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US/AUS vs European cycling fans

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US/AUS vs European cycling fans

06 Jul 2017 15:07

Following a couple of cyclist vlogers on yt, I've seemed to notice that there is a distinct difference in the US/AUS vs the european guys. The former seem to be mostly coastal, vegan, trendy/hipster kind of people, while the europeans seem more like regular folks, though mostly middle class and up.

I see the same in football (soccer), a sport I find utterly boring btw:p, but americans that are into it seem to overlap with the cycling fans, while european football fans are decidedly lower middle class to working class.

Are these sports percived as niche/foreign/exotic/rare in the US/AUS so it becomes an in-group and elitist thing to like, or are there other explanations?

Btw, I have to plug my favorite vloger Jasper Verkuijl, a dutch KLM pilot and amateur cyclist who is relly strong and rides all over the world without any vegan agenda or pretentiousness:p
«Sky helped for the GC, so did BMC - a lot of teams tried but one rider isn't enough. Not against De Gendt. He's like 10 riders.»
Oude Geuze
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06 Jul 2017 15:59

I suppose it could be because cycling - at least in parts of Europe - is considered a regular way to get around, whereas that doesn't seem to be the case in either the US or Australia.

I feel kinda sorry for the US/AUS fans, though. Considering the majority of the big races happen pretty much in the middle of the night from their PoV.
Aka The Ginger One.
User avatar RedheadDane
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06 Jul 2017 18:55

I don't think cycling in the States is mainly (or just) coastal, but I may be wrong. Take Colorado, for instance, America's cycling hub. I think the difference is broader, as in West to East. Cycling today is definitely more of a thing to the West of the country, and not just the coast.

I also don't agree that you'd equate being vegan with being elitist. Vegan cyclists (or vegans in general) are some of the most simple and genuine people you'll see, it's just that there are so few it seems like a niche.

The other reason it would seem like Americans and Aussies are just trendy and hipsters is because of the prevalence of cycling clubs in those two countries, making cliques more obvious.

There's also a major preference for aesthetics in these countries as well as a higher standard of living compared to a lot of European countries, so you are likely to see them rocking boutique kits and mid to top end gear. But again, nothing to be ashamed of.

I don't think you'de be rejected if you were to join a group ride with folks from these two countries, quite on the contrary. Every video I see seems to have everyone in very good spirits, all friendly folks, whereas I've faced some very unpleasent episodes here in Portugal.

I've never been to the west of the US nor to Australia, but cyclists in Europe, at least here, seem way more snobbish.

As far as Australia goes, well, it can only be a coastal thing, no? There's nothing to the interior. I know people who have been to Adelaide and say it is one of the best cycling spots they've been to. They say Adelaide is to cycling like Peahi is to surf. There are cyclists everywhere around town.

Lastly, I really don't know what you mean by vegan agenda or pretentiousness. Where did you even get that idea from? 99% of vegan cyclist youtubers are great people. Geez, people deliberately feel attacked by vegans even if they don't open their mouths.
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User avatar BigMac
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Re: US/AUS vs European cycling fans

06 Jul 2017 19:42

Oude Geuze wrote:Following a couple of cyclist vlogers on yt, I've seemed to notice that there is a distinct difference in the US/AUS vs the european guys. The former seem to be mostly coastal, vegan, trendy/hipster kind of people, while the europeans seem more like regular folks, though mostly middle class and up.

I see the same in football (soccer), a sport I find utterly boring btw:p, but americans that are into it seem to overlap with the cycling fans, while european football fans are decidedly lower middle class to working class.

Are these sports percived as niche/foreign/exotic/rare in the US/AUS so it becomes an in-group and elitist thing to like, or are there other explanations?

Btw, I have to plug my favorite vloger Jasper Verkuijl, a dutch KLM pilot and amateur cyclist who is relly strong and rides all over the world without any vegan agenda or pretentiousness:p


I guess(hope) youtube vloggers do not a consensus make.
climb4fun
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06 Jul 2017 20:50

This was of course just an observation based on a really small sample of self selected individuals, I just wanted others perspective on it regarding the elitist vs commoner culture of cycling.

