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Ullrich retires

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posted Feb 26, 2007

It is sad that such a great cyclist has to retire for reasons that are not his own.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

i agree with ulrich when he said he doesn't understand why he was disqualified from last years tour, especially as off the back of that no charges have been made..what happened to innocent until proven guilty? it's sad that because of this a great cycling career will no doubt forever be tarnished by a drug scandal that yielded not enough evidence and as a consequence we will never know if he had another good tour or two in him. still a great cyclist of his time and extremely fun to watch, sadly missed.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

What ever happened to the saying "innocent before being proven guilty"? For Mr Ullrich, it has been guilty before being proven guilty.
A sad day for the cyclng sport! Where is justice in this world and why do we constantly have to battle against wrong decisions!!!?

One of the big qustions is why him nd not anyone else involved? Why is Ivan Basso back on the bike?

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posted Feb 26, 2007

The sad part about Jan is not only he did not fulfill his great promises, but also the way he was forced out. It is sad to him going away while others who were implicated in doing the same things are still racing for top teams.

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comment by ilanpsi (U7619288)

posted Feb 26, 2007

The article states that Ullrich was suspended from racing, but this is misleading. It was his team which suspended him due to what they felt was damaging evidence. In fact, Ullrich has never been charged with any wrongdoing, let alone convicted. Other riders suffered similarly last year. Professional cyclists are now one unsubstantiated allegation away from exclusion.

-ilan

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comment by Habs24 (U3060644)

posted Feb 26, 2007

it just shows now how pathetic some teams are, i mean how much did he save T-Mobile and Telekom by re-signing, there must have been a team willing to sign him e.g. Tinkoff or Astana, with jans quality i sure would have, DSC are fools for taking Leipheimer over him, Jan and Lance could have done a 'Golden Ride' in 2007 and won everythin in the Tour

Jan was and always will be the Legend of the tour, too much pressure was put on too young and he self destructed, there will be more Big Jans and Lances, but they wont do what Jan and Lance could

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posted Feb 26, 2007

One of the greatest riders ever to take part in the tour. I remember him climbing in the alps up the inside of the corners with no one else in sight. A fierce competitor who never had the luck of Armstrong, he will be missed.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

I feel sorry for Jan as he was not allowed to race in a post Armstrong Tour De France, but I also feel that from his track record of drug conviction in 2002 and his drink driving conviction, that he has allowed himself to stray again in the Operación Puerto doping case. He should just slide out of the public eye now and enjoy the fruits of his labours.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

I remember the first time I saw Jan, he was leaving his Tour bus to go to the start line of one of the 2002's Tour stages. He was quick to escape the mass of reporters and on his evading route he passed my father and I, we both shouted, 'GOOD LUCK JAN!' to which he replied in a deep German accent, 'TANK YOU', and rode off.

Jan Ullrich had a great career, it is commendable that he continually participated in the Tour de France for so many years. He had many wins and more famous second places. It is a shame that he feels the need to step away from his professional career, however, very understandable. Its good to know that he will keep involved in the sport.

Whether he was clean or not, he was a legend of cycling, a fighter and will go down in the history books as one of the greats.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

Ullrich's retirement is not a surprise. He's 33, hasn't raced in a year, and is being hounded by doping investigations.

I would have liked to see him carry on, if cleared. But it seems that wasn't going to happen anytime soon, if ever.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

Ullrich was a bit like the Gazza of cycling more talent than anyone, perhaps too much. It is a shame to see him retire so early when he could have been lighting up the protour for at least a couple more years.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

Well, let's see what happens in the future. Investigations still continue, and Ullrich failed last week to stop material being transferred from the Spanish investigators to Germany. I agree that Ullrich has to be considered innocent at this point, but my opinion is that he has done little to help the situation. Personally I commend T-mobile for their tough actions last year. It was not in their interest to suspend their top cyclists before the TdF, far from it.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

Jan was a very very tough and talented guy who was just unfortunate to be around in the era of Indurain and Armstrong. If those guys hadnt been around we would be surely hailing Jan as one of the all time greats.

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comment by lbergen (U6777621)

posted Feb 26, 2007

Ullrich will be remembered as a tradgic hero; his great potential lost to many battles with Lance......... and bad press. Much more is made of his weight, his off season antics and Oparacion Puerto; than his great athleticism. He stood on the podium 7 times; and surely would have again if Dick Pound didn't decide to declare people guilty on inference only.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

I'm sorry to see him go. I'd have loved to have seen him win one more TdF. Herzliche Grüße, Jan!

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posted Feb 26, 2007

It is a shame mostly that Ullrich did not get one more crack at the Tour de France, post-Armstrong. Something I was really looking forward to seeing but unfortunately now won't be the case. It was a joy to see him race these past years, especially of course for the 1997 victory. But also through some of those battles with Lance, some truly great sporting contests.

