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Foreign riders in national championships

Jul 27, 2009
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According to our local paper, Andre Griepel and Bert Grabsch were going to ride the Australian national championships (presumably as domestiques for Mick Rogers and Adam Hansen). The plan was canned for commercial reasons when the director of the Tour Down Under got wind of it.

Robbie McEwen is quoted as being very unimpressed by the rules that permit foreign riders to ride the Aussie championships, and, frankly, I agree with him.

Does this occur in other countries' national championship races or is it unique to ours?
Mellow Velo said:
Yes. The US RR champs are open to foreigners, I believe.

You are correct Mellow. I have seen 'Pro' and 'The Hard Road' and it is Philly week where the RR is held and foreigners are permitted to ride. Some foreigners are even able to get away in the last few Kms and because all the Americans are watching each other knowing that it is the first US rider to cross the line wins the stars and stripes jersey.

But it is very team based during the road race too and the stronger teams are able to get their leaders to 'the wall' in prime position for an attack or to cover the attacks. I think it would be quite hard to win if you didn't have a strong team.

I guess to answer the OP's question you have to think about it two ways:

In countries where there is pro teams based ie. USA - Garmin, Columbia and a crap load of good United states based teams letting only US riders ride could possibly benefit one or only a few teams alot. ie. The US based teams. Thus allowing one team to completely dominate because they can only afford local talent or because they are trying to develop it.

On the other hand countries like Australia where there are little to no teams, letting in lots of foreigners may allow one team to dominate ie. like how Columbia was gonna send Grabsch and someone else, it could possibly turn the tide completely from a pro or two from most teams and no one team dominating to exactly the opposite.

I guess there are pros and cons to each way of doing it. I guess it just depends on the country.

(hope that made sense)
May 9, 2009
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Here's a couple pics of the most recent illegal alien to wear the US National Champ jersey:
(see in the background, how the dejected the real winner is?)


Aug 4, 2009
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Lucky to see Robbie at the champs he dosnt like the course although he did win there one year in a long two man break with O'neil. pulling him arround.

Bet O'neil was paid big $$$ for that one.