Katie Archibald column: Rumours has it...

'The first time I called, I got put on hold and I loved it. Their hold music was 'The Chain' by Fleetwood Mac'

Katie Archibald

When I used to work on the phones in the family bed shop there was a courier I would often call to try and get customers an estimated time for their delivery.

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The first time I called, I got put on hold and I loved it. Their hold music was 'The Chain' by Fleetwood Mac.

Six months into following through on the inane task of calling up to get the delivery schedule, surely something that could instead be published online, and my love for the song 'The Chain' began to falter. It was a sad day.

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That was seven years ago and, thankfully, the conditioning has now faded and I can crank up the whole Rumours album as blissfully as the next person. You can assume, however, that after such an experience a person might be nervous about a repeat.

Well, and this is related so bear with me, I was racing the UCI Track World Cup in Glasgow last weekend. It's a three-day event but the organisation runs qualifying rounds on 'day zero', which is an unticked session.

You race in relative quiet in front of empty stands, save for some friends and family and for whose benefit the venue might play some music.

Well, imagine my horror when halfway through our team pursuit qualifier, up to my eyeballs in lactate. I realised they were playing the song 'Dreams'.

"God, don't let this go badly and tarnish another Fleetwood Mac song for me with the associated memory!" I screamed internally.

Not actually, of course. I didn't think in a sentence with grammar and structure and clear meaning. But like how a baby can feel fear without learning the verb to be scared, I understood the danger.

The good news is we qualified first, 1.3 seconds ahead of Germany. And for the final the next evening, when the stands were packed and the music subbed out for people's cheering, we won.

It was a new best time for our Tokyo Olympiad squad of (in starting order) Eleanor Dickinson, Neah Evans, Elinor Barker and myself.

I'm going to put the Rumours album on just now and feel good thinking about it.

This Katie Archibald column originally appeared in the print edition of Cycling Weekly, on sale in newsagents and supermarkets, priced £3.25.

Jonny Long

Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races. I'm 6'0", 26 years old, have a strong hairline and have an adequate amount of savings for someone my age. I'm very single at the minute so if you know anyone, hit me up.


Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab, reporting about students evacuating their bowels on nightclub dancefloors and consecrating their love on lecture hall floors. I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).


I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.