Bissell Pro-Cycling Team Taking on the Amgen Tour Again

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Bissell Pro-Cycling Team Taking on the Amgen Tour AgainIt’s cycling season again in many countries and it’s the time of year where cyclists are training and gearing up for the Amgen Tour of California. The tour is set to include the fairly new Bissell pro-cycling team that was formed in 2008. This year the team are preparing to compete in the annual race.

Bissell Pro-Cycling Team

The entire team is currently based in Santa Rosa for training. It’s an extremely exciting event that annually takes place in the breathtaking Santa Rosa location, which also known for its perfect racing and training terrain. The Bissell team have entered this event every year since the crew formed and they’ve proved to be serious contenders on the cycling circuit. They won the best continental team of 2011 and scooped the NRC team standings. It seems that the Bissell team have a reputation as being a very ambitious team that often wins thanks to their aggressive tenacity.

Amgen Tour

The Bissell pro-cycling team will be challenging some serious terrain in the 2012 Amgen Tour. Tour designers have said that this year may prove to be the hardest thus far. There are seven stages that are guaranteed to take anyone’s breath away. Even the most hardened cyclists who compete in Amgen every year may be looking at quite a challenge.

The first phase of the race is the Coleman Valley ascent. Phase two will take cyclists to Bonny Doon Road which will take them to Mt. Baldy and Big Bear, but not summit. Mount Diablo has been included in the race route this year and fans are pretty excited about it. Here’s to hoping the Bissell pro-cycling team stick with their honoured tradition of ensuring they have at least one team member in every pack leading up to the leaders of the race.

There will be time trials in between the third and fourth phases but that should be a cinch for the Bissell team. The real trying cycling comes into the picture when teams have to complete two mountain top finishes at Big Bear and Mt. Baldy.

The tour starts on May 13, 2012, but the Bissell pro-cycling team members, managers and directors will be available for interviews and photo opportunities. This is the perfect time to meet and greet some of the brilliant Bissell cyclists such as Frank Pipp, Chris Baldwin and Carter Jones who was part of the USA Team. The Bissel Pro-cycling team is set to show some serious cycling tenacity again this year. Good luck to them.

Vida Denning is a keen writer that doesn’t cycle half as much as she used to. Her exercise now entails dancing around the living room with her kids while they use the vacuum cleaners. She’s also tried steam cleaning machines but they aren’t great dancing partners.

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The Top 10 Iconic Sportsmen of the 20th Century

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Baseball player Babe Ruth

Image via Wikipedia

10. Michael Schumacher (Motor Racing)

Forget the collisions and the controversies; it is without doubt that this seven time Formula One champion has to make it into the list. Considered one of or the best driver in History – the man who manage to turn round the formula one fortunes of Ferrari and the only driver to go an entire season with a podium finish at every race in the year 2002

9. Michael Jordan (Basketball)

Basketball player turned Baseball turned Actor – Michael Jordan may have not been all that great at the latter occupations but he was one hell of a Basketball player. The 6ft 6” giant dominated the sport and led his team the Chicago bulls to three Championships. Didn’t do too well at the Baseball thing but we all admired him for his Talent and the fact that he was in Space Jam.

8. Babe Ruth (Baseball)

Babe Ruth – the most famous Baseball player that has ever lived could in some people’s eyes be one of the most iconic sportsmen. With a career that spanned from 1914 – 1935 and hitting 60 home runs in a season a record that stood for 35 years, this American legend was two time all star legend and a seven time world series champion.

7. Lance Armstrong (Cycling)

Lance Armstrong was considered to be at deaths door at one point when he was diagnosed with Cancer in 1996. However after a long arduous recovery the man went out to do something even more miraculous and win the Tour De France, Seven Times fro 1999 to 2005. So astonishing was his recovery and competitiveness that many accused him of taking performance enhancing drugs.

