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Biggest Pro Cycling Myths

Jul 2, 2009
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What are the biggest myths about pro cycling? (I'm talking strictly non-Clinic material here)

Here's mine:

Myth: HTC-Columbia are a team only interested in sprinting and stage wins. They have no regard for GC.

Fact: Of the 11 ranking stage races so far, they have managed top tens in eight of them - more than any other team (Katusha, Liquigas and Radioshack are next on 7). This doesn't include Eneco, which they lead. Their record in non-ranking events is also good.

Note: This thread isn't to debate my Myth/Fact, but to put forward your own myth/fact propositions (non-clinic remember)
 
Jul 29, 2010
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Paolo Bettini opposed DNA-testing of riders b/c he felt it was an affront to personal dignity.

Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen care about the sport, rather than their own wallets.

Robbie McEwen's good bike-handling skills are due to his childhood BMX riding. It has nothing to do w/ the fact that he's been riding as a pro for 15+ yrs.

Erik Zabel only used EPO once. Johan Museeuw only used it during the final season of his career.

Indurain had incredible lung capacity. Armstrong's body is physiologically capable of flushing lactic acid at a higher rate than other humans.
 

Polish

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Mar 11, 2009
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Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition!

"Doping is dragging down Pro Cycling!"

(not true, it is the modern anti-doping attitudes that are doing the dragging)
(Pro Cycling has ALWAYS had doping)


"Clean Pro Cycling is as important as Clean Junior Cycling"

(not true, clean junior/highschool/etc cycling is MUCH more important)
(clean Charity Ride Cycling is more important too)
(99.995% of Charity riders / Juniors will NOT turn Pro)

"Doping in Pro Cycling is more lethal than Hunting Accidents"

(not true, more deaths per year from hunting accidents)
 
Polish said:
"Doping is dragging down Pro Cycling!"

(not true, it is the modern anti-doping attitudes that are doing the dragging)
(Pro Cycling has ALWAYS had doping)


"Clean Pro Cycling is as important as Clean Junior Cycling"

(not true, clean junior/highschool/etc cycling is MUCH more important)
(clean Charity Ride Cycling is more important too)
(99.995% of Charity riders / Juniors will NOT turn Pro)

"Doping in Pro Cycling is more lethal than Hunting Accidents"

(not true, more deaths per year from hunting accidents)

OK since my previous post was nuked and I recieved a warning for saying another poster was not a moron, I will try again.

So here are my myths:
Those who attack anti doping stands for "dragging down pro cycling" have cyclings best interest at heart.

Charity Ride cyclists, juniors, and even masters will never try to do what they see pros do, so it doesn't matter if pros dope.

There are more pro cyclists than there are hunters, worldwide.

Should I have said is not a dope?:cool:
 
Jun 16, 2009
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NashbarShorts said:
Indurain had incredible lung capacity.

sorry? Are you saying that having lungs that are 7.7Litres isn't incredible? For reference, that means his lungs are 2.2Litres larger than the adult male average of 5.5Litres
 
Jul 14, 2009
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NashbarShorts said:
Paolo Bettini opposed DNA-testing of riders b/c he felt it was an affront to personal dignity.

Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen care about the sport, rather than their own wallets.

Robbie McEwen's good bike-handling skills are due to his childhood BMX riding. It has nothing to do w/ the fact that he's been riding as a pro for 15+ yrs.

Erik Zabel only used EPO once. Johan Museeuw only used it during the final season of his career.

Indurain had incredible lung capacity. Armstrong's body is physiologically capable of flushing lactic acid at a higher rate than other humans.

so now there is a proper way to admit you are a doper?
 
Jun 16, 2009
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chase196126 said:
My question is, why do you think its not the hardest sport in the world and what would your pick be?


Valid point - I would hope that this thread would be a location to list a well known myth or misconception AND the source for busting it. Otherwise it will degenerate into a mishmash of hearsay
 
Oct 26, 2009
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Mambo95 said:
What are the biggest myths about pro cycling? (I'm talking strictly non-Clinic material here)

Here's mine:

Myth: HTC-Columbia are a team only interested in sprinting and stage wins. They have no regard for GC.

Fact: Of the 11 ranking stage races so far, they have managed top tens in eight of them - more than any other team (Katusha, Liquigas and Radioshack are next on 7). This doesn't include Eneco, which they lead. Their record in non-ranking events is also good.

