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Lance not riding the Vuelta(19 posts)

Lance not riding the VueltaNeedSpeed
Aug 13, 2001 10:34 AM
It's official: USPS and Johan announced on Friday that Lance will NOT be riding the Tour of Spain or the Classica San Sebastian, citing fatigue. Now many of you (as I) heard Lance basically commit to backing up Heras in the Vuelta if he helped Lance out in the Tour. Now, I know that if Lance is truly fatigued after kicking butt in the TdF, he wouldn't want to be a liability to the Postal team supporting Heras. However, what if other USPS riders not as strong as Lance return to Europe to help back up Heras (such as Rubiera)? Personally, I'm disappointed b/c half of Lance is still better than many super domestiques and it would be nice to see how the team dynamics of USPS change to support Heras. I still can't believe that Postal (with Lance's blessing) didn't try to set Heras or any other rider up for a stage win. Heras could have taken one of the last mountainous stages after Lance secured his lead.

I am still a big fan of Lance and will remain one, but it would be nice to see Postal go from a one-dimensional team to a bigger threat by supporting Lance in the TdF, Heras in the Vuelta and Hincapie in the Classics.

You've heard my thoughts. What are yours?
If I were Heras I would jump ship...DG
Aug 13, 2001 10:53 AM
Heras joined USPS to get the know-how on how Lance trains for the big tours. He has accumulated one season of experience and should move on. He is just being used by USPS/Lance and it is highly unlikely he would get a chance to ride as a leader in the USPS team for a couple of more years. Lance has set his eyes on five-peat and Heras isn't getting any younger.
nonsense...Lou M
Aug 13, 2001 11:07 AM
Even without Lance he will still have a good supporting cast for the Vuelta (I firmly believe that USPS has a much stronger team than Telekom). Besides even if he was #1 in another team, he still would not beat Lance nor Ulrich or Beloki for that matter. Everyone knows LA is the boss, he has accomplished just about everything, or at least everything he has tried to. LA has different priorities (like family) and he has the luxury of choosing when he wants to race. That's what you get for being the world's best. If LA were in an earlier stage in his career maybe I wouldn't understand his decision...
Aug 13, 2001 11:28 AM
He is being "used" by USPS/Lance to the tune of $1 million a year. Not to mention roughly $40K for being on the tour team and other prize winnings throughout the year.
He's doing great!nm
Aug 13, 2001 11:31 AM
re: Lance not riding the VueltaDisappointed
Aug 13, 2001 11:02 AM
I wish I knew more of what is going on but I am very dissapointed in Lance. Maybe there is some other reason that Lance is not riding the Vuelta they are not telling us and maybe Heras doesn't care that Lance is not riding the Vuelta but Lance should help Heras as he said he would. It will be hard not to cheer for Lance but this is leaving bothering me. Lance should at least come out and tell us that he spoke with Heras and that Heras agreed that it is better for Lance not to ride the Vuelta or better yet Heras should say so - then I would feel better. Not that anyone cares how I feel. Does Lance feel it is just all about Lance? Maybe Heras should jump ship.
Business is business...curtis
Aug 13, 2001 12:45 PM
...I was led to believe that LA is riding in the States as part of some obligation to a sponsor or two. The bills have to be paid, and if some American sponsor wants to see the American TdF winner riding in front of some American crowds (or even just doing the American talk show circuit), then that's where he rides. I'm sure Heras understands. If he wins the Vuelta, I'm sure he will have obligations to meet in Spain.
Business is
Aug 13, 2001 3:38 PM
I don't think a one day race is worth more than a three week tour when it comes to bills. USPS is the main sponsor and paying most of the bills and they are not the sponsor people are referring to in the S.F. race. There have been plenty of opportunities for LA to ride in the states, nationals, etc. I support Postal, but one could mistake this race to be used as an excuse to not go back for the Vuelta. Heras busy with obligations in Spain, there is one big difference, he supported lance in the tour and lance has chosen (right or wrong) not to do the Vuelta. In reality, i think lance calls all the shots as long as he wins Tour. He effectively rides when he wants. I really don't believe Bruyneel tells Lance what to do.
re: Lance not riding the VueltaPb_okole
Aug 13, 2001 2:22 PM
"Lance should at least come out and tell us that he spoke with Heras and that Heras agreed that it is better for Lance not to ride the Vuelta or better yet Heras should say so - then I would feel better."

