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Where's that GPS?
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here I am procrastinating and trying to avoid going outside and mowing my lawn which is now the shaggiest in the cul de sac - and I'm thinking "If Lance loves this sport, what can he do to help preserve it in the U.S. now that his star-power is not on the road anymore?"

Take the Tour of Colorado - Lance was instrumental is making that happen, kudos out LA!
While I suspect he will be busy with Livestrong, I can't help but wonder if he couldn't do more to promote the sport here and especially bring new American riders into the spotlight with him?

Lets say there is an offer for a commercial or other high-end public appearance - would it be possible for Lance to say "Sure, but I'd like to have Taylor in it as well."? There is no doubt that Lance Armstrong IS cycling to those few Americans who follow the sport - and usually only the TdF - and usually only if Lance is in it.

Americans love a winner - 2nd or 3rd doesn't impress them. Is pro-cycling in the US fated for a return to total obscurity until there is another American TdF champion or can the Lance-effect be used to avoid that?

Okay, now about that lawnmower...
 

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but thinking about it
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LostViking said:
Here I am procrastinating and trying to avoid going outside and mowing my lawn which is now the shaggiest in the cul de sac - and I'm thinking "If Lance loves this sport, what can he do to help preserve it in the U.S. now that his star-power is not on the road anymore?"
Stay away?
 

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Lexicon Devil
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Undecided said:
Stay away?
Yeah, definitely.

I would like to see USAC actually start taking some of its millions of dollars and throwing it behind an initiative to promote junior racing. Races should be free for juniors. Underprivileged youth with a modicum of talent should be given bikes. Promote inner-city cycling; build velodromes in city parks.

Competitive amateur cycling in the US is such a sport for the adults -- softball leagues for people who like bikes. You know it's true, too. If USAC would throw some of its Board's weight behind a serious effort to make cycling a legitimate alternative to soccer, baseball, basketball, and football, we'd see something fantastic.

But putting more money behind 35+ guys who'll be retiring soon is just self-defeating.
 

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Darling of The Lounge
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Lance has notoriety, influence, money, and he can get past the current Landis affair completely vindicated…legitimacy. My hope is that he channels his effort advocate road cycling as a viable alternative to the traditional “ball” sports to North America’s youth.

Although he uses the Livestrong Champaign along cycling as a means to raise cancer awareness, he should decouple one from the other. That way, Lance’s cycling promoting of cycling can flourish on its own without yellow wristband moniker.
 

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Retro Grouch said:
Lance has notoriety, influence, money, and he can get past the current Landis affair completely vindicated…legitimacy. My hope is that he channels his effort advocate road cycling as a viable alternative to the traditional “ball” sports to North America’s youth.

Although he uses the Livestrong Champaign along cycling as a means to raise cancer awareness, he should decouple one from the other. That way, Lance’s cycling promoting of cycling can flourish on its own without yellow wristband moniker.
I'm not a LA fanboy, but ANYONE who helps put on races is good in my books. Given the economy, money is tight and there are a lot of cool races that are now history. I know I was hoping to have lots of fun with the Tour of Missouri. :(
 

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Undecided said:
Stay away?
Maybe if he stays away and the sport starts slipping back into obscurity, prices will drop due to lack of demand and I can afford cooler bike stuff:thumbsup:

It doesn't matter to me, I will never race but I do make believe...

The fans are raising their babies and throwing soft cheeses as is the custom here, the small children shout "he is the champion".... man I love biking
 

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spade2you said:
Why not? Just about everyone can race. Winning...that's another story.
LOL... it would be the whole finishing thing that would be tough right now but you never know...
 

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Where's that GPS?
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Fostering the next generation

Doctor Who said:
Yeah, definitely.

I would like to see USAC actually start taking some of its millions of dollars and throwing it behind an initiative to promote junior racing. Races should be free for juniors. Underprivileged youth with a modicum of talent should be given bikes. Promote inner-city cycling; build velodromes in city parks.

Competitive amateur cycling in the US is such a sport for the adults -- softball leagues for people who like bikes. You know it's true, too. If USAC would throw some of its Board's weight behind a serious effort to make cycling a legitimate alternative to soccer, baseball, basketball, and football, we'd see something fantastic.

But putting more money behind 35+ guys who'll be retiring soon is just self-defeating.
(Okay, I mowed my lawn so I can now shoot the breeze guilt-free)

I think that's a good idea - and might do some good in our inner-cities as well.

Remember, not too long ago, the US was a nonentity in Soccer - now the US is a fixed part of every World Cup - and it all started with local summer soccer camps and "Soccer Moms" in mini-vans.

Perhaps the same could be done for cycling? Love the idea of getting road bikes to inner-city kids and giving them a positive outlet for their energy.
 

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LostViking said:
Remember, not too long ago, the US was a nonentity in Soccer - now the US is a fixed part of every World Cup - and it all started with local summer soccer camps and "Soccer Moms" in mini-vans.
.

Could you all imagine "Cycling Moms"????


Sorry couldn't resist.

~M
 

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JimT said:
The fans are raising their babies and throwing soft cheeses as is the custom here, the small children shout "he is the champion".... man I love biking
Love the Alphonse commercials - he is sooooo cool!!!
 

