Velogal's Blog

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Interesting to read that the Golden Boy of the Race2 Replace, AJ Smith, is now trashing the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling team because they hired Ivan Basso. You can go to the Link below to read the article that I saw.

Now I must admit that I did not follow the Race2 Replace at all - to me it was merely a fund-raising publicity item, with no real meaning as to seeking out the most talented amateur racer in the US. As a matter of fact, I doubt that any of them even entered. I may be wrong, but I think anyone who could pay the money could enter the event. I’m not even gonna call it a race, OK? Anyway, I heard that AJ sat in until the last minute and took the sprint to win the marketing event.

Now, I’m not knocking the Discovery Channel event, it was just as legitimate a fund-raising event as the Ride for the Roses, or a LiveStrong Ride, and it generated a lot of publicity for Indiana University Cancer Center’s research and for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, and maybe a bit of money. Good on it for that. I totally support that.

And the Discovery team really did open their arms to AJ, in addition to giving him a new Trek, a Discovery kit, a helmet, $500, and allowing him to ride with the team at the US Pro Championships. He got to hang out with the guys and was really buddy-buddy with them all, getting lots of hanger-on glory and publicity. And it sounds like the publicity catch phrase, “The next Lance Armstrong” really went to his head.

But now, the spotlight has dimmed, and what is he doing? Trashing the Discovery Channel team... In the Link article, AJ says that he has no interest in racing for the Discovery team now that they have hired Ivan Basso... No kidding, I think he really said that... And I think he was serious. Unbelievable.... He must have an ego the size of a Volkswagen with a moron driving it. Does this guy really think he would have even been considered as Pro rider by Johan? Give me a break, as John Stossle would say...

You’ll have to read the article, by Sharon Robb, wherein he calls cycling “the dirtiest sport in the world”, and goes on to say, "There is no other sport that even comes close to the amount of drug use that is going on. It is happening overseas and over here in the U.S. It is happening much more than anyone wants to talk about. It's ridiculous."

Then he goes on to brag about his accomplishments. Er... Ah.. Well, he won a Junior National sprint title at age 15... Junior Champion, hmm.... But, he sees himself in the Yellow Jersey at the Tour de France - he’s quite sure of it.

No matter, whatever he may lack (especially gratitude and class), it is not confidence, "But next year I am going to be a somebody ..... and the year after that I am going to be THE somebody.

"It's not even a question of whether it's going to happen ..... it's just a question of how long is it going to take. There is no doubt in my mind, it's already happened. I see myself wearing that yellow jersey."

Here is what Cathy Mehl wrote for The Paceline in her September 1, 2006 interview of AJ: “Looking a little like a kid in a candy store, AJ exudes enthusiasm for cycling and is grateful for his chance to ride in Friday’s championship race. The Paceline took a few moments to share AJ’s enthusiasm as he prepares for the most exciting race of his life on Friday.

“What kinds of memories and feelings do you think you’ll take away from this experience, AJ?

AJ: Oh, my God. Four months ago when I was sitting at home sulking and depressed because I was injured, if someone could have foreseen than I would be in this press conference or the one with Lance a few weeks ago, I would have said you were crazy, that there was no way I would be in this position. I am still having a little trouble believing it.

I just want to say I have no specific ambitions or expectations for my results Friday but I hope to put in a decent time and not embarrass myself. More than anything I feel it’s a real honor to be riding on the same course as these guys. I want to thank Discovery Channel for giving me this chance, and I hope it opens some doors for me in the future… “

Dude - You just closed quite a few doors with your mouth... “Honorary member of the Discovery Pro Cycling Team”? I don’t think so now.... Coached by Eki during the Race2 Replace - Nice photo op with Eki... Wonder what Eki thinks about you now? Dude, better be careful or you’re gonna get flicked bigtime one of these days....Especially in that dirty Europe, if you were ever to get there...


  • Thanks for putting into words what I was feeling. I read this article earlier and sat with my chin on the floor. This KID has alot of growing up to do. A lesson in how to make enemies and not influence friends?

    By Anonymous Joan, At 1:56 PM  

  • Don't worry, he ain't gonna get here.

    By Anonymous Europe, At 6:24 AM  

  • very good your blog

    continue !

    By Anonymous Vanker-Patrick, At 9:53 AM  

  • OK so Velonews has an open letter from AJ explaining his remarks. Says it was a 2 hr interview condensed and sensationalized by the interviewer (there are always two sides to a story). Make your own assumptions, I just don't know what to make of it.

    By Anonymous Joan, At 1:39 PM  

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