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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellently written.
It's always difficult for me to judge books on Armstrong, whether they contain something new, whether they will interest the ardent fan who knows the ins and outs of the sport, as I'm someone who has followed the Armstrong saga very closely for coming on 15 years. Last years "Secret Race" from Coyle and Hamilton, for me provided no surprises, nothing shocked me, but the...
Published 13 months ago by dim

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Nothing new!
Enjoyed reading but couldn't help thinking lots of this book was repetition and that it had mostly already been covered by a variety of other authors - disappointed it revealed nothing new since the likes of David Walsh and Juliet Macur.
Published 2 months ago by robert roebuck


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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellently written., 11 Oct 2013
It's always difficult for me to judge books on Armstrong, whether they contain something new, whether they will interest the ardent fan who knows the ins and outs of the sport, as I'm someone who has followed the Armstrong saga very closely for coming on 15 years. Last years "Secret Race" from Coyle and Hamilton, for me provided no surprises, nothing shocked me, but the depth of the detail, the anecdotes kept me hooked and in many ways Wheelmen is the same.

Wheelmen isn't just about Armstrong, and it isn't just about doping. Instead it attempts, and suceeds, in painting a full picture of the entire story. From the late seventies, through the 1984 Olympics with Eddie B defecting from Poland, it introduces Thom Weisel in detail, the formation of the first US Pro team 7-Eleven, through the creation of Subaru-Montgomery and eventually US Postal. It covers the whole story, the team structure, the coaches, the financiers, the sponsors.

Where "Secret Race" covered the story from the point of view of the rider, "Wheelmen" covers it from the other side, the structure, how everything came about and ultimately how everything collapsed. The two compliment each other perfectly and if you own both you are unlikely to need to buy another Lance book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, 13 Jan 2014
This review is from: Wheelmen (Hardcover)
This is an outstanding piece of work by two real (investigative) journalists from the Wall Street Journal. I emphasise real because, with the notable exception of David Walsh at The Sunday Times, most sports journalists are sycophants, held back by a tendency to hero-worship their subjects. Also, they need to keep friendly with the sports stars (and the business people behind them)in order to get access for the interviews their editors are looking for. With Wheelmen, the writers' focus is on exposing what really went on, in what must be the biggest ever rip-off in sporting history of fans, sponsors and event organisers. What the Wheelmen authors found, and report on here, reads like a thriller. I doubt that either of them got a Christmas card from Mr Armstrong, on any of his co-conspirators, though.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, 17 Jan 2014
By 
Anna M "Anna" (Maynooth, Co. Kildare Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
I've read a few accounts of the rise and fall of Lance Armstrong and this one is my favourite. It's well-written, it synthesises info from a lot of different sources, and it cites the sources at the end. It's a compelling read, too. This is definitely the Armstrong account I recommend.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Business side, 27 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
David Walsh's books give an excellent account of the cycling side of the Armstrong saga. Wheelmen gives a detailed account of the growth and size of the financial and business involvment in the case. It shows how many wealthy and influential companies and individuals had a vested interest maintaining Armstrong's 'perfect image' and their reluctance to face the growing concerns over how his and his teams success was achieved. It shows the willingness of individuals and companies were prepared to sacrifice the reputation and businesses of the whistleblowers to maintain their 'in' with the Armstrong clique. Well worth a read, in conjunction with the David Walsh and others books covering the same subject.
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5.0 out of 5 stars For fans of cycling it's eminently readable..., 1 Aug 2014
By 
Stella (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Wheelmen (Paperback)
It's hard not to judge Mr Armstrong. He has been labeled as a bully and a cheat and it's hard to imagine a cycling fan who doesn't have an opinion on the doping scandal that surrounds him. Even those with little interest in the sport have been drawn into the debate. The excuse that 'everyone else was doing it too' is quite frankly, unacceptable. For an athlete in his position as a role model and sporting icon there is just no excuse that would ever be acceptable. There are always two sides to every story though and I wanted to read this to see this whole sorry mess from the other side.

The Secret Race focused on things from the riders' viewpoint, but with Wheelmen we get to fill in more of the blanks and see things from the outside looking in. It seems that everyone has an opinion on this and the interviewee's didn't hold back. Not surprisingly the anti doping crowd have a lot to say here but it's all the little anecdotes and views of the people not usually heard from that make this book worth reading. The wives of team mates, ex girlfriends, retired riders, cycling officials, close family... The cast of characters is lengthy. Overall, it still doesn't paint Lance in a better light (it's hard to imagine anything that could do that) but if nothing else it does highlight the motivation behind his actions.

For anyone who has been following the scandal (or Lance's career) there will be quite a bit here that has already been covered in other places, but there were just enough new details and interviews to hold my interest. It feels almost voyeuristic reading about someone's fall from grace in such detail but it makes for gripping reading.

Do I feel any different about Lance after reading this? Not really, but to be fair there were moments where I could see 'why' the decisions were made, even if I didn't agree with them.

It's a very well written book and eminently readable and I'd recommend it as required reading for anyone who has been following Lance's rise and fall.

*I was sent a complimentary copy of this by the publisher
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fills in the gaps, 3 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
I've read most of the other published work around Armstrong and the USPS team, including Hamilton's book. This book fills in all of the gaps by inserting a inputs from a number of other interviews, many of which have been published in the WSJ.

This book certainly majors on the business side of LA's life, and gives a good insight into the magnitude of the sums involved. All in all, this is perhaps the most complete review of the rise and fall of LA, though its objectivity can make it seem a little soulless at times.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well researched, 19 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
I have enjoyed reading a story of a fallen hero, got found out finally that Superman he certainly wasn't, lost yet another role model in life i supposed, running out of them very fast in this modern world. Shame!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A good read, 5 May 2014
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
A detailed account of the Armstrong story and one in which I started to pity him. Then of course you remember the people he trod on the way to fame, glory and wealth. I enjoyed this book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A much broader view of the culture that made the Armstrong Lie possible. Excellent read., 7 April 2014
This review is from: Wheelmen (Hardcover)
A much broader view of the culture that made the Armstrong Lie possible. An Excellent read that has been well written and sourced.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Faciltators, 2 April 2014
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This review is from: Wheelmen (Kindle Edition)
A little on the dry side, not full of juicy details however well worth a read to get another side of the story. I for one do not hate Lance as a human being, it is ridiculous to do so and one can see the steady cultural pressure on him from people that surrounded him. People think that it was just his "Free Will" to decide to start doping. Of course it wasn't.
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Wheelmen
Wheelmen by Vanessa O'Connell (Hardcover - 15 Oct 2013)
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