By Steve Kish:
Did you know the Tour de France has finished? Better yet did you know
it even started? Yes, that is how little Americans care about the Tour
if someone from our country is not in contention.
For years we would get daily, if not hourly, updates on where Lance
Armstrong stood. Then there was Landis. Cycling in the USA is a lot
like soccer: Americans don’t care unless we are in contention. It’s
sad that these world class athletes don’t get more attention from us,
but we are a nation of big and loud. Look at the top athletes, Lebron,
Kobe, and a bunch of football players. America loves the big, the
loud, the spectacular. NFL brings us big hits, amazing catches, heart
pounding moments. The NBA brings us flash, excitement, a great show.
Soccer brings all the things the NBA does, and some violence the NFL
does. Yet we don’t care for it as it isn’t our sport, it’s the world’s
sport. Soccer is played in more countries than any other sport in the
world. Cycling is more a European sport than American, yet the type of
athlete a cyclist is should intrigue the American fan.
Cyclists pedal for miles, hundreds, sometimes at a time. They go up
mountains, down mountains, ride in the rain, ride in the heat, ride
into a headwinds. Cyclists are impeccable athletes, Olympic athletes.
You don’t see football in the Olympics, partly due to the NFL schedule
and the lack of countries that partake in the sport. It just adds to
the question, why don’t these cycling athletes get more respect from American
American’s crave the violence of football, and the wow factor of
basketball. Cycling is not exciting to watch, I will give you that …
well … except for those tight turns in a packed field. Chaos sometimes
does ensue. Other than that there isn’t that wow factor of a
thunderous dunk, or the “Did you see that hit he just laid on him!”
Cycling is an Olympic sport, a beloved sport in other countries.
Americans just don’t see the greatness in it, the years of training
and sacrifice these athletes put into their sport. The Tour de France
is the biggest race in cycling and who knew it was even going on? Not
until another Armstrong comes along will cycling get the following it
deserves from America.