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  1. #1
    Announcer EventServices's Avatar
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    Best Race you ever saw LIVE

    Not counting the Tour. That's a different animal.
    I'm talking live American racing.

    OK, here's mine.

    The Brick Criterium - Athens Ohio - 1993 (?)

    Coors Light dominates American scene all summer while Subaru-Montgomery focused on European campaing.

    The two teams finally face off on the brick streets of Athens.... in a DOWNPOUR!

    Chaos in the first five laps. Coors Light takes off while Subaru gets a shoddy start. Almost immediately, Coors Light has three guys in the lead group. Subaru-Mongomery has three guys more than 1/2 lap down. Everyone else is of little consequence as there's no defined field, and no one who can match the big guns.

    The race looks to be over after 7 laps. Pfft. Big deal. Let's eat.

    Slowly but steadily throughout the next 50 laps, the three guys from S-M begin to catch up. Remember, the've been riding on cobbles all summer.

    After a frantic chase, they finally make contact with the lead group with two laps to go. The crowd... bored at first... is now on fire. A crash in the final turn takes out Gaggioli.

    Nate Reiss wins it for Subaru Montgomery.

    I think. It's been so long, I'm not 100% sure. It might have been Darren Baker.

    Still, the best race I ever saw.

  2. #2
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    World Cycling Championships, 1986 Colorado Springs. Road races on killer course at US Air Force Academy, track events at the smooth and fine 7-11 Velodrome. Elevation 6400 ft.
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  3. #3
    On Your Right ZackJones's Avatar
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    One of the most memorable was during the Tour of Texas in the late 80's. I don't remember the team he was riding for at the time but Alexi Graywall was in the overall lead going into the final stage which was a criterium in Austin. Either his team or he below up and he ended up losing the lead. Once he realized he had lost the overall lead he started ripping the leader jersey off of his back. He put on quite a show that day

  4. #4
    Senior Member Olyroller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZackJones
    One of the most memorable was during the Tour of Texas in the late 80's. I don't remember the team he was riding for at the time but Alexi Graywall was in the overall lead going into the final stage which was a criterium in Austin. Either his team or he below up and he ended up losing the lead. Once he realized he had lost the overall lead he started ripping the leader jersey off of his back. He put on quite a show that day
    Wasn't it Alexi who got off his bike at the finish line of a race to win and did the mash potatoe carring his bike ?

  5. #5
    Announcer EventServices's Avatar
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    That was the Morgul-Bismarck stage in the Coors Classic in 1985? The exact year might require some research.
    In the second most famous cycling movie, American Flyers, 'David' carries his bike across the M-B line just under the time cut. That scene was supposed to be a take-off/homage to Alexi doing his thing. So we know it predates the movie by a couple of years.

    Alexi rode for Denver Spoke, Crest, 7-Eleven, Coors Light. That I know of. Not sure which jersey he ripped off, but I wanna say it was 7-11. I'd hafta make a quick phone call to verify that one, too.

  6. #6
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EventServices
    That was the Morgul-Bismarck stage in the Coors Classic in 1985? The exact year might require some research.
    In the second most famous cycling movie, American Flyers, 'David' carries his bike across the M-B line just under the time cut. That scene was supposed to be a take-off/homage to Alexi doing his thing. So we know it predates the movie by a couple of years.

    Alexi rode for Denver Spoke, Crest, 7-Eleven, Coors Light. That I know of. Not sure which jersey he ripped off, but I wanna say it was 7-11. I'd hafta make a quick phone call to verify that one, too.
    I think that was 1984
    Those voices in your head aren't real, but they have some great ideas

  7. #7
    Hardtail WorldWind's Avatar
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    1986 Cats Hill in Los Gatos Ca.


    or was it Repack in 76?


    toss up.

  8. #8
    Member climbo's Avatar
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    Philly US Pro is always great for atmosphere. Didn't see many others, the UCI MTB World Cup in Napa was pretty sweet though!

    Next week though, UCI Track World Cup in Sydney (the one in Australia, not America) should offer some serious action !

