Aust's 1st pro contintental team woohoo!



B

Bleve

Guest
cfsmtb wrote:
> warrwych Wrote:
> > I disagree with "crude tribalism" pertaining to national teams. The very
> > nature of teams and competition elicits "crude tribalism" if you will.
> > It has very little to do with nationalism, despite what the pollies &
> > media commentary would like us to think. There were economic reasons
> > why TdF organisers ditched the national teams thing, and the TdF is not
> > quite relevent to our discussion here of Drapac-Porsche venturing into
> > the pro continental circuit.

>
> Another aside, to put a term on the true reasons behind the existance
> of events like the TdF, why is "crude commercialism" more exalted than
> national differences?


About one, you have a choice, about the other, you have a lot less or
none.
I can't undo my birth certificate, but I can choose what I spend my
money on.

> It's all about products endorsements, branding
> and generally flogging stuff, whether it's L'Auto or pregnancy testing
> kits.


For the sponsors, sure, for the teams, it's about getting the best
results they can get.
 

warrwych

New Member
Jun 7, 2004
1,009
0
0
Bleve said:
warrwych wrote:

> I disagree with "crude tribalism" pertaining to national teams.


Spend a day at the cricket this summer. Watch old footage of the
Olympics (see how much cover the other countries get when there's
national pride at stake). Australian teams finishing dead last or miles
in front in boring games get more cover than some really exciting
sport.

> The
> very nature of teams and competition elicits "crude tribalism" if you
> will. It has very little to do with nationalism, despite what the
> pollies & media commentary would like us to think. There were economic
> reasons why TdF organisers ditched the national teams thing, and the TdF
> is not quite relevent to our discussion here of Drapac-Porsche venturing
> into the pro continental circuit. They are different entities. I believe
> the reason there aren't many national teams in the pro circuit is due to
> economics - not many countries want to fork out that much money to
> support a pro team. Governments tend to support amateur sport also (or,
> olympic sports more specifically). Here we have a corporate sponsored
> team, with the corporates filling the financial role governments play
> in "amateur" sport via agencies such as medal factories like the AIS.
>
> I don't see how a corporate sponsored team excludes talented
> individuals.


If it's a team that picks riders on merit or potential, it doesn't, but
if it has a policy of "one nation", then it does.

> AIS like programs exclude talented individuals. Exclusion
> would be due to limited spots available.


You're missing the point, (unfortunatly) we have a world made up of
nation-states that provide various funding etc to their national teams,
but professional road cycling has, on the whole, moved past that. The
AIS stuff is, outside of the context of track cycling where there's no
professional setup like there is for road, IMO, a dinosaur that doesn't
belong, or at least, its philosophy is unfortunate. It makes sense in
amateur sports (regrettably, IMO) but not for professional cycling.

> That happens in any team, even
> the local under 6 ball sports team. D-P fills a gap, is creating new
> pathways for young riders to break into pro circuits.


Sure, and that's fine, they're welcome to do it and as you know, I'm
fully in favour of teams and team development, but I don't think teams
that have a selection policy that includes citizenship of a particular
country are a good thing in general. We don't know if they even do
have that policy, but if they do it would be, in my opinion, a step
backwards rather than forwards *IN THAT CONTEXT*.

Here's a thought experiment; replace "all Australian" with "all
Catholic" or "all Sunni" etc and see how good it looks then. One's
religion is, on the whole, a matter of where one was born and brought
up too ... :)


Unfortunately, my response was meant to be read as a whole and dissection (decontextualising it) distorts it and changes meaning. Well done.

Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics, Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. If teams create division which is supported by aggression and repression then I do not support that (yes, the cricket crowd you mention - havent seen that in cycling yet).

I am not missing any points Bleve, you are being dogmatic and narrowly focussed in your vision of the issue. D-P is NOT a national team, but a team made up of Australian nationals, financed by local businesses, designed to provide experience and exposure (and career pathways) for Australian cyclists who may not otherwise have the opportunity. It is also providing a model of athlete development that is unfortunately uncommon and ignored. You and I both know that talented young athletes may not always follow through, so the Rabobank & FDJ models of selecting the best may not always work, for a variety of reasons, the least of which is burn out.

Considering what D-P is trying to achieve, and where it comes from (ie local business) I cannot see why they would want to include non- Australians (crude way of putting it, sorry) at this stage of their game plan. And let's not forget, there is more to Australia than white anglo-saxon males.

I know I won't "convert" you and I am not trying to. But acknowledgement and recognition of other points of view, rather than blanket dismissal would be less divisive. ;)
 

warrwych

New Member
Jun 7, 2004
1,009
0
0
Bleve said:
cfsmtb wrote:
> >
> Another aside, to put a term on the true reasons behind the existance
> of events like the TdF, why is "crude commercialism" more exalted than
> national differences?


About one, you have a choice, about the other, you have a lot less or
none.
I can't undo my birth certificate, but I can choose what I spend my
money on.

