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  #21  
Old 11-08-12, 21:23
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Alex Simmons/RST Alex Simmons/RST is offline
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Originally Posted by fatsprintking View Post
In some ways any inquiry only needs to establish a couple of things to be positive in moving forward.

1. The employment of ex pro cyclists in top level adminsitration and coaching in the sport perpetuates a paradigm where doping is accepted as a part of the sport.

2 The current model of development of junior cyclists where there is pressure to leave school at 16 to train full time creates a situation where young people are very vulnerable to resorting to unethical means to maintain progress when the alternative is flipping burgers.


People who come from a background of doing anything to break into the sport and then can only make a living by remaining in the sport are the real problem and Australia is as bad as anywhere else.

Look at how many people in the state development teams have a year 12 education and tell me that that is conducive to having young people make reasoned and informed choices when it comes to drugs.

I remember a quote from Alex Zulle where he said that for him the choice was to take drugs or to go back to being a house painter for the rest of his life - it was an easy choice.

The Australian system produces good cyclists but it is debatable if it produces well rounded human beings in its young males.

The funny thing is that the lack of money in Australian womans cycling means that I would bet my house on the fact that they are as a group much more educated than the males and go on to much more divesrse and interesting careers.

If an inquiry identifies some of these structural problems then it will be worthwhile.
+1

I work with some riders at this stage outside of the "system", and there is a need for at least some form of good pastoral care*


* not in the religious context, but as often understood in an Aussie/UK context.
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  #22  
Old 11-09-12, 08:56
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Originally Posted by Alex Simmons/RST View Post
+1

I work with some riders at this stage outside of the "system", and there is a need for at least some form of good pastoral care*


* not in the religious context, but as often understood in an Aussie/UK context.
Thatís right. I work in a school where we are producing some outstanding cyclists, but the pressure they get to throw in school in unbelievable. We are one of the top performing academic schools in Australia and 100% of our kids will go onto university. One of our best cyclists is just starting his VCE and is likely to be in the top one % in the state at year 12. He will most likely become a doctor and he has morons telling him that if he wants to succeed in cycling he needs to think about training full time.
The result of this is that the current system loses some of the best prospects from both a talent and personality point of view because there is no place for them in the current system.
It is also ironic that our town has produced a whole raft of national level juniors, because one guy with a bit of passion but no background in elite cycling got track cycling stated for junior school kids as safe and exciting sport option riding cobbled together bikes. (cheers Roger).
That program has led to over half a dozen state and national titles for juniors, but the transition into the old school development squads does not work for a lot of these kids who want to balance their studies with their riding and maybe even take a year off during their year 12.
Cycling Australia employing someone who focussed on person development rather than just talent identification, would be a good start to developing a meaningful pastoral care program.
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  #23  
Old 11-09-12, 21:35
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Thatís right. I work in a school where we are producing some outstanding cyclists, but the pressure they get to throw in school in unbelievable. We are one of the top performing academic schools in Australia and 100% of our kids will go onto university. One of our best cyclists is just starting his VCE and is likely to be in the top one % in the state at year 12. He will most likely become a doctor and he has morons telling him that if he wants to succeed in cycling he needs to think about training full time.
The result of this is that the current system loses some of the best prospects from both a talent and personality point of view because there is no place for them in the current system.
It is also ironic that our town has produced a whole raft of national level juniors, because one guy with a bit of passion but no background in elite cycling got track cycling stated for junior school kids as safe and exciting sport option riding cobbled together bikes. (cheers Roger).
That program has led to over half a dozen state and national titles for juniors, but the transition into the old school development squads does not work for a lot of these kids who want to balance their studies with their riding and maybe even take a year off during their year 12.
Cycling Australia employing someone who focussed on person development rather than just talent identification, would be a good start to developing a meaningful pastoral care program.
Perhaps a little more like a collegiate system?

Anyway, it's an issue in sharp focus for me as a coach this week, given one young man I work with has made a choice to pursue a path to deal with some of the massive social problems his country faces, and put his full time training / dreams of becoming pro on hold for a bit.

In an irony, he has already been displaced of opportunity several times due to the prevalence of doping and other forms of selection corruption in his location. He's quite talented and a great work ethic, intelligent and has good personal values. I fully support him, as much as I'd like another trip to the world champs, he has bigger fish to fry than becoming a Pro.
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  #24  
Old 11-09-12, 22:13
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I think that the answer is to develop a relationship with some schools where you have a cycling scholership program, where there is a focus on developing a duel pathway for the students.

This will involve coaches working with the schools to reach some compromises with training programs and races, but this would be easy. The schools would be able to take a role in developing plans beyond cycling in conjunction with CA.

