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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

German cyclists competing at this year’s Tour de France

Those with French-sounding first names:
Marcel Kittel
André Greipel
Simon Geschke
Emanuel Buchmann
Marcel Sieburg

Those with first names that could be either French or German:
Paul Martens
Christian Knees
Robert Wagner
Marcus Burghardt

Those with British-sounding first names:
Tony Martin
John Degenkolb
Rick Zabel

Those that don’t seem to fall into any of the above:
Nikias Arndt
Nils Politt
Jasha Sütterlin

Those with out-and-out, no-question-about-it, traditionally German first names:
Rüdiger Selig

Update: As of this afternoon both the Marcels are out. There is a lesson in there somewhere.

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15 comments to German cyclists competing at this year’s Tour de France

  • NickM

    Christian Knees? – I thought they were for praying on.

    Robert Wagner? – He must be in fine fettle considering he was born in 1930.

    And didn’t Tony Martin shoot someone?

  • Laird

    I’m perplexed: Is this post apropos of anything in particular? Or do you just have a fetish for German cyclists?

  • Mr Ed

    Robert Wagner could be American, so he could be in either boat or another…

  • Brian Swisher

    The first set of names puts me in mind of one of P. D. Q. Bach’s friends, the Alsatian artist Hans-Jacques Pferdemerde.

  • Kevin B

    If young Christian’s parents had christened him Hans however, it might have been an unfortunate name for a cyclist.

  • Mr Ecks

    “As of this afternoon both the Marcels are out. There is a lesson in there somewhere.”

    You can’t mime your way to victory?

  • Fred the Fourth

    I’m watching way too much Tour coverage.
    Degenkolb showed up in my dream this morning. As, if my vague memory serves, the CEO of a startup company.

  • Malcolm Coghill

    Marcel Kitty, I mean Kittel is in reality one of the Jedward twins (see his hairstyle). John Dekenkolb when interviewed when he first started winning races would start his interviews with a long drawn out ‘yah’ and punctuate his talks with more long drawn out ‘yahs’. I added that detail apropos of nothing, except it amused me in a puerile way

  • And didn’t Tony Martin shoot someone?

    No; he slept with Cyd Charisse.

  • Fred Z

    And not even one Mohammed. How dat?

  • Rich Rostrom

    Those with French-sounding first names:
    Marcel Kittel – born in East Germany
    André Greipel – born in East Germany
    Simon Geschke – son of East German cyclist Jürgen Geschke
    Emanuel Buchmann – born in Swabia
    Marcel Sieburg – ????

    Those with first names that could be either French or German:
    Paul Martens – born in East Germany
    Christian Knees – born in Westphalia
    Robert Wagner – born in East Germany
    Marcus Burghardt – born in East Germany

    Those with British-sounding first names:
    Tony Martin – born in East Germany
    John Degenkolb – born in East Germany
    Rick Zabel – born in Westphalia

    Those that don’t seem to fall into any of the above:
    Nikias Arndt – born in Hanover
    Nils Politt – born in Rheinland
    Jasha Sütterlin – born in Breisgau

    Those with out-and-out, no-question-about-it, traditionally German first names:
    Rüdiger Selig – born in East Germany

    I think I am as surprised as anyone to find that nine of the sixteen cyclists are East German.

    As to the non-German names: cross-language penetration happens a lot these days. Lately I’ve watched a lot of European mystery-story TV, and I note odd outcroppings of English in the credits. German, French, and Italian shows all have credit lines for “Casting”; a French show has a credit line for “Transport des rushes“.

  • Mr Ed

    I’m sure they are all good, clean chaps who are only following Team orders.

  • Slartibartfarst

    The history of German successes in the Tour de France is not to be sniffed at.
    To put it into perspective: photo of Germany taking the all-classes win of the 1940 Tour de France.

  • Sean McCartan

    Gordon Gottlob must have confused the chaps at Biggin Hill back in the day.

  • Sean McCartan

    Gordon Gollob must have confused the chaps at Biggin Hill back in the day.