Tatiana Grigorieva

Tatiana Grigorieva (Russian: Татьяна Григорьева; born October 8, 1975 in Leningrad, Soviet Union) is a retired Australian pole vaulter. She retired from the sport in 2007 after a 10 year career that saw her win Olympic, Commonwealth Games and World Championship medals. She went on to star in series six of Dancing with the Stars and as Olympia on the 2008 revival of Gladiators.

tatiana grigorieva

As a former national level hurdler in Russia, Grigorieva took up pole vaulting when she migrated to Australia in 1997. Within 12 months of picking up a pole, she became one of the world’s best, placing third in the 1998 Goodwill Games in New York. In her first appearance at the 1999 World Championships in Athletics, she won the bronze medal.

But it was at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney when she stepped into the spotlight and became a household name. On a night when the whole of Australia was watching Cathy Freeman win gold, they had a real bonus in seeing Grigorieva jump a personal best and win silver. The ensuing fame saw Grigorieva take up a number of off-field commitments whilst still continuing to train and compete.

At the 2001 World Championships in Canada, competing against the odds due to an injury restricted campaign, Grigorieva equalled her personal best to claim fourth. In the final competition of the season, as she had done in the Olympics, she edged very close to the world record with a clearance of 4.56 m (a personal best jump) in Yokohama.

At her first Commonwealth Games in 2002, she went into the competition as the overwhelming favourite with enormous pressure on her. Grigorieva’s goal was to win gold and set a new games record – she achieved both.

In 2003 and 2004, despite maintaining a high standard and a place amongst the world’s best, injury, illness and the emotional strain of her marriage breakup, resulted in her missing opportunities to represent Australia in the World Championships and Olympics. In 2005, Grigorieva put all that behind her, changing her training regime, place of residence and focus in life. She had a successful season, making the finals of the World Championships and winning the Osaka Grand Prix to retain her Japanese record set in 2001.

tatiana grigorieva silver medalIn 2006 Grigorieva’s focus was defending her title at the Commonwealth Games in front of her home crowd. The untimely, mysterious loss of her vaulting poles and a nagging hamstring injury days before the event saw her competing at a slight disadvantage. However, she walked away with a silver medal in a performance that was close to her very best. 2006 was clearly her best ever international season where she jumped over 4.5 m six times and recorded two new personal best heights within days of each other and regained a place in the top five.

Since 2000 Grigorieva has appeared in numerous television programs and ad campaigns and magazines and on a number of magazines covers including from Inside Sport and Black+White to GQ in Italy and Esquire in the UK.

Her practical experience and desire to help others is now backed by her continuing studies towards a Health Science degree at the Australian College of Natural Medicine. She also had completed qualifications in Reiki, Pilates and Yoga.

In November 2007, Grigorieva and her partner Plamen Milanov opened the “Caffe e Gelato Milany” on Racecourse Road in the Brisbane suburb of Hamilton.

In December 2008 Grigorieva was named international spokesperson for the fruit bar CheekyChewz manufactured by the Australian company Australian Food Innovators. Her first project has been arranging an initiative that will see 50 cents from every bar sold through Variety’s website donated to that organisation.

Achievements

  • 1998 – Goodwill Games New York City – 2nd Pole vault
  • 1998 – Australian Championships – 2nd Pole vault
  • 1999 – Australian Championships – 3rd 100 m
  • 1999 – Australian Championships – 1st Pole vault
  • 1999 – World Indoor Championships Maebashi, Japan – 9th Pole vault
  • 1999 – World Championships Seville – 3rd Pole vault
  • 2000 – Australian Championships – 2nd Pole vault
  • 2000 – Olympic Games Sydney – 2nd Pole vault
  • 2001 – Australian Championships – 1st Pole vault
  • 2001 – World Championships Edmonton, Alberta – 4th Pole vault
  • 2002 – Australian Championships – 1st Pole vault
  • 2002 – Commonwealth Games Manchester, England – 1st Pole vault
  • 2003 – Australian Championships – 2nd Pole vault
  • 2006 – Commonwealth Games Melbourne – 2nd Pole Vault
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Best Folding Bike for Mountain Riding

