Thursday, April 30, 2009

Armstrong races & BMC out!

There is only one Pro Continental team in the USA and its BMC.  It is also the team that Jeff Louder is on and it is UCI enforcing its muscle of the rule, nearly preventing the biggest name (rider) in the world from racing at the Gila and throwing BMC out of the race.

There are many different levels of races, from the top pros on tour to the local race.  As we pointed out, their are different kinds of motors.  Kind of like the F1 cars and their 200 plus staff coming to a Indy cart race who might have only 50 people on staff and and those teams going to a NASCAR who might have less staff to a given event or worst, going to your local short track to race the little local guys!  Not good! Another way to view it, is to think of it like you have a Tiger Woods coming to your local country club to compete or even a NCAA event.
Mellow Johnny’s teammates — Levi Leipheimer and Chris Horner have completed the opening stage of the SRAM Tour of the Gila, in New Mexico.

We do everything we can to get behind the sport, helping the little teams, but unfortunate reality is that Lance Armstrong’s attendance has the opposite effect. Team BMC, America’s only Pro Continental team, suffered damage due to Armstrong’s global popularity.  They are out!

We only have one Pro Continental team where in Europe there are about 20 teams to race against each other.  UCI says it doing everything it can to push towards globalizing the sport, but that is not working for the USA races. The rules  nearly prevented the biggest rider in the world (Lance Armstrong) from competing while simultaneously throwing our country’s only Pro Continental team (BMC) with  Jeff Louder into mid-season crisis.

It seems that cycling in the USA is really (taxed) and it is put very much so on the back burners of sports. We don't have the upper level teams.  Perhaps the real issue is the lack of support that comes from the cycling industry i.e. grass roots and up!  From the lack of support from the local levels to the fact that tours i.e. Tour de GA., can't raise the money to put on their show.  

You can't build the sport from free parts, stems, bikes, bike kits alone.    The sport needs cash to catch the eye of elite sportsmen and sportswomen. There is a hell of a lot more money in other sports!  Perhaps it's the fact you can't watch a cycling race like F1, Indy, or NASCAR or basketball, football, golf, etc...?  

Most of the top pro golfers can make $1ma for a weeks work.  Sure the next level down doesn't pay what the PGA pays, but they do get cash.  Then you have your cycling events and if I think back, Levi got a check for only $15,000 for racing about one week at the Amgen Tour de Ca.  

Then you have the only one pro team that gets the boot due to the rules.   How many black eyes can the sport get?  Sad!

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