All over for another year!

So as the curtain came down yesterday on one of the best if not the best Giro ever it left us in awe of Tom Domoulin. This 26 year old from the Netherlands lit up the race from start to finish showing grit in the mountains, patience on the flat and pure raw time trialing talent in the the time trials. A little over three weeks ago the race rolled out of Sardinia with one word on everyones lips, the Colombian Nairo Quintana. Could he do the Giro Tour double? How would he do in the Dolomites and Alps? And many more questions.

Well over the next three weeks all would be revealed and it did not go to plan for the young Colombian. He was out raced by the Old Shark himself Vincenzo Nibali in the mountains and outwitted all over by Tom Domoulin.

Before any of this there was plenty of other stories to keep you on the edge of your seat from the crazy police motorbike wiping out our own G, yes bloody motorbikes again!! To another young Colombian in Gaviria taking the points jersey and four victories on his Grand Tour debut at 22 years old. Lets also not forget the epic maintain battles involving Sky’s Mikel Landa who took the mountain jersey and of course the ‘natural break issues’. That along with Quick Step Floors having there best Grand Tour in a ¬†long time it was a race full of stories.

So fast forward to yesterday and needing to overturn a 53 second deficit the current Dutch Time Trial champion Tom Domoulin truly delivered his country their first Giro victory and first Grand Tour win for over thirty years. At 26 years old he clearly has more Grand Tours in the tank and I can see him one to watch for the future.

So back to that Colombian Quintana where does it leave him? Well Le Tour is only 5 weeks away and the battle between him, Richie Porte and Chris Froome is going to be epic. All I can say is ‘Viva La Froome’ and bring on the the Tour de France.

The Most Beautiful Race

A wheely great welcome to Paul Ashman Cycling on this sunny May afternoon. I am sat writing this while awaiting my operation. Those who have followed my woes over the last year will know where I am at but having been cancelled this week it is scheduled for next week and hopefully these head pains will soon be a thing of the past and my racing and riding can get back on track.

So as I write this the most beautiful race in the world is on the TV, yes the Giro D’Italia. This race is the 100th edition of the first grand tour of the year and the organisers have pulled out all stops to make this a special one. Starting on the gorgeous island of Sardinia the race has since moved to Sicily for the summit finish on Mount Etna and now it is firmly back on the mainland. The route is one of testing climbs, demanding time trials, explosive sprint stages and parcours made for breakaways. Already the pink jersey has changed hands four times and given us five winners. The sprints for Greipel and Gaviria and a classic summit win from Polanc amongst the stages so far.

The big boys will come to the fore this Sunday with the first serious summit finish of Blochaus mountain and who will bet against the likes of Nibali, Quintana and our own G battling out on the slopes. What we do know is the next 15 stages of this race will throw up some surprises and give us some superb racing. Catch it all on Quest TV and Eurosport and enjoy!!!

I am off to the Spin Cycling Festival this weekend so check out my instagram for updates throughout the day on Saturday from this cool fashionable show and until next time happy riding one and all.

Polanc atop Etna

Greipel sprinting to victory

Through the eye of a lens

Good evening and a wheely good welcome to Paul Ashman Cycling.

Recently a certain gentleman by the name of Graham Watson announced his retirement after a glittering career. To many that name will mean nothing at all but to those of you who follow cycling, read the magazines and follow it on the web the name will jump out at you as being one of the greatest photographers the sport has seen. For many many years Graham was always to be seen at the races, often hanging on to the back of a motorbike getting that allusive picture of the pros that the world wanted to see. It isn’t just taking a picture either but being in the right place at the right time or spotting a moment before it happens. As well as this having the right equipment and knowing how a picture will turn out. Graham did it all.

When I first started buying the magazines including Pro Cycling and Cycling Weekly the pictures are what stood out for me. From an injured rider led on the ground to a jubilant rider crossing the finish line all the pictures made me want to know more and learn more about this great sport and nine times out of ten it was Graham’s lens that captured it. As well as capturing the riders he had a knack of showing off the great scenery that the World Tour visits.

Graham your pictures will be sorely missed from all of us worldwide but I want to wish you well in your retirement. Check out his work here:

http://www.grahamwatson.com

So it leads me on to my photos that I take. I am no professional photographer, far from it but I do believe I have an eye for it and am very proud of some of the shots I have taken in my time. Below I want to share some of my favourites with you and also some recently taken shots of my Specialized bikes which were taken in the glorious Spring sunshine in Old Town Gardens in Swindon. I hope you enjoy the pictures below.

Until next time happy riding one and all.