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LukasCPH

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Excluding the smaller domestic races and crit scene, the U.S. has always had an identity crisis when trying to position itself on the international cycling calendar. At its best, it's cute; at its worst, it's downright embarrassing.

Watching some of the bigger events often feels like you're being presented the Disney version of European cycling. They use similar terminology, and play off of cycling's legitimate history, but the end result usually seems sterilized and underwhelming when compared to the real thing. Fancy packaging only goes so far when the product inside is a cheap knock-off.

Making it even weirder still: The fans often play along, as if characters in a Disney production as well. They want to be seen imitating European fan behavior, promoting European food and drink, and generally searching for acceptance as "true" cycling fans. I understand that much of it is just people having fun with the imagery, but it's odd.
Yes.

This whole spiel about California being the "fourth-biggest stage race" was part of that, too.
Let's be real: The fourth-biggest stage race is the Tour de Suisse, with Dauphiné and Paris-Nice close behind. Any stage race in the US, however great it may be, can't hope to come near that status until it's been running, continuously, for ~50 years.

But that's not a problem. Not everything has to always be the biggest and bestest - on the contrary, finding a good niche will often be more successful than desperately trying to be(come) something you're certifiably not.
Focus on your strengths.
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    Drummer Boy

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    But that's not a problem. Not everything has to always be the biggest and bestest - on the contrary, finding a good niche will often be more successful than desperately trying to be(come) something you're certifiably not.

    Strade Bianche being the perfect example. What's that race, only 12 -years-old?

    I was really thinking that the Tour of the Battenkill would've grown to something more substantial and significant by now, but it has gotten more popular, and developed quite the cult attraction. The Red Hook Crit is another invention of the U.S scene that has spread internationally and developed quite a hard-core following.

    Trying to be "too much" has been the biggest downfall of U.S. races, IMO.

    -----------------------
    I had totally forgotten that Battenkill added a Gran Fondo since I was last there. I would like to do that, for sure. Or even just be a volunteer next year. It's an extremely cool event.
     :cool
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  • Mellow Velo

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     I know that the UK likes to mimic all things US, but I hope that we aren't heading for a similar California experience over here. Although, Cali did follow the UK in terms of introducing equal men's and women's prize money.

    https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/racing/tour-of-britain/tour-britain-womens-tour-searching-new-main-sponsor-replace-ovo-energy-441711
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  • "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.

    LukasCPH

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    I know that the UK likes to mimic all things US, but I hope that we aren't heading for a similar California experience over here.
    I think OVO simply saw the end of the sponsorship coming and didn't think they would profit from extending the contract.

    Even with no new title sponsor(s) secured (yet), Sweetspot have said that the races (ToB, WT, Tour Series) will definitely be held next year.
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://venezuelapaisdefuturo.blogspot.com/2019/11/vuelta-al-tachira-2020.html?spref=tw

    Tachira could visit Colombia for two stages.

    An Italian (Androni), a Spanish (?) and Colombian teams are expected to be part of the peloton.
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    An Italian (Androni), a Spanish (?) and Colombian teams are expected to be part of the peloton.

    Caja Rural maybe?! They signed (Vuelta a Venezuela winner) Orluis Aular for 2020.
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  • "If this is cycling, I am a banana"

    Joelsim

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    Yes.

    This whole spiel about California being the "fourth-biggest stage race" was part of that, too.
    Let's be real: The fourth-biggest stage race is the Tour de Suisse, with Dauphiné and Paris-Nice close behind. Any stage race in the US, however great it may be, can't hope to come near that status until it's been running, continuously, for ~50 years.

    But that's not a problem. Not everything has to always be the biggest and bestest - on the contrary, finding a good niche will often be more successful than desperately trying to be(come) something you're certifiably not.
    Focus on your strengths.

    They have the biggest roads. The whole peloton can ride abreast on some of them, and frequently do until the sprint.

    IMO, to add to the fact that TOC is the most boring stage race on the calendar about from a couple of stages each year, it’s also on at 10pm to midnight in Europe, a bit of a barrier for most.
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  • Leadbelly

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    http://www.ciclismointernacional.com/la-vuelta-a-san-juan-2020-anuncio-etapas-y-equipos-participantes/

    Teams for San Juan:

    Bora
    UAE
    Movistar
    Deceuninck QuickStep
    Cofidis
    Israel Cycling Academy

    Androni
    Bardiani
    Neri Sottoli
    Fundación Euskadi
    Rally UHC
    Epowers Factory

    Virgen de Fátima
    SEP – San Juan
    Mun. Pocito
    Mun. Rawson
    Puertas de Cuyo
    Amore e Vita
    GW Shimano
    Medellín

    Argentina
    Italia
    Uruguay
    Russia

    A handful of teams less than normal and when E-Powers fail to show it will be even fewer.
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://twitter.com/TourofBritain/status/1193890873290846210

    From one end of Britain to the other in 2020. Part of the package is that the race will then start in Aberdeen in 2021.
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://venezuelapaisdefuturo.blogspot.com/2019/11/vuelta-al-tachira-2020.html?spref=tw

    Tachira could visit Colombia for two stages.

