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Do we owe aarontoy an apology?(13 posts)

Do we owe aarontoy an apology?Spoiler
Aug 14, 2003 11:29 PM
This is from 7-Up pro racer John Lieswyn's diary.
"Sunday: Overland Park Downtown Criterium
This was another great venue. The narrow streets of the old downtown area are lined with locally owned businesses, most of which were closed on Sunday. One that wasn't closed was the coffee shop right across from the start/finish line stage, and they did the best business of the year on race day. The course was seven turns. With temperatures in the 90s you wouldn't expect a wet road but for some reason there was a stream running across the road just before turn one and down the left side of the second straight. While I didn't see any crashes due to water in our race, the prior categories had the usual thrills and spills, including Wes, an Ames area rider who would be giving me a ride home today. Wes started the year as a beginner Cat 5 and today would be his last Cat 3 race. He crashed after getting his tires wet on the aforementioned straightaway, but got back in to win. With upgrade (to Cat 2) sticker in hand, he promptly lined up for our Pro 1/2 event! He didn't last long, but it's like a kid opening a present - he wants to play with it right away, eh?"

So we have a beginner cyclists who reaches Pro 1/2 status in the time it takes most of us to upgrade to cat 4. In a few months, he progress further than most of us will in our entire lives.
Me, I'll never get to cat III, despite having trained 15-20 hrs with a coach, eating right, and doing all the right things. What does this Wes' progress say about me? It's a big ego blow. So when a similar scenerio is presented to me by a poster, my first reaction is to shoot 'em down.

I'm not saying aarontoy was the real deal, but this kind of opened my eyes. If you work hard and train smart, your potential is still didllee-squat compared to many newbies who've never or never will race.
Who?? nmFixie-ated
Aug 15, 2003 4:48 AM
Don't worry, he's not.........MR_GRUMPY
Aug 15, 2003 5:02 AM
he has the same chance of being the "real thing", as I have of winning the lottery AND being struck by lightening on the way home.
He coulda been the real thing. Who knows?Kristin
Aug 15, 2003 5:32 AM
The indications were that he was not--or that if he was he was really cocky about it. When challenged to redo the test under different cirumstances, he cut and run. To me that screams fraud. I did not get the impression that he was looking for constructive critism or to truly improve. No, I think he was looking for some stroking. He didn't get it. He left. People who don't take every opportunity to improve only get so far. Perhaps Aarontoy is talented and has tons of potential, but his attitude will hold him back.
I coulda been a contenda!!!biknben
Aug 15, 2003 5:38 AM
Isn't that from a movie or something. I can hear it in my head but can't picture the scene.

I coulda been a contenda!!! On the Waterfront...davet
Aug 15, 2003 5:43 AM
Marlon Brando
Good Storywspokes
Aug 15, 2003 5:54 AM
Some people are just blessed with the skills to advance and the drive to keep pushing. Very cool story. It is tough to advance in certain area. I have to drive 4-5 hours either direction to find a USCF race so it was near impossible...unless of course you want to do as so many other local sandbaggers and make your own team...have races of 5-10 people and claim the Cat 2-3 status in no time which did most of them no good if they ever tried a real race!

I went to Cat 3. That was enough for was a time when they mixed the 2/3s for the races and they were barnburners!

Aarontoy may be the real deal! who knows? He definitely was ambitious enough to go out there and get timed and make an effort. Sure, maybe they judged the distance wrong or something but heck, he tried. How many out there know tons of the talkers...the hype-up-themselves type...who wouldn't even try on their own to attempt a 3 mile TT. just to see!

I wouldn't let that story be an ego blow rather inspiration that it is always possible.
I agreeThe Human G-Nome
Aug 15, 2003 7:52 AM
you have to respect people who put in a huge effort and take risks of which they know failure is a big possibility. i know a couple riders in the group rides i normally do on saturday and for the life of me, i can't get them to consider racing. they're plenty strong enough and ultra competitive with the group, but they just won't throw their name in the hat. why? "i don't need to suffer any more then i already do?" i dunno, it's too bad. i'm always suffering on the bike - when my HRM spits out 195, i suffer the same way no matter what the forum or context.

it's obviously their choice, but i give props to people that take risks that could potentially bruise their ego.
I thought we did?DougSloan
Aug 15, 2003 6:01 AM
I think people did apologize for being so skeptical, but then some skepticism was warranted when an admitted "newbie" claimed 31 mph time trial speeds. I've never in my life known of someone able to ride at that speed, but not have an idea if that was "fast". By the time anyone is able to reach that speed, he or she would be a hardcore, experienced racer. The claimed speed and the apparent lack of appreciation for that speed were simply incongruous.

For what?jtolleson
Aug 15, 2003 7:07 AM
I thought almost everyone was really polite to him. Even the naysayers merely encouraged in to try again and confirm that it wasn't wind aided or mismeasured.

The skepticism was reasonable, and folks were polite about it. He got some nice encouraging words for his entrance to the sport, and although a few folks popped off (which is part of the board) I think that he was basically a thin-skinned baby for running away so quickly.

And I'm usually one of the board's soft touches!

Even if it was true and he is a prodigy, that doesn't mean that apologies were owed by those who asked reasonable questions.
For what?tarwheel
Aug 15, 2003 9:58 AM
If arontoy was telling the truth, he should have considered it a compliment that everyone was skeptical of his claims. In other words, everyone was saying his achievements just weren't possible for someone with his amount of experience and training. So he should have come away thinking he was really something ... if he was telling the truth. And we all know that is highly unlikely.
Wes may also have been last year's....TFerguson
Aug 15, 2003 8:06 AM
TT and MTB XC and Tri State Champion as well as the 4th place finisher in his last marathon.

Don't assume he came out of nowhere. (But he could have.)

Mike JonesWill Ross
Aug 15, 2003 2:37 PM
Cat. 5 to Pro in about a year and a half after starting out overweight and sedentary. Finished in the lead group this year in Philly. Almost knocked off Horner recently in an uphill finish. Top 20 in some tough stage races this season. Has never trained with a heart rate monitor or a coach, but says he may become a little more focused now that he's, you know, beating some of the best bike racers in the country. Writes a diary on Spokepost that's often hilarious and more entertaining than the upteenth Q&A on how soon to resume training after a headcold. There are prodigys out there that are the real deal and, apparently, not at all uptight about their abilities. I think Mike would have gotten a little more ink this year if folks weren't trying to pin the "next Lance" label on Danielson, not that Danielson isn't deserving of the attention and a great story in his own right.