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posted Feb 26, 2007

I am so sad that Jan has retired from racing, not only is he a fantastic cyclist to watch looking far classier than anyone else around he has such a great personality and is IMHO very attractive. I will miss him.


Long Live Jan!

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posted Feb 26, 2007

What the hell is he doing?
I've loved Jan ever since i was young, I don't think he should retire at all he's not too old, he could easily win the next tour.
He was always in the shadow of Armstrong and then the so called "doping" which is not true, so why doesn't he prove all his critics wrong and win the tour again and finish on a high

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posted Feb 26, 2007

I've always been a fan of Jan's, and I'll miss him. It should be noted that his best performance at the TdF in recent years came when he was not riding for T-Mobile. Had he been riding all these years on a team that was less disfunctional, with a more focused agenda and(a la Postal/Discovery), we'd have seen some truely spectacular battles between he and Armstrong. T-Mobile always seemed to have 'too many cooks in the kitchen'. Jan, you were great fun to watch. Good luck, and have fun in this next chapter of your life.

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posted Feb 27, 2007

Ullrich's retirement might very well come at a time when he is seen as "too old" to be of interest to any pro teams looking to make a mark in the big tours, tainted by, as yet, unproven doping allegations,it's a great tragedy. Fans seem to quickly forget the emmense effort taken to simply finish a race of the magnitude of the TDF as many times as he did, second to Armstrong on 5 occasions, not to mention his accomplishments in so many other races. The man is unquestionably one of the greatest riders of the modern era of cycling, what an undignified end to a great career.

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posted Feb 27, 2007

Ullrich v Basso in the 2006 TdF will always be high on my list of great sporting might-have-beens. A colossal shame. And, yes, the race really regained its clean reputation without them didn't it sadface

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posted Feb 27, 2007

Feel very sorry that Jan is retiring somewhat on a downer.... It is the end of an era, after the great Indurain reign it was Lance Vs Jan and they were some great battles. He was up there every year and a shame for him that Lance was so much on top of his game every year. Jan you were a great rider and made the spectacle of the TDF a great one, doping aside only he knows. I can't see who is coming through now who will light up the 3 weeks as much as these guys have -and fear a return to a chracterless tour. Thanks Jan you're a top bloke!!

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posted Feb 27, 2007

Jan Ulrich is perhaps the greatest cycling talent in the world. However, without the full support of his T-Mobile team, he was never going to overcome the ruthlessness of the Lance Armstrong lead Discovery Channel team.

The loss of Jan from the peloton last year was a crushing blow to the man and his retirement was only a question of time.

I don't want to enter the guilty/not guilty debate but just want to remember the man who cause the TDF to light up with his constant attacks on the yellow jersey and his humility as he waited for Armstrong to return to the lead group after the latter was unseated

Good luck Jan...

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comment by Sam (U1650299)

posted Feb 27, 2007

I too will prefer to remember Ullrich such as when he waited for Armstrong also. That moment, although a tiny one, is still my fondest of the man, because it displayed a sporting morality which is lost in many other sports with a 'win at all costs' Schumacher-like attitude.

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posted Feb 27, 2007

Its interesting that a comparision is drawn with other GREAT bike riders because I dont think that he was viewed as such! When you saw him on a bike he was always riding in such an " uncomfortable " way and would be riding in very big gears - compared with those around him.his liking for the sport was never portrayed by media / team members as that of enjoyment! Even when he won the Worlds.

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posted Feb 27, 2007

End of an era with both Lance and Ulrich now gone but the writing was on the wall, he only just edged on to the podium on the last time trial in 05. Last year's tour was a huge anti climax with Ullrich and Basso out but we'll never get to the bottom of that business.

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posted Feb 27, 2007

I remember that day Ed. Wasn’t Jan one of the friendliest most charismatic of the riders. Its a great shame that he has had to go and if this is the price we have to pay lets hope its worth it. It's unbelievable that Basso has come out of all this smelling of roses although it must be said that neither has been found guilty of anything. OP, it is alleged, was just a way of the Spanish polititians diverting its attention from political issues at the time and to enable the media tycoon, by making the Spanish public turn away from cycling, to put even more rubbish on Spanish TV (we have still to here anything about the other sports supposedly connected with OP - and we know which they are and which teams are alledgedly involved dont we. Anyway at the end of the day we have a great clean British cycling renaissance going on - this year one of our men will win a classic, the prologue of the TDF and the British public won't be able to get enough of the beautiful sport. Then there's Nicole Cooke. See you on your bike in 2008. Papa.

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posted Feb 28, 2007

One of sports true personalities and a top guy (such as that time he stopped and waited for Armstrong). It's a real shame to see his career end in such a way. We'll miss him.

