Skip to comments.Lance Armstrong to ride again — this time in Sturgis
Posted on 07/22/2014 3:02:57 PM PDT by Baynative
STURGIS | Perhaps, the comeback starts in Sturgis.
Lance Armstrong, who has been stripped of seven Tour De France titles and received a lifetime ban from competitive cycling for doping, was named Monday as the grand marshal of the 12th Annual Mayor's Ride at the Sturgis motorcycle rally.
(Excerpt) Read more at rapidcityjournal.com ...
City officials defended the decision by saying that everyone deserves a second chance, even if in this case it is an individual who fell out of favor with adoring fans around the world and lost of millions of dollars of sponsorships in the process.
"We understand the controversy that surrounds Lance, but we are willing to meet it head on. The city of Sturgis is about second chances," said Brenda Vasknetz, Sturgis motorcycle rally director.
Doesn’t everyone in that sport cheat?
That sport's not unique. My wife claims to have read that Keith Richards of the Rolling Stone used to get blood replacement transfusions to help him straighten from heroin binges before tours. But, it's not cycling.
"It's the new ultra-small bike pump kit! Really!"
No. No, they don't. He's already had tons of second chances - every time he fixed a blood test.
comments self censored.
Scumbag Armstrong doesn't deserve any honors whatsoever for the rest of his life.
Hope someone at lease has the decency to boo him.
How gracious of you. Remaining comments self censored.
Lance being set up.
Achievement in Biochemistry?
Hope someone at lease has the decency to boo him.
Probably not going to happen as there is a pretty good understanding of “decency” at the Sturgis Rally. I’ll be there to witness the action.
“...The annual mayor’s ride is a fundraiser for the Sturgis Volunteer Fire Department. In past years, the governor, state legislators, industry professionals and a cross-section of motorcycle enthusiasts have participated in the ride...”
If they think it will help raise money for the SVFD go for it.
Very, very interesting choice though.
Eeeeevvvrybody hates Lance.
Forgiveness folks. Think about it, can’t have no American winning the TDF 7 times. As far as the doping, I’ll bet it’s going on right now, just maybe more sophisticated and better hidden.
Too bad OJ isn’t out on bail. He’s famous too. Which apparently is the only criteria that matter to the clowns who made this choice.
(the whole episode of doping during his career is a completely different subject, but it sure brings out a lot of comments from people who seem to have led perfect lives)
(Check out the TdF official website for the years Armstrong was in the race- It only lists "Armstrong - disqualified for doping").
He has never won a tour de France.
In football, for instance, steroid use seems to not be so offensive. Baseball is a bit different, so it seems. Tennis ...maybe no big deal.
My personal opinion is that sports are entertainment. People pay to see fantastic performances. We pay other entertainers to look and perform in ways normal folks can't. We have no problem with actors, singers or dancers filled with silicone, cut and pasted and doped to the max so they can function they way they want. So why the problem with an athlete enhancing human performance?
As to the TdF winner designation for Armstrong; the list of past TdF winners includes Marco Pantani, Bjarne Riis and Alberto Contador. Pantaini tested positive numerous times and died of a cocaine overdose. Riis admitted to doping and Contador was caught flat out and suspended. Yet, their names are still there.
I think if you could ask all athletes at the point of turning pro whether they would risk future health problems to use dope and dominate while they are young, the majority would say, "Yes". That means nothing beyond the human desire for fame and fortune. Is that abnormal in the world that oogles over "Dream Teams" rolling over amateurs in the Olympics?
I would like to be added to the “Biker” ping. Thanks.
if he would change his name to Barry Bonds there would be no problem.
And all the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc......finishers breathed a sigh of relief following his bust and raised a glass of wine in a salute to the guy who took the heat off them.
As a matter of record, Lance Armstrong doesn't even rank in the top thirty of TDF stage winners............
And since he has been proven to be "juiced", what does that say about the top 30 who never had to experience the same scrutiny Armstrong did?
Oh wait, those other international racers never fell under the jurisdiction of the USADA and thus were exempt from their investigation.........
I don’t get the vitriol regarding Armstrong. I guess I’m also unconvinced that his “doping” was so much of a factor in his success. At that level they’re only talking seconds here and seconds there. The training and work is all still there... Not like he’s laying on the couch eating chips and bon bons. If he truly cheated what I feel is disappointment, not anger.