Best Folding Bike for Mountain Riding - Generally speaking, folding mountain bikes are much better and easier to use than regular mountain bikes. Despite being more expensive than the traditional one, folding bikes are more convenient to bring especially when your storage space is limited or you need it to carry up to the mountain. But not all folding mountain bikes are equal, as they differ in models, sizes, and shapes. The question is, how do you choose the best folding bike for mountain riding?

montague-paratrooper-folding-bike

Before answering this question, you should first understand what you should look for in a folding bike to make sure that it satisfy your needs and it is worth your money. Besides of course that it should be durable enough and made from high quality materials to withstand the dirt road and rough terrain, there are also other important factors you should consider especially for climbing up the hills and the mountains. This is to ensure you would only pay for the best mountain folding bike for your bucks, should you decide to get one.

Easy to Fold

You would want to buy a folding mountain bike that is easy and fast to fold. Some of the latest folding bikes have simple folding mechanisms, while other have more complex designs. To check if it is easy to fold, observe the hinge and latching mechanism. Montague Paratrooper Folding Mountain Bike is one of them. Designed for U.S. Army and the Marines but can be used by civilians, you can fold this Montague bike in less than 30 seconds without using any tool.

Smaller Folding Size

The smaller the folded size of the folding bike is, the better it is. The overall height and width dimensions affect the folded size. Both the saddle and handlebar should be small enough to reduce the folded size. The folded size of Montague Paratrooper Folding Mountain Bike is 36″ x 28″ x 12″ inches only, which is small enough to fit into your car compartment, boat, or any other means of transportation that has only small space available for your bike.

best-folding-mountain-bike

Easy to Carry

There are folding bikes that you still need a carrying bag, but there are those with closed latches, making it possible for you to carry them without a case. Some folding bikes have exposed greasy chains that can cause stain in your clothes while you are carrying them. However, you can reduce the risk if you choose the one that has covered a part of the chain. Folding bikes with metal frames are heavier, so it is better if you choose the ones with frames made from aluminum.

Comfort Riding

For maximum comfort, choose a folding mountain bike that has larger wheels, particularly with 26-inch wheels. Although they have a bigger folded size, they are best to be used especially on off-road trails. As compared to the smaller ones, they can easily handle muddy and sandy surfaces. They provide smooth travel because they react slower in small movements of the handlebars. Lighter bikes are easier to pedal than the heavy ones, especially when climbing a hill.

Finally, it’s always to test a folding mountain bike first before you buy it. Don’t just ride on it. Make sure you also carry it when folded. Doing so will help you decide if it’s really to carry or not. If you’re buying one online, watch tutorial videos. You would also want to make sure you can easily find parts replacement to buy.

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Creative Ways To Ski

It is almost a tradition where majority of people are now going in clubs, societies and social groups wearing animal onesies. This occurs especially during the days of skiing. This trend has become so popular and there may not be any good reason for such activities. I do think that these people like to have fun while wearing these funky animal onesies as creative ways to ski and ski at high speeds. Whenever you visit Australia, America and Europe, you will find this trend at its peak and I think you are also going to fall in love with it. Children also like to ski while in these animal suites since they feel like superheroes as they race to compete the others.

Why choose animal onesies for ski?

animal onesies skiingWhat I tend to think is that the old ski suite resembles animal oneisis, and that is the main reason why people today find it trendy to wear one will feel liven up after they wear the suite and ski down the snow capped mountains like a superhero. Animal onesies is so far the preferred site to go down the road since it has waterproof capabilities when compared to other kinds of clothes. So when one wears such kind of outfit, one is sure that they may not end up shivering and feeling frozen. Animal onesies is considered a jumpsuit that will also eliminate the chances of you falling off the wind since it is broad and fits well.
During the hot weather one may feel so clumpsy, so it is also recommended that you get the lion suit since it is also known to eliminate all physical stress. However, newbie’s may find it hard to wear such suites and go off the lane to ski. Majority of people who are new to ski have also suggested the animal onesies outfit since it is quite easier to learn while wearing such kind of attire. They sat that the outfit may never discredit your safety and ability to move the skateboard.

