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Old 02-14-08, 06:45 PM   #1
Donegal
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TDF a Threat to Cycling's Future

Remember that the tour was created as a publicity stunt to sell papers, it hasn't changed since. All the concentration on doping B.S. Self created doping problems whether we can prove them or not. We own the lab, we create the tests, we won the paper, we leak stories to destroy careers, etc. I'm tired of the French Bull....
Chased lance for 7 years accusing doping. The Landis Bullcrap, Mayo, etc. After seeing what Landis was convicted with, I question if Hamilton, Heras or half the others ever doped.

After banning Astana from the tour, a team with 3 riders who have finished on the podium, 2 last year, I will not waste another minute on this politically generated show of crap. The ASO battle with UCI is based upon UCI's trying to expand cycling around the world. The tour is afraid of a little competition, and is in my opinion, killing cycling.We will invite instead a bunch of French continental teams. Real Classy, ban some of the pro contenders and fill in with cannon fodder.

90% of the doping allegations and B.S. come out of Le Equipe, still creating publicity stunts to sell papers. The oldest and grandest of the races, in my opinion has seen it's day. I side with the UCI, I want to see the Tour Down Under, Tour of Boston, Tour of China, etc. The UCI was created to expand the realm of professional cycling and that's what they are doing. If the ASO is unhappy wth the competition, make yours better. Work with, not against the teams, the riders, the public. No liepheimer, no contador, no Kloden. Makes a lot of sense. Using drugs and past teams as excuses, constant inuendo, attacks on past champions. All sell papers. None help cycling. I will go riding and on vacation in July. And if that bunch of monkeys buys the Vuelta, it can go too.
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Old 02-15-08, 10:17 AM   #2
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The only thing more annoying than the ASO are the fans that think the french are out to get the Americans and will do anything to keep them out of the race.
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Old 02-15-08, 04:17 PM   #3
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The only thing more annoying than the ASO are the fans that think the french are out to get the Americans and will do anything to keep them out of the race.
I understand how frustrating the French can be. I live in California half the year and now get to experience the Tour of California. Yea! I live in France half the year and get to experience the Tour de France. Also the Giro & Dauphine and get live coverage for a bunch of others.

The only thing in defence of the TdF I can say is that the country is beautiful and the towns, police, road departments all support it 100%. If you have ever tried to put on a race in the USA on normal roads you know it is really difficult. California only got a Tour after 40 years of trying by many of us in the bike industry, after our Govennorator got behind it. Still, it is only rolling road closures, and there are problems . . . but it is working and growing.

Living in France I have learned that the French people really like (and copy) Americans. The vast majority really admired and supported Lance Armstrong. I will never forget after 9/11 how many French went out of there way to tell us how sorry they are. The Tour of California may well be the race that replaces TdF one day. California has all the venues that France has, several major mountain ranges, a beautiful coast, Death Valley and much more. As it grows they will eventually move to later in the year when the Mountains are free of snow.

The problem with the TdF, well put in the original post, is the profit motive of ASO, the owners of the TdF. Like every other field, you either grow and make more money or lose you job, right? Currently the TdF is still the Race To Win. Like you said, this may change. I would rather see the TdF remain a major race but less politically managed, and see many more major races developed. While the French are want to shoot themselves in the foot, it may be painful this time and ASO will correct course. They added High Road to the TdF yesterday, so that is a start.

Dick Powell, www.OutfitterTours.com
Founder & Former Owner of The Bicycle Outfitter of Los Altos, CA
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Old 02-16-08, 11:32 AM   #4
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The only thing in defence of the TdF I can say is that the country is beautiful
You're right. I've been several times to France and I think it's a wonderful country which, unfortunately, is inhabited by Frenchmen.
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Old 02-17-08, 09:19 PM   #5
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While I admire your concise summation of the TdF situation, I must admit to being a bit less disciplined - and part of the problem. Does the ASO suck? You bet. But I don't watch the Tour to support the ASO, I follow the coverage to be envious of the sheer guts and determination each rider demonstrates in each stage. I am glued to the set to witness the nuances of the strategies employed, to watch the incredible fitness and physiques, and to visualize myself (a la Walter Mitty) riding with them.

Can I do that while watching the Tour of California and any of the other few races I can find on TV? Sure - but thus far all others still pale to the TdF.

It is still a long way till July and I am hopeful that a way will be found to include Astana. If not, the world will miss out on what could have proven to have been a real gem of a contest. At this point, who can tell that it won't be anyway...
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Old 03-15-08, 02:16 PM   #6
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You're right. I've been several times to France and I think it's a wonderful country which, unfortunately, is inhabited by Frenchmen.
Been a Spaniard and living with a traditional somewhat superfcially conflicting view to our neighbors to the north. I must step in a say that an asseveration of this kind can only be taken as a joke. As we all know the cultural richness the French has brought to our world is invaluable (almost as much as the Spaniards!!!) and permeates parts of our way of life. I have many french friends which I can say have enrich my life with their friendship. True then there are the famous pita french, but are these not as bad as those Billy Bobs riding on their pick up trucks with the gun rack full of shotguns??? ( i would tend to think the french are less dangerous as they dont like to play as much with guns) the present TDF organizers have made a mess of the tour... Leblanc should haver retired long before he did and his successor is probing as much of a pita as he was. Never the less, the tour dtill carries the the crown as the "bike race". I wonder if the time has come for TDF to pass the crown???
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Old 04-05-08, 05:40 AM   #7
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I'd still love to see them run a race with all vintage bikes for just one time, which I'd hope could remind a few people of the charm and humanity of an epic road race. TdF needs its roots.
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