAKING HAMPSTEN this Summer.
Or at least, in the same general vicinity.
So, Why Don’t You Come Join Us?
Last night, I asked Andy if that tour’s full yet. It’s not. In fact, there are 10 slots still open. So, if you’ve got the time and money and think it might be fun to come ride with ANDY FREAKING HAMPSTEN and Chuck Ibis and Laura and her husband (sorry guys) and The Runner and me, well, I can’t imagine a more awesome thing in the world than having Team Fatty totally own this tour.
(Full Disclosure: I’m saying this ‘cuz I want to. I have no financial interest whatsoever in this or any other Cinghiale tour).
There’ll be tough rides — amazingly tough, actually — but I can vouch for the people. Seriously, this is going to be about the dreamiest dream vacation ever.
And Andy’s a darn good cook.