The main reason why many people chose this animal onesies outfit is because they claim that it is a little fun to wear the costume. One can go down the road wearing the tiger cat suite and look appealing and charming to everyone. One of the reasons why children like the tiger cat suite is because this is a character that featured in many TV shows and film. Children have read about this character in schools during their literature class.

animal onesies ski

What girls love to wear?

Today girls love to be hoot. They would wear masterpieces that have been made using the latest technology. A good example is the character Winnie the pooh by Disney World Animation. These animal onesies dress has orange and black stripes that will definitely look great on any girl who goes with it for skiing. One will definitely get this bundle of fun at our shop or simply but it online.

leopard onesieI think you will also fall in love with the event where you and your friend are walking down the lane wearing animal onesies. This will look so colorful especially when each and every one is wearing a different animal feature. Go to a party wearing this animal onesies outfit and love the way you will feel the luxury and all the love animal onesies provides. Gils who wear Winnie the pooh, likes to hold the memories even during their birthdays.

Whenever one something that is cuddly, playful and full of colors, then get animal nesies. These dresses will make your partner want to wear them too. I am sure your partner cannot resist the feel and will look for an outfit that resembles the one you are wearing. These dresses are now found around the globe, therefore, you will get these animal onesies whenever you like.

The leopard pajamas action is perhaps one of the most popular choices of animal jumpsuit out there. As a staple of the UK and fashion around the world, the design of leopard skin has been sought in clothing and accessories for decades. With the trends increasingly turning to animal drawings and prints, especially those that evoke a fluffy warm and cozy feeling, like leopard pattern pajamas and overalls. All animal costumes and dresses can be worn on the lounge or during the time when one goes to bed. Male can also get their own kinds of man wild animal onesies. These kinds of clothes will give them that elegant and sexy look that ever woman loves to see. One can now walk gracefully in any party while wearing a hen suit or a leopard animal onesies. This will definitely make you the talk of the town. Be proud today by getting an animal onesies costume and head to that invited party or just go to ski.

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Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan (born Michael Jeffrey Jordan, 17 February  1963), also known by his initials, MJ, is an American former professional basketball player, entrepreneur, and majority owner and chairman of the Charlotte Bobcats. His biography on the National Basketball Association (NBA) website states, “By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time.” Jordan was one of the most effectively marketed athletes of his generation and was considered instrumental in popularizing the NBA around the world in the 1980s and 1990s.

michael jordan 2After a three-season career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a member of the Tar Heels’ national championship team in 1982, Jordan joined the NBA’s Chicago Bulls in 1984. He quickly emerged as a league star, entertaining crowds with his prolific scoring. His leaping ability, illustrated by performing slam dunks from the free throw line in slam dunk contests, earned him the nicknames “Air Jordan” and “His Airness”. He also gained a reputation for being one of the best defensive players in basketball. In 1991, he won his first NBA championship with the Chicago Bulls, and followed that achievement with titles in 1992 and 1993, securing a “three-peat”. Although Jordan abruptly retired from basketball before the beginning of the 1993–94 NBA season to pursue a career in baseball, he rejoined the Bulls in 1995 and led them to three additional championships in 1996, 1997, and 1998, as well as an NBA-record 72 regular-season wins in the 1995–96 NBA season. Jordan retired for a second time in 1999, but returned for two more NBA seasons from 2001 to 2003 as a member of the Washington Wizards.

Jordan’s individual accolades and accomplishments include five Most Valuable Player (MVP) Awards, ten All-NBA First Team designations, nine All-Defensive First Team honors, fourteen NBA All-Star Game appearances, three All-Star Game MVP Awards, ten scoring titles, three steals titles, six NBA Finals MVP Awards, and the 1988 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award. Among his numerous accomplishments, Jordan holds the NBA records for highest career regular season scoring average (30.12 points per game) and highest career playoff scoring average (33.45 points per game). In 1999, he was named the greatest North American athlete of the 20th century by ESPN, and was second to Babe Ruth on the Associated Press’s list of athletes of the century.

