Draft Animals

Draft Animals

4.35 (1,485 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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From the author of the cult favorite Pro Cycling on $10 a Day and Ask a Pro, the story of one man's quest to realize his childhood dream, and what happened when he actually did it.

Like countless other kids, Phil Gaimon grew up dreaming of being a professional athlete. But unlike countless other kids, he actually pulled it off. After years of amateur races, hard training, living out of a suitcase, and never taking "no" for an answer, he finally achieved his goal and signed a contract to race professionally on one of the best teams in the world. Now, Gaimon pulls back the curtain on the WorldTour, cycling's highest level. He takes readers along for his seasons in Europe, covering everything from rabid, water-bottle-stealing Belgian fans, to contract renewals, to riding in poisonous smog, to making friends in a sport plagued by doping. Draft Animals reveals a story as much about bike racing as it is about the never-ending ladder of achieving goals, failure, and finding happiness if you land somewhere in-between.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 140 x 210 x 20.32mm | 272.16g
  • Penguin USA
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1 Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0143131249
  • 9780143131243
  • 62,767

Review quote

A Ball Four for cycling, Draft Animals [is] full of observations about cycling's less glamorous side. --Jason Gay, The Wall Street Journal As a cycling fan, I was completely captivated by Gaimon's book, and I churned through all 320 pages in one day...[Gaimon] has tremendous insight into this very strange period in the sport's history and recounts the emotional and psychological fallout from each success and failure...Draft Animals is a blatant attack on cycling's culture of silence. --Velonews Draft Animals is written with raw honesty. . . More than anything else, [Gaimon] makes you want to go jump on a bike right now. --Sports Illustrated An easy read that had me laughing and crying . . . At the end of the book, Gaimon had changed my opinion on what I thought it was like to be a professional rider and he had done so in an eloquent and engaging way. --Cyclist "[Gaimon] shares the emotional roller coaster of long-distance relationships and the stresses of securing contracts with race teams. Highly recommended for anyone interested in cycling, this is a candid account from an outspoken cyclist who pursued his career with passion, a sense of humor, and integrity." --Booklist I enjoyed reading Draft Animals. It's a colourful and personal take on life in the professional peloton, and Phil Gaimon writes with an easy and honest style. If you take one thing away from the book, it's that nothing's really black and white: some people cheat at sport and are otherwise genuine and pleasant human beings, some people are completely righteous in their attitude to fair sport and inscrutable in their personal and business relationships, and the resulting mess is hard to navigate. --Road.cc
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About Phil Gaimon

Phil Gaimon retired from laziness and computer games in 2004 and began riding a bike to lose weight. Now, after a long career as a pro cyclist, including two years in the WorldTour, he's dedicated himself to sharing joy--through books, a cookie-themed Fondo in Malibu, Strava hunts on a YouTube channel, and podcasts.
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Rating details

1,485 ratings
4.35 out of 5 stars
5 50% (747)
4 37% (549)
3 11% (161)
2 2% (24)
1 0% (4)
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