> It's all about products endorsements, branding
> and generally flogging stuff, whether it's L'Auto or pregnancy testing
> kits.


For the sponsors, sure, for the teams, it's about getting the best
results they can get.

For the teams, the best results ensures ongoing sponsorship, which is gained by acting as advertisements or "representatives" (by association) of businesses. It's still about the dollar.
 
B

Bleve

Guest
Absent Husband wrote:

> As I understand it (and of course, I am probably wrong!!) - the only
> reason there are so few (if any) 'national' Euro teams in the pro
> peloton is because it is illegal to do so.


To my mind, one of the most beautiful things about the sport of road
cycling is its international composition. The fact that there are very
few nationality-based teams is, IMO, to the great benefit of the sport.
It means that support for teams isn't as heavily based on national
identity as many other sports that haven't moved past the whole flag
waving thing are. Of course, many fans of the sport support riders who
are from their country, but that gets mitigated in its intensity by the
international flavour of the teams they ride in.

This, I think, is a big plus, and it lends itself to far better crowd
behaviour than if teams were based on nationality alone. We'd get more
hooliganism (sure, the drunken crowds in the alps are a menace, but
they're benign, much more so than crowds at, say, soccer during the
world cup or a 'friendly' between Germany and England....). I don't
think, in the modern era, that road racing could run through
uncontrolled crowds like it does, if teams were nationality-based.
What keeps the hooligans away is, IMO, the fact that they can't pick a
fight with a foreigner, because their flag-rider may be riding with or
for one and they need each other.
 
B

Bleve

Guest
warrwych wrote:

>
> Unfortunately, my response was meant to be read as a whole and
> dissection (decontextualising it) distorts it and changes meaning. Well
> done.


The *only* issue I have with D-P is probably nothing to do with them,
it's more the unfortunate emphasis put on it as an "all Australian"
squad, which is probably an emphasis being made by reporting on it,
moreso than the team's philosophy (about which we can only guess). It
saddens me to read posts here and elsewhere decrying the lack of an
Australian team in the pro tour. I think the lack of nationality based
teams is a great strength of professional cycling as a sport and
entertainment.

That's why I'm pulling your posts to bits, because 95% of it I agree
with (as you know ....) but there's one thing I think is regrettable.

> Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics,
> Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape
> York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are
> otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. If teams
> create division which is supported by aggression and repression then I
> do not support that (yes, the cricket crowd you mention - havent seen
> that in cycling yet).
>
> I am not missing any points Bleve, you are being dogmatic and narrowly
> focussed in your vision of the issue.


I am focussing on it, yes, for the reasons outlined above. I think
teams based on nationality are regrettable artifacts of history, and I
admire professional cycling for on the whole, having moved past them.

You may notice I'm not calling anyone any names, but am debating an
issue that I think is worth debating.

> D-P is NOT a national team, but
> a team made up of Australian nationals, financed by local businesses,
> designed to provide experience and exposure (and career pathways) for
> Australian cyclists who may not otherwise have the opportunity. It is
> also providing a model of athlete development that is unfortunately
> uncommon and ignored. You and I both know that talented young athletes
> may not always follow through, so the Rabobank & FDJ models of
> selecting the best may not always work, for a variety of reasons, the
> least of which is burn out.


Agreed.

> Considering what D-P is trying to achieve, and where it comes from (ie
> local business) I cannot see why they would want to include non-
> Australians (crude way of putting it, sorry) at this stage of their
> game plan. And let's not forget, there is more to Australia than white
> anglo-saxon males.
>
> I know I won't "convert" you and I am not trying to. But
> acknowledgement and recognition of other points of view, rather than
> blanket dismissal would be less divisive. ;)


We're having a healthy discussion about something that we feel strongly
about and have different perspectives and points of view about, is that
so terrible?
 
S

Shane Stanley

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
"Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:

> To my mind, one of the most beautiful things about the sport of road
> cycling is its international composition. The fact that there are very
> few nationality-based teams is, IMO, to the great benefit of the sport.


You're kidding, surely. Teams may have some members from different
countries, but many of them are very strongly identified with one
country, and there have been numerous cases of "foreign" riders on them
missing out on things like support in big races.

--
Shane Stanley
 
A

Absent Husband

Guest
warrwych wrote:
>
> Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics,
> Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape
> York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are
> otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. >
> --
> warrwych


I think that's a key point.

I don't care if D-P promote themselves as an All-Aus team - because
they are providing a pathway that would otherwise be unavailable to
help develop Aussie cyclists.

In Europe, there are many more opportunities available for young
developing cyclists. So such a team (based on nationality) simply isn't
necessary.

It would be the same for any country that is developing in the context
of a particular sport, putting together such a team. Say, a Pacific
Islands team playing in our soccer A-league. Or a PNG team playing in
the rugby league NRL.

Cheers,
Abby
 
A

Absent Husband

Guest
Shane Stanley wrote:
> In article <[email protected]>,
> "Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> > To my mind, one of the most beautiful things about the sport of road
> > cycling is its international composition. The fact that there are very
> > few nationality-based teams is, IMO, to the great benefit of the sport.

