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  1. #1
    don d.
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    Tyler Hamilton Rider of the Year

    Cyclingnews.com's readers have voted Tyler their Rider of the Year. I like this choice. He did the unexpected over and over again, and he presented himself as an all around good guy , class act, and a stand up guy. Kudos Tyler.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/...ds03/?id=rider

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    I thought that was a cool reward but I did think it was sort of discusting to see Hamilton outvote riders like Cipollini, Ullrich, Zabel, Bettini, and Pantani for "Legend of Cycling".

  3. #3
    don d.
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    Tyler a Legend?

    Quote Originally Posted by brent_dube
    I thought that was a cool reward but I did think it was sort of discusting to see Hamilton outvote riders like Cipollini, Ullrich, Zabel, Bettini, and Pantani for "Legend of Cycling".
    I didn't see this "Legend of Cycling" voting so I really don't know what it was based on. It's true the riders you've mentioned, with the possible exception of Pantani who is more notorious than legendary, all have more victories, longer careers, more commendations.

    But if the word is taken literally, I know of few "Legends" in cycling. Eddy Merckx for the shear magnitude of his dominance of the sport in his day, then lesser legends, Classics and Tour heroics, the recently discussed ride over Gavia by Hampsten, Francisco Moser's hat-trick in Paris Roubaix, perhaps Cipollini and Zabel for their dominance of their area of the sport.

    But if we are to look back from a point 20 years from now, will we see Tyler's courageous ride as "Legendary"? Will that single 3 week period in the TDF 2003 where he rode 3 weeks with a broken collarbone when everyone was encouraging him to stop, even winning a stage, be considered legendary, more legendary than all Zabel's wins? Maybe, maybe not, but you have to admit it was the stuff of legend.

    Why is it legendary? Because it stands in sharp contrast to the norm, color against the black and white of the mere great successes. I think we will see Greg LeMond's return from near death and Lance Armstrong's return from cancer in the same way. Why? Because they rose above all expectations to achieve what seemed impossible. This is why Tom Simpson is "legend". A Brit on the continent, succeed against all odds, dieing to do it.

    I don't want to get to ethereal or philosophical, but legend is the stuff that we fill our souls with, the stuff that changes how we live our lives. Tyler's courageous will to succeed is that kind of stuff. If you let it inspire you in your day to day life, it can change you. When adversity comes, you will give more than less; when pain comes you will see the prize rather than the pain. If you agree with that definition, can you say that Cipollini's career, taken as a whole has inspired you to become something beyond what you might normally be? I know Tyler's 2003 tour ride into history, the stuff of legend, did that for me.

    Sports legends-Jim Cunningham, the miler; Ted Williams, the pilot who returned to the field; Maurice Herzog on Annapurna; these legends are based on some added pathos, some life defining events or event that rose above the mundane athletic to the heroic. Add your own legend in. Usually it is something that moves you as a person. It is powerful, no matter it's duration or repetition or lack thereof.

  4. #4
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    I agree with Don. No matter what Tyler does the rest of his career, his ride in the 2003 TDF will itself be seen as legendary.

    I was disturbed by how the results of all of the Cycling News year-end polls revolved around the TDF and American riders. It's almost as if U.S. bike racing "fans" have trouble naming any riders who are not American or races where no American rider won. Ulrich, Vino and Heras being exceptions.

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    I know what you mean about US fans focusing on US racers, Im surprised lance didnt win for best female cyclist too!
    "Training is what Iím doing while my opponents are sleeping in."- Bill Robertson

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    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TriDevil
    I know what you mean about US fans focusing on US racers, Im surprised lance didnt win for best female cyclist too!
    and cyclocrosser...

    i remember, during tour, when beloki crashed, phil and paul made a big noise about how armstrong does cyclo-cross in the off-season, by way of explaining his bike handling skills.

    don't get me wrong... for the most part i really enjoy phil and paul, but armstrong's involvement in cyclocross is sporadic to say the most. just a symptom of the lancecandoanything mentality.

    i would have liked to see the cyclingnews poll a little less dominated by americans, but what can you do... it's an english-language site...
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  7. #7
    bac
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    Quote Originally Posted by TriDevil
    I know what you mean about US fans focusing on US racers, Im surprised lance didnt win for best female cyclist too!
    While you are, of course, correct - you left out one valuable fact. ALL NATIONS DO THIS! It's purely human nature to back those whom you perceive to be most like you. Call it nationalism, or call it whatever youíd like, itís common to all. My point is that itís not specific to the United States.

