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Why are UK riders now more successful?

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14 Jun 2013 13:26

JimmyFingers wrote:God you talk absolute guff. It is nothing of the sort, it's about an imagined visit of Jesus to England, and the creation of a heaven on earth, the new Jerusalem in England's green and pleasant land. He makes reference to 'dark stanaic mills' which is interpreted as a warning against industrialisation, but that's about it. Your version is nonsense.


I don't think that either interpretation is Professor in Oxford English literature accurate. But William Blake was an anti establishment artist and didn't like institutionalised Christianity, but he was spiritual. The poem is from a prophetic book called "Milton", so needs to seen in that context. My point was, although the poem might have idealism at it's core, I am not convinced it was meant as a national anthem by the poet. As he was against the powers that be and industrialisation etc and all the other evils of institutions, including perhaps empire and war by extension.
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14 Jun 2013 13:32

Well it was written as a poem not a song so I'm guessing he wasn't intending it as an anthem. The words of the poem speak for themselves, there is no hidden meaning there unless you have an agenda and desire to see them there. The only negative reference in the peom is 'Dark Satanic Mills', not sure you can spin that into some anti-establishment, anti-Empire theme at all.

Nice try though
JimmyFingers
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14 Jun 2013 13:35

Plus the love he has for the land over everything absolutely shines through, whatever his politics. He's talking about England being visited by Jesus, and the holy city of Jerusalem being built there, and that heaven on earth being defended above all things.

Seriously don't even bother.
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14 Jun 2013 13:36

The question is, of course, did Mr. Blake any performance enhancing drugs while writing that piece of English history?
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14 Jun 2013 13:39

Well Coleridge was on opium when he dreamt 'Kubla Khan'. I think you'll find English literature awash with drugs
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14 Jun 2013 14:06

See... this is what happens when you don't pop into the clinic for ages... talk turns to literature!

I have some experience of the bad-old-days of the GB National squad, and latterly the difference the Lottery Funding (WCPP) made... not getting into the 'medical enhancement' argument but I have to say that funding made a rider feel valued and as such were more likely to train harder, and become more professional. I didn't race under Brailsford but I know several that have and do, and he seems to be the logical extension of Pete Keen and a progressive mindset.

Some time back I spoke to Wiggins and he stated quite reasonably that it wasn't that British riders 20 years ago weren't any good, it was just that the current generation have the breaks the former generation didn't. Coming from that former generation, I agree... I had as little to do with the National team as possible and made my own 'lucky breaks' in Belgium and abroad. Those that stayed in the UK stagnated and were ultimately lost to the sport.

Just a thought or two... cheers!
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14 Jun 2013 14:38

esafosfina wrote:See... this is what happens when you don't pop into the clinic for ages... talk turns to literature!

I have some experience of the bad-old-days of the GB National squad, and latterly the difference the Lottery Funding (WCPP) made... not getting into the 'medical enhancement' argument but I have to say that funding made a rider feel valued and as such were more likely to train harder, and become more professional. I didn't race under Brailsford but I know several that have and do, and he seems to be the logical extension of Pete Keen and a progressive mindset.

Some time back I spoke to Wiggins and he stated quite reasonably that it wasn't that British riders 20 years ago weren't any good, it was just that the current generation have the breaks the former generation didn't. Coming from that former generation, I agree... I had as little to do with the National team as possible and made my own 'lucky breaks' in Belgium and abroad. Those that stayed in the UK stagnated and were ultimately lost to the sport.

Just a thought or two... cheers!


Well put. And wasn't that nice of Wiggins. Must be an honest guy really, when not talking to the media.

One negative that has to said though, that with the funding has come an elitist system with all the implications of that. And these are discussed here on the clinic freely. And you were both fortunate that you were able to make your own way and have nothing to do with the system as was back then, I don't think that option would be open to you nowadays.
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14 Jun 2013 15:57

horsinabout wrote:Well put. And wasn't that nice of Wiggins. Must be an honest guy really, when not talking to the media.

One negative that has to said though, that with the funding has come an elitist system with all the implications of that. And these are discussed here on the clinic freely. And you were both fortunate that you were able to make your own way and have nothing to do with the system as was back then, I don't think that option would be open to you nowadays.


