2007 Paris Brest Paris Photography

In August of 2007, Gregg Bleakney, along with motorcycle driver Stephan Schier, set out from Seattle to photograph the Paris-Brest-Paris ultra-endurance bicycle randonee. Documenting the ride from the seat of a motorcycle was an adventure in itself but in no way compared to what these cyclists experienced as friendly locals cheered them along the 1,200 KM route through the wind, rain and cold weather that plagued this year’s event.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Carnage Paris - Exhausted participants and friendly volunteers

“Carnage” is the heart and soul of the Paris Brest Paris. From fatigued participants to friendly volunteers, friends, and family who come together every 4 years to make this event happen. Uninhibited passion for cycling, tradition, and fellow cyclists. An ideology of doing something that most consider to be completely crazy or impossible and making art of it all--in a way that feels somewhat normal, with a smile. Pushing oneself to complete and total exhaustion and then consuming a sports drink, chocolate milk, beer, wine, or high-carb snack to summon enough strength to get back in the saddle and continue on. For me, the meaning of this word, in a PBP sense, renders its own definition which is quite the opposite of the one you might find in a dictionary. While photographing this event from the seat of a motorcycle, every time I witnessed a state of “carnage”, I raised my hands and cheered in victory. Go Carnage!!!

1 comment:

Stephan said...

These moments in the late night quiet of the cafeterias were beautiful. The volunteers clearing the tables moved so reverently around the expired. I imagined I was in a chapel paying homage to all of these momentarily fallen heroes.