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Professional Cycling

Updated on May 21, 2016

Say hello to the bicycle

In this hub, I want to talk about what is competitive cycling route, namely, cycling normally seen on television. I would tell what attracts me to this sport and some basic notions about it.

Paris Roubaix

Paris-Roubaix 1981
Paris-Roubaix 1981 | Source
Paris-Roubaix 2014
Paris-Roubaix 2014 | Source

A bit of history

Professional cycling begins in the 19th century, however, it was not until 19 when it starts to make more popular. In 1903, the first grand tour, the Tour de France, only interrupted by the great wars is celebrated. After the creation of the first grand tour, many more races are held.

A federation and a ranking are created, and it has evolved to what it is today, a great world sport.

Tour de France

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Road race types

The types of races could be divided into three groups: three stages of 21 days (Tour de France, Tour of Spain and Giro d'Italia), one week racing (such as Paris-Nice, Milan-San Remo. ..) and runs or one-day classics (Paris-Roubaix, Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Fleche Wallonne ...).

These three types of races have large differentiated strategies.

Right now, the Grand Tour races are 21 stages, with 2 days off. When we refer to Grand Tour we usually refer to the Tour de France, the Giro d'Italia or Tour of Spain. The Tour de France is the most prestigious of all three, and also the world's most famous cycling race. The Giro d'Italia is the second most important. The stages are very different from each other, some may be flat, other mountainous, and there are also time trials, so you can define different strategies for each. The rider who wins the overall standings is the best time made by adding all the times of each stage. In addition to the general classification, there are other classifications such as the teams, the points on the mountain (which is achieved by passing the mountain passes first) and points at the sprint (which is achieved by finishing in a good position all stages).

In races, one week is generally like the Grand Tour, but shorter and less hard, so there is more chance for other cyclists to win the overall standings.

The one-day classics are very different stage races. They are usually very hard, with a long, unique and complicated route, in which only the strongest riders have a chance to get the win.


General knowledge

Cyclists run in teams of 9 to 11 cyclists, in which there is a leader who is the one most likely to win the stage or the Grand Tour. His teammates are just trying to help their leader so he can win more comfortably. This includes standing in front to cover the wind, bring food and cans from the car to your leader, stay behind with him if he is having a bad day, or even leave him the bike if he has a breakdown.

Explained this, we come to the kind of riders who are in the race. Cyclists can be climbers, mountain climbing well (usually thin and some heavy people), sprinters (with great top speed), puncheur (great riders, strong, wheelers and heavy) and domestique (helping its leader). Sprinters and puncheur cyclists are often also domestique of the leaders, who are usually climbers on the Grand Tour.

The Wind and uneven terrain is the main rival of cyclists, so domestique has to try to do everything possible so that their leaders are at least worn possible when the decisive moment comes. Some situations in which the wind is dangerous is when it blows very strong. You can also blow sideways, being crosswinds, being very uncomfortable and being formed called putting it in the gutter.

The cycling season begins in spring with the spring classics, once it finished the spring classics reaches the Giro d'Italia, after the Tour de France and finally the Tour of Spain. After the three Grand Tour reaches the world of cycling, a classic fall more and basically is terminated in the fall season until next spring.

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This sport is a beautiful sport, many people think it's boring because it's not like basketball football because things do not happen at any time. However, there are stages that are wonderful. The sacrifice of cyclists is extreme. Even many people think that the philosophy of the team is a selfish sport you only win one, and if so, but nevertheless is a very beautiful sport in which all the team is happy for the victory his companion.

Doping

For me, one of the worst things that have happened in this sport. In my opinion, the cycling died with doping from 1980-90 as all the cyclists had to dope to compete, becoming a mafia from 2000. In this mafia was involved everyone, it was all a business. Lance Armstrong culminated all this theater. From that moment he confessed his doping, the cycling world has changed and is now a cleaner sport. Although it has now evolved better, for decades in which the doping was extreme, cycling was destroyed.

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Paris-Roubaix 2016

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© 2016 Leonhard Euler

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    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Welcome to HubPages and thanks for the Follow. Hoping we can read and enjoy each other's work.

      I appreciate the information you give in this article. "His teammates are just trying to help their leader so he can win more comfortably." What a good spirit! Interesting sport altogether.

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