Shouldn’t the trophy be worth the effort?

July 14, 2014

Like hundreds of millions of people across the world, I watched the recent World Cup.  I was drawn into the drama of the world’s most popular sport.  I marveled at the athleticism and groaned at the flopping. 

Now that it is over, I am left wondering.  Shouldn’t the trophy be reflective of the effort?  

449229

After a month of playing in places like the Amazon rain forest, the trophy seems a bit, uh puny? Not that I am saying there should be trophy envy or that size matters but if you look at what cyclists get for riding through the mountains of  Italy for three weeks, it seems appropriate.

2014 giro winner

I know Quintana is a petite man but I think you get the drift.  

 

Fifa trophy makers.  Here is a suggestion for the suggestion box.  Don’t give a trophy that can fit in a carry on bag for the ride home.  

Just saying.

 


Cyclist Village closes doors

April 3, 2009

Today, I received the following email from the website Cyclist Village:

Dear Member,

We regret to inform you that Cyclist Village will be closing down effective immediately. We appreciate your support and participation and wish you all the best.
Regards,
Cyclist Village

Originally started under the title Broadband Racer, Cyclist Village tried to expand the social networking world into cycling.  Blogs, video posts from professional riders as well as fans, Cyclist Village found that while popular, social networking sites have trouble finding a viable business model.

God’s Speed Cyclist Village.

cvjpg


Begin cycling’s greatest week

April 3, 2009

Koppenberg Climb, Tour of Flanders Sportive 2006


Point – Lance should come back

September 11, 2008

When I heard the news, my visceral reaction was “Lance, say it ain’t so.”  You orchestrated one of the best exits in sports history.  Don’t ruin it. Then, I thought about.   Friends both cycling fans and not were asking me what I thought.  Depending on when I answered, I was for it or against it. In New York, seeing people having animated conversations with themselves is no big deal, I figured I would let you in on what goes on inside my mind.  Well at least the cycling part.

This post will list the reasons why Lance should return.  Some reasons are fact based, most are emotion based.  Either way, they make sense to me.  The guy who talks to himself.

1) Lance needs to. As his body of work fades, Lance was expected to transition into a tireless cancer fighter.  One with possible political aspirations.  While Lance has stayed true to his cause to advance the cancer advocacy movement through his eponymous foundation, that type of spotlight is hard to keep bright.  Quite frankly, the subject is not one that makes it to the front page, above the fold.  With a nation that leans towards schadenfreude as opposed to anything of substance, Lance’s personal life increasingly became the story.  That combined with Lance choosing to date celebrities exposed him to an infrastructure designed to create even more exposure to the person on his arm as opposed to the band on his wrist.

This began a troubling decent into the category of famous for being famous.  That is not a legacy worthy of Lance the athlete or Lance the cancer survivor.  I don’t know if Lance Armstrong still has more Sports Illustrated references than People Magazine.  There is still time before Lance ends up on Dancing with the Stars.

2) Cycling (the industry) needs him. Cycling, like many things, is an ecosystem.  Many people make their living off the sport.  Trek saw sales grow with each Tour de France win.  Based on figures from the National Sporting Goods Association (NSGA) and Bicycle Retailer, road bikes in general enjoyed a strong run from the beginning of this decade wile mountain bikes saw significant decline in market share.  High end/high margin bikes also saw significant growth where road bikes dominate the bike retail sector representing about a third of supplier sales. Front suspension bikes are a distant second.  In 2007, as the Lance effect wears off, road bikes, fell four percent in sales and units shipped.  I’m sure you saw similar growth and stagnation in the helmet, sunglasses, component markets.

Spiraling out from bikes and components, I’m sure folks like Graham Watson are feeling the downturn in the cycling economy.  Plus, I’m tired of bull riding having better ratings than cycling on Versus.

3) Cycling (the sport) needs him. Look at what has happened since Lance left the scene.  There has been sheer chaos making cycling the laughing stock of professional sports.  Starting with the ASO/UCI public squabble.  The poor PR surrounding the doping fight.  This is a sore spot.  Cycling has the most aggressive anti-doping program in the history of sports but can’t shake he image of a sport filled with cheats.  Who save cycling from the last look in the abyss after the Festina scandal?  That’s right, Lance.

There is precedent here.  Look to Apple computers.  Steve jobs started Apple, left then returned to restore a tarnished company to glory.  Why can’t Lance do the same for cycling?

4) He can still do it. Look at the three tours since Lance retired.  The races  winners were all beatable.  Winners may not be an appropriate term.  Survivors may be more like it.  No one showed anything that would convince me they could beat an age-diminished Lance Armstrong.

5) It would piss off the ASO.


Break out the iPod

July 21, 2008

We have the ultimate game of musical chairs about to start.  Three chairs and 6 players.  Sunday both whittled down the number of contenders and compacted those with a chance.  Forty nine seconds separate the top six players with less than a week to go.

Three stages are left that will sort out who stands on the podium and what step they will occupy.  Cadel Evans still holds most of the cards with a long (53km) time trial on Saturday.  Look for CSC and maybe Gerolsteiner to try to remove some of those cards by putting serious time into Evans on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Is having two riders in the top 6 a blessing or a curse?  With Schleck in Yellow, Sastre needs to plan his attempt to hurt evans carefully.  Frank Schleck can’t be collateral damage.  Is Riis ready to put all his cards on Schleck and ask Sastre to put his Tour hopes on the shelf?

Denis Menchov is the only one who is not forced to be too agressive over the next two days. he is 30 seconds behind Cadel and probably would like a little time but not the big chunks the others need.  Look for him to continue to take advantage of the labor of others.

Can Kohl and Vande Velde stay in this rarefied air?  Why not, they have lasted this long.  Here is hoping for no bad days.


These cogs go to 11

June 18, 2008

Thanks to SpokeHead for forwarding me the story and Spinal Tap reference for the above story.  How many blogs can quote Shakespeare and Spinal Tap?

Campanolo announced an 11 speed drivetrain reigniting the depate “How thin can you go?”  Well Campy’s answer is we go to 11!


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 104 other followers