Like him or hate him he was still a phenomenal athlete. He battled back through cancer, even. Geez... I wish I had that kind of drive.
Dude, you’ve missed the first two thirds of this year’s TdF.
Welcome to the biker ping list.
He is not just a deeply dishonest person, a serial liar, a devoted cheater, a fraud -- He is a bad person.
Sturgis messed up picking that garbage.
If you care about this subject, read The Secret Race and tell me if you think the same thing.
He’s a monster.
Nice ride ain’t it?
Decades ago I competed at the national level in bicycle racing in the USA. At that time there were no substances that seemed to give a decisive edge in road racing. People still tried and some actually died from heat stroke and other maladies after using stimulants. Large amounts of caffeine was and probably still is the most common stimulant used and is still tolerated.
The Eastern Europeans demonstrated in international competition that hormone treatments were effective in weight lifting, swimming and many other sports such as bicycle track racing. The Eastern Europeans were the most successful original innovators in these types of “scientific” training methods.
After the 1976 Olympics a Polish cycling coach named Eddie Borysewicz defected and was hired by the USCF (United States Cycling Federation) as its first full time coach. I was at one of the very first events presided over by Coach Borysewicz, the Jr. World's team trials held in Colorado Springs, CO in 1978.
One had to have a specified number of points from winning or placing in bicycle races held early in the season. I was a district champion that year and highly ranked nationally. My completion in the trials included most notably, Greg LeMond.
Like so many other endeavors by quasi-governmental organizations the Jr. Worlds Team Trials were a farce in so many ways that it would take several pages to describe it in detail. But it was an education also. The morning of the long road race the temperatures were forecast to be over 100 degrees in the afternoon. The officials decided to start it earlier than scheduled to beat the heat. Only one minor detail, no announcement was made until some of us tried to get some breakfast and were told there was no time for us to eat, and also no time to get food to take with us on the way or in the race.
Now this wasn't an issue for those such as Lemond who had family and support with them, but for many of us it was a big problem. At that time I weighed 135 pounds and had little in the way of reserves. There was no one with me to hand up water or food, I didn't get breakfast. I was in the winning break away before I bonked out. This means my reserves ran out and my blood sugar dropped. I rode to a convenience store and bought food and pop and then rode back to the line in time to see the end of the race.
A guy who I knew personally used stimulants came across the line fifteen minutes after the leaders. His face had white dried saliva all around his mouth and he looked bad... as he crossed the finish line he his eyes rolled back and he collapsed. He was still unconscious when the ambulance transported him to the hospital. I thought that he had died.
That night Coach Eddie Borysewicz who was still unable to speak English yelled at our group through a translator that those of us who hadn't finished the race would never amount to anything. Most of us were just kids who were barely able to afford a plane ticket to Colorado Springs. This was a shameful slap in the face to a bunch of kids who had given their all.
Then to top it off Coach Borysewicz held up my friend who was still in the hospital, as an example of someone who gave his all and was now one of his favorites. Of course he never amounted to anything despite his talent and willingness to use “performance enhancing drugs”.
This was the first race in my career that I hadn't finished, and it seemed obvious to me that the organizers were more than a little to blame. They were suppose to have helped those of us who had no support staff. At the time I wondered if the coach was too stupid to realize why the guy had collapsed or if being someone who was willing to take drugs to perform was somehow considered desirable to him? It has always troubled me.
Within a few years Greg Lemond went on to win the Tour de France three times even after nearly being killed in a hunting accident. I knew Greg to be an extraordinary sportsman and I find it hard to believe that he used performance enhancing drugs. Lance was also one of Eddie Borysewicz’s protégés.
I believe that the coach may have brought an attitude with him from Poland that whatever was legal or wouldn't be discovered was alright if it enhanced performance. I knew many of the riders who were caught up in the “blood doping” scandal in the 1984 Olympics. It wasn't illegal at the time and they were definitely encouraged by Eddie Borysewicz and the rest of the coaching staff to do it. I think this sent a bad message to young riders such as Lance.
At the time Lance ascended to the top... using EPO and other techniques that were truly effective were just coming into their own. The attitude was if the other guys are doing it... we are going to have to do it to only better than them. And that is what Lance did.