>
> You're kidding, surely. Teams may have some members from different
> countries, but many of them are very strongly identified with one
> country, and there have been numerous cases of "foreign" riders on them
> missing out on things like support in big races.
>
> --
> Shane Stanley


Well said Shane.

Case in point - Vino while riding with T-mobile.

And everyone knows Rabo is a Dutch team, Euskatel is full of Spaniards,
blah-de-blah. Yes, there are exceptions to the rule, but they are
predominately pseudo-national teams anyway.

Goes hand-in-hand with the sponsorship issue. An Italian sponsor, with
most of its main operations in Italy, will be leaning on their team to
be filled with Italian riders racing in lots of Italian races, right??

And lets be real, you can't seriously separate the sponsor from the
team management - not completely, anyway.....

Cheers,
Abby (what a stimulating debate this is!!)
 

warrwych

New Member
Jun 7, 2004
1,009
0
0
Bleve said:
warrwych wrote:

>
> Unfortunately, my response was meant to be read as a whole and
> dissection (decontextualising it) distorts it and changes meaning. Well
> done.


The *only* issue I have with D-P is probably nothing to do with them,
it's more the unfortunate emphasis put on it as an "all Australian"
squad, which is probably an emphasis being made by reporting on it,
moreso than the team's philosophy (about which we can only guess). It
saddens me to read posts here and elsewhere decrying the lack of an
Australian team in the pro tour. I think the lack of nationality based
teams is a great strength of professional cycling as a sport and
entertainment.

That's why I'm pulling your posts to bits, because 95% of it I agree
with (as you know ....) but there's one thing I think is regrettable.

> Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics,
> Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape
> York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are
> otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. If teams
> create division which is supported by aggression and repression then I
> do not support that (yes, the cricket crowd you mention - havent seen
> that in cycling yet).
>
> I am not missing any points Bleve, you are being dogmatic and narrowly
> focussed in your vision of the issue.


I am focussing on it, yes, for the reasons outlined above. I think
teams based on nationality are regrettable artifacts of history, and I
admire professional cycling for on the whole, having moved past them.

You may notice I'm not calling anyone any names, but am debating an
issue that I think is worth debating.

> D-P is NOT a national team, but
> a team made up of Australian nationals, financed by local businesses,
> designed to provide experience and exposure (and career pathways) for
> Australian cyclists who may not otherwise have the opportunity. It is
> also providing a model of athlete development that is unfortunately
> uncommon and ignored. You and I both know that talented young athletes
> may not always follow through, so the Rabobank & FDJ models of
> selecting the best may not always work, for a variety of reasons, the
> least of which is burn out.


Agreed.

> Considering what D-P is trying to achieve, and where it comes from (ie
> local business) I cannot see why they would want to include non-
> Australians (crude way of putting it, sorry) at this stage of their
> game plan. And let's not forget, there is more to Australia than white
> anglo-saxon males.
>
> I know I won't "convert" you and I am not trying to. But
> acknowledgement and recognition of other points of view, rather than
> blanket dismissal would be less divisive. ;)


We're having a healthy discussion about something that we feel strongly
about and have different perspectives and points of view about, is that
so terrible?

healthy discussions usually don't include responses such as "old news" (dimissive) and "who cares" (ditto). ;)

Also, I didn't think dogmatic was a name - I thought it was an adjective :p

Despite the excellent inroads Australian individuals have made into the Euro cycling scene, it is still difficult for Australian cyclists to break into the European circuit and be picked up by trade teams (cost is a major factor). It will be interesting to see what happens to the D-P team and how management responds when their riders are made offers by other teams, and those offers accepted. This may be a desirable outcome for them, or it may not be, who knows.

The newsworthiness of D-P being an "Australian" team is just that - a trade team made of up Australians only. It is unique in pro cycling, but I don't think hooligans will be out ramapaging in the gutters as the red train goes past because the team members are Australian. I think the tribes will unite because, as we all know, red is the fastest colour (despite not riding Treks/Giants/Orbeas), especially on porsches.
 
B

Bleve

Guest
Shane Stanley wrote:
> In article <[email protected]>,
> "Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> > To my mind, one of the most beautiful things about the sport of road
> > cycling is its international composition. The fact that there are very
> > few nationality-based teams is, IMO, to the great benefit of the sport.

>
> You're kidding, surely.



Not at all.

I cite the main players who've been successful in recent history:

CSC (US team, but who rides for them as a team leader that's American?)
US Postal/Discovery (US team, Salvoldelli, Danielson, Basso(!), DS is
Belgian)
Phonak (Swiss, but two Americans as the leaders over the last couple of
years)



> Teams may have some members from different
> countries, but many of them are very strongly identified with one
> country, and there have been numerous cases of "foreign" riders on them
> missing out on things like support in big races.


Not by the teams that have a habit of winning major events recently.
 