What we should be avoiding is having 16 year olds living out their Phillipo Pozzato fantasies by training a couple of hours and then spending the rest of the day trying to pick up the waitress at the local cafe. It is the attempt to live like a pro cyclist when they are not that leads to the idea that "taking drugs is just what you have to do." Kids at school are surrounded by people who send the message that cheating is a bad thing. Kids that just ride their bike and drink coffee don't get the same negative message.
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  #25  
Old 11-09-12, 22:26
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Originally Posted by Alex Simmons/RST View Post
+1

I work with some riders at this stage outside of the "system", and there is a need for at least some form of good pastoral care*


* not in the religious context, but as often understood in an Aussie/UK context.
Pastoral care = put out to pasture?
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  #26  
Old 11-10-12, 00:14
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Cycling Australia employing someone who focussed on person development rather than just talent identification, would be a good start to developing a meaningful pastoral care program.
Except the IOC wants nothing to do with that. Understand the sports getting money from the IOC are doing it to develop athletes for the IOC show. Not a broad spectrum of sports participants, not a well developed person who happens to excel in cycling. They want exciting athletes for the 4-year show.

The collegiate system in the U.S. is already a full-blown development track, even in the wildly unpopular sport of competitive cycling. In the more popular sports, athletes are simply passed through the system.

Last edited by DirtyWorks; 11-10-12 at 00:32.
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  #27  
Old 11-10-12, 00:35
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Except the IOC wants nothing to do with that. Understand the sports getting money from the IOC are doing it to develop athletes for the IOC show. Not a broad spectrum of sports participants, not a well developed person who happens to excel in cycling. They want exciting athletes for the 4-year show.

The collegiate system in the U.S. is already a full-blown development track, even in the wildly unpopular sport of competitive cycling.
Thats all true, but a review is a review and if it identifies that the above is part of the issue then that is great.

In Australia we also have just come through an olympics where a number of our athletes proved to be idiots who brought a huge amount of negative publicity to their sports in the once every 4 year cycle olympics show. From this there are already questions about the way athletes are developed in an appropriate way because athletic success needs to be matched to abilities to be able to communicate with people - which few Austrlaian olympains seemed to be able to do.

Also the paralymics has changed the game I think, with people seeming to embrace the greater sense of reality and spirit that was exhibited in London through the paralymics.

I know I am an idealist, but I am hopeful that there is a chance to break down models which are clearly never going to deal with the real reasons behind doping and a set of new structures might be created. I am making a choice to stop being cynical and to start looking for real solutions and for me junior development is where the effort gets the most reward.

We will see how that works out for me hey!!

Last edited by fatsprintking; 11-10-12 at 05:49.
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  #28  
Old 11-10-12, 11:12
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Alex Simmons/RST Alex Simmons/RST is offline
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Pastoral care = put out to pasture?
From wiki as it's not a bad definition for what I'm talking about:

Quote:
Pastoral care can also be a term generally applied to the practice of looking after the personal and social wellbeing of children or students under the care of a teacher. It can encompass a wide variety of issues including health, social and moral education, behavior management and emotional support. This usage is more common in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries such as Australia and New Zealand, where it is also used for student support services at the university level.
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  #29  
Old 11-10-12, 16:05
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Originally Posted by fatsprintking View Post
Thatís right. I work in a school where we are producing some outstanding cyclists, but the pressure they get to throw in school in unbelievable. We are one of the top performing academic schools in Australia and 100% of our kids will go onto university. One of our best cyclists is just starting his VCE and is likely to be in the top one % in the state at year 12. He will most likely become a doctor and he has morons telling him that if he wants to succeed in cycling he needs to think about training full time.
The result of this is that the current system loses some of the best prospects from both a talent and personality point of view because there is no place for them in the current system.
It is also ironic that our town has produced a whole raft of national level juniors, because one guy with a bit of passion but no background in elite cycling got track cycling stated for junior school kids as safe and exciting sport option riding cobbled together bikes. (cheers Roger).
That program has led to over half a dozen state and national titles for juniors, but the transition into the old school development squads does not work for a lot of these kids who want to balance their studies with their riding and maybe even take a year off during their year 12.
Cycling Australia employing someone who focussed on person development rather than just talent identification, would be a good start to developing a meaningful pastoral care program.
the most successful cyclist in the world, left before his A levels, and worked for a bank. Managed the local branch at age 18. Then went to the continent. Dont need to be in Varese at 19 or 20. I would prefer them to go to Stanford, tho they dont have a scholarship program, they ride in the top league. Being a pro in Europe does not necessarily make you a competitive cyclist. Armstrong told the world it was a business and entertainment.
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  #30  
Old 11-10-12, 19:36
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Wonder how we can bring this item to " James Wood 's " attention ?

http://t.co/BU3r7126

Youngsters are so easily led , they adopt " idols " as role models , so references to lounging around coffee shops , easy to believe !

Hard work as against a life on the bike would be easy to ignore . IF they knew the backstory of their coaches/mentors , would they then take the easy route ?

" Donati Report " portrays Oz as the source of so much PED Product that the Criminal Element must always be on the lookout for easy marks /
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