  9. #9
    El Diablo 2Rodies's Avatar
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    '91 Redlands Classic. I was working as a camera operator for a company that filmed the race. I got to do one day in helecopter and that was very cool. We got to hang out with the riders an really had a great time.

  10. #10
    Senior Member JoeOxfordCT's Avatar
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    I know, I didn't see it live..................but

    TDF 2001 - The Look, Alpe D'Huez.....

    I remember seeing it for the first time on the OLN replay the night after it happened.....It was a statement of pure power. It gave me goosebumps, literally

    He stood up and rode away from one of the world's best cyclists like he was standing still.

    After that he sucked up a 6:00 lead by Laurent Roux within a couple kilometers and then dropped him like a bad habit.

    I just got the TDF 2001 on DVD to ride rollers to this winter. I watch that stage a couple times a month now...or at least til Spring. Never fails to impress me....I try to match his cadence riding rollers, me having been riding for 30-60 minutes, he having climbed several hors category mountains before even getting to the final climb. He spins like a madman and keeps jumping out of the saddle over & over again, by himself.

    I know there are alot of people who are sick of Lance, of hearing about him and doping allegations....etc.
    But he's my guy, when I want to get motivated to go spin in my dark, unheated garage on a cold February morning in Connecticut, he's my guy.

    J.

  11. #11
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    I was about 600' from the finish of stage 3 of the '04 Tour de Georgia. Everyone was surprised to see Lance Armstrong out sprint everyone else in a flat stage feild sprint!
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  12. #12
    Ink-Stained Wretch pinky's Avatar
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    Not as big as the races you folks have mentioned, but the final race of the New England Verge Cyclocross series, in the U23 race Jesse Anthony needed to place one rider ahead of Matt White to win the series. To make things interesting Jeremy Powers from Jelly Belly had come back from Belgium, and had a point to make. Jeremy starts beating on the field like a bat out of hell right from the gun, and only Mark McCormack and Jesse Anthony manage to hang on, Jesse needing to beat Jeremy to win. Things stay right on the edge till the last lap, where in the last turn with Jesse and Jeremy neck and neck, Jeremy crashes and Jesse won the title. It was insane.

  13. #13
    Senior Member roadwarrior's Avatar
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    1975 Tour de France. I was living in Belgium and it should have been Eddy's sixth win. The Prologue was in Charleroi and the crowds were gigantic. They rode to Molenbeek the next day, then out of Belgium to Roubaix on day 3. In those days, during the stage there were radio updates every hour and then they showed the last 50 or so kilometers in TV, live. The whole country came to a standstill at that point...

    Eddy was in yellow and then the fan jumped out at the finish at the Puy de Dome and punched Eddy in the gut and actually did liver damage....he was never the same after that.

    Finished second to Thevenet....I saw several stages.

    Made me real nervous last summer with Lance going for his sixth....had that fan not hit Eddy, he would have won six 30 years ago.....

    1976, saw my favorite rider, Lucien Van Impe, the perennial KOM, finally win a Tour.

    Some of the best races I ever saw, I rode in....Somerville, Bound Brook, stuff like that...

  14. #14
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    1984 Olympics - Grewal beating Bauer in the sprint finish and the women finishing 1-2 earlier in the day..

    Me and friends camped out at a park to watch the race, of course sprinklers came on in the middle of the night..

  15. #15
    Photog Extraordinaire Crack'n'fail's Avatar
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    Tour De Georgia, don't remember stage number.

    Climb to Brasstown Bald, everyone is waiting for the big battle between Armstrong and Vogt. They get it but not until local star Cesar Grajales (spelling?) from Jittery Joe's attacks on the steepest pitch of the climb to go ahead for the stage win.

  16. #16
    Coastal NC oneradtec's Avatar
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    Bostick versus McCarthy in the individual pursuit on the track at the 1996 Olympic Trials in Trexlertown, PA. Bostick was 43 years old and riding for a small domestic road team. McCarthy was world champion and riding the US national team's superbike. Bostick had a day job and McCarthy was fully supported by US National team..and he simply trained, ate, slept and received massages..****us he was in his twenties and wearing the rainbow jersey. It was a foregone conclusion that McCarthy would get an easy win and advance to the Olympic games.