About the vegan thing, about half of all cycling channels I've seen call themselvelves vegan ..something about cycling. Maybe durianrider ruined my google algorithm;)
«Sky helped for the GC, so did BMC - a lot of teams tried but one rider isn't enough. Not against De Gendt. He's like 10 riders.»
Oude Geuze
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Re:

06 Jul 2017 21:16

BigMac wrote:I've never been to the west of the US nor to Australia, but cyclists in Europe, at least here, seem way more snobbish.


You don't think that's a bit of a stereotypical view on something literally everyone could potentially be?
Well, almost everyone; guess if you don't have any legs it might be difficult. Then again, hand-cycles are a thing...
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User avatar RedheadDane
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08 Aug 2017 23:04

Here in Australia cycling is perceived as a sport far more than a mode of transport. Driver attitudes play at least some part in that.

Out on the road you are just as likely to see middle aged, upper middle management types with huge disposable income as any other type of rider. Clubs are very popular in most cities, but most riders tend to just get around with friends and not race often, if at all.

Clubs tend to be more prominent, friendly and accessible in country towns where they are more integral to the cycling community. The best clubs I've been involved with are all from regional areas. They're far better than any city based club I've been involved with, on and off the bike.

As for Australian riders being more relaxed, I can tell you that's not always the case!
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23 Nov 2017 18:07

The US, not sure about Aus, but the US just doesn't have the fan base that football, baseball, basketball, NASCAR, or even soccer has, and I doubt it ever will but I hope I'm wrong. Even on the west coast where it's all trendy stuff going on you still don't have the fan base there either. I think like RedHeadDane said, if cycling was important to America to commute to work in like it is in Europe then cycling would have a much larger fan base, but that isn't the case, so bicycle races here draw small crowds. It's also difficult to watch a race in person, the course is too long, people in America like their stadium type of sports, they can see the action no matter what part of the stadium their in. Maybe we should use a large stadium like at Indianapolis Indiana that has a infield road course inside the 500 oval, or Daytona International Speedway in Florida has a infield road course, that they could have cycling races on those types of courses, add in some infield bleachers (that can be put up and taken down) to get closer to the action, turn this sort of racing into a big American event with lots of commercialization and publicising and brands and sponsors to push the races, this way there would be that stadium effect we love. Those infield tracks are rarely used, so why not utilize them? I could be wrong in assuming this but I think if we brought cycling to a place like Indianapolis or Daytona this could draw crowds, maybe not a lot initially but over time who knows? But until we get more pro riders riding out of the the USA I doubt seriously it will go anywhere.

I think Lance Armstrong initially really helped the cause of cycling in America, but then that damn doping thing went on and destroyed all that Lance helped to create and it left a sour taste in people mouths. America needs a new star power, actually at least 2 stars, people in America need to have a face connected to the sport right now there isn't anyone. US also needs more cycling coverage of events, and get those events publicised so we know when they're on TV.

It would be a major up hill battle for America to get pro cycling rocking, but it could be done if the interest is there, right now that interest simply isn't there, maybe as football and NASCAR loses people interests cycling could fill that void, we have the tracks for it, they just have to used.

Like I said, I could be wrong in what I said, but maybe we need to look outside the box and do it differently in America like having a lot of races in stadiums.
froze
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Re:

23 Nov 2017 19:14

BigMac wrote:I also don't agree that you'd equate being vegan with being elitist. Vegan cyclists (or vegans in general) are some of the most simple and genuine people you'll see, it's just that there are so few it seems like a niche.

99% of vegan cyclist youtubers are great people. Geez, people deliberately feel attacked by vegans even if they don't open their mouths.


I love the idea of a defence of veganism by someone called Big Mac.

The stereotype of cyclists as bearded, Guardian-reading tree-huggers (the cultural precursor of the hipster) was very common in Britain until pretty recently; probably now pushed out by driver prejudices against "lane hoggers who don't pay road tax". Fans of cycling are, I would suggest, so far below the horizon that there is no widespread impression of who we are: most people are aware that there probably are such people in their community, but have no idea who they are.
User avatar Armchair cyclist
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24 Nov 2017 16:33

This vegan thing is an odd one, it does work but only for some people, not sure why that is though. When I was racing I had a friend who was a nutritionist and she recommend a vegan diet, so I tried it but my energy levels plummeted, so she altered it to give me more protein and calories, still nothing, more alterations and more of nothing, this took place over a 6 month period, this was not a good thing since I was racing and my performance levels went down, after 6 months of trying to make this diet work I went back to my regular diet and all performance levels returned to normal much to the pleasure of my team!!

