It’s getting to be the time of year when various cycling publications, web-based entities, and opinionated pundits are holed up in undiscolosed locations plotting to dole out multitudes of awards to PRO cyclists whose stellar achievements on the bike warrant recognition. Sure, the Paolo Bettinis, the Fabian Cancellaras, the Alberto Contadors will undoubtedly get their due, but there’s always room for one more award. Added to the pantheon of VeloNews’ “EuroPRO of the Year Who Didn’t Lie About His pre-Tour Whereabouts”, Cycle Sport’s “If It Isn’t Scottish It’s Crap All-David-Millar-All-the-Time Lovefest”, High Times “Downhiller of the Year”, Wired’s “Most GBs of Memory Filled-Up With SRM Data”, venerable non-cycling honors like the Oscar, the MTV Moon Man, the Clio, the Emmy, is the new kid in town: my first annual Big FucKing Hennepin, hereby bequeathed in 2007 to Adam Craig.
Firstly, let’s hear it for employees of beer-selling establishments equipped with Sharpies and a sense of humor. It only makes sense that uber-sized beer goblets deserve equally proportioned beer vessels. Hence the recent appearance of a Big FucKing Hennepin gracing the shelves of Sam’s Blue Light.
You have to love a man, who is arguably the fastest XC racer in the U.S., showing up at a drunken singlespeed race in the north of Scotland, a week before the World Championships, wearing a mullet and a mustache that he grew just for the event to go along with the specially chosen Daisy Duke shorts, denim vest and pantyhose that he was racing in. That’s admirable.
Even more admirable is the way that he rode the race—hollering out rebel yells and maniacal laughs, passing politely, stopping to chat, taking beer hand-ups, wrecking hard on fire roads after taking said hand-ups, and still winning with a crushing margin. Topping it off, he took a tattoo to soft part of his ass that is bigger than most man-hands, less than 48 hours before he was scheduled to race the team relay at the “real” world championships.
2. Nat Ross chimes in regarding the 2007 ‘Cross Vegas:
…10. Who is the baddest motherfucker on the planet?
-Right now I would have to say Adam Craig. He won 43 dollars in one hour while wearing a skinsuit. Not bad for the single speed champion of the world. But can he count? I don’t know if I see 43 dollars in the pic. Where was the rest stuffed? That’s what I thought, sock or not Adam is still the man. He even has a silly tattoo to prove it.
3. He hasn’t mastered the art of clipping in to the pedals at the start of ‘cross races, and he thinks it’s funny:
I did my trademark pedal slip at the start. I told the guy behind me he was screwed, and he was. This is how I like to start the Gran Prix season off: a terrible start, riding through, entertaining people, and getting the most aggressive rider for the day so I can buy my mechanic dinner.
4. Adam Craig don’t need no Foo-Foo pit bikes and Dugast tubulars. Check out the accumulation of ice acquired while scorching the NC locals at a wintry ‘cross race in 2003 while preparing for a trip to Monopoli, Italy for the world championships. Also note the bloody ankle, where Craig ate it pretty hard while trying to bunny-hop a series of barriers. I lined up against Adam that January, and I don’t think I’ve ever been lapped so quickly in my life. In fact, I think he got me twice. The man has a motor.