6. Jesse Owens (Track and Field)

Jesse Owens was technically the first Person to defeat Hitler, not in War but at track and Field. This great runner specialised in Long Jump and the Sprints, and he showed his dominance in the 1936 Berlin Games. Owens went on to win four Olympic Gold’s at these games which became a very poignant moment as this was suppose to be where Hitler was to show off his superior Aryan race.

5. Sir Steve Redgrave (Rowing)

If you have been knighted by the Queen and are considered one of Britain’s greatest Olympians then you definitely are one of the most iconic sportsmen.  Sir Steve’s credentials are truly amazing, five consecutive Olympic Gold Medals from 1984 to 2000 means he is one of only four Olympians to do it and on top of that three commonwealth game wins means he is truly one of the best sportsmen of our Era.

4. Don Bradman (Cricket)

The original master of Cricket batting – Don Bradman was quite simply the best batsmen in Cricket to ever walk the Earth and his stats definitely back it up. The Australian had a Test batting average of 99.94, and the only reason that he never had 100 as his average was due to the fact that on his last game, he was out first ball; the reason he gave to his colleagues when he came back to the pavilion was that he had never hit his first ball for 6 and wanted to try it.

3. Jack Nicklaus

Now I could of said Tiger Wood however with Nicklaus’ who won 18 major trophies over a career of 25 years and a recode that tiger still has to beat and at the moment does not look like doing, is why he makes it into this list. A great golfing legend that opted not to play tournaments so that he could concentrate on Majors has a tremendous golfing record.

2. Pele

Regarded across the world as one of or the greatest footballers of all time and was voted the Football player of the century by the IFFHS and voted by the Ballon D’or committee as the player of the century. In his career he scored 760 official goals, 541 in league championships, making him the top scorer of all time. In total Pelé scored 1281 goals in 1363 games.

1. Muhammad Ali

“I’ll Show You How Great I Am” Were wise words that came from Muhammad Ali and boy did he!! With a great boxing record, and involved in some of the best boxing matches between Joe Frazier and George Foreman Ali was a three time World Heavyweight boxing Champion and in 1999 he was given the title of “Sportsmen of the Century”

 

Written by Annabel, Event Organiser for Chillisauce, specialising in Hen party ideas

 

 

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Great Sports Commercials For Inspiration And Motivation

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Lance Armstrong finishing 3rd in Sète, taking ...

Image via Wikipedia

Advertisements and Commercials have been used for decades to inspire people; the best ones put a lump in our throat or bring a tear to our eye, but they all have one goal – to sell the advertised product. Some companies take a little bit more time and spend a little bit more money than others to achieve something that is great and sports companies have a knack at getting it right. Here we take a look at a few of the most inspirational sports commercials.

Adidas – ‘miCoach Says’

This commercial is the perfect mix of motivation and product placement. Predominantly for the UK and featuring a whole host of UK athletes such as Jessica Ennis, Jonny Wilkinson, Andy Murray and Victoria Pendleton, the music and film combine so well I get itchy feet watching it.

Nike – Lance Armstrong ‘What Are You On?’

There’s no denying that Lance Armstrong’s story is incredible and inspiring, the guy has had to put up with a lot of accusation regarding doping over the years, but there is no denying his ability and athletic capacity. Here he addresses his critics head on in this Nike commercial.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIl5RxhLZ5U

Adidas – Impossible Is Nothing ‘Long Run’

Adidas are a fan of combining old footage with new footage and in this commercial they do just that by having some of their greatest sports men and women run with a young Muhammad Ali. For me the most important person in this video is Haile Gebrselassie, the greatest distance runner the world has ever seen

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iO-UhicUy3g&

Nike – Michael Jordan ‘Failure’

Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time and has to be one of the most successful athletes in history. He’s also one of the most effectively marketed athletes of his generation. In this commercial he sums up his sporting failures in 30 seconds. To win you first have to learn how to fail, something Michael Jordan knows all about.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45mMioJ5szc

Nike – ‘A Little Less Hurt’

This commercial for me is one of the greatest ever made. It covers a wide range of athletes either at low point, struggling or having to work really hard to be the best in their field. The accompanying Johnny Cash track sets it off nicely.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHnR0GGfXqY

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Niblets for July

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Note: We will continue our preview of the NFL teams on Monday.