B

Bleve

Guest
warrwych wrote:
> Bleve Wrote:
> > warrwych wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > Unfortunately, my response was meant to be read as a whole and
> > > dissection (decontextualising it) distorts it and changes meaning.

> > Well
> > > done.

> >
> > The *only* issue I have with D-P is probably nothing to do with them,
> > it's more the unfortunate emphasis put on it as an "all Australian"
> > squad, which is probably an emphasis being made by reporting on it,
> > moreso than the team's philosophy (about which we can only guess). It
> > saddens me to read posts here and elsewhere decrying the lack of an
> > Australian team in the pro tour. I think the lack of nationality
> > based
> > teams is a great strength of professional cycling as a sport and
> > entertainment.
> >
> > That's why I'm pulling your posts to bits, because 95% of it I agree
> > with (as you know ....) but there's one thing I think is regrettable.
> >
> > > Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics,
> > > Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape
> > > York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are
> > > otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. If

> > teams
> > > create division which is supported by aggression and repression then

> > I
> > > do not support that (yes, the cricket crowd you mention - havent

> > seen
> > > that in cycling yet).
> > >
> > > I am not missing any points Bleve, you are being dogmatic and

> > narrowly
> > > focussed in your vision of the issue.

> >
> > I am focussing on it, yes, for the reasons outlined above. I think
> > teams based on nationality are regrettable artifacts of history, and
> > I
> > admire professional cycling for on the whole, having moved past them.
> >
> > You may notice I'm not calling anyone any names, but am debating an
> > issue that I think is worth debating.
> >
> > > D-P is NOT a national team, but
> > > a team made up of Australian nationals, financed by local

> > businesses,
> > > designed to provide experience and exposure (and career pathways)

> > for
> > > Australian cyclists who may not otherwise have the opportunity. It

> > is
> > > also providing a model of athlete development that is unfortunately
> > > uncommon and ignored. You and I both know that talented young

> > athletes
> > > may not always follow through, so the Rabobank & FDJ models of
> > > selecting the best may not always work, for a variety of reasons,

> > the
> > > least of which is burn out.

> >
> > Agreed.
> >
> > > Considering what D-P is trying to achieve, and where it comes from

> > (ie
> > > local business) I cannot see why they would want to include non-
> > > Australians (crude way of putting it, sorry) at this stage of their
> > > game plan. And let's not forget, there is more to Australia than

> > white
> > > anglo-saxon males.
> > >
> > > I know I won't "convert" you and I am not trying to. But
> > > acknowledgement and recognition of other points of view, rather than
> > > blanket dismissal would be less divisive. ;)

> >
> > We're having a healthy discussion about something that we feel
> > strongly
> > about and have different perspectives and points of view about, is
> > that
> > so terrible?

>
> healthy discussions usually don't include responses such as "old news"
> (dimissive) and "who cares" (ditto). ;)


It was old news! And if you're going to get upset about my breaking up
your posts to target a point, it's perhaps not such a good thing to
then do the same thing :)

> Also, I didn't think dogmatic was a name - I thought it was an
> adjective :p
>
> Despite the excellent inroads Australian individuals have made into the
> Euro cycling scene, it is still difficult for Australian cyclists to
> break into the European circuit and be picked up by trade teams (cost
> is a major factor).


That's an interesting point. I wonder if it really is that difficult.
If you look at the national makeup of riders, at, say, the '05 TdF,
where there was I think 10 Australian riders from a field of around 200
in total, that's about 5% of the field. Quite a lot, I think.
Australian riders have won the green jersey, finished in the top 10 a
few times, held the yellow quite a lot, won stages. There was how many
English riders? And they're closer, it's cheaper for them, they have a
significantly greater population to draw talent from and are a cycling
superpower on the track, so they know bikes and bike racing.

I think it's incredibly hard for *anyone* to break into the
professional cycling fold, but there seems to be a disproportionate
number of Australian riders there at the moment, and in the pipeline,
both as domestiques and as contenders for stage wins, classics and Tour
GC/jersey contenders.

The argument that gets put about here quite often is "there's enough
Australians there now to make a team!" seems to directly contradict the
"we need a team to get more Aussies racing in Europe, there aren't
enough, it's too hard for them" position. I'm not suggesting that both
points are being made by you, but that there's two positions, that seem
to me to be mutually exclusive.

I think our system, which is quite similar to the American system,
where we have graded races and a clear progression (not without its
faults!) up through grades, lends itself to a very healthy local
competition and from that, highly talented riders get pushed hard
enough to make them really have to work, and then they get picked up by
teams. Eg : Richard England, Tommy Nankervis, Simon Gerrans, Will
Walker etc. D-P, as part of this, are great, and the path they're
providing adds another possible path for locals to progress (and pushes
the rest to work better), but make no mistake, a significant number of
very talented locals have been progressing for some time without D-P's
involvement, which is why I don't think, in this context, that it's a
big deal for Australian cycling in general.

> It will be interesting to see what happens to the
> D-P team and how management responds when their riders are made offers
> by other teams, and those offers accepted. This may be a desirable
> outcome for them, or it may not be, who knows.


