Dear Flecha

 15 April 2011

Dear Juan Antonio Flecha,
It’s not fair.
All winter you’ve worked so hard for this day.
It’s your main goal every season.
For as long as I remember it’s your dream to win here.
Riding into the velodrome knowing that you are about to win.
Your dream of standing on that podium,
taking the cobblestone and hold it up in the air.
“One day”, you said.
Well, it wasn’t last Sunday.
You weren’t strong enough this year.
You were good in March, maybe too good.
Too soon in good shape this year.
In the last few years you ended three times on the podium.
But it was never the place you wanted.
One time a 2nd place, two times 3rd.
You got beaten in the sprint,
caused a crash in a corner on a cobble section,
or one of the others riders was just too strong and you couldn’t follow.
Still, isn’t it special that a man from Argentina loves the cobblestones?
I mean, you eat cobblestones for breakfast,
you think of them during your training,
 you even dream of cobblestones at night.
Most of the riders from South-America, Spain or Italy turn around
when they see a cobblestone, let alone a whole road full of them.
You on the other hand, are aware of the great history of this race,
knowing that all the greats were riding the same route as you do now.
If there’s one rider that should be on the list of winners of Paris-Roubaix,
it would be you.

© Graham Watson

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One response to “Dear Flecha

  1. Great post about one of the riders that would really deserve to win Paris-Roubaix at least once!
    Imo, the North classics are fascinating also because there are cyclists like Flecha, Hincapie or Hoste that have been chasing a victory there over the last 10 years of their life, without succeeding. Every year I hope one of them will make it to the top spot of the podium, but unfortunately they had to postpone their dream of glory also this time.
    These riders really make you understand what’s so special about the North classics. It’s amazing to think how they can still keep on fighting for winning one these races after all these years! Chapeau to them!

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