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Spiderman along with Goose were two of the young guys that joined the Team Absolut rides last year. After trying a few names out on him, Spidey, as he is also known as, stuck. How he got this name is a story worth telling, He was struggling with his saddle bag at the start of a TTT sometime in mid 2001. Those ‘friendly’ absolutes promptly forgot about him and the automatic gates at OM's place closed before he could get out. While most of us would have just sat around and sulked, Spidey did the most practical thing possible at that time. Figuring that he did not want to miss a mid-week workout, he grabbed the bike with one hand, gate with the other, and scaled the 2 metre high obstacle in my slippery bike shoes, then proceeded to chase the Absolutees up the gap. How about that for a story?!

His current job is none. Actually he is still a student, a Professional student as he calls himself, and loving every moment of it.

In keeping with his superhero name, he thinks that the job he would go for would be a door-to-door NASA space satellite salesman, or a Soldier of Fortune (nicer sounding term than contract killer or bounty hunter).

He’s been riding since he was 7. But only started wearing a helmet 3 years ago. So he figures that’s just about the number of years he’s ridden fast enough to worry about messing up his hair in the wind.

With all those years riding and with a bike enthusiast for a father, he’s had a number of trusty steeds over the years. He started out with a Aluminum BMX where he picked up all his bike riding skills from. Then proceed on to a Shimano racing bike which he used to TT round the car park till a badly taken corner prematurely ended its existence as a transport contraption. Moving on to a  "Shit heavy, rocks for wheels" Cinelli cro-moly mountain bike that brought him places, but it was so dang ugly with Colnago-like batik prints he never rode it in mixed-sex group rides. To this day he  swears it was the most uncool thing to be seen with.....ever! Getting rid of that eyesore he got a Quintana Roo Tequilo triathlon specific bike – his first real taste of speed. He even had a disc-wheel fitted on the rear for races. Damn it looked fast standing still, probably faster than if he were to be actually riding on it. The extreme aero position also gave him his first real experience of numb balls. (5) His all-time favorite Bianchi EV2 XL aluminum in classic Bianchi Celest green colours.....oooh... lovely. He would even consider it his dream bike really, with Campy Record parts and Vector Pro wheels. Only problem was that it was sooooo dang stiff and it had virtually zero compliance. That combined with a cushionless Flite saddle and ITM aluminum seat post, he was 'shitting bricks' after every ride.

His current bike is a  Bianchi XL titanium SLO (short for sloping and not slow) “Lovely frame actually, very springy and compliant, as comfortable as any racing geometry road bike can get. Only problem is that its so heavy it makes me feel like a tow-truck. It's a guy thing. We like curves, protrusions, and sexy shaped-tubes, but not the weight that comes with it,” he gushes. So he’s looking for a new ride.

It comes as no surprise that the person that most influenced him to ride is his dad, who used to race back in the 80's. His old bike was always hanging around the house asking to be ridden. After years of ignoring that rusty, dusty and spider-infested bike, Spidey finally relented and took it for a spin in a local triathlon race. His motivation to race? “I was so intrigued by bountiful cleavage on this 'Ang moh' babe each time she rode past I was hooked onto the sport. And it only got better from there as triathlon garb got skimpier and skimpier as the world ran out of lycra.”

His dream Road Bike is anything that the guys in the pro peloton ride. He would love to get his hands on Pantani's Bianchi EV4. In all honesty, he think that Bianchi's race level aluminum bikes are the best production bikes money can buy. My problem, like my mom always says, is that I've got champagne taste and Coca-Cola pockets. He thinks that he’ll probably end up on a made in Taiwan, compact frame to save material, Giant TCR. So what's the point of dreaming?  

And how about this for a dream Mountain Bike. He’s ever been on a trail. So, his dream Mountain Bike would be the bike that any of you guys reading this, is willing to lend to him for an unlimited period of time. He has his eyes set on a Scott though, the same one that he that he saw Ferry Sonic ride on. What kind of a name is Ferry Sonic anyway? Has anyone ever heard of a ferry that is fast? What an oxymoron.

His best advice received on riding is to look around and observe faces when you ride. When all you see is agonized faces, scrunched up in pain, its a signal for you to shoot out to the front and ride as hard as you can. If you executed the attack well, you would have ridden everyone's legs off and taught them what real pain is. It's always rewarding to send the pack into the red zone. Then you just move out of the draft line, turn around to the guy right behind you who is clearly in an oxygen debt, show a poker face, give him a smile, and say, "Your turn." How about that for advice?  

His best advice given on riding, "No matter how tired you are and how much it hurts, put your head down, hold the drops, grit your teeth and ride it out. Do not let go of the draft no-matter what. The attack can only last so long. Once you get spit-out from the back of the pack, there's no way to get back on. It's a long lonely road home." 

His best cycling moment came during a routine training ride at Coastal, the chaps from the national team were also doing their rounds there. The speed was incredible and we've never gone that fast at Coastal before. The speed goats in the front are really hitting the pace. He managed to survive the loop, past the series of hills in the back stretch. Heading back to the Expo, the pace was so fast even the speedies had split into groups of twos and threes. Now he was still a newbie and riding my tri bike, and was clad in some denim design warehouse clearance bike tights, and flapping in the wind pyjama singlet. He rode up all the way to the front, pulled alongside the lead guy, smiled at him, (see advice above) and asked him, "Eh, how many rounds you all riding today?" This national cyclist looked at him with disgust, and uttered, "F&*% lah, just ride lah!!" He promptly got dropped after that, and he was still going at 45 km/h. These guys must have been doing 48 and above...wow!

His worst cycling moment was during the recent Ironman race in Langkawi, he experienced what it felt like to bonk. Now he knows what they mean when they say, "It just hits you, and your legs just feel like lead and you can't go anymore." 135 km into the bike course, he felt the tiredness creeping up his legs and it was affecting him psychologically. His back ached from being in the aero position for so long, his legs just couldn't turn circles anymore, and he was wondering, “45 km more, how on earth am I going to haul my ass to the bike finish to start the bloody marathon run?” He got off the bike, leaned it against a tree and just sat down to contemplate the future..... bloody hell... his breathing wasn't even laboured, his heart rate was still well within the zone, but his legs friggin' died on him. Thoughts of doing well evaporated into mere hopes of completion. Bollocks. He picked up the bike, shifted to a light gear, held onto the tops, and spun easy, stopping to rest after every 10 km. He clocked exactly 90 mins for the last 45 km, averaging 30 km/h, all the way wondering what the heck am he doing this for. He concluded in the transition tent after he got off the bike, “I've got shit for brains that’s why.” Obviously he was getting slightly delirious by then. The many hours under the blistering sun took its toll (but maybe his one moment of clarity)

His best bike related purchase, hmm, loads to mention here, but the two things that he would not do without in a road bike are first, a Campy Record grouppo, and second, a Rolf Vector Pro wheelset. Simply the best.

His worst bike related purchase are silly things here and there, like his Rudy Project gloves which completely frayed after 5 rides, all Sidi plastic-soled shoes which warp so much they seem to wrap around the pedal, Trek flashing disco lights which die after every ride in the rain, and Continental 3000 GP tyres which corner as though you forgot to put tires onto the rims. Simply disastrous.

He has a number of best non-bike related purchase the best of which is the engagement ring for Denise (cos I exchanged it for a fully functioning wife). Not too far behind that are all kinds of lovely rich food, the countless pints of Ice Cream, my 19" Viewsonic monitor and his Oakley Pro M’s.
Comments or criticism can be sent to spiderman@teamabsolut.net
 

This page was last updated on 05/30/02.
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