Why on earth should he have to explain himself to you or anyone but his team and sponsors? He is a professional cyclist and rides when and where his sponsors say. A lot of his sponsors are based in San Francisco so he will be racing in that city on Sep 9. When you start paying his multi-million dollar salary, then you can tell him where and when to ride. As for Heras, he is paid a mucho money to do a job and that is exactly what he is doing.

ua mau ke ea o ka aina I ka pono
re: Lance not riding the Vueltatr
Aug 13, 2001 3:47 PM
If Lance wanted to ride the Vuelta he would be there. I don't, for one minute, think that his sponsors are telling him to ride a one day in SF instead of riding the Vuelta. After winning three straight, it is his choice. A Postal supporter!!!!
You sound like LemondJames1
Aug 14, 2001 7:15 AM
Please ask yourself this question: Who am I to judge the actions of someone when I do not have all of the information from the source.

Lance should do this...Lance should do that.....give me a break people! Maybe Heras should jump ship, and leave behind his million dollar salary. Maybe Heras wants to win the Vuelta on his own terms. Maybe no one here knows the full story....maybe....maybe...
I knew it was only a matter of time for a Lemond Response....JohnnyA
Aug 14, 2001 7:51 AM
Anyone offering anything but complete praise for LA, prepare for a electronic blanket party.
Did he, or did he not promise to support Heras.Largo
Aug 13, 2001 3:58 PM
This quote is from april
Interpret it how you like, but to me it sounds like he said he would help Heras, if Heras helped him win a 3rd.

Armstrong may race Vuelta España
Lance Armstrong has said that he may ride the Vuelta España (Tour of Spain) in support of teammate and last year's winner, Roberto Heras, if the Spaniard helps him win win three straight Tours de France.

Speaking to Darren Tulett of Bloomberg News at the Circuit de la Sarthe, Armstrong said "If Roberto does the job that we all think he will do, then I believe that should be paid back."

"I don't want to get myself in a corner here, where I'm fully committed to doing the Vuelta, but I believe in returning favors. "
Did he, or did he not promise to support
Aug 13, 2001 9:15 PM
I agree with Largo's interpretation.
No he didn't.....James1
Aug 14, 2001 7:10 AM
Your subject line says did he or did he not promise to support Heras in the comment from

Based upon what I read, Lance most definitely DID NOT promise to support Heras.

Did he say "I will definitely be riding the Vuelta in support of Heras" No he didn't. Did he say "I promise to support Heras in the Vuelta" No he didn't.
Heras might be relievedpeloton
Aug 14, 2001 8:18 AM
Just another thought that has not been mentioned. Maybe Heras is glad that Lance is not riding the Vuelta! Can you imagine what would happen if Heras had a truly bad day and Bruyneel ordered Lance to take control of the race? Super- domestique could become the main contender for victory. I can't imagine Lance taking place in a Grand Tour without some thought of winning it for himself.

PS- If Heras is being 'used' by US Postal to the tune of a million bucks a year, then Postal can 'use' me any time they want!
re: Lance not riding the VueltaJohnnyA
Aug 14, 2001 9:00 AM
I don't have any problem with it being a business decision, and who knows, maybe it would be better for Heras if LA wasn't to overshadowing the race.

What I find distasteful is that the Road to Paris Lance Lovefest show played that issue up. Kind of a warm fuzzy family thing, the Posties will give it their all for Lance and Lance will share the love working as a domo for Heras during the Vuelta. Errh ahh unless he needs to show up to rub elbows with sponsors stateside. IMHO, bad move for cycling and a bad move for Lance.
re: Lance not riding the VueltaPb_okole
Aug 14, 2001 4:56 PM
"IMHO, bad move for cycling and a bad move for Lance."

Go to a busy street corner in your favorite US city. Ask 50 people what the Vuelta a Espana is. You will get maybe 47 blank stares(the other three have OLN). Ask the same 50 what the Tour de France is or who Lance Armstrong is. Now you will probably get 3 blank stares and 47 correct answers. People in the US know Armstrong and the exposure is good for all of us in the US. I have had some people say they actually kind of understand what we do now that they have seen the Tour coverage. The Vuelta doesn't even show up on the strongest radar of the average American. His riding in a US race increases exposure which could increase local sponsorships, races, etc. This would be good for cycling, IMHO.

ua mau ke ea o ka aina I ka pono
re: Lance not riding the VueltaJohnnyA
Aug 14, 2001 5:45 PM
"IMHO, bad move for cycling and a bad move for Lance."

I stand by that. I'm thinking the overall picture, not US cycling. Agreed, Lance hanging out in the US is good for US cycling. But sadly the US is a small player in the international Peleton. Not having the Threepeat TDF champion competing in the big stage races hurts international cycling.

Good move for Lance if he wants to be the premier figure in US cycling history. But, I'd rather see him compete in more races - hey ask those same 50 people who Eddie Merckx is.

my $0.02