‘Landism’ as a way of life | Cycling | Sports


Isms—artistic, literary or philosophical movements with a certain tendency toward the ephemeral—are not available to everyone. Neither be part of them nor lead them. Many times they are led from everyday life. A peculiar personality, which goes beyond the norm and which is accompanied with the necessary regularity by happy and tragic moments, for example. Someone who often embraces the concept of almost and do it in such a way that—almost—it seems better than achieving great success. Many times neither the people who lead these isms nor the people who form them are aware of the significance of the movement until something happens that consolidates it. The cyclist Mikel Landa aroused passions in a sector of the fans. In 2017, when these fans organized themselves under the label #FreeLanda (Free Landa) to express the suffering caused by seeing him work in the Tour for the victory of Chris Froome – then head of his team, Sky -, the countryism It was consolidated as a concept and as a way of understanding cycling.

Countryism (Road Books), is the title of the book in which 12 signatures—journalists, writers, cyclists—explain their way of understanding this ism, which emerged around the figure of a cyclist who has achieved two third places in the Giro and two fourth positions in the Tour. The manual begins with a proposal for the genealogy of the movement by Ander Izagirre. From Alfred Faure and Jean-Baptiste Dortignacq in 1904 – those were definitely different times – to Raymond Poulidor, who for fifteen years courted victory in the Tour – three times second, five times third – but never wore the yellow jersey. Not a day. The texts by Peio Ruiz Cabestany, Marcos Pereda, Marc Cornet, Txani Rodríguez, Ana Rosa Gómez Rosal, Guille Ortiz, María Sirvent, Ramón Espinar, Peio H. Riaño and Elena Alcalde propose an original and bold journey through the movement. The book closes with an explanation of love for Mikel by journalist Carlos Arribas, who offers more than 100 reasons. The penultimate: “Because he will never win the Tour, the Giro or the Vuelta.” The last one: “Because defeat is the natural state of the person.”

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