Comment of the Month: From Steve on Vegas projects the Browns to win 7 games(???)

Go Browns!!! I think the Browns have more potential this year than the Bengals. The Bengals have had the same team in the past and can’t win. The Browns do have new systems but new is better than old and crappy.

Steve: I am a recovering Browns fan and have the receipts for a number of new TV sets to prove it. The TVs got so depressed with the Browns play that they committed suicide.

I hope I am wrong but I don’t like what I see from Mangini. The Bengals will be better on D with Rivers coming back and Palmer will make the difference. I still will bet the under.

Updates on Previous Columns:

The world vs. Lance Armstrong

Despite an outstanding effort, it looks like Lance is not going to win this Tour. He has announced that he will compete for the Radio Shack team next year.

What should the NFL do with Mikey Vick?

Mikey met with Comm. Goodell this week. The rumor is that he will be allowed to practice with a team but will face a suspension of between 2 and 6 games. First he has to find a team. So far not a single NFL team has expressed interest. The UFL has said he would be welcome to play for them.

Niblets fresh off the Cob:

Pro sports leagues and the NCAA files suit against the State of Delaware for single game betting law.

The NFL finally got the support of the NBA, MLB, NHL and NCAA in opposing the recently passed single game betting plan that Delaware enacted to help reduce that state’s budget deficit. The suit was filed in Federal Court in Delaware.

The NFL makes the 2010 Draft a TV mini-series

On Thursday the NFL announced that the 2010 Draft would conduct round 1 on Thursday April 22 at 7 PM Eastern Time. Rounds 2 and 3 will be done on Friday with the remainder held on Saturday. I hope none of the players that attend the draft will fall out of the first round. Does Madison Square Garden serve breakfast?

Is FA WR Marvin Harrison on an NFL black list or just a victim of age?

Harrison is still a free agent despite several teams needing WR help. The question is why? There was the problem with a man that was shot with Harrison’s custom gun outside the receiver’s bar. The victim was shot again and is in stable condition.

According to his agent, several teams have expressed some interest in Harrison. Don’t believe it. He may catch on (excuse the pun) during training camp if an injury happens but don’t bet on it. Harrison will be 37 before the start of the 09 season and has lost a lot more than a step.

The Vikings are doing more than waiting for Favre (and you thought this was a Favre free site!)

The Vikes have signed a new deal with pro bowl DB Antoine Winfield. Winfield will continue to play LC this year. At 32, his days at CB may be limited. But he is a key to the Vikes D and could play safety in the future.

NBA Water Cooler talk

The Cavs offered LeBron James an extension the second they were allowed to by league rules. Don’t expect him to jump to sign it. However he said he was considering it. That is good news for the Cavs.

Allen Iverson is without a contract. He thinks he has been blacklisted. No Allen, it is the economy. He was offered a 5 million mid level exception by Memphis in July but there is a difference of opinion whether the deal is still on the table. Memphis has not commented. Look for the 2010 free agent pool to be a lot more shallow than some think. The money just will not be there for many clubs to offer maximum contracts.

Minnesota’s 5th overall pick Ricky Rubio has told his team in Spain and the NBA that he wants out of the Spanish league ASAP. That should reduce Rubio’s buyout and get him into the NBA.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

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The difference between winning and losing is work ethic and mental toughness.

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What did we learn from the British Open?

Tom Watson gave all of us that are older than dirt and even a few that are older than rock a warm feeling by his outstanding British Open. Watson is almost 60. He fought back several times and came within inches of winning the tournament in regulation. Granted, he missed a makable putt on the 18th green to fall into a playoff and then struggled in overtime. However, his performance along with that of Greg Norman last year at the British point out 2 very important points. First, the British Open requires a lot more patience than strength and more experience than power. But the most important lesson from the Open is this. Younger players in almost all sports win or lose based on work ethic and mental toughness more often than on talent and athleticism.

