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"The most authentic book ever written on making a living as a pro cyclist in Europe." -- Bob Roll, Versus TV cycling commentator
"I saw my first pro kermis race during my first week in Belgium, and it felt like trying to escape a hall of mirrors but not being able to read the exit signs. Everything was larger than life and more grotesque than I had imagined. But kermis racing was not all about the drugs. If the grand tours are like classical music, kermis racing is punk rock, Belgian-style.
At some point during the season, our team was invited to a stage race in France, but our team director had made an agreement for us to race a big kermis in Brugge. My buddy Cocquyt decided that we should go as hard as we possibly could from the gun in the kermis, team time trial style, and then peel off at the end of the 11-kilometer lap, laughing at all the guys we had tortured as we took off for the other race. Of course, we all coughed up blood for the entire trip to France, but it was strangely worth it, as if we had smashed our guitars, poured beer on the audience, and walked offstage before the end of the first song."
Joe Parkin's life changed when he left America to become a professional bike racer in Belgium. In this brutally frank memoir, Parkin celebrates the glory of racing but doesn't flinch from the cold reality of that life--the drugs, the payoffs, the betrayals by teammates, the battles with team owners for contracts and money, the endless promises, and the sheer physical pain of racing day after day.
Set in the hardest place in the world to be a bike racer, A Dog in a Hat is one rider's story of his love affair with professional cycling.
Excellent read! If you're an avid cyclist, this is a great story of the ups and downs of road racing.Published 26 days ago by Amazon Customer
I really enjoyed this book. It gives a really good account of doping in Europ in the 80s and 90s.Published 2 months ago by benos122
Must have book! If you are a cycling fan this is a must read!Published 2 months ago by Rafael Azevedo Souza Costa
Great book on the euro cycling experience....wish Joe had the chance to ride in the TDF! Enjoyed this book a lot.Published 6 months ago by mrroll81
Fast, enjoyable read, couldn't put it down. Mainly because I too was a cycling fan of the 1980's.Published 7 months ago by Chris