has american cycling finally arrived?

Discussion in 'Professional Cycling' started by longanecker4, Jul 9, 2003.

  1. longanecker4

    longanecker4 New Member

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    one of the proudest days EVER for american cycling! certainly the most memorable for an american team... don't even try to discount this ride by the americans as a fluke or as the result of so many "foreign" riders on the team. this is ligit baby!!! finally usp beats once!!! finally the american-based TEAM shines in a tour where only individual americans have thrived!!! incredible! historic! yes!!!!!!:D
     
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  2. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    I think if there's a country that should be proud, it must be Australia.
    We are only 4 days into the Tour and they have worn Yellow, Green and White.
     
  3. claggy

    claggy New Member

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    there is no doubt that american cycling is getting better and better . but us postal is an american based team not a team full of americans is it . well done to them though they are by far the best prepared team , they deserved that win ....................and they certainly were not lucky.

    australian cycling is also really booming , with 7 riders (would have been 8 if not for the unfortunate evans) not only that they are also mostly competitive .

    what is the media coverage of cycling like in your countries?
     
  4. Tour de Lance

    Tour de Lance New Member

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    i live in switzerland and the media coverage is very good.they show tour de france everyday LIVE (i watch it on eurosport though) and papers write everyday of it,but in my native country (Italy) the media coverage was much better cos u know we have lots of riders and lots of tradition in cycling.
     
  5. longanecker4

    longanecker4 New Member

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    yes vo2... certainly the aussies should lead the tour in nationialistic pride. i envy the fact that austrailia has embraced cycling unlike america... here, the media reports results, but they are truly uninformed and do not understand the dynamics of the peleton (oh, and they ONLY report on lance). they say things like, "lance STILL fails to lead the tour today, and he is being beaten by his own teamate!"... wow, how ignorant our press is of this great sport. i have to say that the enthusiasm i had when i began this thread is only the result of seeing the "team aspect" of cycling portrayed on our televisions. overall, it is hard to be an american cycling fan, because our sports fans usually know little more than the NBA, NFL, and MLB... cycling is baffling to most americans and to our sports media...

    o.k. now i'm really depressed! :p ... by the way, my apologies for the name calling on the lucifierion thread.
     
  6. DiabloScott

    DiabloScott New Member

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    Vo2 ArchAngel said:

    "I think if there's a country that should be proud, it must be Australia. We are only 4 days into the Tour and they have worn Yellow, Green and White."

    Yeah - good job Australia. We should get some of you guys on our team since you don't have one of your own. We don't need any sprinters though, just climbers and time trialers.
     
  7. Shabby

    Shabby New Member

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    I'm surprised noone has mentioned that the "American" team only has three Yanks in it.

    By that logic, FDJ can be classified as an Aussie team as well and USPS can be classified as Spanish.
     
  8. claggy

    claggy New Member

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    which is why im delighted liverpool have signed harry kewell.

    the ausie sportsmen are always the ones to look up to , they seem to have confidence and determination that in general is lacked by other sporting nations. its a big complement coming from someone who lives in england by the way , a country used to regular sporting defeats at the hands of the ausies.

    having said all that you cant knock the determination of guys like tyler and lance.
     
  9. DiabloScott

    DiabloScott New Member

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    Seriously, the really great thing about having an American team in the Tour and other Euro events is that an American sponsor and several co-sponsors have realized that the sport has enough appeal to American fans that they're willing to pay the big dollars to be a part of it. That will lead the way for more sponsors and more teams when Lance is no longer around and USPS decides they've had enough.

    Now that the Aussies have had plenty of well-deserved success maybe some Australian companies will make the same decision and we'll see some Australian sponsors of teams that have a multi-national roster riding the big races.
     
  10. 2WheelsGood

    2WheelsGood New Member

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    I've always had a bit of a hard time with the country pride thing, especially with American cyclists.

    Let's face it; if a racer from the US is successful in European racing, it isn't because he's American--it's in SPITE of the fact that he's American.

