Ruminations from JV...

Jul 6, 2010
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Alright, here are some thoughts from Vaughters upon the state of ProTour membership etc.

http://www.cyclingnews.com/blogs/jonathan-vaughters/the-geox-paradox

Since buddy has taken such a pounding in this forum, why not read his ideas and THEN pick them apart.

He's got some good ideas, and some that aren't feasible, but give it a read. This is an issue that is really going to come to the fore this upcoming season. Lots of heat.

Like I've said before, this guy's groomed for politics...
 
Aug 13, 2009
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JV misses one key point. The reason there was such a strong objection to the Protour from RCS and the ASO was because the UCI wanted to take away all their TV rights and bundle them in a package like F1.

The argument was never about how many teams are invited to races it was about who controlled the $$$$$
 
JV's plan basically boils down to "give my team and a few others a ten year guarantee to ride all the big events so that the large sponsors will have no realistic choice other than giving their money to the lucky few. After we have cut off the air supply to the smaller teams, I'll be able to sell my team in whole or in part for big bucks."
 

Barrus

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Apr 28, 2010
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Do you guys want to discuss the protour thing, or the anti-doping thing? Because that will decide where this thread'll go (what subforum I mean)
 
Barrus said:
Do you guys want to discuss the protour thing, or the anti-doping thing? Because that will decide where this thread'll go (what subforum I mean)
Under JV's plan he would personally suffer much financial damage if he were to reveal that one of his riders were doping.

There! Now we can discuss the matter with the freedom to take the discussion where it may.
 

Barrus

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Apr 28, 2010
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BroDeal said:
Under JV's plan he would personally suffer much financial damage if he were to reveal that one of his riders were doping.

There! Now we can discuss the matter with the freedom to take the discussion where it may.
Shall I than put another thread in the general road race forum to discuss the non-doping thingies?
 
Barrus said:
Do you guys want to discuss the protour thing, or the anti-doping thing? Because that will decide where this thread'll go (what subforum I mean)
Good Point. One orbits around the business model and the other on investment risk. Interrelated so, perhaps both in one thread, in that they both relate to the pros and cons of corruption, greed and turf battles, but it could get confusing...

PS either way, compelling thread(s)
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Race Radio said:
JV misses one key point. The reason there was such a strong objection to the Protour from RCS and the ASO was because the UCI wanted to take away all their TV rights and bundle them in a package like F1.

The argument was never about how many teams are invited to races it was about who controlled the $$$$$
So true. And one thing I actually agree with the Hog about is that teams definitely deserve a bigger share of the TV money.
 
Oct 29, 2009
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BroDeal said:
JV's plan basically boils down to "give my team and a few others a ten year guarantee to ride all the big events so that the large sponsors will have no realistic choice other than giving their money to the lucky few. After we have cut off the air supply to the smaller teams, I'll be able to sell my team in whole or in part for big bucks."
+1
10 year licences would be crazy. What guarentee can Vaughters or any other team give for that matter that their team will even by around in ten years time, never mind have a budget big enough to field a competitive team. As Brodeal says all this will do is create a very cosy club for the teams at the top and the smaller teams may as well not bother, it reduces competion between teams massively.

As far as I understand most of the teams dont have much of a problem with the current system, its more the UCI changing the goal posts at the last minute for what does and does not qualify as a pro tour team that ****es people off.

What so hard about having clear rules about how riders and teams are ranked. Saying the top 15 teams are pro tour, everyone else pro conti. The bottom two pro tour teams are relegated each year and the top two pro conti teams promoted. The UCI is so vague about the rules and seems to have no solid basis for deciding who's in and who's out. I mean did they ever actually give a reason for Geox not getting a license other then 'somebody had to miss out.' Do the UCI decide these things on a whim, do they take bribes, seriously how do did they decide this year the Geox, FDJ and Cofidis didnt deserve a license but Euskaltel, AG2R and Quick Step did?
 
The Cobra said:
+1
10 year licences would be crazy. What guarentee can Vaughters or any other team give for that matter that their team will even by around in ten years time, never mind have a budget big enough to field a competitive team. As Brodeal says all this will do is create a very cosy club for the teams at the top and the smaller teams may as well not bother, it reduces competion between teams massively.

As far as I understand most of the teams dont have much of a problem with the current system, its more the UCI changing the goal posts at the last minute for what does and does not qualify as a pro tour team that ****es people off.

What so hard about having clear rules about how riders and teams are ranked. Saying the top 15 teams are pro tour, everyone else pro conti. The bottom two pro tour teams are relegated each year and the top two pro conti teams promoted. The UCI is so vague about the rules and seems to have no solid basis for deciding who's in and who's out. I mean did they ever actually give a reason for Geox not getting a license other then 'somebody had to miss out.' Do the UCI decide these things on a whim, do they take bribes, seriously how do did they decide this year the Geox, FDJ and Cofidis didnt deserve a license but Euskaltel, AG2R and Quick Step did?
+1

+ more doping as the non-guaranteed pool of riders try to topple the incumbents for the higher salary guaranteed and limited positions.
 
Jul 6, 2010
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Lots of good discussion so far...