If they're playing with the pros, they'll get poached unless they can
compete in the auction for talent.

> The newsworthiness of D-P being an "Australian" team is just that - a
> trade team made of up Australians only. It is unique in pro cycling,
> but I don't think hooligans will be out ramapaging in the gutters as
> the red train goes past because the team members are Australian. I
> think the tribes will unite because, as we all know, red is the fastest
> colour (despite not riding Treks/Giants/Orbeas), especially on porsches.


My T1 is red :)
 
B

Bleve

Guest
Bleve wrote:
> Shane Stanley wrote:
> > In article <[email protected]>,
> > "Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:
> >
> > > To my mind, one of the most beautiful things about the sport of road
> > > cycling is its international composition. The fact that there are very
> > > few nationality-based teams is, IMO, to the great benefit of the sport.

> >
> > You're kidding, surely.

>
>
> Not at all.
>
> I cite the main players who've been successful in recent history:
>
> CSC (US team, but who rides for them as a team leader that's American?)
> US Postal/Discovery (US team, Salvoldelli, Danielson, Basso(!), DS is
> Belgian)
> Phonak (Swiss, but two Americans as the leaders over the last couple of
> years)


I forgot :
Davitamon - Belgian (Robbie McEwen, Cadel Evans)
FdJ - French (recently, Brad McGee, Baden Cooke)
There's more that I can't think of off the top of my head
 

warrwych

New Member
Jun 7, 2004
1,009
0
0
Bleve said:
warrwych wrote:
> Bleve Wrote:
> > warrwych wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > Unfortunately, my response was meant to be read as a whole and
> > > dissection (decontextualising it) distorts it and changes meaning.

> > Well
> > > done.

> >
> > The *only* issue I have with D-P is probably nothing to do with them,
> > it's more the unfortunate emphasis put on it as an "all Australian"
> > squad, which is probably an emphasis being made by reporting on it,
> > moreso than the team's philosophy (about which we can only guess). It
> > saddens me to read posts here and elsewhere decrying the lack of an
> > Australian team in the pro tour. I think the lack of nationality
> > based
> > teams is a great strength of professional cycling as a sport and
> > entertainment.
> >
> > That's why I'm pulling your posts to bits, because 95% of it I agree
> > with (as you know ....) but there's one thing I think is regrettable.
> >
> > > Frankly I couldn't care less if a team was made up of Catholics,
> > > Sunnis, Bhuddists, women, car drivers, individuals who live in Cape
> > > York, or who are over 40. If it provides opportunities that are
> > > otherwise not readily available then I see that as positive. If

> > teams
> > > create division which is supported by aggression and repression then

> > I
> > > do not support that (yes, the cricket crowd you mention - havent

> > seen
> > > that in cycling yet).
> > >
> > > I am not missing any points Bleve, you are being dogmatic and

> > narrowly
> > > focussed in your vision of the issue.

> >
> > I am focussing on it, yes, for the reasons outlined above. I think
> > teams based on nationality are regrettable artifacts of history, and
> > I
> > admire professional cycling for on the whole, having moved past them.
> >
> > You may notice I'm not calling anyone any names, but am debating an
> > issue that I think is worth debating.
> >
> > > D-P is NOT a national team, but
> > > a team made up of Australian nationals, financed by local

> > businesses,
> > > designed to provide experience and exposure (and career pathways)

> > for
> > > Australian cyclists who may not otherwise have the opportunity. It

> > is
> > > also providing a model of athlete development that is unfortunately
> > > uncommon and ignored. You and I both know that talented young

> > athletes
> > > may not always follow through, so the Rabobank & FDJ models of
> > > selecting the best may not always work, for a variety of reasons,

> > the
> > > least of which is burn out.

> >
> > Agreed.
> >
> > > Considering what D-P is trying to achieve, and where it comes from

> > (ie
> > > local business) I cannot see why they would want to include non-
> > > Australians (crude way of putting it, sorry) at this stage of their
> > > game plan. And let's not forget, there is more to Australia than

> > white
> > > anglo-saxon males.
> > >
> > > I know I won't "convert" you and I am not trying to. But
> > > acknowledgement and recognition of other points of view, rather than
> > > blanket dismissal would be less divisive. ;)

> >
> > We're having a healthy discussion about something that we feel
> > strongly
> > about and have different perspectives and points of view about, is
> > that
> > so terrible?

>
> healthy discussions usually don't include responses such as "old news"
> (dimissive) and "who cares" (ditto). ;)


It was old news! And if you're going to get upset about my breaking up
your posts to target a point, it's perhaps not such a good thing to
then do the same thing :)

> Also, I didn't think dogmatic was a name - I thought it was an
> adjective :p
>
> Despite the excellent inroads Australian individuals have made into the
> Euro cycling scene, it is still difficult for Australian cyclists to
> break into the European circuit and be picked up by trade teams (cost
> is a major factor).