He is a two-time inductee into the Basketball Hall of Fame – in 2009 for his individual career, and in 2010 as a member of the 1992 United States men’s Olympic basketball team (“The Dream Team”).
Jordan is also known for his product endorsements. He fueled the success of Nike’s Air Jordan sneakers, which were introduced in 1985 and remain popular today.[5] Jordan also starred in the 1996 feature film Space Jam as himself. He is the majority owner and head of basketball operations for the NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats, having won a bidding war to buy controlling interest in the team from founding owner Robert L. Johnson.

NBA Superstar

michael jordanJordan left college after his junior year to join the NBA. Drafted by the Chicago Bulls, he soon proved himself on the court. He helped the team make it to the playoffs and scored an average of 28.2 points per game that season. For his efforts, Jordan received the NBA Rookie of the Year Award and was selected for the All-Star Game.

In 1985, he finished his bachelor’s degree in geography and continued to play basketball professionally. While his second season was marred by injury, Jordan was breaking new ground on the court during the 1986-1987 season. He became the first player since Wilt Chamberlin to score more than 3,000 points in a single season. The following season, Jordan received his first Most Valuable Player Award from NBA—an honor he would earn four more times in 1991, 1992, 1996, and 1998.

By the late 1980s, the Chicago Bulls was quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with, and Jordan was an instrumental part of the team’s success. The Bulls made it to the Eastern Conference Finals in 1990 and won their first NBA championship the following year by defeating the Los Angeles Lakers. A rising NBA superstar, Jordan became known for his power and agility on the court as well as for his leadership abilities.

He eventually landed several endorsement deals with such companies as Nike, which further pushed him into the spotlight.

In 1992, the Chicago Bulls beat the Portland Trail Blazers to win their second NBA championship title. The team took their third championship the following year, dominating in the basketball world. Jordan, however, had other things on his mind. He lost his father, James, to an act of violence after the end of the 1992-93 season. Two teenagers shot James Jordan during an apparent robbery and were later convicted of the crime. In a move that shocked many, Michael Jordan decided to retire from basketball to pursue baseball. He played for a minor league team, the Birmingham Barons, as an outfielder for a year.

Back on the Court

In March 1995, however, Jordan returned to the basketball court. He rejoined the Chicago Bulls and eventually helped them win the championship against the Seattle Sonics in the 1995-96 season. That same year, Jordan made a big splash in another arena—film—as the star of Space Jam (1996). The film mixed live action and animation and paired Jordan with cartoon legends Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck on screen.

Thefollowing season Jordan came back even stronger, averaging 30.4 points per game. Starting all 82 games that season, he helped the team finish the regular season with 72 wins and clinch a win in the NBA Finals against the Utah Jazz. The two teams faced each other again for the championships in 1998, and Jordan helped the Bulls beat them for the second year in a row.

Retiring after the 1997-98 season, Jordan did not stray from the sport for too long. He joined the Washington Wizards as a part owner and as president of basketball operations. In the fall of 2001, Jordan relinquished these roles to return the court once more. He played for the Wizards for two seasons before hanging up his jersey for good in 2003.

Personal Life and Legacy

In 2006, Jordan bought a share of the Charlotte Bobcats and joined the team’s executive ranks as its managing member of basketball operations. He experienced some personal changes that same year, ending his 17-year marriage to wife Juanita Vanoy. The couple divorced in December 2006. They had three children together during the course of their marriage: Jeffrey, Marcus and Jasmine.

michael jordan family

The following year, Michael Jordan made news—this time as the father of an up-and-coming college basketball player. His eldest son, Jeffrey Jordan, made the team at the University of Illinois. Both Michael Jordan and his ex-wife Juanita have supported their son and tried to help him deal with playing in the shadow of a NBA legend. “He wants to be a basketball player, but he wants to do it on his own terms …The thing that we have tried to tell Jeff is that you set your own expectations. By no means in this world can you ever live up someone else’s expectations of who you are,” Michael Jordan said during an appearance on the Today show.

In April 2009, Jordan received one of basketball’s greatest honors: He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Attending the induction ceremony was a bittersweet affair for Jordan because being at the event meant “your basketball career is completely over,” he explained.

