On Stage 1 of last year’s Cape Epic, Team NAD came flying past the first water point. I couldn’t help myself. “Go NADs,” I shouted. “Go NADs!” – By Jonathan Ancer
In fact, for the next eight days, whenever I saw the NAD duo of Gawie Combrink and Nico Bell, I – and every other fan with a schoolboy sense of humour – would shout “Go NADs!” Team NAD eventually came second in the African Red Jersey category. Which means, you could say, that NAD (“Go NADs!”) was the bollocks.
Some may argue that one of the riders from USN Purefit (the winning African team) would have been more at home hanging with the NADs: Waylon Woolcock. Although from a name symmetry perspective, perhaps Woolcock should have teamed up with an Epic rider from the middle of the field: Willie Burger.
Imagine the commentary: “If Willie and Woolcock can keep it up, they’ll penetrate the field – they’ve shown some spunk by shafting the Bulls, and are sure to make a vas deferens to the leader board, providing they don’t get blown. What’s going on? Woolcock has pulled over to the side – this is not the time to bonk!”
Funny names weren’t reserved for men only. The German rider in Team Sport for Good, who came second in the women’s category, was Sabine Spitz. Spitz rode with Yana Belomoina, but perhaps she could convince triathlete star Jodie Swallow – who has five Ironman 70.3 South Africa titles under her belt – to join her. Now there’s a team that could go places. Which would Woolcock choose to partner him in a mixed team: Spitz or Swallow?
No, in the end he would probably have wanted to get dirty with the Frenchwoman who won the mixed category – Fanny Bourdon. Fanny and Woolcock… oh come on, it’s funny.
From the sexual to the scatological. Among the riders to tackle the Cape Epic were a team of two Estonians: Erki Kukk and Martin Loo. I’m not shitting you. Then there was the oddly-named Team Robot Doll, the Hong Kong pairing of Tsz Ting Wong and Kay Yip Wong. They always went left, because two Wongs don’t make a right (just like two Wronges don’t make a writer).
‘Nico Bell’, of course, is a great name for a cyclist, even without his teammate. (“Go NADs!”) And ‘nominative determinism’ is the theory that a person’s name has some influence over what they will do with their life – I give you Port Elizabeth dietician Rene Smalburger, and (as we’ve been talking about Woolcock) Chinese penile-extension surgeon Dr Dao-Chou Long.
But when it comes to names that fit, you really can’t do better than former pro roadie and DiData team principal Dougie Ryder. Could he be anything but a cyclist?
Two more pro riders who fit their names are Team Sky’s Ben Swift, and former Cape Epic women’s winner Yolande Speedy. Swift and Speedy would make a super-fast mixed team, wouldn’t they? There’s opportunity for branding, too, with Swift sponsoring Swift… and Scott sponsoring Scot Scott in a new series of Skattejag (which they could rename ‘Scottejag’). I can see it now: “Stop die horlosie, here comes Scot Scott on a Scott.”
Wait, come back! I’ve got more…