That's an interesting point. I wonder if it really is that difficult.
If you look at the national makeup of riders, at, say, the '05 TdF,
where there was I think 10 Australian riders from a field of around 200
in total, that's about 5% of the field. Quite a lot, I think.
Australian riders have won the green jersey, finished in the top 10 a
few times, held the yellow quite a lot, won stages. There was how many
English riders? And they're closer, it's cheaper for them, they have a
significantly greater population to draw talent from and are a cycling
superpower on the track, so they know bikes and bike racing.

I think it's incredibly hard for *anyone* to break into the
professional cycling fold, but there seems to be a disproportionate
number of Australian riders there at the moment, and in the pipeline,
both as domestiques and as contenders for stage wins, classics and Tour
GC/jersey contenders.

The argument that gets put about here quite often is "there's enough
Australians there now to make a team!" seems to directly contradict the
"we need a team to get more Aussies racing in Europe, there aren't
enough, it's too hard for them" position. I'm not suggesting that both
points are being made by you, but that there's two positions, that seem
to me to be mutually exclusive.

I think our system, which is quite similar to the American system,
where we have graded races and a clear progression (not without its
faults!) up through grades, lends itself to a very healthy local
competition and from that, highly talented riders get pushed hard
enough to make them really have to work, and then they get picked up by
teams. Eg : Richard England, Tommy Nankervis, Simon Gerrans, Will
Walker etc. D-P, as part of this, are great, and the path they're
providing adds another possible path for locals to progress (and pushes
the rest to work better), but make no mistake, a significant number of
very talented locals have been progressing for some time without D-P's
involvement, which is why I don't think, in this context, that it's a
big deal for Australian cycling in general.

> It will be interesting to see what happens to the
> D-P team and how management responds when their riders are made offers
> by other teams, and those offers accepted. This may be a desirable
> outcome for them, or it may not be, who knows.


If they're playing with the pros, they'll get poached unless they can
compete in the auction for talent.

> The newsworthiness of D-P being an "Australian" team is just that - a
> trade team made of up Australians only. It is unique in pro cycling,
> but I don't think hooligans will be out ramapaging in the gutters as
> the red train goes past because the team members are Australian. I
> think the tribes will unite because, as we all know, red is the fastest
> colour (despite not riding Treks/Giants/Orbeas), especially on porsches.


My T1 is red :)

I only take offense when my posts are broken up in such a way that decontextualises statements/sentences thereby changing their meaning or intent. I noted in my original post that the news was 2 days old; your noting of such appeared dismissive.

Is 5% representation of a nationality in a large race quite a lot? How many Spanish, Dutch, German, French, Italian etc riders were there? I don't have figures in front of me, but I would imagine in the greater scheme of things, 5% isn't that big a figure. What is interesting is that of that 5% they score some big goals, for Australians that is :p

I don't think the Brits being good at track racing automatically translates that well to being a force on the road. I think it simply means the Brits are good at track, and know track racing and track bikes (with some Australian help by the way).

Regarding riders such as England, Walker et al being "picked up" by teams. How does that process occur? By doing the hard work to put on the CV and approaching team managers and agents, showing interest in joining particular teams, letting teams know you are available. It's less a case of "being discovered" but of hard work getting your face out there and known -lobbying. That costs money (racing overseas for eg), time, effort, persistence. Yes there are instances of locals doing it on their own, and the guys you cite are cases in point. How much backing and silent support do these guys have? England's not a young guy and I assume would have put a lot on the line to achieve a dream. How many guys/girls do go o/s with the hope of making a team, spend a couple of yrs licking the bottom of baked bean cans to get by, and don't make it, not for lack of ability? And as I said D-P is not just about getting riders into a pro-team but about athlete development, using a model that is uncommon. So it's not just about D-P presenting a team to the pro continental circuit, but about the whole package of what D-P is about.

PS you need gt stripes on your red trek :p
 
B

Bleve

Guest
warrwych wrote:

> I only take offense when my posts are broken up in such a way that
> decontextualises statements/sentences thereby changing their meaning or
> intent. I noted in my original post that the news was 2 days old; your
> noting of such appeared dismissive.


I'm sorry if you took that personally.

> Is 5% representation of a nationality in a large race quite a lot?


>From a country where cycling is a small minority sport, I think so,

yes. CSV has I think, 2000-odd licenced racing cyclists this year for
the whole of Victoria, how many footballers, cricketers, basketballers,
soccer players are there?

> How
> many Spanish, Dutch, German, French, Italian etc riders were there?


It's their national sports (or at least, very significant sports
there), of course they'll be well 'represented' (if we have to say that
a rider is representing their country, when they're really representing
themselves).

> don't have figures in front of me, but I would imagine in the greater
> scheme of things, 5% isn't that big a figure. What is interesting is
> that of that 5% they score some big goals, for Australians that is :p


That's a product, I think, of tough local racing, good local coaching
and it being difficult to succeed.

> I don't think the Brits being good at track racing automatically
> translates that well to being a force on the road. I think it simply
> means the Brits are good at track, and know track racing and track
> bikes (with some Australian help by the way).