Very true 'horsin'... I hadn't really thought about that... it seems very much 'My way, or the highway'... and I totally agree with you about the systemic elitism.
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14 Jun 2013 16:07

Isn't the whole point of the lottery funded GB programme is to be elitist??

Got to agree with you about Bradley W. Had some dealings with him a couple of years ago in a non-cycling related situation. Really down to earth. Hope his success doesn't change that.
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14 Jun 2013 16:10

horsinabout wrote:Well put. And wasn't that nice of Wiggins. Must be an honest guy really, when not talking to the media.

One negative that has to said though, that with the funding has come an elitist system with all the implications of that. And these are discussed here on the clinic freely. And you were both fortunate that you were able to make your own way and have nothing to do with the system as was back then, I don't think that option would be open to you nowadays.


It is elitist, in that, if you don't stack up physically and produce results, you can't stay in the club. At least the seelction process is based on tangible performance metrics rather than the old boys network, that frequently, it used to be.
However, the truth is, competitive sport is Elitist. Someone should even create a racing category that refers to just that... oh wait...

There was also nothing fortunate, about, going "your own way", believe me.
The drop out rate of even the most talented riders from the highest level, was huge in Britain. It doesn't take many years of having no money to make a rider scale down their ambitions and get a real job.

Its a decision the most talented riders, in the UK, simply don't have to make now....

Hence, a decade or more into the performance programme, GB has the advantage of being able to play the numbers game, rather than just waiting for the occasional star to arise in spite of the system.
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15 Jun 2013 03:21

It's the toothpaste.
JimmyFingers wrote:Look I no way dispute Wiggins ... he is doping, he's at it all the time, and has been for years.
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15 Jun 2013 07:17

andy1234 wrote:It is elitist, in that, if you don't stack up physically and produce results, you can't stay in the club. At least the seelction process is based on tangible performance metrics rather than the old boys network, that frequently, it used to be.
However, the truth is, competitive sport is Elitist. Someone should even create a racing category that refers to just that... oh wait...

There was also nothing fortunate, about, going "your own way", believe me.
The drop out rate of even the most talented riders from the highest level, was huge in Britain. It doesn't take many years of having no money to make a rider scale down their ambitions and get a real job.

Its a decision the most talented riders, in the UK, simply don't have to make now....

Hence, a decade or more into the performance programme, GB has the advantage of being able to play the numbers game, rather than just waiting for the occasional star to arise in spite of the system.


When I say elitist what I mean is it is by selection of a limited number, in some cases down to one individual, freezing out other talent.. And yes in sport that selection should mean the best or most talented. Your statement “the selection process is based on tangible performance metrics “ well this might as well have come straight out of Dave Brailsford mantra. They have replaced objective measures with tangible performances. Because objectivity requires a truthful process and facts that are none biased in their interpretations, tangible does not, it is a solid outcome – it doesn't show how you get from A to B.

Selection as is now is based on things like, for example, going in to schools and testing kids on wattage machines. Or selection by this method., rather than some method of showing your worth in a good domestic racing set up.

The sport of cycling in the UK really did need funding better hence the lottery. And for all the reasons you state, a large drop off of talent, but it has gone from one extreme to the other and a depressing over reliance on the power meters in the selection process. And I would question this selection process especially as regards to Chris froome.,

It is clearly a system that works, but it is a system that gives the impression it is created for and around doping, PED's and any other enhancement you care to mention. And it is arguably both the making of and the ruination of the sport.
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15 Jun 2013 09:48

it is clearly a system that works, but it is a system that gives the impression it is created for and around doping, PED's and any other enhancement you care to mention. And it is arguably both the making of and the ruination of the sport.


It doesn't give me that impression, at all. It gives me the impression of the difference between having a system, and not having one.

I don't know if you had any experience with the BCF prior to its reorganisation, but as the parent of an offspring that got to a pretty high level as a youth, I can tell you it was a hindrance rather than a help, and the whole cycling scene in the UK did a very good job of choking aspirations due to a lack of expertise, and a small-mindedness that was infuriating.

National-level funded doping conspiracy? Who knows.

Small pockets of team-funded doping? Possibly/probably.

Froome? Either a rampant doper or an amazing talent that wasn't in the right place at the right time.