    With the exception of a few select areas in this country, by and large the US is not a cycling-friendly place to live.

    To be a successful racer here is almost a matter of survival. Aside from the fact that the rest of the country looks at this sport like it's a freak show, training on the roads in most parts of the US is a suicide mission. You want to see how well America supports its cyclists? Let's do a quick check... raise your hand if you live in the US and get hassled from motorists on almost a daily basis. I see a lot of hands.

    And on top of all that, where do these successful American pros live for most of their racing season? Europe.

    Perhaps I'm partly bitter because of all the flag waving I see from Americans who wouldn't even know who Lance Armstrong is if it wasn't for his cancer story. But now, suddenly, because they know who he is they feel some strange pride in the fact that he's American.

    My point: being American is far more of a handicap to being a great cyclist than it is an advantage.

    But aside from that, I do still love this country. :cool:
     
  11. i2ambler

    i2ambler New Member

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    Well, I dont get hassled on a daily basis.. However, one out of every 3 times an idiot will yell slanderous remarks or honk. I dont get the honking.. as if I am supposed to get out of the way, when I am riding 4 inches or less from the curb.. owell..
     
  12. longanecker4

    longanecker4 New Member

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    by the way... i'm not one of "those" americans who wouldn't know of lance unless his story was so big. i raced against lance on several occasions from 1990 to 1992 (both cycling and triathlon)... so yeah, i'm proud of him and i'm proud for american cycling. even if the support from the "uneducated" american sports fan is superficial at best, this is still the greatest moment for u.s. cycling, hands down. don't be such a cynic!:confused:
     
  13. Seraphim

    Seraphim New Member

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    My congratulations for the Australians...:)

    They definitively manage to show themselves!
     
  14. Feanor

    Feanor New Member

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    In general I agree with many of your points, but it is still wrong to completely lump the entire country into a single stereotype concerning cycling and respect of cyclists on the road.

    I think the same thing happens when people make comments like "The French hate Lance Armstrong because he is an American spoiling the purity of their sport" When in fact, people who have actually been to France and observed reactions to Lance (particularly recently) report that he has a grand following and garners tremendous respect and even rampant fandom in France...

    It might be another case of the malcontents getting the big press... You know, like someone burning a picture of Lance and waving a french flag having the cameras on him, when just to the side of that fan are 500 more cheering him on...

    I JUST started road cycling very recently in the Joe-Average suburb of San Francisco that I live in... People here give me a very wide berth as they drive by and have, at least so far, slowed to make sure I was clear before turns etc...

    And of course, a most memorable event in my extremely short cycling career is found here :)

    http://www.cyclingforums.com/t33801.html

    I think that what you might deem as animosity, and a need for cycling survival, might actually be an unfortunate mix of bad luck, and unfamiliarity with the sport. Both of which can change fairly easily over time compared to things such as racial prejudices etc...

    I think that the general perception in this country of how Lance is viewed negatively in Europe is incorrect, and I think that the perception of cyclists in this country is also not as negative as it might seem...

    Have a good one!

    Feanor
     
  15. Seraphim

    Seraphim New Member

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    Hey, I’ve got a question especially for Americans:

    Of course it’s interesting to debate whether American question is arrived, and of course you can derive that answer from the success American cycling pro’s have, but what I’m more interested in is this:

    I think for a country to REALLY have any success, especially in the future,is in the “backbone” of that sport in a specific country: the structure of American (in this case) cycling, both professional and amateuristic/ youth cycling.

    Can anybody tell me, or give me some information about the “structure” in America?
    How many races for professionals are there in the USA (I know there are at least a couple), and how many for amateurs? How many professional teams are there, and how many Americans in those teams?
    And how is “youth cycling” organized? Is it, just as basketball, baseball etc., concentrated around the high schools and coleges/ universities or is ther another structure for cycling (like amateur cycling teams, etc.)?

