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Let us pray: U .S. tour possibilities(9 posts)

Let us pray: U .S. tour possibilitiesDjudd
Jul 30, 2001 4:03 PM
After Lemond's second win in the TdF, (probably directly related to it) the U.S. was honored with a classy little race with the most unfortunate name "Tour de Trump", that metamorphised into the Tour duPont. Though not nearly on par with the big three it did attract some world class Euros stateside and the UCI actually cleared a spot for it on the racing calender. As we all know we have since lost this race and have only memories. (I saw Raul Alcala stomp a young Lance Armstrong in a time trial to win the overall, a smiling Greg Lemond, while warming up for the opening stage, picked up my then two year-old son as he ran in front of Lemond's bike yelling "dad, dad, bike, bike!!) Does anyone think it is likely the Armstrong trifecta will give us another opportunity at a world class multi-stage race? Or are we stuck in road racing limbo doomed to videotapes and second-hand reports.
re: Let us pray: U .S. tour possibilitiesMichael Y.
Jul 30, 2001 6:54 PM
There has been talk in this board of Nike pushing for a Prolouge and First stage of the TDF in the US. I think that is a big mistake. After it is done, you will here about the Peleton complaining of Jet Lag from the 7 hour flight back to France.

It makes more sense for Nike and other sponsers to get behind a big world class stage race in the US. You would need a commitment from US Postal to compete as well as good TV coverage for exposure. I think it could be a very good race.
re: Let us pray: U .S. tour possibilitiesBrit Racer
Jul 31, 2001 1:29 AM
As interesting as it'd be, it's not going to happen - not for many years at least, by which time LA will obviously have retired and unless a new American is at the top, interest in the US will presumably have gone back to the levels it was at between Lemond and Armstrong meaning that there won't be the demand for it.

M. Leblanc, the TDF boss was quoted as saying that it'd require 3 concordes to do it and there are apparently only ever 2 in the air at the same time. Factor in jetlag, delays, etc and it's simply too risky.
UCI schedule too full for U.S. TourCima Coppi
Jul 31, 2001 5:43 AM
When would you have it? If you look at trying to organize a national tour in the U.S that will draw riders from the European Peloton, their schedule is too full. There is no way it could be scheduled before the Giro (one of the downfalls of the Tour duPont). Now that the Vuelta is in September, no rider would want to come over here to race between the TdF and the Vuelta. After the Vuelta is the Worlds, then the season really starts to wind down.

If anything, organizers should start small and work their way up. Start with one of the current multi-day stage races ridden by the U.S. teams and build on that (much the way the Coors Classic began its roots).

Just my 0.02 lira's worth.

CC
possible solutionDuane Gran
Jul 31, 2001 5:56 AM
Bear in mind that the UCI calendar is mostly based on the European scene, which shares it season with most people in the northern section of the United States. There are UCI events in the southern hemisphere and elsewhere which are less popular, but do happen in the semi-off season.

As much as I would prefer for an American tour to occur during the summer months, it would be possible to stage a race during the winter months in some places like Arizona.

There is a lot of great terrain in the United States for an incredible tour. I would love to see something come about here, but I think it would have to happen in the southern part of the country.
Too far awaymr_spin
Jul 31, 2001 8:09 AM
Hey, Arizona is beautiful, but there's no way a major race will ever go there. California is even better (IMHO), and I can't imagine them holding a major race here, either. Sure, you have the Gila, we have Redlands and Sea Otter, and Oregon has the Cascades Classic. Good races all, but if the Euros show up, they send their B-squads.

Getting the Euros to send their A-team over requires four things:

1. Short as possible flight (i.e., East Coast)
2. Big money prizes
3. Big UCI points
4. Good UCI Calendar slot

A great opportunity would be to merge all the June First Union races into a stage race. The flight is short, the big money is there, and the timing is good for Euros training for the Tour or their own National Championships. Add two more stages, including a mountain stage and time trial, convince the UCI to give it at least a 2.2 rating, and I guarantee you'll see top guys from top teams lining up in America.
What led to the demise of the Tour duPont?9WorCP
Jul 31, 2001 7:08 AM
Was it simply a question of money and lack of interest? Lemond picked up your son? I'm totally impressed.

Next year there is supposed to be major race in downtown NYC. Lance is supposed to be there along with a few others from the european peloton. So at least something might get off the ground.
What led to the demise of the Tour duPont?Djudd
Jul 31, 2001 3:03 PM
In my opinion the end of the Tour Dupont was not due to lack of interest but merely inconsistent corporate sponsorship. Like it or not planning and executing a multi-stage race requires the forebearance and money of major corporate entities. The Dupont company pulled out without much warning and no help in securing another sponsor. The interest was there, anyone who had been to stage would tell you how the people came out for the race.
I saw the Tour DuPont ...bianchi boy
Aug 1, 2001 7:33 AM
When it came through North Carolina in the mid-90s. The stage we watched finished in Raleigh, and Lance Armstrong was the stage winner and ultimately the overall winner. I had never heard of him before then, and it was long before his bout with cancer. It was really incredible seeing all the racers sprint into Raleigh and take several laps through the downtown area. Even my wife was impressed.

Unfortunately, all of the big sponsors pulled out. And with our car culture in the U.S., it is probably very difficult dealing with all the traffic and getting roads cleared, etc. I agree, tho, it would be great if someone could launch another big tour in the US.