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    human velocipedio's Avatar
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    with all due respect, i do think that americans tend to be a bit more enthusiastic about it. chants of "u-s-a! u-s-a!" are overwhelming at almost every international sporting event. you don't hear people chanting "france, france" or "belgique, belgique." moreover, the american media tends to focus on american athletes to exclusion of all else, no matter how mediocre [or how gifted, for that matter] they might be.

    cycling coverage in the u.s. is pretty good, but if you watch the coverage of other international events, like the olympics, you'd think that the world of sports consisted entirely of heroic americans.

    yes, most people tend to root for their countryment [though i'd have to disagree that :nationalism" is "human nature"] and that's okay. i just think that tridevil and brent_dube are reacting to a certain excess on the part of their countrymen.
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    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    It's not really about nationalism in sports. It's more about knowledge of things outside of your border. Americans are notoriously ignorant about non-american things. There are people who honesly believe that American football is the most popular sport in the world and that the Super Bowl is the most watched sporting event.

    So it's natural that your average viewer in the U.S. has trouble naming any riders besides Lance and Tyler. The only reason that Jan is in their vocabulary is because of his rivalry with Lance. When a race features no Americans, people just don't care. Look what happens to this board after the Tour.

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    Also, our Olympic and other sports coverage isn't brought to us by the BBC and Peugout. It is brought to us by U.S. companies appealing to a U.S. buying audience. The minute the commentators started going on about the Europeans or the Afticans or Asians, etc., they would promptly hear from those who pay for all of this. The guys who bring us the advertising. At $300K and up, per minute, I would want my audience appealled to first, as well.

    Having attended two of LA's TdF wins ('99 & '03 and will also attend '04), I can assure you that I saw just as many flags and shouting and carrying-on for the Spanish riders and the Italian riders and whatever as I did for LA. In fact, I don't recall a single painted LA supporter in red, white and blue livery. But I do recall many in the orange of the Netherlands, green of Italy, etc. So we all do it and I would say about equally.

    The problem with what we watch is that is brought to us by those who wish to appeal to a U.S., or in the case of OLN, North American audience. And that is what we are going to get.

    Go Lance!!! And Tyler and Julich and Leipheimer and Danielson and Rodriguez and all riders from the U.S.!!! Believe we will be seventeen strong in the TdF this year. Best ever. And I hope that they all win.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    Look what happens to this board after the Tour.
    They talked about the Vuelta?

  12. #12
    I am a lonely visitor RegularGuy's Avatar
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    It takes nothing away from the accomplishments of any other rider to say that Lance is a five time winner of the TdF, or that Tyler's season, and especially his performance in the TdF was amazing. I will be interested to see what Tyler does this year as leader of Phonak, with a team recruited specifically to support him.

    I have observed that the Basques show a level of regional pride that rivals American nationalism.

    And the French do seem to like their national riders.

    In fact, there are quite a few national flags being waved in the crowds lining the Tour de France route.

    I will confess to being more obsessive about the Tour than other races. I follow the others, but not as closely. I really only have time to obsess over one grand Tour per year, so it might as well be the grandest. It isn't just because of American winners, though. I followed the Tour before Mr. Armstrong ever competed.
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  13. #13
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brent_dube
    They talked about the Vuelta?
    No. Half the people disapeared not to be seen again until the 2004 tDF.

    Look at the Paris-Tours thread. One response.
    Last edited by Laggard; 01-03-04 at 04:29 PM.

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    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RegularGuy
    .
    I have observed that the Basques show a level of regional pride that rivals American nationalism.
    .
    But the Basque fans are knowledgeable about more than just Basque riders. That's the difference.

  15. #15
    I am a lonely visitor RegularGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    But the Basque fans are knowledgeable about more than just Basque riders. That's the difference.
    This is true. There are more American fans of Lance than fans of cycling.
    Religion is a good thing for good people and a bad thing for bad people. --H. Richard Niebuhr

  16. #16
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Not just sports.

    cycling coverage in the u.s. is pretty good, but if you watch the coverage of other international events, like the olympics, you'd think that the world of sports consisted entirely of heroic americans.


    Velo..Maybe try to understand..Our media stinks. We watch the international media outlets through our satellite. Not just sports, American media ignores the rest of the world most of the time...Unless, some event draws attention to it.
    Watch a German news outlet, ( comes in English, once a day.) it is possible to know what is going on in Paraguay, should you watch it regularily..
    Please try to understand..We are the product of our media. How can you understand ther rest of the world if you ignore it.
    I agree excessive nationalism is bad whether it is German, American, Mexican, whatever. That being said, the determination of Tyler. I think he is a bit more than mediocre. Certainly determined is an correct adjective.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    No. Half the people disapeared not to be seen again until the 2004 tDF.

