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on 12 May 2017
I got the feeling he left some stuff out, especially relationships with Hamilton for eg. Maybe you don't have to tell all?
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on 9 June 2014
Hincapie was a rider of huge ability but this book is just an attempt to whitewash his involvement with Armstrong. He lets himself off far too easily, claiming he decided to go clean as early as 2006, something few will believe credible, then tries to set himself up as a paragon of clean riding. Pah.

This is one for the cycling historians but it's ethically vapid. Avoid unless you really want to hear a former pro excuse himself and find that entertaining.
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on 1 June 2014
This should be one of THE books of the era given this guy's position. It's not. It's a cheese sandwich : aka banal. And it's such an American book : sanitised, skimmed and no depth. It's the equivalent of all those crap airport corporate strategy "bestsellers".

Robotic nice guy George is very good a cycling and has the obligatory keen father. Is talent spotted, gets contract, meets Lance, finds and is happy with no2 role although sometimes it's a bit tiring being a pro cyclist. Slips effortlessly into taking drugs but did not really inhale. Team does well. PEDs come under fire. Gets caught up but by then is clean and very keen on cleaning up the sport. Proves to be an fffing brilliant chaperone to two more of the eras cycling greats. Quits the sport because it's getting to that time and because of fed PED pressure. Makes friends again with LA (though never really explains why they fell out).

Well yes I guess that must then be the skeleton but ye gads the guy lived through - in the MIDDLE - of very interesting times but about which he has actually very little to say (in this book anyway). I simply don't believe he is so vanilla.

It's written far too soon and far too aplogetically. There IS a very interesting character with his own unique and very real brilliance ... but you will not find him in this book. Oh George.
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on 10 June 2014
I've had this book for a couple of weeks now and unlike others on the post LA doping subject, I just can't get into this one.
I think part of the problem is that George has wheeled out a whole host of current top names to add little snippets in the book and how great George is and what an influence he has been on their lives. George does as good a job congratulating himself as they do too so the book is really about how super duper Big George was/is.
He never really gets to grips with the doping issue, instead making excuses (as they all have) about the fact he 'had to do it' and he never tries to distance himself from the culture either. Maybe he's too loyal?
George starts to take the credit as the architect of change within the pro peleton. He makes some veiled claims that he started the clean up after an epiphany but prior to this he was cheating 'only a little bit'. He would only cheat when it was absolutely necessary it seems and then only a little bit of EPO, testosterone and blood. That's still cheating mate.
I really wanted this book to be an expose of life inside the Armstrong Camp, the doping culture and the life of a Super Domestique. Instead its a self congratulatory book of excuses with nothing new. Like I said, I've had this for 2 weeks and I can't really be bothered to read the final few chapters.
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on 31 August 2014
I bought this book as I have a general interest in the 'other' cyclists of the Armstrong era. George was finally backed into a corner and forced to admit his doping past despite not failing a test. As the rider who seemed closest to Lance I was almost determined not to like him and take a cynical view of his story. But I have to say this is a very well written book, even without the 'doping' bits it is an interesting auto-biography, well illustrated with contributions from other riders. For this reason I have to give it 5 stars.. reluctantly.
As far as the doping is concerned I have to take a cynical view of his claim to have a naturally high red blood-cell count. A quick Google of the condition suggests that far from being an athletes dream, it is a serious and debilitating condition with poor life expectancy; he does not appear to be on his last legs, he claims to have inherited the condition from his mum...
I also had a feeling I had read the book before, some passages had a familiar ring, I am not sure where from. His confession reads a bit like David Miller's in that he claims to have stopped doping before he was forced to. He seems to have sacrificed some of his results, saying he doped, whilst claiming that the results he is most proud of were achieved 'clean', I suppose we will never know the full story.
But I have to say that I finished the book thinking good 'ol George, a man who worked hard played hard and has the scars to prove it. I am pleased I read the book and am happy to recommend it to others even if George is a
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on 10 January 2015
I liked George as a rider, without question he had talent, it appears I would probably not like him as a person if the book is anything to go by.

An ingratiation of all things wrong with the sport with little or no apology. Perhaps like most fans it was a case of Armstrong book burning for me, so I suppose this could have always gone both ways, but for a seemingly principled man he came away with none.

The lengths Armstrong went to deceive, cajole and ultimate intimidate and destroy peoples lives seems to have fallen softly on Hincapies shoulders; he seemed all too forgiving. I can only imagine the stress the whole sport was under as Armstrong controlled and deceived it and the whole world; but if George feels he can still go out on pleasure rides with him, let that be the make of him. Also as is often the case there doesn't appear to any attempt to expose the central origins that blight the sport, it always appears to stem from somewhere else

Structurally the various quoted interventions halted the flow of the book really adding nothing other than some back patting for the protagonist, but halt proceedings for the reader and at times wholly cringeworthy.
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on 22 July 2014
Frankie, Tyler and landis all come in for a bit of a pasting from Hincapie. These are three of the largest names to come out against Lance. George does a good, if under stated job on them. They broke the silence after all (well, once they were caught). Like other reviewers don't believe the going clean story but then again, don't particularly care. In a sport where you can't pick a winner for the last 20 years due to drug use you become immune to it.

Some of the other reviewers that claim he is distancing himself from Lance obviously don't know their cycling history. This is a guy still riding to protect his legacy as well as Lances.

His biggest mistake in his career is choosing this ghost rider, again, wonder what planet some of the reviewers are on criticising his writing, he rides bikes, he doesn't write books.

In a time when the entire peloton was doped out of their brains (and as I write this, a wry smile crosses my face knowing conty has had to retire from the Tour, cleaned up my $&@?), he was again, one of the best of the drug takers.

And a bloody good cyclist.
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on 4 June 2014
Other reviewers have so far questioned the position on doping that Hincapie has taken. The tone was well set by Armstrong in his foreword. The foreword itself is the biggest load of cr@p I have read for a long long time. Lance uses the opportunity to acquit himself from all wrongs by simply explaining that they all did so he had no option. Surely Lance if they all rode their bicycles under the proverbial bus would you do so too? Hincapie reinforces this Armstrong lie. If Armstrong and Hincapie loved the sport as much as they claimed, then they would not have followed the d=crowd when they discovered they were getting 'dropped' because everyone was on the new PEDS except Motorola riders. Any decent human being would have gone straight to UCI and the press and blown the gaff (as they say). Armstrong's foreword, and by association, Hincapie's book, are both disingenuous to the extreme. All my respect for Hincapie has gone. He did himself no favours with the content (or indeed the format with it's annoying inserted paragraphs written as homilies by his friends to the great George). George was a great cyclist, of that we have no doubt. But I would question everything else.
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on 3 July 2014
By his words in this book, and his actions over the last few years, George is revealing himself as the most cynical of a very cynical bunch. He continues to go to great lengths to a) gloss over his crimes (remember he stole races, earning opportunities and team spots from clean riders), b) blame others for his sins ("Frankie made me do it") and c) grab as much cash as he can from whatever way he can continue to exploit the erroneous St George myth. That he is still able to be involved with young riders, while hilariously claiming credit for ridding the sport of doping, is the biggest crime of all. Do not line this mans pockets!
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on 21 October 2014
Interest perspective of life in the peleton, before, during and after drugs. Well written without sensationalism, but with insider knowledge of why. The writer seems to have caught the essence of 'Big George', without making him to good to be true. I like the fact that he once again mentions that no other sport is vilified the way cycling was and to a great extent still is.

A very enjoyable book

B
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