Time will tell, of that I'm sure.
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15 Jun 2013 11:34

horsinabout wrote:When I say elitist what I mean is it is by selection of a limited number, in some cases down to one individual, freezing out other talent.. And yes in sport that selection should mean the best or most talented. Your statement “the selection process is based on tangible performance metrics “ well this might as well have come straight out of Dave Brailsford mantra. They have replaced objective measures with tangible performances. Because objectivity requires a truthful process and facts that are none biased in their interpretations, tangible does not, it is a solid outcome – it doesn't show how you get from A to B.

Selection as is now is based on things like, for example, going in to schools and testing kids on wattage machines. Or selection by this method., rather than some method of showing your worth in a good domestic racing set up.

The sport of cycling in the UK really did need funding better hence the lottery. And for all the reasons you state, a large drop off of talent, but it has gone from one extreme to the other and a depressing over reliance on the power meters in the selection process. And I would question this selection process especially as regards to Chris froome.,

It is clearly a system that works, but it is a system that gives the impression it is created for and around doping, PED's and any other enhancement you care to mention. And it is arguably both the making of and the ruination of the sport.


Froome did not come through the British development system and was only really chosen for SKY cos they needed British riders.

I think the British system has been a big plus in the development of the sport there but it also meant if you were not cut out for the track, you would struggle to make it. Dan Martin is the perfect example, he switched his allegiance to Ireland immediately after junior level because BC wanted him to work on the track.

Look at the type of riders that have been developed by British Cycling, mostly strongmen like Stannard, Thomas, Dowsett, Cummings etc. Then there is Cav who is a sprinter but where are the climbers??? Wiggins is one who they 'transformed' but who else, JTL was not a product of BC, he went to France early. Maybe Josh Edmondson and still waiting on Peter Kennaugh. No, SKY have had to look abroad for their mountain goats.
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01 Sep 2017 15:33

It's the return of Angus Fraser, star of (among others) ANC-Halfords, LA Confidentiel, From Lance to Landis, Seven Deadly Sins and friend of (again, among others) Brian Smith:
At the Gent Six Day in 2016 he was pictured on a massage bed sat next to the rider Chris Lawless, a product of the British Cycling development programme who currently represents the UCI Continental team Axeon-Hagens Berman and was aged only 21 at the time. There is no suggestion Fraser or any British rider was contravening anti-doping laws in any way but British Cycling admitted having someone with his reputation exposed to young riders would be concerning.
Young Mr Lawless, you may have noticed, has recently signed for a British WT team...
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Re:

01 Sep 2017 21:17

pmcg76 wrote:
horsinabout wrote:When I say elitist what I mean is it is by selection of a limited number, in some cases down to one individual, freezing out other talent.. And yes in sport that selection should mean the best or most talented. Your statement “the selection process is based on tangible performance metrics “ well this might as well have come straight out of Dave Brailsford mantra. They have replaced objective measures with tangible performances. Because objectivity requires a truthful process and facts that are none biased in their interpretations, tangible does not, it is a solid outcome – it doesn't show how you get from A to B.

Selection as is now is based on things like, for example, going in to schools and testing kids on wattage machines. Or selection by this method., rather than some method of showing your worth in a good domestic racing set up.

The sport of cycling in the UK really did need funding better hence the lottery. And for all the reasons you state, a large drop off of talent, but it has gone from one extreme to the other and a depressing over reliance on the power meters in the selection process. And I would question this selection process especially as regards to Chris froome.,

It is clearly a system that works, but it is a system that gives the impression it is created for and around doping, PED's and any other enhancement you care to mention. And it is arguably both the making of and the ruination of the sport.


Froome did not come through the British development system and was only really chosen for SKY cos they needed British riders.

I think the British system has been a big plus in the development of the sport there but it also meant if you were not cut out for the track, you would struggle to make it. Dan Martin is the perfect example, he switched his allegiance to Ireland immediately after junior level because BC wanted him to work on the track.

Look at the type of riders that have been developed by British Cycling, mostly strongmen like Stannard, Thomas, Dowsett, Cummings etc. Then there is Cav who is a sprinter but where are the climbers??? Wiggins is one who they 'transformed' but who else, JTL was not a product of BC, he went to France early. Maybe Josh Edmondson and still waiting on Peter Kennaugh. No, SKY have had to look abroad for their mountain goats.

You can make some argument for Simon Yates, but even then, they missed Adam Yates who had to make the move to France.

Hugh Carthy is another talented young climber BC somehow missed...
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