And, mods, I posted this in the Clinic as JV was getting such a rough time in this forum I thought his explications may be of interest to his detractors. Not necessarily doping-related, but any associations with JV tend to end up doping-related... even if it is a loose association. His fault, not mine...

Yeah, ten year contracts... Brilliant idea. Like that won't kill the sport. How many sponsors won't get involved in the sport if they're most of a decade from getting into the big-time?

Talk less, think more...
 
These is not ruminations about the Geox Situation. This is JV using the situation to push his long term agenda. I will speculate that the initial discussions that JV had with his business mentor and later with his current patron involved how to cash out. JV has been treating his team like a startup company with the long term goal of selling his stake in it or even going public. Thus he has long been a proponent of an American-style exclusive league of teams.

Ironically, JV's own journey from tiny amateur team to a big time European one, would be near impossible under his plan for the sport. This is what is known as closing the door behind you.

Such a system would have serious implications for races. The UCI chooses which races that the big team all have to race. Its push to foist cycling into non-traditional cycling countries will ultimately lead the soulless, antiseptic race series that is Formula 1, where great races in Europe are replaced with races in whatever developing country is willing to pony up the most money to the governing body.
 

Dr. Maserati

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Jun 19, 2009
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BroDeal said:
These is not ruminations about the Geox Situation. This is JV using the situation to push his long term agenda. I will speculate that the initial discussions that JV had with his business mentor and later with his current patron involved how to cash out. JV has been treating his team like a startup company with the long term goal of selling his stake in it or even going public. Thus he has long been a proponent of an American-style exclusive league of teams.

Ironically, JV's own journey from tiny amateur team to a big time European one, would be near impossible under his plan for the sport. This is what is known as closing the door behind you.

Such a system would have serious implications for races. The UCI chooses which races that the big team all have to race. Its push to foist cycling into non-traditional cycling countries will ultimately lead the soulless, antiseptic race series that is Formula 1, where great races in Europe are replaced with races in whatever developing country is willing to pony up the most money to the governing body.
Yikes - good point, as we had that last year regarding teams when both Team Sky & TRS got 4 year licenses while kicking out established teams like BBox & Cofidis.

I think the 10 year licence is too much - but I always thought a licence should be renewed every 4 years but offer an extension to a team beyond their sponsorship agreement.

That was the reason Milram folded - they were given a ProTour licence last year for just 1 year (2010) which meant they had a difficult task pitching to a prospective sponsor as they could not guarantee a place at the Tour (or any GT).
 
From a romantic point of view, I like the old school structure of the sport, which is layered structure that extends from the amateur club level to very top of the professional level. A rider can join the club attached to his local bike shop, move on to a regional team, then to national level, and so on. The structure is there is allow riders to go up step by step as far as their talent can take them.

Vaughters idea would create a vast gulf between a small and thriving tier of top level teams and a cash starved layer of unstable teams that struggle to get into larger races. It could be like chopping out the Pro Conti teams completely. To some degree this has already happened with the Pro Tour.
 

Dr. Maserati

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Jun 19, 2009
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One point that JV spoke on was how the points are with the riders - while the team itself has nothing.

Off the top of my head - what if every team (or more correctly the controlling company) had a set number of points to add to those of the riders. Points could be taken away for any doping violation involving any team member (not just the rider).

One of the problems with the current system is that it is a throwback to the FICP or UCI rider points for individuals - which encouraged doping, as having points are essential to a team.
 
Dr. Maserati said:
One point that JV spoke on was how the points are with the riders - while the team itself has nothing.

Off the top of my head - what if every team (or more correctly the controlling company) had a set number of points to add to those of the riders. Points could be taken away for any doping violation involving any team member (not just the rider).
Now that is a Belgian CRACKing idea. Split the the points between the rider and the team, and have team point penalities for a rider testing positive. If the team points were valuable and if the anti-doping authorities seriously tried to catch riders then there would be pressure on the teams to prevent doping.
 
I don't think the idea of having 10 super teams kills a small team's chances of making it big. It actually gives greater flexibility to the big races to showcase small teams, which is something they've wanted all along. The TdF could invite 5 French teams plus another 5. The Giro and Vuelta could do the same with Italian and Spanish teams. The system as it stands now (and in the past) leaves too much to the whims of the GTs and the UCI.

If a sponsor leaves one of the 10 teams stranded, there would be plenty of interest in buying them out. The exclusivity raises the interest and value in owning a team.
 
May 26, 2010
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BroDeal said:
From a romantic point of view, I like the old school structure of the sport, which is layered structure that extends from the amateur club level to very top of the professional level. A rider can join the club attached to his local bike shop, move on to a regional team, then to national level, and so on. The structure is there is allow riders to go up step by step as far as their talent can take them.

Vaughters idea would create a vast gulf between a small and thriving tier of top level teams and a cash starved layer of unstable teams that struggle to get into larger races. It could be like chopping out the Pro Conti teams completely. To some degree this has already happened with the Pro Tour.
what is wrong with continuing this tradition.

Money has ruined most sports. the corruption and the doping leads to something no longer being a sport and becoming entertainment for the TV and sadly the people who get rich are invisible and are not sport lovers and take money out of the sport and prevent it from filtering down to the grass roots level.
 

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