Len Vreeland

You might know Len Vreeland as "the guy on the left" in an old photo that I have of four guys on Avatars at some kind of bike show in Worcester:

Here is some very interesting information from Greg Yatko sent to me in December, 2005:

The guy on the left was my father-in-law, Len Vreeland. In 1983, he attempted to break John Marino's transcontinental record. At 53 years old, he ended up not breaking the record but set a record of sorts for his age group at the time.

Len was given 2 avatars for his attempt. He passed away a few months ago at age ~76. As you might imagine, the computer came in quite handy during his record attempt. I made the computer mount out of an old Fiamme rim, and it placed it just where he needed it. The pink jersey was from our tiny little bike club called the "seagulls". To be in the club, you had to read Jonathan Livingston Seagull, "No Limits" was the concept. The pink jersey was for people to laugh at the color, and then when we would toast them on the velodrome or on the road, they wouldn't laugh anymore.........

Anyway, Len broke Jackie Simes 24 hour roller record at 717 miles. He did that at age 45, at the grand opening of the Lehigh County Velodrome.

While doing the race across america in '83, we were going through Jerome, Az., starting on the long winding downhill (Len was on the bike and I was following close on the motorcycle), a guy stopped us and said he saw the article in Bicycling magazine about Len and his attempt, and knew all about it. He asked us what Avatar meant, and when we told him, he thought it was a real neat name.

I visited Jerome last summer, and on the side of a large white building in HUGE letters is the word "Avatar". I'm moving out to Phoenix in a few weeks, and when I visit Jerome again, I'm gonna find out if that sign made it there from that guy that stopped us over 20 years ago. I just thought that was interesting.

The 3rd guy from the left is Tom or Bob Cole, I don't remember which one. Len and Mr. Cole are/ were from Bethlehem Pa. I thought I remembered them riding up to the event from Bethlehem. Based on Lens' tan, I am real sure this picture was after his record attempt, and I remember making the computer mount just before his attempt in July of that year.

P.S. I think Len is on # 1 or 2  prototype and its still in his wife's house, dusty but certainly operational. I hope they keep it in the family forever.

Thanks for your website. 
Greg Yatko

Greg also sent a link to a site that has a lot more information about Len. Here it is

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