In general, the work ethic of the current group of golfers is not nearly what it was in the days of Nicholas, Palmer, and Player. The equipment is much better now. The athleticism is at a higher level than in the 60’s through the 80’s. One reason that Tiger Woods has been able to dominate the golf scene over the last few years is his work ethic and mental toughness against the other top golfers.

Work ethic and mental toughness show themselves in other sports

Those same two qualities show themselves in other sports as well. Check out the off season headlines Tom Brady and Tony Romo. Brady wins playoff games while Romo struggles in key situations including the 4th quarter and playoff games.

In ProSportsDaily.com the top 4 Brady headlines are “Tom Brady, Randy Moss go the extra mile to reconnect”, “Tom Brady to Randy Moss A blast from the past”, “Knee surgeon Wins High Praise from Brady”, and “Catch up time with Brady”

How about those about Romo?

From Google we see articles like “Romo says kids should play more than 1 sport‎”, “Tony Romo broke up with Jessica Simpson”, “Tony Romo fires a 69 at American Century Celebrity Golf Tournament”, and “Is John Mayer responsible for Simpson, Romo split?‎” Nothing about football, the Cowboys, or his focus and dedication to win it all in 2009. I think Jerry Jones has a work ethic problem with his QB.

Romo enjoys the celebrity status he gets from football. Tom Brady is too busy trying to win to enjoy his.

Another example of dedication, mental toughness and work ethic is Lance Armstrong. He now is second just 1:36 behind his team mate Alberto Contador. He may value the team result at this point in his life as much as the individual win. He may or may not win the yellow jersey in the end. I think that if the leader was a member of another team, he would win it as much for his team as for himself.

But he has been away for 3 years, battled back from cancer, and is 10 years older than the majority of his competitors. He is still is leading the rest of the pack.

Golf and tennis suffer the most from so many talented players lacking work ethic and mental toughness but it shows up in other sports as well. Roger Federer and the Williams sisters dominate tennis with their minds and focus as much as they do with their physical skills. Don’t expect to see that change any time soon. Work ethic and mental toughness goes a long way to winning in any sport.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: NFL,Romo,Brady,Cowboys,Watson,British Open,Williams,Golf,Tennis,work ethic,toughness
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The world vs. Lance Armstrong

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The old joke about the French was “Why did the French plant trees along the Champs-Elysses? So that the German soldiers could march in the shade.” Now the joke has another ending. “So that Lance Armstrong can ride in the shade to another Tour de France championship.

Armstrong may well be the best thing and the worst thing that ever happened to the Tour. He has always captured the interest and some coverage and advertising money from the US whenever he has been involved. I guarantee that I would not spend one second writing about the Tour were he not in it. When he retired after 7 wins in 2005, the US and much of the world forgot about the race. ESPN, and the Sporting News Radio would spend a couple of seconds on it only when a winner had been crowned.

But things are different now. Armstrong has crept within a couple of hundredths of a second of the lead. Given his previous performance through the mountains and the latter stages of the race, if he’s even, he’s leavin’.

His story is remarkable. 7 titles despite fighting cancer and the French organizers doing anything they could to prove he was cheating. The French have been violating their own guidelines in an attempt to catch him with anything in his body that is not approved. The French just can’t believe that anyone has the drive to keep his body capable of such accomplishments. I can’t help but think that MLB should bring the French drug testers in to help with the steroid problem.

Armstrong is carrying the American Flag and his team on his back. He deserves all the attention he is getting and more. It is only the race that deserves to be ignored unless Armstrong is involved.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and edits .

Technorati Tags: Tour de France,Armstrong,Germans,cancer,steroids,MLB
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