While he may not be playing on the court, Jordan remains active in his sport. He became the majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats in 2010 and serves as the team’s chairman. And improving the team’s less-than-stellar record seems to be Jordan’s number one priority these days. He told ESPN in November 2012 that “I don’t anticipate getting out of this business. My competitive nature is I want to succeed. It’s always been said that when I can’t find a way to do anything, I will find a way to do it.”

Outside of his work with the Charlotte Bobcats, Jordan is involved in a number of business ventures, including several restaurants. He also does a lot for charity, including hosting the annual golf event known as the Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational.

Jordan married 35-year-old Cuban-American model Yvette Prieto on April 27, 2013, in Palm Beach, Florida. Tiger Woods, Spike Lee and Patrick Ewing, among other celebrities, reportedly attended the wedding ceremony. In November 2013, Jordan’s rep announced that the NBA star and Prieto were expecting their first child together—and Jordan’s fourth—in April 2014.

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Lance Armstrong

Lance Edward Armstrong (born Lance Edward Gunderson; September 18, 1971) is an American former professional road racing cyclist. Armstrong had won the Tour de France a (former) record seven consecutive times between 1999 and 2005 before being disqualified from all those races and banned from competitive cycling for life, for doping offenses by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) in 2012. He is the founder of the Livestrong Foundation, originally called the Lance Armstrong Foundation, which provides support for cancer patients.

lance armstrongAt age 16, Armstrong began competing as a triathlete and was a national sprint-course triathlon champion in 1989 and 1990. In 1992, Armstrong began his career as a professional cyclist with the Motorola team. He had notable success between 1993 and 1996, including the 1993 World Championship, Clásica de San Sebastián in 1995, an overall victory in the penultimate Tour DuPont and a handful of stage victories in Europe, including the stage to Limoges in the Tour de France.

In October 1996, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer that had spread to his brain, lungs and abdomen. His cancer treatments included brain and testicular surgery and extensive chemotherapy. In February 1997, he was declared cancer-free and the same year he founded the Lance Armstrong Foundation. By January 1998, Armstrong had renewed serious cycling training, having signed a new racing contract with US Postal. He was a member of the US Postal/Discovery team between 1998 and 2005. On July 24, 2005, Armstrong retired from racing at the end of the 2005 Tour de France, but returned to competitive cycling with the Astana team in January 2009 and finished third in the 2009 Tour de France. Between 2010 and 2011, he raced with the UCI ProTeam he helped found, Team Radio Shack.

On February 16, 2011, Armstrong announced his retirement from competitive cycling. At the time he was facing a US federal investigation into doping allegations. In June 2012, USADA charged Armstrong with having used illicit performance-enhancing drugs. On August 24, 2012, the USADA announced that Armstrong had been issued a lifetime ban from competition, applicable to all sports which follow the World Anti-Doping Agency code. In addition, the USADA stripped Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles. The USADA report concluded that Armstrong engaged in “the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen.” On October 22, 2012, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), the sport’s governing body, announced its decision to accept USADA’s findings. Shortly after, the UCI also decided that because doping in Armstrong’s era was common, his seven stripped wins would not be relocated to other riders. Armstrong chose not to appeal the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Despite having denied drug use throughout his career, in January 2013 he admitted to doping in a television interview conducted by Oprah Winfrey.

Early life

Armstrong was born on September 18, 1971, at Methodist Hospital in Plano, Texas, north of Dallas to Linda Gayle (née Mooneyham), a secretary, and Eddie Charles Gunderson, a route manager for The Dallas Morning News. His great-grandfather was the son of Norwegian immigrants. He was named after Lance Rentzel, a Dallas Cowboys wide receiver. His parents divorced when Lance was two and his father has two children from another relationship. His mother later married Terry Keith Armstrong, a wholesale salesman, who adopted Lance in 1974.

