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impossible?(10 posts)

impossible?soulsurfer104
Nov 25, 2003 6:11 PM
how does one go about becoming a professional cyclist? can you make a comfortable living and support a family in this profession? i realize that lance makes a comfortable living, but he also has lots of income from tv commercials and things like that. all i know at this point is that i DO NOT want a desk-job for 40 years. help me out! thanks.
re: impossible?Time Trial dot org
Nov 25, 2003 7:05 PM
"how does one go about becoming a professional cyclist?"

Well, quite simply, you find someone to pay you to wear their logo while you race your bike ... and you win some prize money as well.

Bam - you're a professional.

http://www.timetrial.org
re: impossible?Woof the dog
Nov 28, 2003 10:42 PM
It is silly to place your bets for having a great life on a career in cycling. Odds are against you, and you know what, there are other and by far, i repeat, by far more interesting things out there than riding your bike (professionally or not). They will provide you with a real interest and a chance to discover new things, not to repeat what has already been done. If you are a really smart human being, you can put your intelligence toward something that will benefit not only you but others as well. Get an education, not legs. What are you going to do when you are fourty five and still working in a bike shop or selling plumbing parts and being a bike racer like some people I know? I feel pity for them. Moments of glory you get while winning for the home crowd will never ever ever top the satisfaction of having things like an interesting hobby for which you JUST HAPPEN to get paid lots of money (i.e. job that you like), a happy family, kids, a house, financial security, health insurance, etc etc etc. You simply cannot dwell on your race wins consistently day after day, because when the next morning after the win comes, you still got that old dry cheese and a huge credit card bill waiting for you. Smart people in college/grad school are studying as much as they train, if not more, and when (most often) their plans for a career in cycling fail, they got something they can fall back on. This, I guess, is the best outcome if you still want to race.

Woof.

P.S. what i wrote here is something that I think about a lot, so it is kind of like an inner monologue for myself. You, of course, just got the benefits of someone thinking for you.
Are you one of the...Dwayne Barry
Nov 26, 2003 4:14 AM
fastest guys in your area (and young) already? If not, it's very unlikely you have the talent to become a professional cyclist. And even then it's only the top guys that make a good living at it. Probably not more than 10 or 20 domestic guys making what most would consider good money. Most US-based pro cyclist are living the 12k a year dream.
re: impossible?No_sprint
Nov 26, 2003 10:12 AM
Watching *The Hard Road* would be good for you.

I'd say your odds are better in almost any other sport.

Getting the league minimum as a bench warmer/kicker who never plays a game in the NFL would make you richer than probably all but about 5 or 10 current pro cyclists in the world.
re: impossible?soulsurfer104
Nov 26, 2003 12:44 PM
there goes that idea.
There is one common theme...BigLeadOutGuy
Nov 26, 2003 12:44 PM
Every pro athlete has the same story line...everyone said they couldnt do it or that they were a dreamer and to forget it and goto skool and get a job and be like everyone else. Dont buy into it. If youve got a sparkle of talent polish it and use it to the best of yoru ability. All athletes are created equal...its the training that we do to make our bodies adapt and excell in our sport that makes us great. now get a good coach and train as much as someone that works a full time job =)
Good luck
ya but......?soulsurfer104
Nov 26, 2003 5:43 PM
the only thing that concerns me is this: what happens if i train and train and train, and do really well, but then get injured and cant race anymore? and i skipped college to race bikes? then what? on the other hand, i could win every race i enter and get some big corporate sponsors and make a good living. but thats kind of "iffy". i know i possess the talent and the mindset to go all the way in competitive cycling. everyone i have ridden with tells me that i am scary-fast for my age of 16 and that i should start racing. its either get sponsored and set something in concrete or forget about my bike until after college when i am fat and dont care about my health anymore. how do i get noticed by potential sponsors? are there any specific races (preferably in california) that sponsors watch more closely than others? help me out here. thanks.
live like a bum or get a jobjim hubbard
Nov 27, 2003 12:58 AM
A piece of advice. I know alot of guys that have raced in europe and its not easy especially if you are 'clean'. I have a friend who has just quite the sport. He was national road champion 3x, national TT champ 2x. He rode for a division 2 team in Europe(not going to say where). Team leader 50,000 euro per year. Tax 40% leaving 30,000 euro. Because it was a div 2 team anything that was required other than stock wheels(they were sh*t!) came out of your own pocket. Vitamens, UCI health checks, massages etc etc out of your own pocket. At the end of the year he was clearing 10,000 euro.
He was offered a ride with a div 1 team. The first thing that was said was that you will go onto the teams drug program....at your own expense! Turned down the offer.
Has since become so disheatened with the sport that he has retired.
Note this is europe, but is systematic of what happens at this level there.
I believe that the USA is still fairly clean but as has been mentioned the salaries are low.
If you are passionate about it go for it.... However you have stated that you are not currently racing and therefore have no results. My suggestion is that you achieve some results first then review your career path.
re: impossible?spacemonkey
Dec 1, 2003 3:27 PM
Try to strike a balance. It is very possible to go to school,work part-time, and race at a high level at the same time. If you can't manage to do all three then you are probaly devoting too much energy to a specific area. In my experience one does not have to come at the expense of the other. A lot of guys race in college, get good results, try the Pro scene, finish school, and all in no particular order. Just learn not to live by the timelines that other people try to shove down your throat and be comfortable with the fact that you will become a helluva well-rounded individual. Happiness is a long AND short-term goal!