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Date Posted: 05:53:46 08/28/04 Sat
Author: Mark
Subject: Re: Anyone Else Want An American Team?
In reply to: Vaughn Trevi 's message, "Re: Anyone Else Want An American Team?" on 12:01:12 08/27/04 Fri

Hehe, they sure would. But maybe the riders will get jealous of the attention then. ;)

Anyway, yeah, a team like Vlaanderen would be great for just about any country. I've seen someone else mention the need for a team focusing on developping young American riders, and that's kinda what Vlaanderen does aye.

For anyone who doesn't know the team: it is a team with the Flemish government as main sponsor. They give talented youngsters that don't get signed immedeately by a big team the chance to develop in a professional setup. They're very patient with them, and surround them with experienced riders and staff. For example, they've got Paul Van Hyfte as road captain these days, that's a whole lot of experience, hehe.

The most important thing about the Vlaanderen team is that they 'bridge' between the super-talented riders and the 'normal' talented ones. The former always get signed, but the latter sometimes have to spend a lot of time in the purgatory that is amateur racing, before hitting the big times. I know of many good riders who eventually gave up on their dream cos of the hardships of amatuer racing. So, a pro team with sponsors that aren't primarily concerend with results is a great way of not letting those guys go to waste. Given the amateur culture here (and the lack of real transportation troubles) the US racing scene might need it even more. The Bush administration better start pumping cash in a US-youth team, I say! ;)

>Agreed Mark,
>What would work would be to have a Pro team like
>Belgium has for their men and womens team to help
>young USA riders bridge over to the pro peloton.
>Wouldn't hurt for other countries to have the same.
>I do like the Victoria Secret sponsor idea though... I
>mean can you imagine the "Lingerie Team Girls" showing
>up to races to cheer on the riders?!!
>That might get a few folks attention. hehehehe

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