England has a history of racing on the European continent that is about
as long as ours. For them, it's a lot easier (you can swim to France,
if desperate ...) to get there, to train there etc. And, the Pound is
worth heaps, so they don't tend to have the same money issues.

>
> Regarding riders such as England, Walker et al being "picked up" by
> teams. How does that process occur? By doing the hard work to put on
> the CV and approaching team managers and agents, showing interest in
> joining particular teams, letting teams know you are available.


Of course. With a little help from the Australian tax payer ... (AIS,
VIS etc)

> It's
> less a case of "being discovered" but of hard work getting your face
> out there and known -lobbying. That costs money (racing overseas for
> eg), time, effort, persistence.


You mean not just any lazy bum can walk up to Bjarne and say "Hey, I'll
take Basso's place!"? I've been gypped!

> Yes there are instances of locals doing
> it on their own, and the guys you cite are cases in point. How much
> backing and silent support do these guys have? England's not a young
> guy


He's 20 I think. Maybe 21?

> and I assume would have put a lot on the line to achieve a dream.


Of course. Should it ever be any other way? If everyone could do it,
it'd be no challenge. If everyone was Lance, who'd watch the Tour?

> How many guys/girls do go o/s with the hope of making a team, spend a
> couple of yrs licking the bottom of baked bean cans to get by, and
> don't make it, not for lack of ability?


I don't know, and neither do you, but I'd wager that if they do have
talent, they'll start doing very well either here, or in the amateur
road races in Europe. If they don't have talent and a strong work
ethic, they'll bomb, as they should. I know a couple of people who've
done it, they have interesting stories to tell. Have you read Peiper's
book yet? Spoken to Aaron Salsibury?

> And as I said D-P is not just
> about getting riders into a pro-team but about athlete development,


yep, which is a good thing (as *I* keep saying too!)

> using a model that is uncommon. So it's not just about D-P presenting a
> team to the pro continental circuit, but about the whole package of what
> D-P is about.


Yes, but the 'news' was the 2nd tier licence, not their existence or
reported philosophy.

> PS you need gt stripes on your red trek :p


It's got my name on it, that slows it down enough as it is :)
 
S

Shane Stanley

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
"Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:

> I cite the main players who've been successful in recent history:


....with incredible selectivity. How many events has Basso won for
Discovery so far, for example?

Yes, there have been several polyglot teams. But there have also been
plenty that are mostly from one country, and still others for whom there
is a strong preference for the nationality of the team leader. To
pretend otherwise is delusional.

--
Shane Stanley
 

warrwych

New Member
Jun 7, 2004
1,009
0
0
Bleve said:
warrwych wrote:

> I only take offense when my posts are broken up in such a way that
> decontextualises statements/sentences thereby changing their meaning or
> intent. I noted in my original post that the news was 2 days old; your
> noting of such appeared dismissive.


I'm sorry if you took that personally.

> Is 5% representation of a nationality in a large race quite a lot?


>From a country where cycling is a small minority sport, I think so,

yes. CSV has I think, 2000-odd licenced racing cyclists this year for
the whole of Victoria, how many footballers, cricketers, basketballers,
soccer players are there?

> How
> many Spanish, Dutch, German, French, Italian etc riders were there?


It's their national sports (or at least, very significant sports
there), of course they'll be well 'represented' (if we have to say that
a rider is representing their country, when they're really representing
themselves).

> don't have figures in front of me, but I would imagine in the greater
> scheme of things, 5% isn't that big a figure. What is interesting is
> that of that 5% they score some big goals, for Australians that is :p


That's a product, I think, of tough local racing, good local coaching
and it being difficult to succeed.

> I don't think the Brits being good at track racing automatically
> translates that well to being a force on the road. I think it simply
> means the Brits are good at track, and know track racing and track
> bikes (with some Australian help by the way).


England has a history of racing on the European continent that is about
as long as ours. For them, it's a lot easier (you can swim to France,
if desperate ...) to get there, to train there etc. And, the Pound is
worth heaps, so they don't tend to have the same money issues.

>
> Regarding riders such as England, Walker et al being "picked up" by
> teams. How does that process occur? By doing the hard work to put on
> the CV and approaching team managers and agents, showing interest in
> joining particular teams, letting teams know you are available.


Of course. With a little help from the Australian tax payer ... (AIS,
VIS etc)

> It's
> less a case of "being discovered" but of hard work getting your face
> out there and known -lobbying. That costs money (racing overseas for
> eg), time, effort, persistence.


You mean not just any lazy bum can walk up to Bjarne and say "Hey, I'll
take Basso's place!"? I've been gypped!

> Yes there are instances of locals doing
> it on their own, and the guys you cite are cases in point. How much
> backing and silent support do these guys have? England's not a young
> guy


He's 20 I think. Maybe 21?

> and I assume would have put a lot on the line to achieve a dream.


Of course. Should it ever be any other way? If everyone could do it,
it'd be no challenge. If everyone was Lance, who'd watch the Tour?

