|Newsletter - 2004 Archive
Will there be a Mystery Rider in the 2004 RM 1200?
by E.W. (Wim) Kok, Brevet Organizer, B.C. Peace Region.
The other day I looked at the list of participants in the three categories for 2004 RM 1200: the 90-hour groups, the 84-hour group and the waiting list. I noted riders from far and wide; recent arrivals to randonneuring and some from way back when. When I say way back, I mean waaaaaay back when. That's where one name on one of these lists fits. It definitely piqued my interest. I may be totally off base here, but without blowing anyone's cover, I will only divulge that there is ancient fame associated with this name. Let's face it, if this person does exist (and participates in 2004), which may be pure coincidence, then my submission is for naught, and the joke is definitely on me. On the other hand I do know that April 1 is on the horizon, and we all know the significance of that. (You may also recall that, before we could register, some interesting names appeared on the list of participants.)
So let's explore some possibilities here. A person interested in riding RM 1200 signs up and uses a nom de plume, or in plain English a pseudonym. Assuming of course that we are dealing with a pseudonym raises interesting questions as to why. Allow me to speculate here. First, the registrant does not wish her/his partner, family, employer to know that he will be absent for a while? Train in secret, ride in secret and return in secret. Second, it is an attempt to keep us guessing as to who this cyclist could be. In doing so, the organizers have added an element of mystery to the event. Third, it represents a deep sense of humour on the part of the organizers or the registrant, something we do appreciate of course. Fourth, it may be someone who loves vintage bikes; at least that's what his affiliation appears to reveal? Fifth, the rider may wish to protect his identity for good reasons. For example, many years ago a member of the Royal Family in the Netherlands -- the future king -- registered under a pseudonym in the legendary and famous 200 km Eleven City Skating Marathon (Elfsteden Tocht). He did this to prevent an onslaught of publicity if his participation became known -- paparazzi, etc. You know the story. By the way he successfully completed the event. Fifth, it may be a way to test us, to see (1) how alert we are and (2) how well we know our fellow riders and the history of randonneuring. So the question is: "will we have a person of fame in our midst?" Sixth, add your own speculations ...
The speculation can go on for a while. As a final observation we may be looking at the mystery of resurrection here. Wow! In that case I do wonder if this cyclist will be using his 113 year-old velocipede with the intriguing handle bars and the original Michelin tires. Will there be other mysterious competitors from the same era, i.e. a randonneur representing Dunlop, and this time with caffeine pills in his pocket? I say no more at this time, but look forward to the uncovering of the mystery. Revelations may be accepted at: wkok at nlc.bc.ca. [to e-mail: replace at with @]. Je suis tres curieux. Meanwhile enjoy the preparation for the RM 1200. :-) :-) :-)
[March 26, 2004]
There was and additional submission received on this matter, also on March 26:
On Wim's submission: "No comment"
Rocky Mountain Organizers.