    An Italian (Androni), a Spanish (?) and Colombian teams are expected to be part of the peloton.
    #androni Giovanni Ellena says, they'll start the season either in San Juan (January 26th) or, if they can secure an invitation, in the Tropicale (January 20th).

    https://www.tuttobiciweb.it/article/2019/11/11/1573419388/giovanni-ellena-androni-sidermec-crescere-i-giovani

    So maybe no Tachira (supposed to start on January 10th) for them (or no Tachira at all)?!
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://twitter.com/WielerFlits/status/1194221054627078144

    The Arctic Race of Finway.

    6 augustus – Etappe 1: Tromsø – Tromsø (166 km)
    7 augustus – Etappe 2: Nordkjosbotn – Kilpisjärvi (172 km)
    8 augustus – Etappe 3: Finnsnes – Målselv Ski Resort (184,5 km)
    9 augustus – Etappe 4: Gratangen – Harstad (161 km)
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    https://twitter.com/tds/status/1197467528034947075

    they did very well this year, and two of their guys used the opportunity to move up to WT. Good to see them around again :cool
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://www.ciclo21.com/tour-ruanda-2020/

    Teams for Rwanda:

    Israel Cycling Academy (or whatever they're gonna be called)

    Androni-Sidermec
    Nippo Delko Marseille
    Total Direct Energie
    Novo Nordisk

    Benediction Ignite
    Bai Sicasal
    Pro Touch
    Team Bike AID
    Vino Astana Motors

    Rwanda
    Cameroon
    Algeria
    Ethiopia
    Eritrea

    Belgian U23

    Could be another team added to that. You can see the profiles via the link as well.
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  • Leadbelly

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    This "news" is actually from September, but I only noticed it this morning.

    https://www.lequotidien.com/sports/cest-la-fin-pour-le-grand-prix-cycliste-de-saguenay-89a2cc4f4d5d8578d868005b420d0c26

    Saguenay cancelled. Frau Merkel can't be blamed this time, it's just the local government having to tighten it's belt and can no longer afford to contribute.
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  • LukasCPH

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    And here are the usual half-dozen leader's jerseys for the Tour of Rwanda:


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  • Leadbelly

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    https://twitter.com/procyclingno/status/1199368378097504257

    The Tour of Norway might not go ahead next year. Funding issues (as nearly always!). ARoN is getting the lion's share of what state money is available, with what's left being divvied up between Norway, Hammer and the Ladies.
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  • LukasCPH

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    ARoN is getting the lion's share of what state money is available, with what's left being divvied up between Norway, Hammer and the Ladies.
    Who else is in favour of the obvious solution - drop Hammer and support the actual races? :P
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  • Leadbelly

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    Down at the bottom of the article, I find the breakdown in funding per day is quite interesting[1].

    ARoN 3750000K per day
    Ladies Tour 1000000K
    Tour of Norway 833333K
    Hammer Series 333333K

    Local politics might play a part in why ARoN gets so much (where is t-72 when you need him), but even if you add on the 6 million ToN says they need (for six stages), the per day funding will still be under half of what ARoN gets.
     1. It would be even more interesting if we knew what the total race cost per day was
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  • Joelsim

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    The funding for ARoN has been frozen.
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  • Leadbelly

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    Leadbelly

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    https://twitter.com/WielerFlits/status/1200385039751680001

    Hammer Limburg cancelled in 2020 due to date clashes after the Olympic shuffling.

    Hammer does get a lot of stick for various reasons. The TTT (although hilarious in the first year) just isn't a satisfactory way for me to decide the winner. I haven't ever seen one of the Hammer Hill stages (does it just play out similarly to the Sprint day?), but I've manged to catch a couple of the Hammer Sprints and tbh it was more entertaining than a normal bog standard sprint day, though Hammer Break might be a better way to describe the action.

    I'd be tempted to ditch the TTT, just make it a two day thing and maybe even have each day's event as a separate competition. Also get a local CT or (u23) national team involved in addition to the Velon teams.
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  • LukasCPH

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    Hammer Limburg cancelled in 2020 due to date clashes after the Olympic shuffling.
    Oh no! :-x
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  • Leadbelly

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    Joelsim

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    TTTs, IMO, are a bit of a stupid thing. Why should a rider who rides for a smaller team be penalised a couple of minutes for something out of his control? Nonsensical.
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