Note: This thread isn't to debate my Myth/Fact, but to put forward your own myth/fact propositions (non-clinic remember)

Lance Armstrong's comeback from cancer is the greatest sports story of all time.

Lance Armstrong is the greatest cyclist of all time.
 
chase196126 said:
My question is, why do you think its not the hardest sport in the world and what would your pick be?

I think we had a thread on this somewhere else but...

'Hard' is subjective term and the question is ambiguous. It could just as easily refer to level of skill required (i.e. technical difficulty - golf!) or mental toughness as much as physiological demand. Or do we mean 'harder' to be successful (to win) - some sense that some sports are more competitive than others. I think this needs some clarification.

In the context of endurance sport it usually means how much requirement is there for pyhsiological and/or mental endurance. Even with this clarified for me it's still a bogus question - how do you say XC Skiing is or isn't 'harder' than riding a stage of the tour. Is a marathon harder than a 1500m on a track - it's longer but harder?

It's fun to speculate but i don't think I have ever seen a convincing answer.
 
Jun 19, 2009
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The Hitch said:
I would say its the hardest proffesional sport.

Some of the extreme sports others practise are harder, but from the ones you can make a living of, cycling is the hardest.

Bull riding is the hardest. 8 seconds seems longer than the Tour and the odds of finishing are less...go figure.
 
Jun 12, 2010
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chase196126 said:
My question is, why do you think its not the hardest sport in the world and what would your pick be?

My pick would be boxing, what other sport has inflicting potential brain damage ( knock outs) as a desired way to win?
I`d rate X country sking as harder to...but in 3rd place I`d put Grand Tour races.
This was also the view of the late coach Eddy Soens when we once had a chat about it.

Defining "hard" is obviously very subjective.
 
Jan Ullrich, a clean rider, should have won 9 Tours
96 - Riss - doped
97 - won
98 - Pantanni - doped
00, 01, 03 - Armstrong doped
04 - Armstorng - doped, Basso - Birillo, Kloden - would let him win, they are good friends
05 - Armstorng - doped, Basso - Birillo
06 - i have a feeling he was better than Pereiro
 
Well name me other sports where young guys aged 22 or younger are encouraged to not compete because doing so could ruin their careers.

In all the big mainstream sports, people in their early 20's or even teens have a big presence. So forget about those.

Marathon, often touted as the hardest sport by people who dont know much about road cycling, has young guys around that age competing and winning. Hell Sami Wanjiru was 21 when he won the olympic marathon 2 years ago. The London marathon was just won by a 23 year old. Triathlon, a sport which people say is the hardest because they have to carry the extra upperbody muscle for swimming. Current world champion Allistair Brownlee was 21 when he won it last year.

But in this thing of ours, never mind competing, people around this age are prevented by their teams from even riding grand tours because it would ruin their careers. It is just too tough.

Dekker_Tifosi said:
I know Rabobank for a fact don't let 20 year old neo pro's ride even 1 grand tour. They protected Gesink and Mollema from riding them in their first year.

Probably better than burning young guns up. I remember Spilak two years ago was used in so many races he was complety gone after may and needed 1,5 year to get back at his old level (and winning Romandy this year)

And peter sagan. Any other sport he would have been pushed straight to the top by now. He might ride the flat days of the Vuelta as prep for the World Champs (im not sure) but as far as completing a gt goes. Forget about it.

Also what other sport so much impacts the anatomy. Weve all seen the horror pictures of Rasmusen and others. The ammount of weight the cyclists lose over the course of a grand tour has got to be big.
And then there is the hct level. A grand tour lowers the ammount of red blood cells in the body, far more significantly than any other sport.

You could argue the boxing impacts the anatomy with scars and injuries, but cycling has injuries too, bad ones, and in boxing, the refs are there to stop fights if they get out of hand.

There are probably some other variables in the body which are impacted by riding a grand tour which i havent even mentioned.

And this is just the grand tour aspect of road cycling. What about the 1 dayers, and the very difficult 7 day stage races.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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ESPN compiled this list several years ago, creating some silly formula that ranks different sports based on difficulty. While its a nice idea, ESPN proves they are still in love with the big 4 American sports.

Cycling distance ranks 20th and cycling sprints ranks 27th for those who don't want to follow the link.

Boxing is listed as number 1 (no complaints with that).

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/sportSkills