Saturday, March 29, 2008

VandeVelde & Track

So after talking to John today about how awesome the speed has been at Manchester this week, I couldn't help but look for some past articles on him and C on the track. I came up with a couple stat articles but nothing very good in the write up department. John was recalling some of his times, C's, and then putting that into perspective of the Team Pursuit winning times. Holy crap, they are flying is about the best to sum it up. John was awesome, C was incredible, and the guys now, wow. Track racing on tv can be kind of boring (to me, although I love watching the Madison) but there is NO denying the thrill of seeing the speeds they go. Being at a track and seeing it first hand I have been told is a very cool experience.

John was at the '68 Olympics in Mexico City (4000m Team Pursuit) and the '72 Olympics in Munich (4000m Team Pursuit-17th and 4000m Individual Pursuit). I have often fessed up, I am like a little kid listening to stories. John shares them with the best of them and I never get tired of listening.

John Vande Velde - 2004 US Bicycling Hall of Fame Inductee
A two-time Olympic track cyclist (1972, 1976), Vande Velde also captured three national individual pursuit crowns (1969-70, 1972). His son, Christian, was one of the top youth riders at the 1999 Tour de France, and was instrumental in Lance Armstrong's victory at the Tour de France. A veteran of six-day racing, Vande Velde also won a bronze medal at the 1971 Pan American Games (team pursuit). The elder Vande Velde also owns the Vandedrome, a portable wooden velodrome that has been used for numerous events, including the 1998 Goodwill games in New York. He is also a member of the UCI Track Commission.

Christian was an alternate at the '96 Olympics in Atlanta and was at the '00 Olympics in Sidney (Men's Indiviual Pursuit 12th 4:31.528)

From the 2007 Tour of Georgia:
Vande Velde overcame some of the bitterness from more than a decade ago, when he failed to make the U.S. Olympic team for the 1996 Atlanta Games. Track cycling was held in a temporary velodrome at Stone Mountain.
"It would be a lie to say I didn't have a lot of memories going around that park yesterday," the 30-year-old Vande Velde said. "I actually thought of quitting after putting so much into making the Olympics, then not making that team."

USA Cycling - Christian Stats.

US Cycling Track Champions - scroll down the list for your favorites

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