Tom Healy, one of the organizers of the 1984 International Human Powered Speed
Championships, recalls the genesis of Varvel's cartoons as follows (interpolations in
square brackets are by John S. Allen):
Nothing in my files contradicts John [Stegmann] as being the progenitor of the image.
My first exposure to the image was from an Effective Cycling Instructor News
newsletter dated Spring, 1983 which featured John's cartoon on the mailing panel.
(interesting note, the ECI News editor was Karen Missavage who later served as a
practical vehicle competition judge at one Indy IHPSC)...[the 1984 IHPSC]
I was taken with the image and showed it to other members of the Indy Chapter of the
IHPVA. As we put together a proposal to host the IHPSC, I floated the idea of using the
image past the group. They enthusiastically agreed it should be used and I enlisted Gary
Varvel, an artist at the evening newspaper, the Indianapolis NEWS, where I served as,
among other things, bicycle columnist, to flesh out John's concept.
His first version [above] is merely a cartoon recreation of the original.
Taking the image back to the Indy Chapter, we talked it over and I returned to offer
Gary additional art direction which resulted in the image which John Allen has posted
[below] ... As noted, this was the image used on the IHPSC T-shirts at the 10th