She did admit that for a lot of people the vegan diet doesn't work. Personally I don't think humans were made for an all veggie diet. The human body was made to consume meat, just look at our teeth and you can see that. However we are designed to eat both which makes us omnivores, not just one or the other, and there are certain nutrients that man needs that are only found in meat. Like I said earlier though, according to my nutritionist, that some people do very well on a vegan diet and some don't, so a person needs to experiment to see what works for them.

One thing to note, I have known about 2 dozen strict vegans over the years, mostly women which seem to tolerate vegan diets better than some men, however the odd thing is...all of these women died at early ages due to cancer. Several of them were health fanatics from religiously working out, taking vitamins and minerals, and herb supplements etc etc etc, and one was licensed in all that crap, all died from cancer including my nutritionist who was the licensed one. I'm not sure if there is a connection there or not, but it's something worth considering. I think if a person goes to far in one direction it's bad, whether it be all meat like the Akins diet promotes, or all veggies, there has to be a balance, if that balance it tilted to the extreme in one of those directions your health will suffer especially over the long haul.

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froze
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24 Jun 2018 16:16

Bike racing is small, tiny.. everywhere.. for us in the US things are taking a couple of small steps forward.. first an unlikely place like Knoxville Tennessee is doing a great job.. they are putting lots of effort to promote our domestic championships. Equally as important in my opinion, the promoters are communicating and cooperating with business to show that hosting the race has a positive economic impact. In Philadelphia, a mash up of fans and business are trying to restore the Cycling classic... I am not sure if it will work for the long term but I applaud the hard work that has gone into trying..
With streaming and some targeted marketing.. maybe more people can see the races or at a minimum..see highlight reels and results..
I think Cycling News has shown itself to be superior to the others... and as a total surprise for me. While Velonews has podcasts about illegal, banned substances sold by Floyd Landis.. Cycling News has a couple of pieces about riders, races and the all important back story..in my non scientific opinion. CN article about Horner will get more people interested in the US championships..than let's say Lance Armstrong's view on the direction of pro cycling.
There are a bunch of women racers with good personal histories and..got results or are in contention. In my opinion if the race as a whole can't get outsiders focused on following a horse, picking a favorite for whatever reason.. the best it can be is how many, shirts, beers and plates of food semi interested passers-by purchase.. ain't nobody getting on a plane or driving significant distance to get a multi day hotel room in Knoxville TN to watch a bicycle race without some strategic marketing.. I wish the racers and race organization success.. good job to Cycling News and others who try..
Unchained
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Re: US/AUS vs European cycling fans

06 Jul 2018 04:15

Oude Geuze wrote:Following a couple of cyclist vlogers on yt, I've seemed to notice that there is a distinct difference in the US/AUS vs the european guys. The former seem to be mostly coastal, .........................


Easy to account for this. Australia and the US are large countries where the majority of the population lives on, or near th coast. Europe consists of smaller countries, many with no coastlines; so the populations are often remote from the coast.
avanti
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08 Jul 2018 23:12

I think the idea of putting a circuit race on a large race track road course would be something that might be able to be sold over here. You've got both Indy and Dayton with infield courses. You've also got other road courses that although you can't see the entire track, they have spots with TV's so you can watch when they aren't right in front of you. That new course in Texas for F1 might be a candidate. Maybe older road courses like Road Atlanta, Mid-Ohio, Road America, whatever the one is Sonoma, CA is.

More TV coverage of races would help as well. Currently if it's not the Tour de France or Tour of California, Tour of Utah, or the new one in Colorado, you have to hunt for it and then most aren't on TV anyway and you have to hunt on line.

Of course it doesn't help that most races are in Europe so they start while we're asleep and unless it's the weekend end while we're working.

As for coast vs middle of the country... Colorado in the middle of the country. In North Carolina the biggest cycling hub/city is Asheville and it's in the mountains, not at the coast. It's at least a 4 to 5 hour drive to get there from the coast.
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