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Who's the Greatest English Speaking Rider Who Didn't Make It

DrumlinDrumlin Posts: 120
edited December 2012 in Pro race
Graham Jones, Joey McLoughlin, Darryl Webster all spring to mind. If only they'd had the support - and clean competition - that Brits get nowadays.
Would welcome company for Sat rides west/south of Edinburgh, up to 3 hrs, 16mph ish. Please PM me if interested/able to help.
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  • nweststeynnweststeyn Posts: 1,574
    Lance armstr..... argh sorry I can't do it.
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 20,476
    Arguably, Obree...
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • John Tanner, Matt Stephens, Chris Walker, Adrian Timmis, Chris Lillywhite
  • RichN95.RichN95. Posts: 24,073
    Hubert Opperman. Could have been a Tour winner.
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • tailwindhometailwindhome Posts: 15,475
    Froome - could have had 2 GTs by now. :wink: :roll:
    Believe that a farther shore
    Is reachable from here.
    Believe in miracles
    And cures and healing wells
  • ocdupalaisocdupalais Posts: 3,767
    Gethin Butler
  • Paul 8vPaul 8v Posts: 5,458
    ddraver wrote:
    Arguably, Obree...
    This ^
  • For me, I'd really like to have seen how far Chris Boardman could have gone on the road. He mnaged 2nd in the Dauphine so it wasnt as though he couldnt climb
  • Me!
  • For me, I'd really like to have seen how far Chris Boardman could have gone on the road. He mnaged 2nd in the Dauphine so it wasnt as though he couldnt climb

    eh? He had European seasons 1993-2000 ?
  • I think our two most talented riders who should have gone on to much bigger things are Newton and Manning
  • fearbyfearby Posts: 245
    Darryl Webster without a doubt. Class in spades.
  • For me, I'd really like to have seen how far Chris Boardman could have gone on the road. He mnaged 2nd in the Dauphine so it wasnt as though he couldnt climb

    eh? He had European seasons 1993-2000 ?


    Yeah, I was coming at it more from the angle of how much further he could have gone than being just being used for 7 mins every 3 weeks at the Tour. If the peloton had been clean I think he could have achieved a hell of a lot more than just the prologues (though not knocking that as achievement).

    For those who didnt make it, can we throw Mark Scanlon into the mix?
  • tailwindhometailwindhome Posts: 15,475
    Paul Kimmage













    :wink:
    Believe that a farther shore
    Is reachable from here.
    Believe in miracles
    And cures and healing wells
  • giropaulgiropaul Posts: 414
    There's some pretty harsh definitions of "didn't make it" here.

    Graham Jones - hugely respected Continental pro, palmares to match - I'd settle for 1% of that
    Joey McLoughlin - big wins in UK and in Europe, pro contract with ANC and Peugeot - health problems prevented him doing even more

    If what is really meant is didn't reach their potential, then Graham Webb would have to be in the top few, Joey certainly could have had more wins if his health had been better, Phil Thomas had the potential to win big Continental races - I saw him riding comfortably with de Vlaeminck etc, Grant Thomas oozed class, Paul Watson was a very classy rider, but after a short time with Hitachi decided to pursue (very succesfully) other career pathss - just the first few that come to mind. There were, and are, also riders who settle in France and Belgium, make a good living, but never get mentioned here in the UK - Nigel Perry for instance. Look in the results of the Pro kermesses in Belgium and there are a lot of UK riders getting up there. Peter Stevenson from the North-East rode for 7-11 and was a good pro, never recognised at home (now lives in Belgium and has a bike shop).

    The issue of clean racing is a red herring - the reason why many UK riders didn't go abroad in the 70s and 80s was more to do with the size of contracts they could get in the UK compared with what they'd start on abroad. Also, it wasn't as easy to commute back then, and living on a basic contract in Belgium wasn't a shed load of fun, when the Kelloggs etc at home would make you good money. The healthy UK calendar and comparitively good contracts meant little exposure of UK riders in the big races abroad, although when they did go (Malcolm Elliott - Amstel Gold, Paul Watson - Fleche, Joe Mcloughlin Ghent Wevelgem etc) they got noticed.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 50,594 Lives Here
    Paul Kimmage
    Ha.
  • mike6mike6 Posts: 1,199
    I can see where you are coming from with Graham Jones. He did well, but according to a lot of pundits he was a top class rider capable of winning the top races, but the DSs burned him out doing domestique duties for lesser riders. In today's climate he would have been a protected rider.
  • Malcolm Elliott. Not that he hasn't had two brilliant careers. But think what he could have done if the support and direction riders get now had been available first time around. Can sprint, climb, timetrial; came through that 1st awful unsupported ANC Tour de France extremely strongly despite the circumstances; was worked over for Amstel. Strong enough for the 3 week Tours (2 Tours, Vuelta points). Could he have been guided to ride the big mountains in the style Wiggo has done so well - I think so. Tactically astute, great positioning (even recently, that neat holding off of Kristian House for the Durham Halfords crit a couple of years ago). Lovely supple riding style from the track. Also managed to look cool in somewhat dodgy '80s kit.
    Reckon a Tour top 15/20 and definitely stage wins, plus a Classic or 2?
    If everything's under control, you're obviously not going fast enough.
  • edhornbyedhornby Posts: 1,780
    Ian Cammish ? That man had (still has) a serious engine
    "I get paid to make other people suffer on my wheel, how good is that"
    --Jens Voight
  • DrumlinDrumlin Posts: 120
    I've just remembered Dave Lloyd and Phil Bayton, their epic break in the 1973 Milan-San Remo...
    http://www.davelloydcoaching.com/galler ... n-san-remo
    Would welcome company for Sat rides west/south of Edinburgh, up to 3 hrs, 16mph ish. Please PM me if interested/able to help.
  • McLoughlin and Dave Lloyd both chargers...