    Comparing split times during the race..the crowd senses that the race is tight! Everyone is going crazy. Bostick's coach is going nuts as he shouts out his split times to Bostick. Bostick pulls off the upset and goes to the Olympic games at age 43. McCarthy is shattered by his defeat.

    I wasn't there..but I saw it on TV and I was going nuts like everyone else there in Trexlertown. Bostick was one of my heroes after that race.

  17. #17
    Junior Member Kiricjark's Avatar
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    Mine was back in 1980 or '81. It was The Coors Classic stage in Nevada City/Grass Valley, CA. It had Greg Lemond and Eric Heiden as the only names I knew at the time. I would say it was the "best" for me because that event is what inspired me to become a cyclist instead of just having a bike to get around like everyone else where I lived.

  18. #18
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    Compared to racing in one yourself, watching a bike race live is like watching grass grow. I much more prefer to see it on TV because they show so much more than just that nanosecond of when the racers speed by you.
    dekkerfan

  19. #19
    Announcer EventServices's Avatar
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    You're kidding, right?

    You're entitled to your opinion, but I disagree completely.


    I could list a million, but here are a couple that seemed pretty unlikely to be earth-stopping in their excitement, yet they were indeed crazy.
    Fitchburg Longsjo in 1996....the time trial was amazing.
    USPRo Championships in 1993....stellar.
    Wendy's International in 2001....breathtaking.
    Blue Ash Dash in 1989..... it was a steady crescendo to the last lap.

    TV can't capture that.

    You gotta be patient and pay attention to the subtle stuff.

  20. #20
    The Recycled Cycler markwebb's Avatar
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    I saw the Stetna's from Indy in a race in Louisville KY in 1970's A youngster named Steve Bauer was also in the race. The Canadian won, but the Stettna's father was in one of the official cars trailing the leaders and protested the finish - claiming Bauer cut off/impeded his son. The officials moved Bauer to second or third - I can't remember. Bauer went on to a much more successful professional career - I guess in Euro pro circuit they did not have much tolerance for parents in official cars !

  21. #21
    Descends Like Avalanche HigherGround's Avatar
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    I was on the Ben Franklin Parkway during the 1993 USPRO Championships. Lance (Armstrong, in case anyone has forgotten his last name ) had already won two of the three legs of the Thrift Drug Triple Crown. If Lance won the USPRO Championships, which were the third and final leg of the series, he'd also win $1 million dollars. The race organizers had a big screen TV on the Parkway, so I could watch the final lap and the grind up the 16% Manayunk Wall. Lance broke away with a few other riders, then dropped the breakaway to ride solo to the finish. It was a truly awesome display for a first year pro, and a foreshadowing of things to come...
    The rider in my avatar is David Etxebarria, not me.

  22. #22
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    I really enjoy going to the Downers Grove National Criterium Championships every year. It is a lot of great fun, and you get the chance to see our local heroes and our American cyclists in action. I go and set up in the same place every year on the first day and stay until the very end every time. It's some of the most exciting racing I remember seeing.

    Koffee

  23. #23
    Senior Member sewupnut's Avatar
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    The old Coors Classic - Washington Park Crit in 1984. I think La vie Claire was over here for that one. My wife left me for Bernard Hinault. And Rebecca Twigg wouldn't give me the time of day.

    sun

  24. #24
    Meow! my58vw's Avatar
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    I have not seen alot of racing but my favorite live actually had to be the last Ontario criterium, Cat 4,5. Pouring rain and the racers were pushing so hard it actually scared me. Couple good saves and lots of sliding around... and won in a pack sprint.

    (And I absolutly got soaked videotaping it)
    Just your average club rider... :)

  25. #25
    Senior Member dwatson's Avatar
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    The Tour Dupont in 90, watch the pros climb one of my favorite climbs at 30 mph. Three days latter got married, the reception was at the same hotel the teams stayed. We had an extra 250 people at receptionís bar. it was great to see the riders. My wifeís dad didnít it was to funny, it was an open bar.

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