Career

At the age of 12, Armstrong started his sporting career as a swimmer at the City of Plano Swim Club and finished fourth in Texas state 1,500-meter freestyle. He stopped swimming-only races after seeing a poster for a junior triathlon, called the Iron Kids Triathlon, which he won at age 13.

lance armstrong 2In the 1987–1988 Tri-Fed/Texas (“Tri-Fed” was the former name of USA Triathlon), Armstrong was ranked the number-one triathlete in the 19-and-under group; second place was Chann McRae, who became a US Postal Service cycling teammate and the 2002 USPRO national champion. Armstrong’s total points in 1987 as an amateur were better than those of five professionals ranked higher than he was that year. At 16, Lance Armstrong became a professional triathlete and became national sprint-course triathlon champion in 1989 and 1990 at 18 and 19, respectively.

Motorola: 1992–96

In 1992 Armstrong turned professional with the Motorola Cycling Team, the successor of 7-Eleven team. In 1993, Armstrong won 10 one-day events and stage races, but his breakthrough victory was the UCI Road World Championship held in Norway. Before his World’s win, he took his first win at the Tour de France, in the stage from Châlons-sur-Marne to Verdun. He was 97th in the general classification when he retired after stage 12.
He also collected the Thrift Drug Triple Crown of Cycling: the Thrift Drug Classic in Pittsburgh, the K-Mart West Virginia Classic, and the CoreStates USPRO national championship in Philadelphia.

In 1994, he again won the Thrift Drug Classic and came second in the Tour DuPont in the United States. His successes in Europe occurred when he placed second in Liège–Bastogne–Liège and the Clásica de San Sebastián, where just two years before, he had finished in last place as his first all-pro event in Europe.

He won the Clásica de San Sebastián in 1995, followed by an overall victory in the penultimate Tour DuPont and a handful of stage victories in Europe, including the stage to Limoges in the Tour de France, three days after the death of his teammate Fabio Casartelli, who crashed on the descent of the Col de Portet d’Aspet on the 15th stage.
Armstrong’s successes were much the same in 1996. He became the first American to win the La Flèche Wallonne and again won the Tour DuPont. However, he was able to compete for only five days in the Tour de France. In the 1996 Olympic Games, he finished 6th in the time trial and 12th in the road race. In August 1996 following the Leeds Classic, Armstrong signed a 2-year, $2m deal with the French Cofidis Cycling Team. Joining him in signing contracts with the French team were teammates Frankie Andreu and Laurent Madouas. Two months later, in October 1996, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer.

Cancer

On October 2, 1996, then aged 25, Armstrong was diagnosed as having stage three (advanced) testicular cancer (embryonal carcinoma). The cancer spread to his brain, lungs and abdomen. On his first visit to urologist Jim Reeves—in Austin, Texas—for his cancer symptoms, he was coughing up blood and had a swollen testicle. On October 3, Armstrong had an orchiectomy to remove his diseased testicle. After the surgery, Dr. Reeves said that he had less than a 50% survival chance.

After receiving a letter from and talking to an oncologist at Vanderbilt University, Dr. Steven Wolff, Armstrong went to the Indiana University medical center in Indianapolis. He decided to receive the rest of his treatment there. The standard treatment for Armstrong’s cancer was a cocktail of the drugs bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin (or Platinol) (BEP)—the first chemo cycle that Armstrong underwent was BEP. For the three remaining chemo cycles, however, he was given an alternative, vinblastine etoposide, ifosfamide, and cisplatin (VIP), to avoid the lung toxicity associated with bleomycin. This decision saved his cycling career. At Indiana University, Lawrence Einhorn had pioneered the use of cisplatin to treat testicular cancer. Armstrong’s primary oncologist there was Craig Nichols. On October 25, his brain lesions were surgically removed by Scott A. Shapiro—MD, Professor of Neurosurgery at Indiana University and Resident Director—and were found to contain extensive necrosis.

lance armstrong cancer

Armstrong’s last chemotherapy treatment was received on December 13, 1996. In February 1997, he was declared cancer-free, but shortly afterward came the news that his contract with the Cofidis team had been cancelled. A former boss at Subaru Montgomery offered him a contract with the US Postal team on a salary of $200,000 a year. By January 1998, Armstrong was already engaged in serious training for racing, moving to Europe with the team. A pivotal week (April 1998) in his comeback was one he spent training in the very challenging Appalachian terrain around Boone, North Carolina, with his racing friend Bob Roll.