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always right sometimes
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Doctor Who said:
Yeah, definitely.

I would like to see USAC actually start taking some of its millions of dollars and throwing it behind an initiative to promote junior racing. Races should be free for juniors. Underprivileged youth with a modicum of talent should be given bikes. Promote inner-city cycling; build velodromes in city parks.

Competitive amateur cycling in the US is such a sport for the adults -- softball leagues for people who like bikes. You know it's true, too. If USAC would throw some of its Board's weight behind a serious effort to make cycling a legitimate alternative to soccer, baseball, basketball, and football, we'd see something fantastic.

But putting more money behind 35+ guys who'll be retiring soon is just self-defeating.

LA is promoting young talent already.

http://www.treklivestrongu23.com/
 

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In our lifetimes, we'll probably never see another GC rider from the USA like Lance. Interest will fade from casual domestic interest in cycling, despite rising talent like Taylor Phinney, Tejay van Garderen, Lawson Craddock and perhaps throw Peter Stetina in there. But that's ok, we're used to it. These guys will certainly win their share of one-day races, grand tour stages, and maybe even the Dauphine or Paris-Nice. But that won't matter much to the USA armchair fan (or Madison Avenue) who have been spoiled by the success of Lemond and LA. To them, only the top of the podium in Paris matters.
 

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RoadBikeReview's Member
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Doctor Who said:
Yeah, definitely.

I would like to see USAC actually start taking some of its millions of dollars and throwing it behind an initiative to promote junior racing. Races should be free for juniors. Underprivileged youth with a modicum of talent should be given bikes. Promote inner-city cycling; build velodromes in city parks.
How do you propose giving bikes to kids with any talent? What are the criteria for determining talent? How can you find out that a kid is talented before he has a bike?

Does winning a race or two make someone talented? My first few races when I was 15, Idid decently in, well enough to immediately qualify for an Elite Development Camp. I was a goof - I had no idea how to timetrial, turning in something stupid, like a 34 minute 20k. Sure, I showed potential, but... 34 minute 20k? Should that garner a bike? No? Then what should?

It's not that I'm against your idea - it's a great idea. I think it'd just be very difficult to effectively implement.

There are actually a decent number of programs right now - the Elite Junior Development camps are relatively cheap - $450 if I remember, for a week. They're surrounded by other racers in a really race-oriented environment. I'm sure they're heavily subsidized by USAC, and they did a lot for me when I was $15.

Race entries are pretty darn cheap right now - $15 entry, and often $5 or $10 to enter the adults race in addition. I don't think entry fees are chasing any juniors away, any more than entry fees are chasing away women.
 

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but thinking about it
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rydbyk said:
Why stay away?
Taint and media misfocus.

I recognize that he can bring benefits. For example, I think that having another well-funded domestic U23 team is great (not that Trek-Livestrong is strictly a team for U.S. riders). The Holowesko unit is good, but didn't get as much media attention as T-L was able to get. Do the U23 riders really need a lot of media attention? I don't know---they do need the chance to establish the foundation for a pro career.

But, if Armstrong is involved, it's about Armstrong, as far as the media is concerned, and if Armstrong carries a taint of association with an era of cycling that's perceived as being too dirty to take as a real sport, then it's a problem.

So, I think he can be good for developing riders, with fund raising and behind-the-scenes work, but I'm less sure about contributing more to developing the fan base. I'm not sure that we'll ever get there on that front.
 

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Doctor Who said:
Yeah, definitely.

I would like to see USAC actually start taking some of its millions of dollars and throwing it behind an initiative to promote junior racing. Races should be free for juniors. Underprivileged youth with a modicum of talent should be given bikes. Promote inner-city cycling; build velodromes in city parks.

Competitive amateur cycling in the US is such a sport for the adults -- softball leagues for people who like bikes. You know it's true, too. If USAC would throw some of its Board's weight behind a serious effort to make cycling a legitimate alternative to soccer, baseball, basketball, and football, we'd see something fantastic.

But putting more money behind 35+ guys who'll be retiring soon is just self-defeating.
Some of you overlook the "business" of cycling. Love him or hate him to death, unlike other American cyclists, Armstrong generates loads of money, end of story. Now, for your idea about "underprivileged youth" and cycling, sure it's a nice idea. But I think it ends there. Entertaining the microscopic chance that some underprivileged youth has the genetics and ability, the USAC would have to provide far more than a bicycle for such a person to have a chance.
 

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Maybe the future for cycling in the U.S. could go the way of horse racing? A few high-profile events that everyone would follow for the hype and spectacle like the Triple Crown. IMO, It's hard to see it becoming as popular as baseball, basketball, football because it's just too dang expensive! Sad, because if you ever want to see a group of great, in-shape Americans, just hang around the staging area before a bike race. I mean, really, how many Americans can look good in spandex besides us?!
Maybe LA could go on the road with the Livestrong tractor-trailer filled with Trek bikes, show up in an innercity hood, fit all the kids/people who wanted to ride, and take 'em out for a group ride to give them a taste of cycling. While Lance is signing autographs, make sure you pay somebody to count the bikes! "Let's see, 75 bikes went out - how many came back?"
 
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