    Anybody? :)
     
  16. longanecker4

    longanecker4 New Member

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    seraphim-
    american cycling STILL isn't as organized for youth cyclists as it is in most european countries. here, the united states cycling federation puts on junior-level races, but race organization is left primarily up to individual event organizers (and therefore events are very sporadic and inconsistent).

    as far as pro teams and pro events... again, these are left to individual race organizers and then associated with the uscf. there aren't many international events that attract big european (and other foreign) pros. there have been several attempts to get this sort of racing in the us (i.e., hell of the west, tour de trump, tour du pont, etc.) but it has been for the most part unsuccessful. sponsors typically fall through after a couple of years of low fan turnout and general lack of american enthusiasm.

    young rider development is getting better but VERY SLOWLY. i started racing in highschool (1986), but there was no support from the school. everything i did was on my own with only my parents to support me. when i got to college, other sports were dominant (primarily football in texas). the university i attended was typical to most other major universities in the u.s.. it had what they called "club" cycling, but it was not what was referred to as a "varsity" or "scholarship" sport (all funding was independent or from business sponsors). the racing was competitive, but if i wanted to gain any respect i had to race uscf events along w/my college racing. the collegiate racing is administrated by the united states cycling federation, but few (if any) universities are offering "real" scholarship opportunities for talented cyclists.

    all-in-all, american cycling hasn't "arrived" (as i opened this thread question). it is not as well organized or as respected as the team sports in the u.s. (i.e., football, baskteball, baseball). americans just don't get it, and it drives me crazy! if americans really watched what this sport is all about (e.g, this year's tour), i think they would begin to appreciate what cycling is really all about... until then, please advise if you have any ideas. hope i answered your questions.
     
  17. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs Guest

    Kinda' off on a tangent but as an erudite American, I'd like to see pool/billiards and chess receive the same amount of media coverage as the TDF. Football and basketball, yeeeech!
     
  18. Seraphim

    Seraphim New Member

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    WOW,
    enough information, longanecker4! :)

    Sad to hear that cyclists like you have to "fight against windmills' (Don Quichote) so much...

    I know a little about the sports system in the States, and I think you will also know that everything is totally different in Europe (not based on the schools, but on amateur/ professional clubs/ teams).
    But…are there ANY chances for individual teams/ clubs to organize something in the States (outside the school system)? Amateur cycling teams for instance?

    Otherwise I think it’s gonna be a long trail for the American cycling fans…
    I don’t think there’s a lot space for cycling on the colleges/ universities (look how tough it is for soccer to achieve some real success).

    Still...thanks for the information!
     
  19. matt_ttu

    matt_ttu New Member

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    cycling is not a NCAA sponsered sport. There are college leagues, based regionallt for both road and mt cycling. the one i know about is the Southeastern collegiate cycling conference.(SECCC) that organizes college races through out the southern states.

    There are also amateur races that are regionally supported. Using a Catageory system to rank riders against other riders with the same amount of racing expereince.

    THere are all kinds of clubs in nearlly ever american city, with some sponsering races or at least a few one day centuries a year.
     
  20. longanecker4

    longanecker4 New Member

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    to be truthful, the club teams in the u.s. are the only source of riders for u.s. cycling. if someone is to be discovered, they will "category up" into higher level of racing until they are able to race professionally. however, american professionals (w/the exception of the few riders in europe) can make only a pauper's living at best if they race solely here in the states. if they want to make professional cycling a lifestyle, they must move to europe.

    unfortunally, because american culture is so "pop" based, an enduring, sometimes tedious sport like cycling just flops. americans want team contact sports that yield immediate grattification in terms of drama. they are too impatient for a sport like cycling where races often take hours or even days to develop a plot. until the culture changes, i am affraid cycling will never gain the respect it will need to be truly successful in the states.

    it's is nice to know, though, that others around the world are willing to even ask questions regarding america's view of cycling. hopefully the rest of the world doesn't despise us for our lack of sporting culture.

    later- longanecker4
     
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