US Postal/Discovery: 1998–2005

Before his cancer treatment, Armstrong had won two Tour de France stages. In 1993, he won the eighth stage and in 1995; he took stage 18 in honor of teammate Fabio Casartelli who crashed and died on stage 15. Armstrong dropped out of the 1996 Tour after the fifth stage after becoming ill, a few months before his diagnosis.

Armstrong finishing third in Sète, taking over the Yellow Jersey at Grand Prix Midi Libre.
Armstrong’s cycling comeback began in 1998 when he finished fourth in the Vuelta a España. In 1999 he won the Tour de France, including four stages. He beat the second rider, Alex Zülle, by 7 minutes 37 seconds. However, the absence of Jan Ullrich (injury) and Marco Pantani (drug allegations) meant Armstrong had not yet proven himself against the biggest names. Stage wins included the prologue, stage eight, an individual time trial in Metz, an Alpine stage on stage nine, and the second individual time trial on stage 19.

In 2000, Ullrich and Pantani returned to challenge Armstrong. The race that began a six-year rivalry between Ullrich and Armstrong ended in victory for Armstrong by 6 minutes 2 seconds over Ullrich. Armstrong took one stage in the 2000 Tour, the second individual time trial on stage 19. In 2001, Armstrong again took top honors, beating Ullrich by 6 minutes 44 seconds. In 2002, Ullrich did not participate due to suspension, and Armstrong won by seven minutes over Joseba Beloki.

The pattern returned in 2003, Armstrong taking first place and Ullrich second. Only a minute and a second separated the two at the end of the final day in Paris. U.S. Postal won the team time trial on stage four, while Armstrong took stage 15, despite having been knocked off on the ascent to Luz Ardiden, the final climb, when a spectator’s bag caught his right handlebar. Ullrich waited for him, which brought Ullrich fair-play honors.

In 2004, Armstrong finished first, 6 minutes 19 seconds ahead of German Andreas Klöden. Ullrich was fourth, a further 2 minutes 31 seconds behind. Armstrong won a personal-best five individual stages, plus the team time trial. He became the first biker since Gino Bartali in 1948 to win three consecutive mountain stages; 15, 16, and 17.
The individual time trial on stage 16 up Alpe d’Huez was won in style by Armstrong as he passed Ivan Basso on the way despite having set out two minutes after the Italian. He won sprint finishes from Basso in stages 13 and 15 and made up a significant gap in the last 250 m to nip Klöden at the line in stage 17. He won the final individual time trial, stage 19, to complete his personal record of stage wins.

lance armstrong 3In 2005, Armstrong was beaten by David Zabriskie in the Stage 1 time trial by two seconds, despite having passed Ullrich on the road. His Discovery Channel team won the team time trial, while Armstrong won the final individual time trial. In the mountain stages, Armstrong’s lead was attacked multiple times mostly by Ivan Basso, but also by T-mobile leaders Jan Ullrich, Andreas Kloden and Alexandre Vinokourov and former teammate Levi Leipheimer. But still, the American champion handled them well, maintained his lead and, on some occasions, increased it. To complete his record-breaking feat, Armstrong crossed the line on the Champs-Élysées on July 24 to win his seventh consecutive Tour, finishing 4m 40s ahead of Basso, with Ullrich third. Another record achieved that year was that Armstrong completed the tour at the highest pace in the race’s history: his average speed over the whole tour was 41.7 km/h (26 mph).

On July 24, 2005, Armstrong announced his retirement from professional cycling.

Comeback

Astana Pro Team: 2009

Armstrong announced on September 9, 2008, that he would return to pro cycling with the express goal of participating in the 2009 Tour de France. VeloNews reported that Armstrong would race for no salary or bonuses and would post his internally tested blood results online.

Armstrong riding for Astana on Stage 17 of the 2009 Tour de France.

