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Pedalare! Pedalare! A History of Italian Cycling
Pedalare! Pedalare! A History of Italian Cycling
by John Foot
Edition: Paperback

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pedalare! Pedalare!, 14 Jun. 2011
Pedalare! Pedalare! is possibly the finest, most profound and certainly the best written book on cycling I have ever read. And I mean on cycling, not just Italian cycling, which would be faint praise indeed.

The history of Italian cycling is not just about Coppi and Bartali and nor is it a list of Giri winners. So, for example, Pedalare! has the space and breadth to devote a 20 page chapter on the myths surrounding Bartali's Tour victory in 1948. Magni has a 24 page chapter and so on.

Nor does the author gloss the drugs issue. Quite the reverse and he debates when cycling "died". Was it in 1984 when Moser blood-doped his way to the 1 hour record or as late as 1999 with Pantani?

Most sports books are written by sports journalists and it shows. Pedalare! has been written by a historian and that shows as well. Context is everything: How the Giro came about. How the great cyclists became cyclists to escape grinding poverty. And why Vespas and Fiat 500s destroyed everyday cycling in Italy.

Few books on cycling are worth reading, fewer still are worth buying but Pedalare! Pedalare! is to buy, read, lend to others, retrieve and then read again.

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