> How many guys/girls do go o/s with the hope of making a team, spend a
> couple of yrs licking the bottom of baked bean cans to get by, and
> don't make it, not for lack of ability?


I don't know, and neither do you, but I'd wager that if they do have
talent, they'll start doing very well either here, or in the amateur
road races in Europe. If they don't have talent and a strong work
ethic, they'll bomb, as they should. I know a couple of people who've
done it, they have interesting stories to tell. Have you read Peiper's
book yet? Spoken to Aaron Salsibury?

> And as I said D-P is not just
> about getting riders into a pro-team but about athlete development,


yep, which is a good thing (as *I* keep saying too!)

> using a model that is uncommon. So it's not just about D-P presenting a
> team to the pro continental circuit, but about the whole package of what
> D-P is about.


Yes, but the 'news' was the 2nd tier licence, not their existence or
reported philosophy.

> PS you need gt stripes on your red trek :p


It's got my name on it, that slows it down enough as it is :)


i get your point now re: compared to all the footballers (all codes) , cricketers etc in Australia, to have 5% of the field of the world's most famous bike race is quite a lot. I am not so sure. 10 out of a population of X thousands who ride is not so many (not talking straight CA membership numbers here, just to twist figures in my favour ;) ). What is important about those riders is the regard with which they are held by their teams, and that they do very well against other riders from the local (northern) hemisphere.

the Brits do have ready access to the Euro circuits, but I am not so sure road racing is as strong culturally for them as it is in Australia, due in part to climate.

Is Richard England that young? No way.. Seriously, I thought he was late 20's or so.

agree on all other points, nothing further to add :)

except - didn't realise your name was such a heavy load :p
 
B

Bleve

Guest
warrwych wrote:


> i get your point now re: compared to all the footballers (all codes) ,
> cricketers etc in Australia, to have 5% of the field of the world's
> most famous bike race is quite a lot. I am not so sure. 10 out of a
> population of X thousands who ride is not so many (not talking straight
> CA membership numbers here, just to twist figures in my favour ;) ).


There's not many Chinese riders at the TdF :)

> What is important about those riders is the regard with which they are
> held by their teams, and that they do very well against other riders
> from the local (northern) hemisphere.
>
> the Brits do have ready access to the Euro circuits, but I am not so
> sure road racing is as strong culturally for them as it is in
> Australia, due in part to climate.


I dunno, I read an interesting book on the history of British racing
cycling 'one more kilometer and we're in the showers', which did talk
about a tradition of road time trials a lot.

>
> Is Richard England that young? No way.. Seriously, I thought he was
> late 20's or so.


No, he was a kid when I started racing (which isn't all that long ago!)

>
> agree on all other points, nothing further to add :)
>
> except - didn't realise your name was such a heavy load :p


heh :)

Are you going to come and do a few of the BBN track races? Small
fields, well behaved .... even I manage to feel safe in the bunches!
 
B

Bleve

Guest
Shane Stanley wrote:

> In article <[email protected]>,
> "Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> > I cite the main players who've been successful in recent history:

>
> ...with incredible selectivity. How many events has Basso won for
> Discovery so far, for example?


None, but he did win a few for CSC, which is a US registered team with
a Danish DS.

> Yes, there have been several polyglot teams. But there have also been
> plenty that are mostly from one country, and still others for whom there
> is a strong preference for the nationality of the team leader. To
> pretend otherwise is delusional.


The *successful* teams of late have almost all been very mixed, with
team leaders often (except US-P/Disco with Lance) being from a
different country than the team registration etc. I'm not talking about
the alsorans (Euskatel, Bouyges telecom etc)
 
T

Theo Bekkers

Guest
Bleve wrote:
> warrwych wrote:


>> the Brits do have ready access to the Euro circuits, but I am not so
>> sure road racing is as strong culturally for them as it is in
>> Australia, due in part to climate.

>
> I dunno, I read an interesting book on the history of British racing
> cycling 'one more kilometer and we're in the showers', which did talk
> about a tradition of road time trials a lot.


British racing was influenced by their laws which, mostly, prohibited racing
on public roads. I worked with a guy who rode with a club in England, and
then Ireland, many years ago. The Police would come down hard on bunches of
cyclists sitting nose to tail on the roads. Individual riders on a time
trial were not bothered by the rozzers, as conviction was difficult.

For some reason the coppers in England thought it was dangerous for bunches
of cyclists to go flat out on public roads, ignoring minor inconveniences,
such as traffic lights and stop signs. The law considered that racing should
be done on closed circuits. :)
And there was serious enforcement.

Theo
 
S

Shane Stanley

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
"Bleve" <[email protected]> wrote:

> The *successful* teams of late have almost all been very mixed, with
> team leaders often (except US-P/Disco with Lance) being from a
> different country than the team registration etc. I'm not talking about
> the alsorans (Euskatel, Bouyges telecom etc)


So poor Tom Boonen is an also-ran...

--
Shane Stanley