Eagles Wings

31“It seems like the Americans are now peloton insiders. How did the American movement come about… I think the revolution was started by such great people as Greg LeMond, Davis Phinney…it’s easier for Americans in Europe than ever before…riders can fit in on any team now. There are English speakers on most teams…And more than ever English has become the language of the peloton.”                                                     David Zabriskie, Pro Cyclist, World TT Medalist

 

American cycling is no longer the new kid on the block of elite racing, but we’re still youthful and growing into the big cycling shoes we could wear as a superpower. Ten Tour de France wins don’t make us the dominant world power, but have helped shift attentions and resources toward the New World. Now I think we’re cycling’s teenagers, asserting some autonomy but still in need of direction and paternalism from global governance. In our maturation process, we’re experiencing growing pains: changes among sponsorships for D1/ProTour teams, one international tour attracting top talent, some input into UCI and Grand Tour decisions, limited representation in other international associations for riders, and growing interest in some races on the Americas Tour. We are in a rite of passage for producing world class athletes by getting our men’s and our women’s programs to Europe. We’re also bringing down the age of our euro-ready pros to be more in line with competitive programs that begin in adolescence.

 

I would like to see more U.S. involvement in world decisions – an American cycling “embassy” – with more international exchange of riders and more representation in international associations. Yet I wouldn’t want a cycling world with American domination. Racing with the dominance of one team or program isn’t as interesting or as fruitful for as many. Instead, parity is perfection, in my opinion. Like an eagle soaring on high, hopefully, we can continue a trend which is earning this privilege and stay aloft in the upper strata of the sport – while retaining our youthful enthusiasm.

 

Prayer for American Cycling

who satisfies your desires with good things
       so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
32Psalm 103:5

 

We are grateful for a country with great cycling terrain and a growing rate of participation. We confess our disdain with 33ugly Americanism. We pray for smart growth and blessing upon American cycling.

 

Ponder How can I improve the level of my cycling experiences? Affirm I can be revolutionary for reform and growth. Watch and spread your risk between ambitious projects and safe havens.

 

31“American Cycling Grows Up (Sort Of),” an interview between Floyd Landis and Dave Zabriskie by Loren Mooney, Tour de France 2007 www.bicycling.com.

32The Bible, New International Version, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

33Being a patriotic American is different from being an Ugly American or behaving like every nation on earth must be just like us played out as an annoying tourist while traveling abroad: loud-talking, thinking everyone should speak English, and general ignorance about the culture one is visiting.

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