BEWARE!   You have found the Privateers.  BEWARE!



That's right kids, the three man destruction force brings you racing at Encino Velodrome.

What: "GONE IN 250m!"
Where: Encino Velodrome
When: Saturday, April 17th, 2010
Why:  Racing RULEZ!!

Also, there will be "Low Key Time Trials" beforehand (starting @9AM) as well as a bike swap meet.

Race Flyer


Who are we? 

 Originally we were just two guys that were such misfit cycling geeks, they had to form their own team.  Now there's three of us - we picked up a new rider in the off season.

There was an initial rush to join Privateer but in the end only one ponied up with what it takes to be a Privateer.  TjK and Jason came back too.  Things still haven't changed for them - too slow to be pro, but too fast to quit.

It's still stupid and our efforts would be better well spent with an already established local club, but frankly, we're obviously a little too antisocial for them - otherwise we would have been asked to join.  (Or at least not asked to leave ones that we were previously members.)

We are still self sponsored.  Our club still offers nothing to our members.  We still buy our own kits, buy our own gear, and pay our own entry fees.  We do it because we love racing, not because we want to be part of someone’s clique. 

We race only for ourselves and not to represent anyone else's company or ideals.

Well, that and we were sick of riding in low quality team kits.


Privateer  (pri'va-tîr')
  1. an armed ship that is privately owned and manned, commissioned by a government to fight or harass enemy ships.
  2. the commander or one of the crew of such a ship.
     3. to cruise as a privateer

Our 2008 2009Team Kit

Read More About It!!

What was a Privateer?:

Privateers are armed merchant ships commissioned by the national government of a belligerent country to interdict and capture enemy merchant vessels on the high seas. The legal course normally followed by a national government is to issue a "letter of marque or reprisal" to the would-be privateer legitimizing what would normally be considered piracy.

The motivation for the national government to follow this quasi-legal process was the ability to quickly deploy a low-cost naval force that was capable of attacking and destroying the merchant fleet of an enemy. The motivation of a privateer crew and its supporters was greed mixed with a sense of adventure and patriotism, the key being greed. It was a risky business; they were close to being pirates and were disdained by the professional naval officer. In their hearts they were patriots and strong individualists.

Privateers struck at a romantic cord in Americans. When they spoke of privateers they spoke of the Revolution and the War of 1812 and weak sea forces verses mighty powers; they spoke David vs Goliath. They were a symbol of the little power striking out and triumphing over superior overwhelming might.

During the American Revolution to have any military success at all against the largest commercial and military power in the world, the American colonies had to exploit every means possible to obtain essential military supplies and strike out against the oppressor. British sea power threatened American overseas and coastal shipping. The Americans turned to the issuance of letters of marque, legalizing and commissioning private enterprises to outfit and send out armed merchant ships as commerce raiders. The privateers had the legal authority to prey on British shipping.

A large part of the munitions brought into the United States from abroad, and a large share of the profits of many of the most prosperous merchants were not as a result of ordinary commercial transactions at all. They came from successful raids by American privateers on the high seas. No less than 365 vessels of Boston were commissioned as privateers during the war... It can be said with much truth that the Americas carried on the first two years of the war largely at British expense. (Huston, The Sinews of War, p. 21.)

Privateering was a threat to the European nations especially the country with the world's premier merchant fleet, England. Even though in the past they had relied upon letters of marque in their national wars, like reformed sinners they wanted to outlaw the practice. Meeting in Paris in 1856 the European powers decided to declare the practice illegal and piracy.

The United States, which had institutionalized the practice of issuing letters of marque in Section 8, paragraph (11) of the Constitution, did not support the Paris meeting and the goals of the European powers. Out of past necessity and weakness, raids, harassment and disruptions were the chief pillars of American naval strategy from the Revolution to the War with Mexico. The privateer operating under the letter of marque was the romantic bastion of this strategy. Due to a desire for the ability of a smaller nation to challenge larger ones on the world's oceans as well as the right of privacy, the American Secretary of State William L. Marcy, stating that if privateering were given up the seas would be ceded to the larger powers, requested modifications in the agreement. These requests were ignored and in 1856 the Declaration of Paris banned the use of privateers and the issuance of letters of marque and reprisal. The United States was to regret that it was not part of the international agreement.


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