Go Fly A Kite La Flamme Rouge
The Red Kite is overtaken 62La flamme rouge dépassée
The Yellow Jersey arrives Maillot Jaune à l’arrivée
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Before Olympic road cycling became professional caliber, the final amateur American Olympic Trials occurred in Altoona, Pennsylvania. Based on a points system, one could qualify for the Barcelona-bound team but not before first facing the formidable class of 1992 – future lions like Lance Armstrong and his notable compatriot star domestiques. Yet it was an underestimated rider named Timm Peddie who forced an attack that stuck and won from his small group.
Peddie was not a favorite but he wasn’t without palmarès. He’d done some national team trips and had been tested as an espoir. Not as talented in some areas (and not doping either), his ability to suffer was off the charts. He wasn’t considered a GC contender, but he was known for repeatable snap that separated him at odd times from a peloton of painmeisters. His results were few but they were spectacular and solo. He rode with passion and produced a plethora of emotional reactions. This same fire
characterized his off-the-bike persona as well, and he was often a source of controversy due to his relentlessly righteous zeal. He was not without flaw nor meant to be pitied because he was misunderstood. He was simply as fiery and in-your-face as the red kite which clearly marks the final kilometer. He held nothing back.
In meeting both pain and the final kilometer, it’s no time to quail, rise up to the challenge or neither gives you respect. Mais où est cette maudite de flamme rouge, je ne sens plus mes jambes! Where is the flippin’ red kite because I cannot feel my
legs?! The red kite can also be a sweet marker that indicates your time to suffer will rise and fall at last…prior to the podium flowers, showers and resuscitating powers of rest and recovery.
Prayer for Ability to Finish Strong
“Lift up a banner and proclaim it; keep nothing back…” 63Job 39:21
We are thankful for the inflatable archways of the flamme rouge that mark the remaining throes of suffering. We ask for ability to tolerate this painful challenge that leads toward an expected end.
Ponder Am I eager to face pain like prey that must be clawed? Affirm I forebear to finish strong and capture a reward. Watch the kite as a sign to keep nothing back, then fly.
62“Lyrics 2003 Tour de France,” www.kraftwerk.technopop.com.br
63The Bible, New International Version, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society