My biggest problem with Lance is not that he used performance enhancing techniques and then lied about it. It is that he attacked Greg LeMond and others who I know to be honorable and attempted to ruin their lives. Lemond made the constructive criticism that Lance should distance himself from Doctor Ferrari who was known to be helping others with illegal performance enhancing drugs and techniques. Lance went on a vicious campaign which caused Greg to lose nearly everything. So it is not going to bother me if the same thing happens to Lance.
I know a bunch of people who have been highly critical of professional cyclists. Mostly I think that it is funny because people who have never bicycle road raced at a high level simply have no concept of the actual effort involved. The closest most will ever come to it are longer distance running races, but even that is not really very comparable.
Sorry for the very long post.
Excellent post. THIS is why I come to Free Republic.
I agree, Liberty. Armstrong doesn’t measure up next to these guys.
Thanks for the long post. No apologies necessary.
There are quite a few of us here in "The FR Peloton" who have ridden at Cat3 USCF or better and fully understand not only the dedication to maintain that level of fitness, but the pressures that increase as status grows.
When I was riding I lived near Santa Cruz where a lot of riders lived and trained. I knew Jock Boyer who was the first to ride the Tour and met Greg only once. But, both of them had a respect and admiration for the sport and seemed to me to feel a responsibility to American cycling for setting a good example and image. Greg, more so IMO. I'll never believe LeMond used any PED at all, even though he was riding when the simple practice of blood doping became common. I think that began in eastern Europe too, but I could be wrong. There was a lot of talk about it when the '84 Olympic team was exposed, but it was something that was so wide spread it was a case of doing what everyone else was doing. Besides, what was so wrong with saving your own blood to use later, eh? That of course led to other techniques, then EPO.
If you've been following the Tour de France thread here over the years, you'll know that there is a wide variety of opinion in the FR Peloton. I think I am in the minority. "Vision", "euro-twit", "kevkrom" and others are very hard line on PEDs and also came down much harder on Lance than I did. They eviscerated Contador, too. I defended Lance longer than anyone, maybe because of his cancer ordeal and having met him at a USCF banquet when he was still with Motorola. When you meet someone its easy to feel for them a bit more, I guess. I also defended Floyd Landis - I just didn't want it to be true.
(I have a hunch there's something about the exhaust pipes too)
*1968 HONDA 450 K1
Hey they aint snobs up there.
Plenty of them love Birmingham steel
If you have never been to Sturgis it is just a hoot and every American should see Mt Rushmore.
You gid it.
I’ve been to the heads. Pretty cool.
Its very cool.
My wife and I still ride a tandem frequently, but I haven't entered a bicycle race for over 30 years. I retired as a firefighter six months ago and have been working on increasing my fitness level and losing pounds for the past few months. Things are starting to come together. Who knows? Maybe one day I will be light and fast enough to be competitive in my age group.
“Jock” Boyer was one of my heroes. The Seattle area had some notable riders at that time as well. Mark Pringle who won the 1976 Nevada City Classic when he was 19... A couple years after that on a rainy winter day he exclaimed I was crazier than he was. As a young junior I had ridden 50 miles up from Tacoma in the rain and pushed the pace on an early season 40 mile club ride and then rode back home in the rain.
My younger brother had a huge crush on Rebecca Twigg. When they were both intermediate’s (under 15), they crashed together in a drainage ditch at the side of the road in a race near Redmond. He was using some Cinelli track pedals on his road bike. You had to reach down and pull a lever to get the pedals to release. He was head down in this deep ditch. He couldn't get to the lever and the more he tried the more he slid toward the water a couple feet deep at the bottom of the ditch. Suddenly a beautiful angel came to his rescue. He was scratched up but they rode back together and he felt no pain. He couldn't stop talking about her for weeks. Unfortunately for him nothing came of it.
There were many others... Tom Brosnowski was probably the rider who was the very nicest to me. My room mate at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs won the JR Nationals the following year. It was a long time ago and you probably have never heard of most of my friends, but it was a pretty close knit community.
In those days a lot of the best races near us were in British Columbia and we used to go up there a lot. I rode with a group whose leader had on old VW Van, a crazy mustache and a pony tail that went to his butt. Incredibly, we crossed the boarder dozens of times but were never hassled even one time. None of us were pot smokers because we didn't want to screw up our lung capacity.
Well it is fun for me to reminisce.
I am sorry, It was two years later that my roommate at Colorado Springs won the JR Nationals. He was quite a character, but like me, I believe outside circumstances caused him to have to give up racing while he was still young.
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