Sunday, January 18, 2009

Thurbo..... Turbo..... Per-turbo.....

All means the same thing ...Pain... especially if he's in your race ...which is highly likely since he's out there every weekend, and often does three races a day!!

Read Mark Johnson's excellent article about the legend himself written for Competitor SoCal Magazine. Mark is a pro writer and photog and one of those great folks --like Lyne Lamoureux and Mike Hernandez-- who shine the media light on bike racing here in the US. Our obscure sport has a million stories below the surface, and these guys do the telling with their superb pictures and eloquent words. Grazie!

So... not much to add to the article other than perhaps this. To observe Thurlow at the races, you might wonder whether or not he's really having fun. You could call it a look of indifference ...or perhaps aloofness ...sometimes you'd even have to call it a scowl. But I ask you this, when doing an activity that you've been doing for consistently for 30 years ...take breathing for example... how much visible enthusiasm do you show? I hesitate to guess at the total number of races the man has done, but it's got to be well into the thousands. Think about that for a minute. Is he having fun? The proof is inside the pudding, and maybe doesn't always show on the surface.

But every now and then he lets a bit of the emotion out. Elite Nationals RR, 2008, up against 130 Gggg-gnarly Cat 1's from all around the USA. Super fast race on a windy, hot-n-dry, cranky afternoon. Half way in Turbo scoots across to the big break and, no doubt, goes pull for pull with the big motors up in first class. 'round about 100 miles in, the break starts cracking so Turbo goes off again, this time with just two others, each a hardened NRC thoroughbred ...who happen to be teammates. Do they work T over? Can they? I don't know, it's hard to see first class from the back of coach. Anyway, with the sun setting and 120 fast miles in the bank, the trio sprints for the prestigious Stars-n-Bars jersey. Thurlow gets the bronze.

3rd at the Elite Nationals. Is that a good result? Compared to what? Top-shelf Euro pro victories, top-10 in the Olympics, buckets of major US professional wins, ...Masters 45+ vee at the Ontario Industrial Park merry-go-round?

Well, his non-stop beaming smile after the race left no doubt...



...he's still having lots of fun.

11 comments:

Aram said...

Nice write-up mark! I'm a fan of his, for sure.

Marco Fanelli said...

Thanks Aram. See you in a couple weeks I suppose. Defend your '07 Mothballs Vee!!

Anonymous said...

Enough kissing ass. I dont know if this is worse or the Bahati blog where everyone kisses RB's butt.
Raul F.

Marco Fanelli said...

Tell ya what, Raul... In 10-15 years when you're in your late 40's and you podium at the Elite Nationals --crit Nationals in your case!-- I'll write a butt-kissing blog post about you, k?!

Bud said...

Mark,
That's not a smile that's indigestion. It is fun to race with him though, definitely world class. I still want to beat him, doesn't everybody?

Bud

Marco Fanelli said...

Right you are, Bud! I am both a fan and a competitor -- they aren't mutually exclusive. When the gun goes off, it's me and my teammates against the world.

Lyne said...

thank you.

Anonymous said...

I used to work with Mark Johnson in San Diego. Hell of a nice guy and an exellent writer.

Anonymous said...

I got into a break with Thurlow and one of his teammates at one of the Camarillo Crits in the late 80's. Thurlow was riding for Centurion at the time. We stayed away the entire race and on the last lap you can imagine the one two's going on. Needless to say, I was the third rider across the line. But wait, Thurlow and his teammate were dq'd for a shanigan during the early part of the race, and I was given the big W. So I have the dubious honor of taking first in a race with Thurlow.

MM

Dave Jacobson said...

Mark before I forget I told Josh hi for you.....

Marco Fanelli said...

Lyne-
You're welcome. Keep it up!

Anony-
Ditto that.

MM-
A vee is a vee, or a W is a W.

Dave-
Thanks. See ya at the races.