Australian ABC radio reported on September 24, 2008, that Armstrong would compete in the UCI Tour Down Under through Adelaide and surrounding areas in January 2009. UCI rules say a cyclist has to be in an anti-doping program for six months before an event, but UCI allowed Armstrong to compete. He had to retire from the 2009 Vuelta a Castilla y León during the first stage after crashing in a rider pileup in Baltanás, Spain, and breaking his collarbone. Armstrong flew back to Austin, Texas, for corrective surgery, which was successful, and was back training on a folding bicycle within four days of his operation.

On April 10, 2009, a controversy emerged between the French anti-doping agency AFLD and Armstrong and his team manager, Johan Bruyneel, stemming from a March 17, 2009, encounter with an AFLD anti-doping official who visited Armstrong after a training ride in Beaulieu-sur-Mer. When the official arrived, Armstrong claims he asked—and was granted—permission to take a shower while Bruyneel checked the official’s credentials. In late April, the AFLD cleared Armstrong of any wrongdoing. Armstrong returned to racing after his collarbone injury at the Tour of the Gila in New Mexico on April 29.

On July 7, in the fourth stage of the 2009 Tour de France, Armstrong narrowly failed to win the yellow jersey after his Astana team won the team time trial. His Astana team won the 39 km lap of Montpellier but Armstrong ended up just over two tenths of a second (0.22) outside of Fabian Cancellara’s overall lead. Armstrong finished the 2009 Tour de France in third place overall, 5:24 behind the overall winner, his Astana teammate Alberto Contador.

Team RadioShack: 2010–11

On July 21, 2009, Armstrong announced that he would return to the Tour de France in 2010. RadioShack was named as the main sponsor for Armstrong’s 2010 team, named Team RadioShack. Armstrong made his 2010 season debut at the Tour Down Under where he finished 25th out of the 127 riders who completed the race. He made his European season debut at the 2010 Vuelta a Murcia finishing in seventh place overall. Armstrong was also set to compete in several classics such as the Milan – San Remo, Amstel Gold Race, Liège–Bastogne–Liège, and the Tour of Flanders, but bouts with gastroenteritis forced his withdrawal from three of the four races.

Armstrong returned to the United States in mid-April to compete in the Tour of Gila and May’s Tour of California, both as preparation for the Tour de France. However, he crashed outside Visalia early in stage 5 of the Tour of California and had to withdraw from the race. He showed fine shape after recovering from the Tour of California crash, placing second in the Tour of Switzerland and third in the Tour of Luxembourg.

On June 28, Armstrong announced via Twitter that the 2010 edition would be his final Tour de France. Armstrong put in an impressive performance in the Tour de France prologue TT, finishing third, but was plagued by crashes in later stages that put him out of GC contention, especially a serious crash in stage 8. He rallied for the brutal Pyreneean stage 16, working as a key player in a successful break that included teammate Chris Horner. He finished his last tour in 23rd place, 39 minutes 20 seconds behind former winner Alberto Contador. He was also a key rider in helping Team RadioShack win the team competition, beating Caisse d’Epargne by 9 minutes, 15 seconds.

Lance Armstrong confessionIn October, he announced the end of his international career after the Tour Down Under in January 2011. He stated that after January 2011, he will race only in the U.S. with the Radioshack domestic team.
Armstrong announced his retirement from competitive cycling ‘for good’ on February 16, 2011, while still facing a US federal investigation into doping allegations.

Physical attributes

Armstrong has recorded an aerobic capacity of 83.8 mL/kg/min (VO2 max), much higher than the average person (40–50), but lower than some other Tour de France winners, such as Miguel Indurain (88.0, although reports exist that Indurain tested at 92–94) and Greg LeMond (92.5). At his peak, he had a resting heart rate of 32–34 beats per minute (bpm) with a maximum heart rate of 201 bpm.

Collaboration of sponsors

Armstrong revolutionized the support behind his well-funded teams, asking sponsors and suppliers to contribute and act as part of the team. For example, rather than having the frame, handlebars, and tires designed and developed by separate companies with little interaction, his teams adopted a Formula One relationship with sponsors and suppliers named “F-One”, taking full advantage of the combined resources of several organizations working in close communication. The team, Trek, Nike, AMD, Bontrager (a Trek company), Shimano, Sram, Giro and Oakley, collaborated for an array of products.

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