    Look at the Paris-Tours thread. One response.
    That is because Paris-Tours sucks

    Heck, Merckx didn't even win it


  18. #18
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Ok. The Tour Of Lombardy thread had two responses.

    I dare anyone call that a suckass race.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    Ok. The Tour Of Lombardy thread had two responses.

    I dare anyone call that a suckass race.
    'Nobody told me it existed before it happened.'

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    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Dude, you gotta keep up on this stuff.

    Well, you don't have to. You should though.

  21. #21
    Senior Member roadwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    It's not really about nationalism in sports. It's more about knowledge of things outside of your border. Americans are notoriously ignorant about non-american things. There are people who honesly believe that American football is the most popular sport in the world and that the Super Bowl is the most watched sporting event.

    So it's natural that your average viewer in the U.S. has trouble naming any riders besides Lance and Tyler. The only reason that Jan is in their vocabulary is because of his rivalry with Lance. When a race features no Americans, people just don't care. Look what happens to this board after the Tour.
    The "average viewer" does not watch cycling.

    They watch the NFL and NASCAR.

    I like it that way.
    "Nothing is so typical of middling minds than to harp on the intellectual deficiencies of the slightly less smart, but considerably more successful."
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    Senior Member roadwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    cycling coverage in the u.s. is pretty good, but if you watch the coverage of other international events, like the olympics, you'd think that the world of sports consisted entirely of heroic americans.


    Velo..Maybe try to understand..Our media stinks. We watch the international media outlets through our satellite. Not just sports, American media ignores the rest of the world most of the time...Unless, some event draws attention to it.
    Watch a German news outlet, ( comes in English, once a day.) it is possible to know what is going on in Paraguay, should you watch it regularily..
    Please try to understand..We are the product of our media. How can you understand ther rest of the world if you ignore it.
    I agree excessive nationalism is bad whether it is German, American, Mexican, whatever. That being said, the determination of Tyler. I think he is a bit more than mediocre. Certainly determined is an correct adjective.
    I can watch European soccer on ESPN. I have been watching the "Cup winners cup" tournament for some time.
    For MLS fans, most of the players are foreign.
    Baseball, for years has had foreign players. Dominican, Venezualean, now Japanese. People still watch.
    If the American media is ignoring the rest of the world, please 'splain why when I am watching Fox News that 3 out of 4 correspondents are not in the US reporting news. At my last count.
    I lived in Europe. They report on sports like soccer, track, cycling, cricket...I had to buy the International Herlad Tribune to get scores from the US. Or find CNN. Politically, yes they pay attention to the US. There is a reason for that.
    I lived in Belgium...they pay attention, mostly, to Museeuw, Verbrugghe, VDB, and the rest fall in behind. It matters not where you live, your own always come first.
    "Nothing is so typical of middling minds than to harp on the intellectual deficiencies of the slightly less smart, but considerably more successful."
    Bret Stephens, WSJ

  23. #23
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Warrior.

    Quote Originally Posted by roadwarrior
    I can watch European soccer on ESPN. I have been watching the "Cup winners cup" tournament for some time.
    For MLS fans, most of the players are foreign.
    Baseball, for years has had foreign players. Dominican, Venezualean, now Japanese. People still watch.
    If the American media is ignoring the rest of the world, please 'splain why when I am watching Fox News that 3 out of 4 correspondents are not in the US reporting news. At my last count.
    I lived in Europe. They report on sports like soccer, track, cycling, cricket...I had to buy the International Herlad Tribune to get scores from the US. Or find CNN. Politically, yes they pay attention to the US. There is a reason for that.
    I lived in Belgium...they pay attention, mostly, to Museeuw, Verbrugghe, VDB, and the rest fall in behind. It matters not where you live, your own always come first.
    Of course each country carries stories of its own.. But, I am half Canadian. Half my family is from Canada. Grew up near the Canadian border. I watched mostly CBC...Covered more depth about US stories than ABC,CBS,etc..
    We get 15 minutes of ads, 10 minutes of fluff speical interest kind of crap, and about 1 minute of in depth analysis.
    Living deep within the US, I rarely get my news from US networks.. I watch BBC, Link, German news, a European news network with English broadcast. I know I get more analysis, depth and I am better for it..

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    Please try to understand..We are the product of our media.
    What a sad but true statement. Ideally wouldn't it be the other way around?

    -s

  25. #25
    don d.
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    Quote Originally Posted by slider
    What a sad but true statement. Ideally wouldn't it be the other way around?

    -s
    It is the other way around.

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