    Anyway, my input: Paul Curran.
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • shinyhelmutshinyhelmut Posts: 1,345
    Wasn't there a chap on the team in Beijing who came home without a medal? Whatever happened to him? I remember thinking he looked like he had potential.
  • edhornby wrote:
    Ian Cammish ? That man had (still has) a serious engine


    Thats true, he was the god of time trialing when I was a nippper and almost untouchable.
  • Jamie Burrows?
  • Wasn't there a chap on the team in Beijing who came home without a medal? Whatever happened to him? I remember thinking he looked like he had potential.

    He came back for the London Olympics and didnt do too well so maybe he just can cut it at the top level after all? :lol:

    Seemed an ok track commentator though, maybe that is where he should concentrate his efforts
  • Dave_1Dave_1 Posts: 9,512
    Conor Henry. And a Scottish rider Andrew Young
  • ProssPross Posts: 24,213
    There were so many riders before BCs success who would have hit the big time with the support available today. Back then they would have had to make their own way at a big French or Belgian amateur club and hope they got noticed.

    To answer the question (although it is likely to be UK biased) I would like to have seen John Tanner have a crack at the continental scene as he dominated home based racing for years and it would have been good if Russ Downing had got a top level pro contract a few years earlier. Of non-UK English speakers I think Shane Sutton should have done bigger things. Obree would be a tempting pick but I just can't see him ever fitting into a pro racing team.

    Going off topic a bit but I'm sure we all have someone from our clubs who we feel could have made it to the pro ranks and comfortably held their own. I'm not going to be rash enough to say any of these would have been great riders but who knows? From my own club Dylan Williams would be my choice - in today's racing scene I reckon he could have been a climbing domestique at Sky. The best rider I've seen at my club with far more natural talent than Julian Winn had, finished 2nd (to Matthew Stephens) in the Gwent Junior 2 day which is now the Tour of Wales and has been won by juniors who have gone on to be top pros. He went to the wrong area of France as an amateur though and ended up racing a diet of kermesses when he was a little climber, I think Dave_1 raced with him quite a bit.
  • Dave_1Dave_1 Posts: 9,512
    Pross wrote:
    There were so many riders before BCs success who would have hit the big time with the support available today. Back then they would have had to make their own way at a big French or Belgian amateur club and hope they got noticed.

    To answer the question (although it is likely to be UK biased) I would like to have seen John Tanner have a crack at the continental scene as he dominated home based racing for years and it would have been good if Russ Downing had got a top level pro contract a few years earlier. Of non-UK English speakers I think Shane Sutton should have done bigger things. Obree would be a tempting pick but I just can't see him ever fitting into a pro racing team.

    Going off topic a bit but I'm sure we all have someone from our clubs who we feel could have made it to the pro ranks and comfortably held their own. I'm not going to be rash enough to say any of these would have been great riders but who knows? From my own club Dylan Williams would be my choice - in today's racing scene I reckon he could have been a climbing domestique at Sky. The best rider I've seen at my club with far more natural talent than Julian Winn had, finished 2nd (to Matthew Stephens) in the Gwent Junior 2 day which is now the Tour of Wales and has been won by juniors who have gone on to be top pros. He went to the wrong area of France as an amateur though and ended up racing a diet of kermesses when he was a little climber, I think Dave_1 raced with him quite a bit.

    I agree Pross. I raced with Dylan Williams in the Junior of Tour of Ireland...was lightly built guy and had the make up to be a great hill climber. Also, Matthew Postle was pretty fast as well. Coldra RC? I wasn't a fan of Evans but he was quick too. I think also David Cook was another who could have made it...Team Sky and current success makes it look like UK cyclists have only been good recently when infact there was great talents being passed over yearly through the llate 1980s to early 2000s.
  • ProssPross Posts: 24,213
    Dave, Matt Postle is allegedly making a comeback into the vets ranks next season - not looking forward to it! Dylan came back a couple of years back but seems to have given up again. John Evans (if that is who you meant) is now on the Canadian national teams coaching staff with Richard Wooles. I think he looks after the sprint team as a sort of soigneur.
  • Jamie Burrows?

    Another vote for Jamie. A mercurial talent who broke the record of Pantani up Plateau De Beille (sic) and was signed up by one of the biggest teams of the day. Probably was born around 10 years too late IMO.
    Plucking a few names from a while ago, Matt Stephens, David Rand and Bomber Harris would have been good pros given the opportunity and going back further Joey Mcloughin and Adrian Timmis showed glimpses of what could have been.
    A lot of guys were good enough to make it but for a long while English speakers weren't looked on favourably by foreign DS's in favour of Eastern European riders like Vinokourov, Kivilev, etc which makes the achievements of outliers like Jeremy Hunt, Roger Hammond and David Millar all the more impressive
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