Conquista Issue 21

Frequency Quarterly
Publisher Names by Conquista Cycling Club
Conquista Issue 21

A British cycling dynasty whose members don’t like to draw attention to their achievements – for fear of “living in the past”. The nameless motorised sidekicks of the six-day scene. An astonishing Grand Tour achievement that no one noticed – not even the team that had pulled it off. A road trip into the wild and remote depths of Spain in celebration of high literature. A race with a thousand starters that you’ve never heard of. And a trip to the World Championships with some antipodean also-rans.

Conquista 21: the introvert’s edition. A bit like all the others then.

“I have ridden with two unbelievable descenders in my life: Sean Kelly and my Aunty Margaret.” Joe Earley (son of Martin Earley and Catherine Swinnerton). 

After telling the story of Bernadette Swinnerton in issue 20, Suze Clemitson concludes her history of a remarkable cycling dynasty by telling the tales of younger siblings Catherine and Margaret. Don’t miss part two of Searching for the Swinnerton Sisters.

Ernest Hemingway called Spain “the last good country left”. Tom Owen and photographer Matt Grayson rode from Madrid to Pamplona, the two cities most closely associated with the author, across some of the wild and remote areas he loved above all. They tell the story of their adventures in Papa’s Bravas.

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About Conquista

Why “Conquista”? 

The word, which occurs in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian, means “conquest”, or “achievement”. 

Cycling is all about overcoming. Cheating the wind. Defying gravity. Beating the peloton around France. Beating the traffic to work. Beating your mates to the café. 

As often as not, it’s about conquering yourself. Clambering out of bed for a cold morning commute. Squeezing out a bit more effort when your lungs and legs are bursting. 

So all cyclists are conquistadores – every one of us, every time we ride.


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