The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs Paperback – 9 May 2013
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"Brilliantly detailed and wholly convincing: with Coyle's skill and Hamilton's honesty, the book was always likely to be excellent. This is no generalised or theoretical exploration of a doping culture but a forensic description of how it worked. Armstrong used to say there would always be sceptics who didn't believe in his story, but now the sceptics are those who, ostrich-like, continue to believe. They should be compelled to read this book, and though the collision with reality will cause them to shudder, the good news is that they will be riveted by a well-told story and will be the better for knowing the truth." (David Walsh Sunday Times)
"The broadest, most accessible look at cycling’s drug problem to date." (New York Times)
"The news leaks about The Secret Race have vastly undersold its importance. Tyler Hamilton's book is a historic, definitive indictment of cycling's culture of doping during the Armstrong era. Here's the reality. The Secret Race isn't just a game changer for the Armstrong myth. It's the game ender. No one can read this book with an open mind and still credibly believe that Armstrong didn't dope. It's impossible. That doesn't change the fact that he survived cancer and helped millions of people through Livestrong, but the myth of the clean-racing hero who came back from the dead is, well, dead. The book is the holy grail for disillusioned cycling fans in search of answers. The book's power is in the collected details, all strung together in a story that is told with such clear-eyed conviction that you never doubt its veracity." (Outside magazine)
"Astonishingly candid... an extraordinary confessional." (Matt Dickinson The Times)
"Riveting... Just about every significant detail in the USADA evidence is here. And it is brilliantly conveyed by an insider who can see both sides of the story: the institutional corruption, which eats away at the culprits, as well as the crippling pressure on riders to conform. We can expect plenty more books to be published on this conspiracy, for it is arguably the most audacious ever plotted in the world of sport. But it feels as though Hamilton's is likely to become the definitive work on the subject." (Simon Briggs Daily Telegraph)
The award-winning story of Tyler Hamilton, who takes us deep inside the secret world of professional cycling and his years as Lance Armstrong's teammate.See all Product description
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As I said book starts by saying it is unfinished business, the unfolds through the whole book. For Daniel it is at he was left 50 50 about Armstrong's guilt. For Tyler it is about getting his side of the story out there. Tyler's story is ingrossing. He starts out as a promising young rider doing well on the American cycling circuit. Then he moves to Europe and he is suddenly in the middle of what he calls superhuman performance. For a while he takes heart he can compete with the doped up athletes. He starts becoming privy to the elete athletes getting secret little white bags. Finally seeng his potential he is invited ino he club. "What wold you do?"
The next question to answer is if everyone is doing it doesn't that just make it an even playing field? As Tyler says with all things being even the one who works the hardest wins. Wrong it is the one with the best system of getting and adnimistering the drugs wins. In his case it is th Godfather Lance Armstrong. You see relationship between Tyler and Armstrong change from friends/lutenent to rival/enemy.
I honestly do not think Tyler hates Armstrong, I thnk the part that gets him and probably every other cyclist of he era is Armstrong the biggest named user is the one that got away with all the money and fame. As a reader we are given a look at be dark side Armstrong as well as his charismatic appeal. As well as the rewards of being on his good side then the danger and punishments of crossing him. The book gives some examples of possibly how high up Armstrong's influence could be reaching, and how well connected and protected he was and still is. A great book and a gret story, with real life drama. Get it and enjoy.
I suppose unless you are a sports physiology 'nerd' like me it could be a bit of a chemistry lesson at times but only to a necessary extent, it seems to me.
As they say the 'devil's in the detail' and TH's inclusion of that precise detail is where this book is so different from anything you may have seen on this subject before.
If you are interested in cycle racing and endurance sport of any kind then you really have to read this; you won't be able to put it down!
However, it retains far more than simply curiosity value for it still paints a compelling picture of how just so many cyclists ended up cheating. When nearly all the other leading cyclists were already doping, new cyclists faced huge pressure to cheat too or get out and were immersed in a culture where cheating was fine. After three years of losing races to those who were cheating, Hamilton buckled and joined their ranks. Though he doesn't mention it, his own cheating then in turn helped set the tone for the next batch of new young cyclists, putting the same pressures on them to dope that older cyclists had put on him.
This cycle of pressure may partly excuse Tyler Hamilton's own record. But he did more than just dope. His record is one of cheating, denying it, lying, being banned and then going back to the cheating and lying. On that, Hamilton's attempts to cling to his 'but otherwise I was an honest person' defence are less convincing, for he carried on the lying and cheating right up until he had almost no choice but to confess. His subsequent full cooperation is only a small recompense that he didn't quit, confess or - even better - do both many years earlier.
Yet despite all that, his passion for cycling is infectious and his accounts of the racing, both legal and illegal, are thrilling, making this a very readable and enjoyable book. The actions of cycling authorities coming out pretty poorly, even if you view the allegations about Lance Armstrong paying the UCI in the most generous light possible. Huge increases in average race speeds did not trigger nearly enough suspicion and time and again it was the police and other law enforcement authorities who triggered the doping scandals though their diligence, and not the sport's own enforcement activities which kept on missing things, even with tests that were farcically easy to avoid.
And if you are listening to current athletes denying drugs claims in 2017 - well be warned thay you might just be a bit more cynical if you do choose to read this.
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Book arrived on time and in good condition.
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