Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Meet The Velomad

It was 5.30pm and i decided to walk over to Edwin's place (IMCyclist or Joo Ngan Son).

I sent my Italian gf for a cosmetic makeover. Changed the stem, handlebar tapes, added a meter and replaced the rear tire with a Conti Ultra GatorSkin. Total damage was RM658.

I noticed a man standing there and he gave a man smiling at me.

I did not know who he was until i saw a touring bike outside Edwin's shop.

Instantly i asked Edwin who the chap was and i was told he was the chap that cycled the world.

Hey, it's that Velo chap!

I walked up to him and started talking to him and listen to his stories. He came in Malaysia via Thailand and will head down to Melaka and towards Singapore for Chinese New Year.

His name is Richard. Richard Velomad. I suspect Velomad is not his real surname but he is right, he is Velo (bike) Mad. Aptly named Richard!

I spoke to the man for about 30 minutes, talking about bikes and the experience he has gotten from his travel on two wheels.

He concur that Malaysia is by far the best country he has visited so far.



What is interesting about Richard is his bike. Most of us are so anal about ensuring our bike has the same groupset and runs on certain brand and certain make.

The bike Richard uses are custom made frame that will last a lifetime. Sounded simple enough and it looked like an old steel frame. The geometry were made in pretty strange manner too. I noticed the headset were ultra long and the frame geometry were not unlike a road bike or mountainbike.

I name it Frankenstien Velomad (Sorry Richard, i can't resist!)

Now, to start with, Frank has a seat that already molded to Richard's butt.



Not convinced the seat looked customised over the miles?

Here.


Comparing the two Brooks Saddle - priceless

This wasn't the only interesting part. This machine has Campy shifters, Deore crank, 105 rd and mountain bike's cassette. There is no fancy V-brake even as it utilises the proven cantilever system. The panier looked like it weighs tonnes but they aren't.

Unbelievable.





The man himself, Richard looked like he could do 400km of bike ride in a single day.




He picked up the Mini flags strewn all over the road when he entered Malaysia from Thailand

Nine years, 47 countries, 88,000km, 2 person (him and wife) and 1 Mission.

How many of us are willing to leave the comfort of our home for NINE years and do what he does.

Truly free soul and truly living his life to the max.

I salute you Velomad!



If you guys are interested to follow his adventure, look out for him in Facebook using his name. He is a friend in Facebook now. I am proud to know someone, abeit for 30 minutes!

Oh ya, he and wifey will be cycling back up from Singapore to Melaka to catch the ferry to Indonesia! Talk about extra mileage to save money!

Richard, if you are reading this - KEEP THE WHEELS TURNING!

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