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Christmas Comes Early to the Cafe

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Hey all -- a couple items of good news to report today. I'm a save-dessert-for-last kind of guy, so I will start with the smaller one. SBN, our network, has signed up with Getty Images for use of some pictures. I am awaiting the signal that our account has been activated so I can see exactly which images are available to us. However, they cover plenty of cycling, so we should have somewhere between "enough" and "an embarassment of riches" when it comes to available images. More details, such as who can post them (fanposts?) and how to do crediting, to follow.

Ordinarily this would be the day's biggest announcement, but not today. The second piece of good news... looks something like this:

Pic2_medium

At long last, I have been authorized to officially hire a teammate to help run the show here, and that person would be -- you guessed it -- Gavia!! Gavia has been a key contributor here for a long time, virtually since we started, and her trademarks include unparalleled race previews and breakdowns, info from Europe before other English sources notice, and a special brand of personality pretty well captured by the picture above. We're not big on titles here, but you can think of her as co-editor, whereby she will take the lead on all things Italy, France and Spain, while I will have first-line responsibility for the rest of the known world. This is more of how we will communicate than a restriction on anyone else.  [For example, if the words "Italy, France and Spain" ring a bell, that would be the grand tours, which call for all hands on deck.] This isn't the Treaty of Tordesillas. Can't get enough Gav? No worries, she will still be contributing heavily to Steephill.TV, and we will still point you in the direction of everything she writes over there.

So please join me in welcoming Gavia to her new status. I would also like to express my appreciation to SBN for both pieces of good news. With Gavia's help, the Cafe is primed for a big year in 2010.