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Cycling made the national news this morning(12 posts)

Cycling made the national news this morningmike mcmahon
Jun 14, 2001 10:51 AM
Unfortunately it was a report on doping and the current ban on pro cycling in Italy. It seems the only good news we here in the States about cycling is Armstrong's Tour victories.

On a brighter note, NPR also mentioned that today is the 43rd birthday of one of my personal sport heroes: Eric Heiden. Heiden was one of the greatest Olympic athletes of the 20th Century. He could have made a mint off of his medals and All-American looks. Instead, he returned home and took up professional cycling. After holding his own at the professional level, he went to medical school and became an othopedic surgeon. It's nice to see an athlete of Heiden's caliber who goes on to do something with his life other than pimp Nikes, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, or a host of other products. Happy Birthday, Eric.
An Amateur, in the original sense of the wordMeDotOrg
Jun 14, 2001 11:03 AM
...from the Latin Amator, or lover. Someone who participates for the love of the sport.
True. Here's more info on Heiden for those interestedmike mcmahon
Jun 14, 2001 2:15 PM
For those of you too young to remember Heiden in the Olympics, I'm attaching a brief bio from ESPN. I don't tycically gush about athletes, but Heiden was (and is) truly a role model in every way.
Except for winning the USPro Championship!mr_spin
Jun 14, 2001 3:50 PM
And riding both the Giro and the Tour. strongDAS
Jun 14, 2001 11:29 AM
Here in Palo Alto there is a local road climb called Old La Honda. A local describes it...


Old La Honda Road (E), Woodside
distance: 3.3 miles
climbing: 1260 feet

This is a classic, the benchmark climb in the region. It is neither terribly steep nor long, but its proximity to population centers and the beauty of its narrow switchbacks and generous shade make it extremely popular. Almost all local riders know their best times up this hill, from the bridge to the stop sign. Each Wednesday it is climbed by the infamous "Noon Ride", often including national-caliber riders. It was recently repaved over 75% of its length, making it a bit faster.

Its narrow, blind corners make Old La Honda a terrible descent, and almost all rider opt instead to descend nearby Highway 84.


I usually climb it somewhere between 21-24 minutes. I know some faster guys that can do it around 19-20. The record, held by Eric Heiden is 14:20. Strong.
Old La HondaHank
Jun 14, 2001 1:07 PM
In the 80s when I lived there, my favorite ride was going up dirt Alpine and then coming down Old La Honda - loved that descent (sorry to hear they repaved it). I knew some people who did that climb in the mid 15s (a few people on the Avocet team). I did low 18s a few times - remember alternating between a 42 x 19 and a 42 x 21. When I was in high school, I caught Heiden on a short climb on Old Arastradero - it was like coming up behind the Incredible Hulk. He was really cool, invited me to join him on his ride, which was going to be another 30 or 40 miles. I told him I thought I heard my mom was calling me... I think he used to live on Old La Honda. Maybe he still does.
Old La Hondamr_spin
Jun 14, 2001 2:39 PM
The primary reason no one went down Old La Honda because the pavement was so bad, especially at the top. It's a great climb, though. A typical old lumber road in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It's a 10% grade for over 3 miles, which isn't terribly bad. I used to do 21-22 minutes regularly, but I haven't been there in a while. I should go back soon. I could easily break 20 minutes on new pavement! The other side, the ocean side, is pretty cool, too.
Old La HondaHank
Jun 14, 2001 3:14 PM
yeah but on 84 you always get stuck behind cars. No traffic on Old La Honda. Kind of sketchy in places but a lot more fun.
He's really only......4bykn
Jun 14, 2001 1:29 PM
43?? Damn, I'm only 7 months younger than a legend from the previous generation. Time marches on, and we all keep getting older.
re: Cycling made the national news this morningrodemiles
Jun 14, 2001 7:38 PM
Does anyone know whatever happened to Eric's younger sister Beth? She was a killer cyclist and speedskater like Eric but seemed to let the media overwhelm her. After dominating cycling for a year or so she seemed to slip completely out of sight. She had the most beautiful smile.
my brush with eric heiden the greatnesstoopoorformoots
Jun 14, 2001 7:57 PM
as an candidate for a residency spot in orthopedic surgery i interviewed at UCDavis med center two years ago. my first interviewer: "Dr. Heiden" it said on the schedule. my suspicions were confirmed when i walked into his room: he had a full-size skeleton behind his desk with three olympic gold medals around its neck.

throughout the 30min interview he was extremely pleasant and kept the discussion to me and my background. he was extremely modest and never once went into "well see when i was in the olympics and won the gold medals for...."
A meeting with HeidenAwestruck
Jun 15, 2001 2:55 AM
U.S. Olympic speed skaters would train at the U.S. High Altitude Speed Skating Center (USHASSC) in Butte Montana while I was attending school at Montana Tech about 13 years ago. Tech had the best "available" gym/workout room in the city, so the USHASSC Skaters would frequent the gym on a pretty regular basis (unfortunately, my visits weren't so "regular"). Nevertheless, I used to think I had an impressive set of pistons...shaved, ripped from lots of miles. Then Bonnie Blair, sometimes Heiden, and the rest of their speed skating cronies would walk into the gym for their workout. Weights would drop...the stereo would turn off...I'd never seen such huge, ripped legs...MASSIVE! The skaters' legs were enough to build anxiety in any person present, but needless to say Mr. Heiden and Ms. Blair were two of the friendliest, willing-to-help people I had ever come into contact with.'s no wonder Heiden has the record on the ride you speak of (Old La Honda)...