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posted Feb 28, 2007

Don't worry folks! Someone new will be along soon, the "greats" are just the best of their day.

I thought Ulrich was going to be another super-rider when he first appeared but it was not to be. Personally I think Joop Zoetemelk was much better than Jan was.

Now Coppi, Anquetil, Mercxx, Hinault & Armstrong all in one season that would be a race of the greats!

As to the drugs thing, doping is endemic in sport- no smoke without fire. The UCI's stance just makes cycling look bad because the other sports are secretive.

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posted Feb 28, 2007

Jan ullrich is an underachiever. Very talented, but does not have the brains or discipline to stay fit in the winter. What a waste of a career.

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posted Feb 28, 2007

Good riddance to Ullrich. This guy wasted a huge talent due to his sheer laziness in the winter and colossal appetite for junk food. Rather than send him off to a nice comfortable retirement, he should be tied by the hands to the rear of the Tour's publicity caravan and be dragged round route of this year's tour as an example to others.

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posted Feb 28, 2007

Jan is to cycling what George Best was to football – a huge talent but a wasted talent. In a flush of youthful enthusiasm he managed to stay focussed long enough to win a Tour de France. Once the fame and money started rolling in though he was distracted too much and didn’t give his all any more.

Even a huge talent like his can’t win a Tour de France (or similar) without putting in the required hours of dedication and commitment. He was famous for not training during the winters and starting the season looking more like a tubby club rider than a pro. It’s a shame because even good club cyclists know the importance of a “good winter” and are willing to make the sacrifices required by the sport. If they can do it at amateur level then why couldn’t Jan as a pro?

Lance used to say that if Jan could have come into the Tour in the shape he was in at the end then he’d have won every time. I think Lance would be the first to admit that he isn’t such a natural talent in the way Jan is. However what Lance had was a gruesome discipline of preparation which meant he could enter the Tour in his best possible form. Jan would pick up his form in the course of riding the Tour but without it being there at the start he’d have to put up with humiliations like Lance taking a minute out of him in the Prologue time trial.

The sad thing is that someone who is probably in the top 10 of natural cycling talents ever will not be remembered. In ten years time we’ll have fading memories of a fat bloke who couldn’t be bothered training and was lucky enough to win a Tour once. Lance on the other hand will be remembered and will go down in cycling history as an all time great. No offence to Lance but in my opinion that’s a tragedy.

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comment by Zebedee (U5109043)

posted Feb 28, 2007

Leestopford
Ullrich only rode the Tour once when Indurain rode which was the year Riis won.
He had a great talent unfortunately it was let down by stupidity at times i.e teh tablets in the nightclub incident.
Ultimately looking back at what he could have achieved and what he did achieve it's a talent that's been wasted.

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comment by Sam (U1650299)

posted Feb 28, 2007

If Ullrich wasted his talent, then the other 200-odd riders each year wasted theirs too! Looking at the stats, no other rider comes close in the Tour to Ullrich's consistent Tour podiums. So, either Ullrich is a freak of nature and could be this effective despite poor training, attitude and cake (sports science proves this to be very unlikely) or perhaps he just wasn't as good as the media and public believed him to be!

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posted Feb 28, 2007

AITheRoadie I completely agree with everything you said. A great natural cyclist who was all too frequently tempted by the celebrity-esque trappings that pro cycling on the continent holds.

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posted Mar 1, 2007

Ullrich was the most consistantly impressive tdf cyclist - apart from armstrong of modern times. Sure he was battling with his own demons and was always in Armstrongs shadow...but the results speak for themselves....and just think...had armstrong been convicted of doping ullrich could have been the greatest ever!!

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posted Mar 2, 2007

Ullrich did annoyingly under-achieve in his career but I think his main fault was he was a too nicer bloke. Although hughly talented he lacked tha killer instinct. Most succesful sportsmen (Roger Federer being the exception) are arrogant, self-opinionated and full of their own importance - like Lance Armstrong. I'm not saying that its wrong its part of what drives them to success. I'm not sure Jan could not be that way, I've never read a bad thing about the 'man', Jan Ullrich, only how 'nice' he is. As for the drugs - who knows? - if he did he wasn't the only one but he seems to be the only one very publically pursued by both authories and media, isn't this de-ja-vu, Marco Panatini style? Jan doesn't appear to be quite so fragile mentally and had friends and family around for support. So I say "Good Luck to you Jan and all the Best". I will definitely his legs come July.

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posted Mar 2, 2007

this is sad news - in my heart I hope he did not dope - whenever I am climbing, or racing in a TT I think of him - visualize myself as him, those legs tapping out tempo on a massive gear... inspiring me to humbly do better than before.

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